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My First Organised Meet and Welsh Conversation!!

Postby vgh50 » Thu Aug 11, 2011 6:49 pm

This has been a long time coming and it was becoming a bigger and bigger demon to overcome!! I am such a coward and have such little opportunity to speak Welsh that if it hadn't been for a fellow SSiWer's invitation combined with some inspiring posts on this forum and a subtle push from Iestyn I still would not have taken the plung! :shock:

There have been many inspiring posts on the forum, Tricia (crystaltipps65) and Alison (my_cat_silky) to name just two, but there are far to many to mention here, but one post was from sheeshkebab1711 was a turning point: viewtopic.php?f=20&t=4504

This was where I admitted:

vgh50 wrote:I'm embarrassed to say that I was contacted by an SSIW member not too far from me but I put him off until I'd finished the Intro course as I didn't think I'd know enough to speak to someone who was half way through the intermediate course :oops:


and where Iestyn said:

Iestyn wrote:For anyone who is in VGH's shoes, get out there and do it. If all that happens is that you meet a new person, speak exclusively in English and say "da bo" at the end of the evening, who cares? You've made a contact who is also learning Welsh. When you're ready, you can get on with it!


Well the time finally came today that I would meet a fellow SSiWer for lunch - neutral ground and I brought my daughter for moral support - plus she's currently on lesson 6.1 so it was good experience.

I woke up very early this morning in a cold sweat with a feeling of dread over the impending doom that awaited me at 1pm! I couldn't eat anything so I did my daily speaking and listening practice, followed by a 2 mile run and then once more through my current lesson. I spent most of the morning listening to one listening practice after another in an attempt to train my ear so I might have a chance of understanding something that was said and I kept telling myself Iestyn's comforting words: If all that happens is that you meet a new person, speak exclusively in English and say "da bo" at the end of the evening, who cares?

We arrived at the pub with 5 mins to spare and found a delightful gent sitting at a table sipping a cwrw and greeted us with a smile and a cheerful, 'Shwmai!' :smile:

I was still a little nervous but this chap was so welcoming and at ease and so easy to talk to that I began to relax and had the most amazing 2 hours that I have ever had with someone I had never met before. I think we spoke for at least the first 20 mins in complete Welsh and then after that we would speak a bit in English about the course or something specific where we didn't have the vocabulary and then it would be back to speaking in Welsh again. In fact we found out about each other speaking only Welsh, and even my daughter after only 1 month of learning with the course was able to pitch in and follow the conversation! We both came out of the pub floating on a cloud, filled with a new confidence and enthusiasm! I am so excited and thrilled that I have been able to get over this hurdle that was holding me back! :D

My daughter and I are going to Llanelli this Saturday to watch the Scarlets play rugby and then watch the Wales game on the big screen in the supporters village at Y Clwb - we can't wait to try out some more Welsh when we get there so look out Parc Y Scarlets! We'll be there soon! :dawnsio:
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Re: My First Organised Meet and Welsh Conversation!!

Postby TygerC » Thu Aug 11, 2011 7:06 pm

Awesome, isn't it? :D
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Re: My First Organised Meet and Welsh Conversation!!

Postby jstetson » Thu Aug 11, 2011 7:13 pm

An experience worthy of dancing dragons, for sure!
Feel free to correct my Welsh, os gwelwch yn dda.
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Re: My First Organised Meet and Welsh Conversation!!

Postby Catrin Lliar » Thu Aug 11, 2011 7:30 pm

I love your post Vaughn, what a fab story! I'm so chuffed it all went well for you and Caitlin - she's a star! :star:

I'm high five-ing you both from here, there's no stopping you now! :D

Very envious of your up coming Saturday! :mrgreen:

Have an amazing time! :dance:
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Re: My First Organised Meet and Welsh Conversation!!

Postby Dee » Thu Aug 11, 2011 7:35 pm

Brilliant Vaughn! Llongyfarchiadau! Now that you've dipped your toe in the water there'll be no holding you back :clap: And llongyfarchiadau to your fellow SSiWer too for making your first real Welsh conversation such a positive one! :cariad:
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Re: My First Organised Meet and Welsh Conversation!!

Postby Tahl » Thu Aug 11, 2011 7:42 pm

From:
vgh50 wrote:I woke up very early this morning in a cold sweat with a feeling of dread over the impending doom that awaited me at 1pm!

to:
vgh50 wrote:... I began to relax and had the most amazing 2 hours that I have ever had with someone I had never met before. ... In fact we found out about each other speaking only Welsh ... We both came out of the pub floating on a cloud, filled with a new confidence and enthusiasm!

in one short (not very short -- two hours!) but momentous afternoon. Llongyfarchiadau, Vaughan, look what you and your daughter have proved to yourselves. Your excitement leaps off the page. :-) And good work, that other SSiWer, for taking the initiative to reach out and start the conversation.

[Edited because I can't spell...]
Last edited by Tahl on Thu Aug 11, 2011 10:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: My First Organised Meet and Welsh Conversation!!

Postby HarmonicNature » Thu Aug 11, 2011 8:00 pm

That's absolutely brilliant, Vaughan! :llongyf: I'm so happy for you! As everyone else has said already, there will be no stopping you (and Caitlin!) now! Keep up the good work! :seren:
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Re: My First Organised Meet and Welsh Conversation!!

Postby longdehua » Thu Aug 11, 2011 8:26 pm

:llongyf:

Congratulations Vaughan! Enjoy the rush of excitement while it's still surprising to you that you can communicate with other people in Welsh. I'm sure pretty soon you'll be all "Oh, so I just phoned up Radio Cymru to give them my opinion on the government's health care reforms in Welsh. No big deal ... "

:harhar:
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Re: My First Organised Meet and Welsh Conversation!!

Postby Gelis » Thu Aug 11, 2011 8:34 pm

:seren: :seren: :seren: I'm really chuffed for you Vaughan....WELL DONE!.. :D
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Re: My First Organised Meet and Welsh Conversation!!

Postby Iestyn » Thu Aug 11, 2011 9:10 pm

Vaughan - it's 10 o'clock, and little Gwenllian is asleep. I should be in bed, but instead I have just cracked open a can of Brains Bitter to celebrate your Graduation. You have proved that you truly are a Welsh speaker. There can be no doubt in your mind that all that work has paid off, and that you have truly become Welsh speaking. Now maybe you will relax a bit about your lessons! :wink:

I am so pleased for you, because I know how much this means to you. I hope that you slap yourself on the back so hard that it bruises, because what you have achieved is phenomenal. Thank you so much!

:seren:
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