European Youth Portal
Information and opportunities for young people across Europe.

International relationships

Photo by: qthomasbower
Liebe, amour, kærlighed, amore, miłość … love is beautiful in every language. The sensation of being in love has an explosive quality, described in phrases like mad about, swept away, all aflame and head over heels. Seen through your rose-tinted glasses, you feel you can take on the world.


Replace those rose-tinted glasses with international rose-tinted glasses and love suddenly becomes even more interesting. After all, love overcomes all barriers – even language barriers. OK... most barriers.



Ruud (Netherlands) & Eline (Belgium):


‘This one day we were cleaning the bathroom together and I wanted Eline to hand me the squeegee. So I asked her for the stripper, what we call it at home. She almost died laughing. When I asked her what she called it, she said – all straight-faced – the word that we use for ‘wanker’ (aftrekker). She couldn’t understand why I thought that was so funny. What’s more, in Flemish, so in Belgium, they use this same word for all sorts of things, from the act of decorking a bottle to drawing open the windows to – OK, OK – stripping a bed. But to her, stripping sounded ridiculous…’



Yannick (Netherlands) and Edita (Croatia):


‘Edita can understand Dutch fairly well, but she hardly speaks it yet. And it’s funny, because she has actually picked up a lot of her Dutch from TV ads, and those one-liners really stick. So when I least expect it, she’ll come out with some familiar line. Like if she’s doesn’t understand what I mean, she’ll suddenly shout “So what do you want from me?” Or if the dishwasher is done and the plates are squeaky clean, she’ll take on this pose like in an ad for washing up liquid and say, “and it really works, too!”.’

Published: Thu, 07/11/2013 - 17:48

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