Hong Kong is a great place for hosting Couchsurfers. My flatmate and girlfriend put a limit to how many we host, otherwise we could have people around on a continuous basis :). Right now there are three guys from Sweden around, so we did a short Swedish/German/Cantonese session. We started with German, and while one of them (B; she’s a language lover) soaked it up instantly, the other two got pretty intimidated, and soon signaled Full. Which is kind of a success, as normally new player are very hesitant to do this :) I was going pretty fast, which might have been a factor. So I switched to Cantonese. This might seem counter-intuitive, but worked pretty well. The first of them again assimilated everything so rapidly that it almost took my breath away, definitely the fastest learner I’ve encountered so far, while the others were mostly overwhelmed by their own anxieties, but played along nevertheless. I breezed through yes/no; I/you/she; my/your/her; have/give/want in maybe 10 minutes with B, while the others mostly watched from the meadow, occasionally taking part in the game. When I overwhelmed her with a slightly difficult yes/no construction, we switched to Swedish.
I never realized how similar Swedish is to German! It felt like learning a German dialect with a simplified grammar. Would love to learn more! Maybe it becomes more difficult further in, but right now it feels like a language for free :) Definitely a break from the beautiful, but demanding Cantonese.
After the fast Swedish we did some more Cantonese. Switching languages is a great way to make people relax after they became Full, especially of course when doing it in their native tongue ;)