Knowledge about Belgium in Australia is very limited, so whenever we tell people we are moving to Belgium we get a host of questions. The regular questions - how big is Belgium? (twice the size of Sydney), how many people? (10 million), what languages do they speak? (Flemish, French, German and Walloon), what is the national dish? (steamed mussels and fries). Other questions range from the geographically limited (does Belgium have a coastline? Is it near France?) to the geographically confused (what country is Belgium in?), or from the culturally limited (is it okay to wear bikinis in Belgium?) to the culturally confused (do you get danger pay for working in Belgium?).
(for the geographically and culturally limited/confused - yes, yes, it is its own country, no but only because it is too cold, no).
I hate to disagree with a native Belgian, and everyone I've spoken to has told me the same thing - Walloon doesn't exist. I'm just going off a wikipedia article on the Walloon language:
It says that Walloon is similar to French, but is a distinct language from both French and Belgian French. It also says that Walloon is nearly a dead language, and mostly elderly people in isolated towns speak Walloon. Am I crazy or is "Walloon" just a conspiracy to make me look silly? :)
actually we only speak 3 languages. When we say Flemish, it's Dutch with a flemish accent. And Walloon doesn't exist. In Wallonia they speak French.
You'll find all that out while living here :)
I hope you enjoy your time in Belgium.
Posted on: Feb 13, 2009
Join TravBuddy to leave comments, meet new friends and share travel tips!