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  • Fluent in English; learning Arabic, Chinese (Simplified), Dutch, French, German, Swedish
  • 25, Male
  • Member since 2015
  • Language Student
  • University of Leeds, German and Chinese
  • From England, United Kingdom
  • Profile 70% complete

About Me

Hi! I'm Tim Van Gardingen and I'm a language Student from the UK, currently studying German and Chinese at the university of Leeds.
I love languages, so outside of my degree I'm learning other languages too - in order of proficiency, from pretty good, to pretty rubbish I speak German, Mandarin Chinese, Swedish, Dutch, Arabic and French. Naturally, I'm always looking for people to chat with!

My other big hobby is music. I play a fair few instruments and listen to a huge variety of styles, but mainly folk, metal, post-rock and electronica.

I also love to read and write - I run a couple of blogs (although neither are particularly popular...) and write for my student paper.

Art in general is a big part of my life, but I haven't got my paint brushes out for too long. =(
Hopefully that's enough about me!

Why I’m on Couchsurfing

Traveling is also really important to me (I left it out from the prior section as it was getting too long anyway) and within that I think the people you meet is one of the most important elements you take away from the traveling. I'm on couchsurfing therefore, mainly to meet people.

Later, but unfortunately not now as I have no place of my own currently, I want to offer a couch to fellow couchsurfers, for exactly the same reasons as above, but it will have to wait a while. Sorry!


Oh I see, interests were supposed to go here. Well, as in the 'about me' section then! Language, music, literature, art, culture.

  • arts
  • culture
  • literature
  • running
  • traveling
  • socializing
  • painting
  • music
  • languages
  • language exchange

Music, Movies, and Books

What I'm listening to changes fairly rapidly, but anything that Steven Wilson has ever produced is a fairly constant favourite. His latest album 'Hand.Cannot.Erase' is my most played currently.

Movies? I don't watch many films, but I've always found the Matrix really interesting. I like films for their ideas, and the Matrix explores some pretty crazy ideas.

As for books, I'm a huge fan of the Bronte's. For something more modern, catch 22 is a favourite, and something much much older, I love the Norse sagas.

One Amazing Thing I’ve Done

I lived in Xinjiang, China for a year and taught English, without knowing Chinese (in the beginning at least!). If you haven't heard of this part of China, look it up - it's not exactly what comes to mind when you think of China. I miss it terribly.

Teach, Learn, Share

I'm not entirely sure what to put here, so let's go for something vaguely thought-provoking...

Taken from a photographer by the name of Ryan Muirhead -

"Why do we make art? Because we don't have the answers, and art is abstract enough to say 'this is the answer'. It honors the questions. Art with answers? Great art explores the questions."

Sorry it's not mine, but I stumbled across it and thought it was great.

What I Can Share with Hosts

Conversation. Maybe it seems like a minor thing, but good deep discussion is incredible, and I appreciate anyone who goes a bit more abstract in their conversation.

I can possibly share some language knowledge, and can definitely offer language exchange -it's a mutual thing, and that is even better!

And like anyone who has traveled a little, I have stories to share.

Countries I’ve Visited

China, Denmark, England, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, New Zealand, Scotland, Singapore, Sweden, Wales

Countries I’ve Lived In

China, England, Scotland

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