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hello and a question about writing order

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Hey there,...

My name is Boosh and I'm from the Netherlands.

Because I'm working with a girl from HongKong and a Guy from Malaysia who both speak Cantonese I decided to start learning it myself.

The girl and guy are teaching me words and sentences but I want to start picking up the writhing also.

I know how to look up the words the teach me and I write down the sentences they speak in romanization.

My question:

Can I write down the words in the same order as they say them to me?

For example :

nei5 sik1 teng1 gwong2 dung1 waa6

would that be : 你識聽廣東話

If I write it down?


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Well Cantonese is more a colloquial form of Chinese, you can certainly write them down in the same order, and most Cantonese people should be able to read them, but people who speak other Chinese dialects may not be able to understand what you write.

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I don't bother about other dialects for now because I mainly focus on Cantonese allthough I'm learning the words in Mandarin also at the same time.

So for now I just write each sentence the way I speak it. There's no option of taking chinese writing classes in my neighbourhood. Grammar classes are also out of the question so I have to learn myself.

Only advantage I have is that I'm a trained singer,allready speak 4 languages and I'm a Dutch native speaker(Dutch is as people tell me one of the hardest languages to learn).

I have no problems with the different tones in Mandarin and Cantonese and the Native speakers tell me I'm doing very well.

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Boosh: keep in mind that most Chinese will say you're doing well even if you aren't. You can get complimented on your excellent Chinese after only saying Ni hao.

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I am aware of that except :

In the last 7 years these two people have become very personal friends. They live and work in the Netherlands and the dutch people are very honest and open.

If we don't like something we just say it. If we like something we say it right away too. For example:

Hey girl,...I like your *ss. To other people who speak a different language and have a different culture that would be a very incorrect and maybe insulting phrase. For us dutch guys it is just the way we speak,are and feel.

Sooi Kam and Mai( that's how they're called here) have adapted very well and tell me the truth about everything. I speciffically instructed them to tell me everything I do wrong and they know they can never insult me by telling me my cantonese stinks.

To top it all off,...They are really helping me to learn. They are married and have a son who studies Mandarin ,Cantonese and Hakka who calls me up every day to learn me 1 new word. He doesn't hang up the phone untill I pronounced the word correctly three times.

There are about 1.3 billion people who speak chinese but these three people are very close to me and know I would never forgive them if they just say I'm doing a wonderful job out of politeness.

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a mix of english and german (no offense, boosh!!!:mrgreen: )

the trick is you never know when to use the english or the german... only dutchmen knows...


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Mai Kairong
a mix of english and german (no offense, boosh!!! )

Yeah, I've never officially tried to learn Dutch but since I speak English and German my reading comprehension of Dutch is... well, better than my reading comprehension of Mandarin after four years of studying that... I'm going to go cry in the corner now. :cry:

(However, when I actually hear someone speak Dutch, its all Greek to me! :wink: )

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I don't know any Cantonese, but I am familiar with the series of books by Huang and Stimson, which I thought were good when I used them to study Mandarin in university.

Anyway, Huang wrote a beginning Cantonese text


and accompanying audio (expensive)


I liked the grammar explanation in the Mandarin series a lot. Detailed but not overwhelming.

If I were learning Cantonese I'd probably take a look at Huang. But I haven't actually looked around on the web either. My 2 cents....

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If you speak english and german... the reading of "A reference grammar of Dutch - Cambridge University Press - Fehringer" could improve your Dutch undestanding in a couple of weeks... including listening...


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Boosh: dan zal het geen probleem zijn, ik wou je alleen even waarschuwen.

Hashirikata: yes, twice as hard :-p

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Lu : indeed no problem ;-) These people are helping me out enormously and are very honest.

To the people who suggest that Dutch could be a mixture of german and english........

"Forgive them Father,they know not what they're doing"


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