The blushing foreigner….


While writing this I am looking at our collection of ‘learn your self……….’ books. From where I am sitting I can see:

  • Learn yourself Norwegian
  • Learn yourself Italian
  • Learn yourself French
  • Learn yourself German
  • learn yourself Spanish

Ben has an unhealthy obsession for anything Japanese, so I’m sure it won’t be long until ‘learn yourself japanese’ will be up there. We don’t just have one of each either. These come in a variety ways:

  • Learn italian in a day
  • French for dummies
  • Learn Italian in a week (they must have realised they were pushing it in a day)
  • The complete phrase book (we have this one quite a few times)
  • Conversational Spanish…..

It just goes on and on….. and to add to these we also have around 20 audio cds to accompany the books.

I know what you must be thinking…. impressive. Emma can make herself understood in the native tongue of what ever country she is in. Nope, unfortunately not. I do not speak a word of any other language. Before I came out here I said I was going to make an effort to learn Norwegian…. and I will, but I am under no illusions that when I leave here I will speak it as well as my English language, because I won’t. This won’t be from want of trying. Norwegians speak perfect English. Walk into any shop, cafe, restaurant and speak slow drawn out English so they can understand and they will smile and reply in a confident American accent. They almost look excited at the thought of being able to speak in English.

But none of this is bothering me. The fact that I don’t speak a word of any other language isn’t the problem, my problem is that I am struggling to speak English.

Ever since I can remember I have always blushed. Not slightly where my cheeks go a little rosy, no… this is full on crimson red. This starts in my cheeks then works its way around the whole of my face, neck and I’m guessing (I can’t be too sure about this) but my body too. It usually happens when I am embarrassed about something, if I have tripped over, said something stupid, knocked several cans of beans off a shelf. But since moving here the blushing has gone to a whole new level. I now seem completely incapable of going anywhere and communicating with folk. Just the other day Paul and I were queueing in the local supermarket and I noticed that the lads behind us only had a bottle of pop to pay for, where as we had a huge basket of items. So in long broken English I told them to go before us, of course they understood me perfectly smiled and said thank you. I then stood there glowing like a big red beacon…. Paul took this opportunity to take the piss leaving me going even more redder than I thought possible. This has happened to me several times….. its got to the point where I’m faking illness’ just to get out of entering a shop. So the other day before we went shopping, I gave myself a talking to. I then proceeded to walk around the supermarket looking like Spud from Trainspotting.

So before I master this beautiful Norwegian language I seriously need to get a grip and learn to speak English again.

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