I don’t consider myself a foreigner here in Finland anymore. I’ve lived here since July 1998 (15 years). I’m used to (most of) the ways of life, living and people in Finland. It just feels right. If anything, I feel more foreign when I am “home” in the US.
This morning I heard two obvious foreigners speaking Finnish with each other on the bus. It makes me smile and I think it is great to hear foreigners speaking Finnish, at all levels. Especially ones you know are not native to Finland. These two now have common language between the two of them who normally wouldn’t have a common language.
I am by no means 100% fluent in Finnish, but I do speak and write the language decently well. I get by, to say the least. I have done all of my IVF treatments in Finnish (with an explanation or two in English for further clarification, after it was said in Finnish), I go to doctors’ appointments for myself and Paxlet, the store, talk in Finnish at work in person and phone (although mostly in English). I survive.
It may have taken me ages to get where I am in my language skills with Finnish, due
partly mostly to laziness. Especially as I don’t consider myself to be good at learning languages. But I sure enjoy the little idiosyncrasies of languages.
Piece of cake = helppo nakki (easy hotdog*/wienie/fankfurter)
Okay, okie dokie = selvä pyy (It’s clear partridge)
Slowly, little by little, bit by bit = pikku hiljaa (little quiet)
Kill two birds with one stone = lyödä kaksi kärpästä yhdellä iskulla (Hit two flies with one hit)
Like two peas in a pod = Kuin kaksi marjaa (Like two berries)
A slip of the tongue = Päästää sammakko suustaan (To let a frog out from oneself’s mouth)
*When someone says “hotdog”. What do you envision? The ‘dogs’ themselves or a ‘hotdog and a bun’?
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