“Wees niet bang om fouten te maken, iedereen die een nieuwe taal leert, maakt fouten!”
In other words, don’t be afraid to make mistakes, anyone who learns a new language makes mistakes!
After a few months in the Netherlands, words to that affect frequently run through my mind.
That said however, I had a funny experience at Schiphol Airport last week, whilst picking up the new arriving missionaries.
Whilst Monic and I, along with Elder Ornelas were waiting for the final missionary to arrive at Gate 2, I was approached by a complete stranger, looking for directions to the other arrival gates 3 & 4.
Having just come from gate 3, I gave him the directions in my best Dutch, pointing at the same time…
“Ga rechtdoor, dan rechtsaf, 100 meter rechtdoor en dan is het aan u rechterhand”
He thanked me and then headed off in that direction.
I turned back to Monic and Elder Ornelas, and it struck me that this was very similar to that moment when Elder Calhoun in the movie “The Best Two Years” directed a complete stranger at the railway station. For those of you who have seen the movie, you will recall that precise moment. If you haven’t see the movie – then watch it, it has to be one of the best movies about life in the mission field.
We laughed together as we talked about the movie and Elder Calhoun!
In that moment, I realised without thinking that my Dutch is improving!!
What is improving for you right now, that you may not have noticed?