Category Archives: Language

Understood Imperfections

I haven’t shared any language-related posts in quite some time. In the past, I’ve share some of our misunderstandings and blunders, as well as some words we find useful or just really like.

But sometimes we stumble upon things we realize are simply not the same between our two languages, English and Norwegian. And that’s what I’m sharing today. Continue reading Understood Imperfections

NWotD: Today, it’s all about LOVE!

Kjærlighet
(noun) love.å elske
(verb) to love.


Used in a sentence
Kjærligheten bli tålmodig og vennlig.
(From 1 Corinthians 13: Love is patient and kind.)
Elsk din neste like høyt som du elsker deg selv.
(From Matthew 22: Love your neighbor as yourself.)

Thoughts on the word(s)
I think it is fantastic that there are two different words for love: a noun and a verb. I have often reminded our boys – or myself – that love is not just a noun, but also a verb. That they can say they love each other, but their actions show how they feel. In Norwegian, it is quite a bit easier!

What are your thoughts on this? Have you ever learned another language? When speaking of love, does it use the same word for both the noun and the verb?

NWotD: lege

Lege
(noun) doctor.Used in a sentence
Daniel besøkte legen i går.
(Daniel visited the doctor yesterday.)

Related words
Fastlege: general practitioner
Tannlege: dentist
Legevakt: ER/emergency room/emergency services

Related to us
Daniel had his first Norwegian checkup today. Everything went well. We really like our family doctor/GP. He is patient with our bad language skills, and seems to be quite thorough. A couple of things that were interesting to us and quite different from our experience in the states:

  1. He introduced himself by first name. No formal titles here!
  2. He was wearing a white t-shirt and dark blue scrub pants – no shirt & tie with white lab coat!
  3. We waited about 2 minutes to be called back. And the doctor called us back.
Have you ever visited a doctor in another country? Did you notice differences from your home country?

Language Confused: Hate

It’s always good to know how to introduce yourself. This is one of several key phrases we focused on before arriving in Norway.

ADVICE: don’t merely depend on your reading skills when learning a new language. You really need to hear it from a native speaker. Say it back and let them have the freedom to correct you.

We thought we were doing great. But sometimes we would get strange looks. Apparently, as we later figured out, Zack was saying something that sounded more like “I hate Zack.”

 

Language Confused: Tire Dilemma

Here in Norway, we have two sets of tires for our cars: summer tires and winter tires. We have almost no storage space here, other than one closet outside of our front door (yes, one closet in our entire house – that’s a lot different from where we lived in the US). So, like many here, we have to take the extra tires to a tire storage facility.Literally, a tire hotel. It’s also where you can buy tires. But basically, you pay to store them and to have them changed out twice a year.

So we’re there, waiting on the guy who’s doing the paperwork. Another guy walks up to me and asks if he could help me.

Here’s the thing I’ve mentioned before: you typically rehearse dialogue before completing a task. Well, we’d already used all of that dialogue with the other guy, so I’d kind of filed it away.

And in my haste to answer him, instead of saying I’m here about tire storage, I tell him that “I am a tire hotel.”

Language Confused: You’re hanging up what?!?!

Zack had been working with the landlord, trying to get the bathroom remodel completed before my mom and step-dad came to visit. In a process like that, you hear and begin to learn vocabulary you haven’t used before.Like the word for moldings.

We were visiting with friends, but it was time to leave. Zack was excited to speak in Norwegian as he told his friend he needed to go and hang molding (trim) on the walls. Only he didn’t say that.

No, Zack was going home to hang lust on the walls.

Life Lesson: learn to laugh at yourself!

NWotD: Familie

Familie
(noun) Family.Used in a sentence
Familie er viktig for meg.
(Family is important to me.)

Related words
Far: father
Mor: mother
Sønn: son
Datter: daughter
Bror: brother
Søster: sister

Related to us
We are very excited that Zack’s brother and sister-in-law had their first child, a son!
Vi er veldig glade for at Zacks bror og svigersøster har fått sitt første barn, en sønn!

Liebe Gruß and Language Formalities/NwotD

When our friends Jeff & Deanna lived in Germany, they were taught the proper way to end a conversation. It included a greeting to your family, friends, etc. And they quickly learned that it was quite important and could be considered rude when not used.

So Jeff’s question was this: Is there any formal or informal greeting or salutation in Norwegian?

There are things that are appropriate to say, but so far we haven’t learned anything that would be considered rude if we didn’t say.

Here are some helpful greetings and phrases.

For a greeting you might say

  • Hei!
  • Hei hei!
  • Hallo!

Often after this, you will say

  • Takk for sist! It means thanks for the last time – basically acknowledging our last meeting. It could possibly be compared to an English phrase like “good to see you again.”

If you are welcoming a guest into your home, you might say

  • Velkommen til oss! Straight translation: welcome to us.

As you are departing, you can say

  • Ha det bra! Taken word by word, it literally translates have it good. But this is the word we would use like good-bye.
  • You can also say Ha det, a shortened form.

And many times in your departure, you may choose to say one or two of these

  • Takk for oss! (Thanks for us)
  • Takk for i dag! (Thanks for the day)
  • Takk for i kveld! (Thanks for the evening)
  • Hils familien! (Greet your family)
  • Vi ses snart! (similar to See you soon!)