Language confusion

I am officially language confused.

I’ve had a few instances of this during the semester already, usually when I’m writing a message or e-mail to an English-speaking person. When usually happens is that I’ll accidentally write a Norwegian word that’s similar to the English word; for example, writing “dag” instead of “day.”

The language confusion has recently grown worse, however.

Over the past few days I’ve been writing and reading a lot of Norwegian because I’ve been regularly contacting two Norwegians. I write to them in Norwegian, mostly without the help of Google Translate, and they respond in Norwegian. I’ve also been randomly reading some articles in Norwegian on the web, and I’ve ended up on some tour pages in Norwegian.

Seeing so much Norwegian lately means that yesterday I started talking to myself in Norwegian. That was weird. Even weirder was the fact that last night, one of my dreams was in Norwegian.

TOO MUCH NORWEGIAN.

But then today I went to the grocery store to buy some food. When I went to check-out, the cashier happily greeted me, saying, “Hei.”

I responded with “hello.”

Why didn’t I speak Norwegian there? I can’t explain it, especially because the Norwegian word for “hello” is almost identical. It’s not as if it’s difficult or anything. For some mysterious reason, my brain just went straight to English.

The cashier then commented on one of the items I bought, which was a word that is identical to the English word. I could have redeemed myself here and said something in Norwegian, but again, my brain just continued with the whole English thing. Even better, the only thing I responded with was, “yes.”

Seriously?!

I can explain my lack of ability to say something intelligent in English because of this music paper. I’ve been cooped up in my room for the past few days just writing, with no social interactions other than those over the Internet/Skype. Whenever this happens, my ability to interact with people degrades to the point of being nonexistent.

But still, I know what “yes” is in Norwegian. Just… really.

The cashier scanned all my items and then asked if I wanted a bag (don’t know if I’ve mentioned this, but here in Norway, you have to buy plastic bags at grocery stores–they’re not free). Know what I responded with?

“Nei,” the Norwegian word for “no.”

Good work brain, let’s just switch languages randomly in the middle of a conversation.

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4 responses to “Language confusion

  1. Last semester I started writing in Spanish on my programming exam (after studying for days for my Spanish exam). xD I had to go back and change everything to English. lol

  2. Hey nice post. I noticed that you’ve change you blog’s layout, I like both of them cause they’re simple and catch my attention. I’m wanting to learn Spanish and then Norwegian but I realize that to ace the right sounds in Norwegian language is hard. I’m guessing you learnt it at some point too. Do you have any tips or comments for me regarding this? 🙂

    • Hm… I think the best thing you can do is just practice the sounds over and over again. I sat with my Norwegian friend for the longest time just saying “ø” over and over until she finally told me that I had it. The only thing you can really do is train your brain and face to move the way you want them to. There aren’t too many difficult sounds in Norwegian (at least I didn’t think so), so you shouldn’t have too many problems with it 🙂 good luck! And thanks for visiting! 🙂

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