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An imaginatively titled Belgian thread...

An imaginatively titled Belgian thread...

Old Sep 12th 2019, 8:50 am
  #136  
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Default Re: An imaginatively titled Belgian thread...

La vie est belle.
That's really good to hear!
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Old Sep 15th 2019, 12:10 pm
  #137  
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Default Re: An imaginatively titled Belgian thread...

That’s great to hear.

As Ive now been a year here I’ll give an update as well. Completed my B2 Dutch now moving onto A1. Things are making sense when proper Dutch is spoken, but is it in west Vlaams?! Not really.

Ive finally given notice to the Navy. So by June next year I’ll be applying for job in BE. As a third country applicant probably giving other hurdles to jump through.

Overall I’m loving Brugge, it’s 10min from beach which is probably windy. Fondly reminds me of my childhood home in Cape Town. People are friendly and getting on good terms with the butcher and baker which starts making the neighbourhood feel like home.

Expecting our first soon, so we have had a good run down of medical procedures and things to expect. Just hope the little one arrives before I have to get back in the Eurostar.
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Old Nov 23rd 2019, 5:42 pm
  #138  
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Default Re: An imaginatively titled Belgian thread...

Had a visit to the town hall midweek to kick off the state pension (other countries) process. All they do is check that I really am who I say I am, which countries I'm due a pension from, sign this officially stamped document and Brussels will be in touch...

I am still reeling from the level of efficiency here.

Earlier today I received a message on our Whatsapp family group:



I thought that Annetje might have a chuckle at that.
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Old Nov 23rd 2019, 6:24 pm
  #139  
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Default Re: An imaginatively titled Belgian thread...

Originally Posted by BuckinghamshireBoy View Post
Had a visit to the town hall midweek to kick off the state pension (other countries) process. All they do is check that I really am who I say I am, which countries I'm due a pension from, sign this officially stamped document and Brussels will be in touch...

I am still reeling from the level of efficiency here.

Earlier today I received a message on our Whatsapp family group:



I thought that Annetje might have a chuckle at that.
Normal language to me .... It's the way I think nowadays !
Could you read it ? Sometimes I see a text on FB with all the words back to front ... No problem

Counting I always start of in English and then somewhere switch to dutch ... Never in French
My mother used to talk like that but then just French and Dutch (Seriously !).
And with my late husband I mixed English and Dutch.
You should try that at home, great fun ! And a good way to learn the language (If your partner translates the difficult bits for you).


No too sure I'm a nerd though, maybe just a bit weird ?
.
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Old Nov 23rd 2019, 8:11 pm
  #140  
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Default Re: An imaginatively titled Belgian thread...

Originally Posted by Annetje View Post
Normal language to me .... It's the way I think nowadays !
Could you read it ? Sometimes I see a text on FB with all the words back to front ... No problem

Counting I always start of in English and then somewhere switch to dutch ... Never in French
My mother used to talk like that but then just French and Dutch (Seriously !).
And with my late husband I mixed English and Dutch.
You should try that at home, great fun ! And a good way to learn the language (If your partner translates the difficult bits for you).


No too sure I'm a nerd though, maybe just a bit weird ?
.
We have done this at home for years, I used to try in the office in CH as well...

My response to that message was:



Agree that you're not a nerd

We do get some funny looks when we go shopping though, last weekend in Carrefour in Schoten was really funny, the cashier very quickly understood what was happening and joined in, mixing Dutch and English perfectly.
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Old Nov 23rd 2019, 9:35 pm
  #141  
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Default Re: An imaginatively titled Belgian thread...



Once we were sitting at a terrace drinking whatever with my mother, brother, sister and her son (Gambian) mixing languages, as one does.
Suddenly from the table next door came the question : ''Welke nationaliteit hebben jullie'' ?
Was a Dutch couple who had been listening for a while.
They shook their heads when we told them all the different nationalities we have in our family !
(Counting ....counting .... 7 ! , that's called cosmopolitan).
.
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Old Nov 24th 2019, 12:46 pm
  #142  
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You lot think you've got problems - we get funny looks speaking Hungarian, in Budapest!
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Old Dec 21st 2019, 9:24 am
  #143  
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Paging all those less than 170 cm tall!

Please report to your nearest Belgian Army base for enrollment as drivers / gunners for their newly refitted fleet of armoured cars!
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Old Feb 14th 2020, 9:36 pm
  #144  
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Default Re: An imaginatively titled Belgian thread...

Some things are going down very well here, some others not so.

On the not-so well front, I’m having a bit of a tussle with OCMW (CPAS en Francais) on the subject of volunteering, of all things.

I volunteer a couple of hours a week at my local community centre, co-hosting English (as what like she be spoke in Buckinghamshire, arr) conversational classes. Six months back I signed up, had my ID checked and submitted (for insurance purposes on their part), all good. I pitch up every Tuesday, pick up my list of attendees and (most importantly) my whiteboard markers, disappear upstairs and join this week’s gang for a couple of hours.

Last Tuesday I received my list of attendees, a somewhat depleted box of whiteboard markers , and another form to complete; they want (= insist on) paying me for my time spent. Which part of ‘volunteer’ do they not understand? That sets my topic for next week’s group meeting...

---

On the going well front, having signed up a couple of months ago at the Gemeente (town hall) for assistance in getting one’s pension(s) from foreign parts, I was rewarded by shedloads of paperwork from Brussels. I went as far as I could online, then hit the wall… OH couldn’t help see through it, nor could sis-in-law, who said probably best to go back to the town hall, which I did.

Bloody brilliant! My ‘handler’ was able to verify that all the stuff I’d done online so far was ok, then proceeded to fill in the paper bits that couldn’t be done online, and finished up with “oh no, don’t bother posting it, I’ll scan the lot and email it, it’s an efficient fast-path. If Brussels asks anything else, give us a call to fix another appointment to sort it.”

My handler’s email to Brussels was already in my inbox (with me in cc) before I got home…

Whoo-hoo!


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Old Feb 15th 2020, 9:51 am
  #145  
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Default Re: An imaginatively titled Belgian thread...

Had a similar experience when I first arrived here. A friend & erstwhile colleague asked if I would give 2/3 hours a week helping out at a new school to teach aviation English to budding pilots & air traffickers. I said I would be delighted to help out but when I said unpaid a look of horror & disbelief crossed his face. I pointed out that for me it would be fun, help me with my Hungarian, would exercise my brain - & from a financial perspective, being unpaid, preserve my "inactif" status with the tax authorities.

Worked out well in the end - one of his teachers comes here a couple of times a month to teach us Hungarian & improve her aviation English & iron out her delightful but very strong accent!

Everybody wins!
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Old Aug 16th 2020, 5:17 am
  #146  
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Default Re: An imaginatively titled Belgian thread...

Originally Posted by BuckinghamshireBoy View Post
We have done this at home for years, I used to try in the office in CH as well...

My response to that message was:



Agree that you're not a nerd

We do get some funny looks when we go shopping though, last weekend in Carrefour in Schoten was really funny, the cashier very quickly understood what was happening and joined in, mixing Dutch and English perfectly.
Hi Buckinghamshire Nice to see you have settled in to Belgian life so well... We used to call that speaking Nengels when we lived in the border country How I miss those Turnhout chocolates Altho they just wouldn't survive in these temps.. 34 deg today .Up until Senga Dog died in February we still used to mix languages ,as we spoke to her in Dutch. Now we have to add Portuguese to our lingo... OH is good..as usual... I am struggling
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Old Aug 16th 2020, 8:12 am
  #147  
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Default Re: An imaginatively titled Belgian thread...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Macaronic_language

I am sure this is one of the ways in which languages change and acquire new vocabulary items, borrowed from other tongues.
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Old Aug 16th 2020, 4:02 pm
  #148  
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Default Re: An imaginatively titled Belgian thread...

Originally Posted by GeniB View Post
Hi Buckinghamshire Nice to see you have settled in to Belgian life so well... We used to call that speaking Nengels when we lived in the border country How I miss those Turnhout chocolates Altho they just wouldn't survive in these temps.. 34 deg today .Up until Senga Dog died in February we still used to mix languages ,as we spoke to her in Dutch. Now we have to add Portuguese to our lingo... OH is good..as usual... I am struggling
It's going very well, thank you, apart from maybe... the language.

I hit the wall, by going too fast, too soon. It seems that I have trouble 'disconnecting' from French when it comes to grammar and general constructs resulting in a complete mess. Back to the drawing board, after having found a new plan.

Originally Posted by scot47 View Post
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Macaronic_language

I am sure this is one of the ways in which languages change and acquire new vocabulary items, borrowed from other tongues.
I figured that there had to be a recognised term for this, thank you for posting that link.

-----

I am at last in receipt of my Swiss state pension, bang on time (against all odds) and with no help whatsoever from UK GRO. After the initial 'handshake' between Swiss and Belgian social services, the Swiss then targeted me directly, demanding paper copies of tons of stuff, some of which I had, others that I had to order from GRO.

Ever efficient, the Swiss followed up a month later - "you have 30 days to supply the requested documents, or we'll archive your pension application". I chased GRO and was basically told to sod off - they blamed Covid for the delay. I forwarded that reply to the Swiss, asking if it was worth sending what documents I had, and was told to scan and email everything. At which point my Swiss 'gene' woke up, so I did just that, organised the 16 documents logically into 4 separate emails, each email with detailed explanatory notes. This exercise took most of a weekend.

By Monday lunchtime I had received an email saying ok, that's good, you can stop now. One month later a letter arrived detailing their calculations, and a month after that - last week - the first payment landed in the bank account.

My request to GRO for the documents was made April 6th; today it is still "in progress", estimated completion date April 29th...
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Old Aug 16th 2020, 4:10 pm
  #149  
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Default Re: An imaginatively titled Belgian thread...

Originally Posted by BuckinghamshireBoy View Post
It's going very well, thank you, apart from maybe... the language.

I hit the wall, by going too fast, too soon. It seems that I have trouble 'disconnecting' from French when it comes to grammar and general constructs resulting in a complete mess. Back to the drawing board, after having found a new plan.


I figured that there had to be a recognised term for this, thank you for posting that link.

-----

I am at last in receipt of my Swiss state pension, bang on time (against all odds) and with no help whatsoever from UK GRO. After the initial 'handshake' between Swiss and Belgian social services, the Swiss then targeted me directly, demanding paper copies of tons of stuff, some of which I had, others that I had to order from GRO.

Ever efficient, the Swiss followed up a month later - "you have 30 days to supply the requested documents, or we'll archive your pension application". I chased GRO and was basically told to sod off - they blamed Covid for the delay. I forwarded that reply to the Swiss, asking if it was worth sending what documents I had, and was told to scan and email everything. At which point my Swiss 'gene' woke up, so I did just that, organised the 16 documents logically into 4 separate emails, each email with detailed explanatory notes. This exercise took most of a weekend.

By Monday lunchtime I had received an email saying ok, that's good, you can stop now. One month later a letter arrived detailing their calculations, and a month after that - last week - the first payment landed in the bank account.

My request to GRO for the documents was made April 6th; today it is still "in progress", estimated completion date April 29th...
GRO are a disgrace. I had to obtain several certificates back in 2018 and eah one was late (against their quoted timescale) and each one had to be chased. Quick enough to take the money though. RAF however, very good. More interesting - my Wife had to apply for her Father's birth certificate from the Dutch, arrived practically by return of post, before payment was sent!
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Old Aug 17th 2020, 7:45 am
  #150  
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Default Re: An imaginatively titled Belgian thread...

Originally Posted by BuckinghamshireBoy View Post
... estimated completion date April 29th...
I guess they did not specify which year?
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