Friday, 2 December 2011


My norwegian is improving now that I'm working but I'm still making the stupidest mistakes. Sometimes I lie in bed at night thinking about all the cringe-worthy things I said at the barnehage that day (whilst Henrik pisses himself laughing)
There are three words that I often mess up:
pølse (pronounced pulsa)= sausage
pose(pronounced poosa)=bag
pause(pronounced powsa)=break, as in half an hour break from your job etc
Now these three words are used frequently in my everyday life but I keep on muddling them up.
The busiest time at work is when we are getting 18 children ready to go and play outside. Norwegians take the weather very seriously and these children are dressed properly in any weather.On this particular day it was cold,wet and windy so we were dressing children in woolen trousers and tops,padded all in one suits,rain clothes on top,scarves,wellies,gloves and hats so it's a busy time. I needed a plastic bag to put some wet clothes in, so asked my lovely colleague, "Kan jeg få en pause?" to which she replied that we were really rather busy right now so it was not a good time to take a break!!!! I'd stupidly asked for a break rather than a bag!
Uff! I did not live this down for the rest off the day but I'm learning to accept that mistakes like this will continue to haunt me as I'm trying to nod off to sleep for the next few months.....


  1. Yesterday, I asked for a "påse", which I don't think really means anything at all! (as a noun, anyway). You are SO not alone on those!

  2. Great one! I am sure there will be more, as long as it is not rude then it is ok (or I guess it will be even funnier if you said a rude word :-) )

  3. And like that, our daily lives have mysteriously become identical. And this whole thing about wool followed by: regndress/snødress/vinterdress/parkdress- important business.

  4. p.s. in regards to Emily's comment: "påse" means "bag" in our part of the country. Yet another word to screw up.

  5. Oh dear! Well, maybe it was better than asking for a sausage? One of my best friend's is Norwegian but all I can say is 'takk'!

  6. So funny! But I am so impressed with your Norwegian. I lived in Holland for 7 years and operated 80% in English.

  7. haha! I remember having this exact problem when I first moved here. Norwegians thought I was crazy that I couldn't hear the difference, but it still took me many months to finally distinguish the sounds (and say the right word when I meant to).

  8. I was always so bad at that part of working at a Barnehage. The other workers would have dressed a couple kids and I would just barely manage one! =) When I was a vikar I was bad and spoke in English to the other workers. I now wish I hadn't then I would have learned more. I think when I say the last two they sound a like.
    Love your blog! Klem, dd