Today, TT and I had our last meeting. If Covid-19 hadn’t happened, we would probably have gone out for some drinks but now that obviously didn’t work.
We had a recap of our last 9 meetings and talked about how we liked this class in general. We both agreed that we liked the cultural aspects the best as it was very interesting to see the differences and similarities in our cultures. The vocabulary parts were interesting as well but especially since I went home, I didn’t have the chance to speak Finnish anywhere else than in the meetings with TT which is why I didn’t enjoy it quite as much as the cultural meetings.
We also talked about Vappu as we originally had plans to go out together. TT told me about the Vappu traditions (drinks, munkki…) and who knows maybe I’ll come back to Finland next year to celebrate it myself.
Furthermore, we told each other how Corona effects our life right now and what restrictions are in place in Germany and Finland. Through that we got to the topic of the differences in our healthcare systems.
It was a nice last meeting, as we talked about a lot of different stuff and things that were on our minds.
Moikka, pysykää terveinä. (Bye, stay safe/ healthy.)
TT and I talked about the different words for different stores that you may need when wanting to make out a meeting point with someone. We also felt like these words are important when you travel in the respective country if you need to find a hotel (=hotelli), a doctor (lääkäri), a pharmacy (apteekki) or a supermarket (supermarketti).
We also talked about other places like restaurant (ravintola), library (kirjasto), club (klubi), church (kirkko), hospital (sairaala), cinema (elokuvateatteri) and university (yliopisto).
For me the Finnish word for university of applied sciences was especially hard to remember, just because it is so long: ammattikorkeakoulu!
Some of the words I already knew, partly because bus stations are named after it (f.ex. yliopisto) or in the case of ravintola because the cafeteria at TAMK is also named ravintola. Other words are similar to the English or German word like hotelli, pubi or baari, which makes it easy for me to remember.
All in all, these words can be very useful for us and I’m glad we talked about it.
Because last week was Easter, TT and I decided to talk about our Easter traditions. (Also: Happy Easter, or as it goes in Finnish Hyvää pääsiäistä!) Because we both grew up with a Christian background the Easter traditions are quite similar.
Easter is a time where you spend a lot of quality time with your family for both of us. While here in Germany stores are closed on the holidays (which in this case include Good Friday, Easter Sunday and Easter Monday), stores in Finland remain open.
In Germany, on the day before Easter we always have huge bonfires but in Finland the day is quite uneventful. However, TT’s family had the tradition that the kids would put a hat next to their bed in the evening and then during the night the rooster would come and bring chocolate eggs or small gifts from the grandparents.
On Sunday, they would wake up and find their chocolate. Also, they have an Easter lunch where they traditionally eat lamb and chicken with different vegetables like asparagus. The traditional Easter dessert is called Mämmi and is being eaten with cream or vanilla sauce. You can see a picture of it below.
I wish I was still in Finland to try this although I gotta admit that it doesn’t look that appealing…
Easter Monday is again just about family time and eating good food.
Moikka täältä saksasta!
Today, TT and I had another facetime meeting. Because the weather in Germany was going crazy all day, we decided to talk about the weather and the seasons.
I still remembered the seasons (kevät, kesä, syksy, talvi) from my Finnish class from last semester but I didn’t know how to talk about the weather yet.
Now I can have basic small talk conversations in Finnish about the weather. If someone asks me how the weather is (Mikä sää?), I can answer in a very basic manner now (On tuulista. / On aurinkoista. / Sateinen sää.).
I had great fun teaching TT about the weather as she thought some of the words sounded hilarious and we laughed a lot about the pronunciation.
Due to the Corona pandemic, I flew home at the end of last week, so TT and I are continuing our meetings over FaceTime now.
Today we talked online. Of course the big topic is the COVID-19 virus. TT updated me on the situation in Finland, that the Uusimaa area is getting closed for 3 weeks and I have to say that I am glad I decided to come home, as now I wouldn’t even have that choice anymore as I couldn’t get to the airport anymore.
We also talked about the different consequences in Germany and in Finland. Obviously, because Germany has a lot more inhabitants than Finland and because there are a lot more Corona cases (in Germany there are over 40.000 as of yesterday while Finland still „only“ has around 1000 cases), the daily life looks quite different for us now.
I told TT about the new regulations here in Germany, that you are not allowed to meet more than one other person outside anymore and if you breach the regulations you have to pay high fines. In the worst case, if you organize parties with more than 10 people you can even go to prison.
We both agreed that we think it is unlikely that the university will open up again after easter but we are both curious to see what happens.
We hope that all of you guys out there are safe!
Today, TT and I met to talk about Finnish and German music. First, I showed TT all the different genres and songs I like in German (which took some time as I listen to a lot of different German music).
The one German artist she already knew is Rammstein so I introduced her to German Schlager (Helene Fischer), Folk music (Santiano), Rap (Kontra K, SXTN), old Rock (Die Ärzte), Pop (Pur), older music my parents always listened to when I was younger (Udo Jürgens) and the songs I listen to at the moment (Alligatoah, Feine Sahne Fischfilet). We also briefly talked about what the songs are about.
She enjoyed at least some of the songs^^
Afterwards TT showed me some Finnish songs. I already knew some songs for example Levoton Tuhkimo by Dingo.
We started with songs that are originally English but translated to Finnish like Kalajoen Hiekat (California Dreamin’) and Oon voimissain (I will survive), then she showed me some songs that she likes to listen to (Matkustaja, Sata salamaa) and afterwards some Finnish Rap (JVG). We also listened to some female artists like Abreu and some older Finnish artists like Olavi Virta.
In my opinion Finnish sounds surprisingly good in songs which is why I put some of them to my Finnish playlist on Spotify. 🙂
This was a great meeting and we had a lot of fun talking about the content of the different songs and listening to the songs together.
Yesterday, TT and I met at my place to talk about food and we made German lentil soup. We made a vegetarian version for me but also put sausages into TTs to make it authentic German.
TT enjoyed the food. While cooking we discussed food related vocabulary. While doing so we realized that while some words are very similar in Finnish/German/English so for example Banane= banaani or Gurke= kurkku, others were pretty different (what a surprise with Finnish^^). I for example learned that bread is leipä and juusto means cheese.
While eating we decided that we are going to talk about music the next time as we were already listening to some music while eating.
Today, TT and I met at Espresso house for our third meeting.
We taught each other the 10 most important verbs in Finnish and German. Some verbs we still knew or at least remembered from our classes before but even for those it was nice to go over it again and work on pronounciation.
The 10 verbs we talked about are to be, to do, to speak, to live, to read, to love, to eat, to drink, to go and to learn.
At the end I also learned some useful sentences that stay in context with the verbs, for example that “Minulla on nälkä” means “I’m hungry” or “I love you” is “Minä rakastan sinua”.
Now we will have to study the verbs individually so that we can start using them in sentences.
Today, TT and I got together at the Ravintola Puisto for our 2nd meeting.
We mainly focused on useful phrases today, ranging from sentences you need to introduce yourself (f.ex. Minä olen 21 vuotta vanha.) to phrases you need around the different holidays like “Hyvää syntymäpäivää!” or “Hyvää pääsiäistä!”. We also focused on the right pronunciation of these sentences, which was a bit of a challenge but in the end we both did pretty good.
We also came up with some plans for future meetings. We want to cook traditional Finnish food including reindeer meat and I am still trying to come up with some typical German dish we could enjoy together. Also, we are planning to go to a Finnish party together and I already learned today how to order a beer without letting everyone know that I am not Finnish: “Yksi olut, kiitos.”
Today TT and I had our first meeting. We met at her place and bonded over some waffles. While enjoying our food we talked about basic Finnish and German vocabulary concerning food. I for example learned that strawberries are mansikat in Finnish and knife and fork is called veitsi ja haarukka . In general we got an overview about each others existing knowledge of the respective language.
We had a great kick-off meeting and will meet again next Wednesday for coffee and will discuss useful everyday phrases then.