the sounds of Dutch

(I think it works. Maybe.)

A while back, Ted’s parents told us that some of his relatives were interested in hearing what the Dutch language sounds like. I’m trying something new here, which is both a technical and a linguistic challenge. The link below is a sound file of me reading the summary of our latest Dutch lesson. This lesson taught us the past perfect tense (which is apparently what Dutch speakers most often use even where English speakers use the simple past tense). Verbs are given a ge- prefix, which can make them even harder to pronounce. So if this works, what you are hearing is me trying to pronounce Dutch. I make no claims as to whether it’s what the words in question are actually supposed to sound like. (Also, don’t be surprised if it takes me a few tries to get the audio file working properly.)

Here’s the original:

Het is sondagavond. Het weekend is al weer voorbij. Karin Koenen belt haar vriendin Carolien Vogel om te kletsen over het weekend. Karin is gisteren met haar moeder naar de stad geweest. Ze hebben gezellig met z’n tweeën gewinkeld. Karin heeft een gat in haar hand maar toch heeft ze niets gekocht: haar moeder heeft een jas gekocht en Kaarin heeft schoenen gekregen. Ze hebben ook nog koffie gedronken bij cafe Bommel. Heel tovallig is Carolien daar zaterdag ook geweest. Zij heeft s’morgens eerst de krant gelezen. Daarna heeft ze getennist en nog iets gedronken in cafe Bommel. Op weg nar huis heeft Karin boodschappen gedaan want s’avonds had ze een etentje thuis. Haar collega Jeff Wilson en zijn vrouw Alice hebben bij haar gegeten. Ze heeft een visschotel met gebakken aardappelen en salade gemaakt. Het was lekker én gezellig. Carolien heeft een heel sportief weekend gehad. Tennissen, skeeleren in het Vondelpark en wandelen met haar zus en haar nichtje. Dan moet Karin plotseling ophangen want ze krijgt nog een andere lijn. Dat is Henk.

And a translation – I’ll put it in grammatic English, rather than try to translatie word-for-word:

It is Sunday evening. The weekend is nearly over. Karin Koenen calls her friend Carlien Vogel to chat about their weekends. Karin went to the city with her mother yesterday. The two of them had a pleasant time shopping together. Karin has a hole in her hand (that is, can’t hold on to money) but didn’t buy anything. Her mother bought a coat for herself and got Karin a pair of shoes. They also drank some coffie at Cafe Bommel. Coincidentally, Carolien was also there on Saterday. First, she read the newspaper that morning. Then she played tennis and had something to drink at Cafe Bommel. On the way home (from shopping) Karin did her grocery shopping, because she had company for dinner that evening. Her colleague Jeff Wilson and his wife Alice ate with her. She made a fish dish with fried potatoes and salad. It was delicious, and a cozy evening. Meanwhile, Carolien had a sporty weekend. Tennis, rollerblading in Vondel Park and walking with her sister and niece. Then Karin has to hang up, because Hank calls on another line.

One Response to “the sounds of Dutch”

  1. Grada Says:

    Heel goed! Brava!
    adn your pronunciation is not bad at all, for someone who has been in the Netherlands for such a short time!

    The audio file opened itself sweetly in the mail you sent; I had no problem whatsoever!
    Grada

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