It is, actually, a challenge to live with forty people that speak a different language. Learning Dutch is, without a doubt, one of my goals for his project.
‘Wakker worden!’ is the first step in the Dutch life – wake up.
‘Goedemorgen’, ‘hoe gaat het’, ‘dankjewel’, ‘wacht’, ‘lekker!’ and ‘slaap lekker’ are some of the words and expressions that I hear (and understand) during the day. Day after day, a new word is added to my brain dictionary.
After almost a month of being on board, I can understand some basic words and expressions. Everyone is very nice and is explaining me new words and things about the Dutch culture every day. For example: Sinterklaas, something that I had never heard about. This year I’m going to celebrate Sinterklaas for the first time (and at sea!). I’m going to eat pepernoten and chocoladeletters! However, in a few moments during the day, I really feel like wanting to hear some Portuguese, like, wanting things to be easier.
But then I think: School at Sea is a challenge in itself. Not knowing Dutch is, indeed, hard, but I really think that it is a very good reward to be able to tell my Portuguese friends some Dutch words after these six months. Maybe I’ll even be able to have a conversation, in Dutch, with my friends from the Netherlands! And maybe I’ll have a better idea of what it is like to live in another country.
I’m really looking forward to keep working on my Dutch! Tot ziens!