December 7, 2017

10 Questions: Christian Evans

Christian Evans is the author of the book '101 English Mistakes Finns Do'.

  1. What’s your unmissable breakfast item?

A cup of tea, milk no sugar. The teabags I use have travelled in a suitcase from England.

  1. How did your story with Finland begin?

In the womb. My mother is Finnish and my father is Welsh. I grew up in England and I have been living in Finland since 1996.

  1. What’s the first common English mistake Finns make that you noticed?

There are two that spring to mind. The first one is English words with a ‘th’ sound. So, words like ‘three’ and ‘through’ are sometimes difficult for Finns to pronounce. The other common mistake is mixing up the words ‘he’ and ‘she’. The Finnish language only has one word for he/she, ‘hän’.

  1. What’s the most baffling thing about Finnish (language) to you?

It has to be Finnish grammar. Trying to remember what the correct ending for a word should be is often baffling.

  1. What’s your favourite word in Finnish?

A difficult question. I love words in general that are onomatopoeic, for example, ‘kukkokiekuu’ (cock-a-doodle-doo). If I have to say one word then probably ‘kukkuluuruu’ (peek-a-boo).

  1. How do you communicate with people if you don’t share a language?

In today’s world smartphones with language apps are very handy.

  1. Whom do you admire and why?

Anybody that helps others, for example, charity or voluntary work. It’s selfless and definitely admirable.

  1. How do you relax?

Spending time with my wife and two kids, walking the family dog (a Westie) and reading.

  1. What is your favourite holiday destination and why?

Llanfair­pwllgwyngyll­gogery­chwyrn­drobwll­llan­tysilio­gogo­goch. Bit of a mouthful! It’s a village in North Wales on the island of Anglesey. It’s where my Welsh grandparents lived. A beautiful place that I often visited as a kid.

  1. Any advice to people wanting to move to Finland but concerned about the language?

Don’t worry. Generally speaking Finns have very good English language skills. If you can speak English you’ll survive. Finns are more than willing to help out people in English if you don’t speak Finnish. I would definitely encourage people to learn Finnish though.

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