Having been a member of SSiW for quite a time (I’ve now done the ‘old’ southern courses and the new Level 1), I’ve been quite envious of those who have been able to ‘launch’ themselves into Welsh in the real world, but have been really hesitant about doing it myself - concerned about what could go wrong! But, as a means of encouraging others who may be in the same position I thought I’d post on the forum my experiences of yesterday!
Another member of my gym - who I knew was a Welsh speaker and with whom I’ve exchanged pleasantries previously, came into the same section of changing room as I was. This was the opportunity I’d been promising myself I’d take for such a long time. The usual English conversation took place, and after even further hesitation, I finally said ‘Can I ask you something? - Ga’i drio siarad Cymraeg gyda ti?’ ‘Wrth cwrs! Ti’n dysgu Cymraeg wyt ti?’ came the answer - and we were off!! What surprised me was that he didn’t appear to make any concession to the fact that I was a learner, so there were bits I didn’t understand although most I did. I was over the moon and couldn’t wait to tell my wife when we met up.
Coincidentally, I had an optician’s appointment in the afternoon, and part way through the testing, and making reference to my ‘Dw i’n dysgu Cymraeg’ badge, started speaking in Welsh to me - and carried on for the rest of the appointment. I was even more chuffed now - all those months of waiting for the opportunity to get involved in Welsh in the Wild, and two came up on the same day!!
It’s now easy for me to say but, if like me, you don’t feel confident enough to start off a Welsh conversation - try it! It’s not as bad as you might think, is well worth the effort, and you get a real buzz once you’ve done it! Pob hwyl pawb!
Thanks - and you’re right about the Spanish; I never had the same hesitancy with that!
Not that I’m aware of - perhaps somebody else on the forum knows. Out of interest, I’ve been wearing the ‘Dw i’n dysgu Cymraeg’ badge for months and yesterday was the very first time that anyone’s noticed!
(noob here, lurked for ages before being brave enough to join ! ) I started with saying hello and thank you etc to shop people - nice and easy, and no expectation of a conversation. My local town is mainly Welsh speaking, which is quite intimidating for a shy English person moving here - although I will quickly say that everyone I have met has been very very friendly, and accommodating, and as soon as they see the panic in my eyes, they quickly switch to English ! My local superstore is fantastic - I can try out small phrases, and they don’t laugh and point - they are happy to mix the 2 languages, and often I can say (in Welsh)that I would like to buy some…stuff ( whatever it is, in English) and they are fine with the mix’n’match. My dog is also learning Welsh - not that he ever listened in English, but I can try
Perhaps there is. I seem to remember that the nice lady from Menter Iaith that Tresaith bootcampers met in April might have worn something like that (and she gave us “dysgu Cymraeg” badges), although it might have been a Menter Iaith badge.