Monday, August 22, 2011

Nice to Meet you .. Oops We've met! Of Norwegian pleasantries

Scandinavia in general has a interesting set of social greetings that you exchange but one particular one has got my interest :

'Takk for Sist'
So when meeting someone for the first time you ofcourse extend out your hand and say ' Helen, 'hyggelig' (the second word basically translates to 'nice to meet you'). Now initially I made sure I said nice to meet you because thats a clear indicator you don't speak the language but in the aim of 'integration' I've started using the word hyggelig which of course leads to a response / conversation in Norwegian and me looking a bit confused and waiting for the correct time to say 'err I'm sorry I don't speak norwegian yet'. So really I squash the aim in a matter of seconds but that's an entirely different topic :) But one must remember this greeting is used only the first time you meet the person.

Subsequent times that you meet this person you are going to be using the term that interests me the most 'Takk for Sist'. Literally this means 'thank you for the last time' and could be extended to either it was nice meeting you last time or thank you for the fun time we had together or the lovely dinner etc you get the picture. What's even more interesting is that time is of no consequence. The *LAST* time could even have been a year ago ... so this is clearly where my problem begins.... my most recent experience went something like this ... 

Helen: Hei, Helen, Hyggelig
Person: Hei Helen, Takk for Sist .. 
Helen in her mind: **BIG Oppss !!**

This is usually the point where I then feign ignorance of what just happened ...I think I'm just going to stick to my safe pleasantries in english and definitely ones I can wangle my way out of when met with situations like this :)

Clearly Norwegians have a  better memory than this Indian ...... Must Be All Fish !

No comments: