This time we met at mine to make a German sandwich dish called Strammer Max. The dish was very easy to make and tasted great. My language partner said that this is a dish Germans usually eat when people come and help you move out. I enjoyed it a lot.
Before we met I wrote down my favourite travel destinations in Germany for a trigger. On our meeting I asked my partner to check out these destinations and name I few recommendations himself. Turned out most of the destinations I picked were in the South of Germany. My language partner is from the North of Germany, so I got a few recommendations where to go in the North too. For example he suggested to go to Pullman City which is a recreation of a Western Town (cowboys, country music etc). From then on we talked about how many states, islands our countries have and what our countries look like on a map. I told my language partner about our 2222 islands and that we have the longest ice road in Europe.
Although I thought I had learnt about Germany and its states in school, a lot was entirely new for me. I also learnt that Bavaria is the equivalent to Bayern. I had thought they were two different states.
Picture represents a Strammer Max. From Wikipedia.
On Sunday we got together at my language partners place. I decided to cook something that has been my childhood favourite dish – buckwheat and cottage cheese. I also brought some Estonian chocolate with kama and found that Prisma sells an Estonian based kohuke (curd snack). During cooking we exchanged some famous songs from each of our countries.
Hearing my language partner and his flatmates speak German to me was very exciting, since I haven’t practised it for ages. I was surprised at how much I understood, even though sometimes the meaning of the texts arrived to me a bit late. I was too scared to answer in German myself this time. I could tell that my accent would be horrible. However, I have decided to at least try and speak German on our next meet-up.
To my language partner I taught the Estonian names of the food we had (tatar, kohuke, kama). However mainly we talked about our culture differences and some common grounds. We even managed to slightly cover such topics as politics and religion. I got to ask questions about some things my German teacher in school had taught and to check their accuracy. Listening to our countries songs anyway, I got a chance to also introduce my country’s anthem and translate it. I also introduced a massive event – Estonia’s Song Festival, which has held a special place in the hearts of Estonians and also touched the hearts of some foreigners.
I definitely learnt to be more confident in my German skills and step out of my comfort zone. I also thoroughly enjoyed listening to the uniquenesses of Germans and their culture.
This picture depicts the Estonian curd snack called kohuke.
(The picture is taken from flickr: https://www.flickr.com/photos/anuwintschalek/8553573899)