AlOlaf wrote:I always thought the reason I wanted so desperately to speak German lay solely in the intrinsically splendid nature of the language, but the fact is I never had the determination to really learn it until I went to Germany. There, enamored by the place, I tried to talk to people and failed miserably, which filled me with a burning resolve to someday return with better skills. I’ve come to the conclusion that if I have no prospects for using a language in the country where it’s spoken, there’s no way I can generate the insane enthusiasm necessary for mounting a truly intensive and focused long-term study assault. But if I know with certainty I’ll be milling around and hobnobbing with native speakers on their home turf, I’m ready to run with the bulls if I think that’ll help me prepare. At the core of this is the real impetus or engine, if you will, of my language learning activities: a fervent desire not to look stupid in front of foreigners.
I have to say I'm similar, sort of. While attempting to learn languages a number of years ago now, it dawned on me as I progressed (yet still got nowhere near the level I am today in French), that wow, this language learning is a massive
task. Although I had said in my teenage years because I was learning some German at the time, that I wanted to move to Germany one day, I now came to a new realisation - that since the task was soooo big of learning a language, I need to go and live there (i.e. France for French). I thought, I'm not going to invest this massive amount of time day in day out without some kind of end objective in which the language is imperative. Well, okay, that suits me, as I was always interested in living in Europe anyway, so if I'm to continue, it must be done (living there).
So, I'm like you in that my motivation for learning languages is usually connected with the idea of spending a considerable amount of time in the country/countries in which it is spoken. I do think though, that it's not the country that comes first with me, then the idea of learning the language, but the language perhaps first, then I imagine being able to live there or spend a lot of time there.
Unfortunately I've still not made that goal (of living there), but you know life has a way of not turning out how you necessarily want it to, and that's okay, but i'm still driven to get there in some capacity, which may be regular or prolonged visits, or living short term (as opposed to the rest of my life, which I still dream of, but know is not realistic given where my family are, and that my children need connection to family etc.). Sorry for the ramblings, i'll blame it on you AlOlaf for triggering this drawn out explanation.
AlOlaf wrote:Now, with no travel plans, I can’t decide whether to try to push on with Norwegian or to go back to Danish.
If you're not suffering from burn-out, my vote is for Danish IF you haven't reached the level you have desired to reach yet, but I know it's more complex than that and you've many other factors to consider I don't know of... and I'm not you, of course. Good luck!