Fun with Dutch!
Nederlands schijnt voor Engelstaligen suprisingly easy to learn te zijn, maar ze struikelen over onze onmogelijke uitspraak en onlogische spelling:
The most confusing thing at first is probably the open syllable rule: If a syllable ends in a vowel, the vowel becomes a double vowel automatically. For example, take the word maan ("moon"). Dutch plurals are (usually) created by adding "-en," so you'd think that the plural is maanen (which would make perfect sense) but because of the blasted open syllable rule it becomes manen. "But wait," you say, "How can 'man' be considered an 'open' syllable? It ends in a consonant!" You see, this is the second twist: the Dutch syllabify their words differently, so that it doesn't matter that "en" is just an add-on...the syllables are thus ma-nen. Thus, if there is a vowel followed by only one consonant and then another vowel, it is open. The final, and most frustrating, twist, is that this only applies to stressed syllables. This is usually the first syllable, but often in words like regering ("government") you have no idea which syllable is stressed (it's the second one, so it's pronounced as if it were regeering).