You do what you have to do

When we lived in Switzerland and I was struggling to learn German, my good Swiss friend (who could speak 3 languages) told me that if I got stuck I should try to rephrase what I wanted to say. I have often put this piece of wisdom into practice in Italy. When we ran out of matches last week, replacing them became a priority and I soon found myself in the Tabbaccheria not knowing the word for matches. I took a deep breath, smiled at the man behind the counter and said in my best Italian “I am looking for sticks to commence fire” to which he replied in his best English “Would you like matches?” Sometimes you just try too hard…

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