Dinner in Tarvis and my language blunder

There comes a moment when it’s your turn to make other people laugh. Since I’m not a comedian, this usually happens when I make a fool out of myself. Then the skill of knowing to laugh at yourself is very handy 😉

Yesterday we were unexpectedly invited for dinner with Derek’s old friends who live in Tarvis. Tarvis is a small Italian city just across the border with Austria. I never met them before so Derek was going to introduce me to them for the first time. We also brought a friend with us, Philipp from Graz.

Derek’s friends were very friendly and hospitable, like true Italians 😉 In fact, I felt so comfortable around them that soon after we arrived, I left Derek in the living room and went to the kitchen where the girls were cooking. They asked me, in German, whether I spoke German. “Ein bisschen, (a little bit)“, I replied. So they started talking German to me. I thought they were probably happy to practice their German and perhaps they thought my German was better than Italian. In any case, I spent the next few minutes happily chatting to them in my broken German. Then Phillip showed up in the kitchen.

“We are talking in German,” I proudly told him, also to inform him that he could communicate with them in his mother tongue.

“I heard you,” he replied.

I went on to explain: “I’m so happy to talk German to them, because with them I’m not afraid to make mistakes. With native Austrian people I’m shy to speak, but their German is not that good, just like mine.”

Philipp nodded and asked them: “How come you speak German?”

Now listen. The mother replied in German: “I was born in Austria and only came to Italy when I got married.” I started blushing. But more was coming. Her daughter said: “My mom always talked to me in German. I went to German-speaking school too.”

“Oh.” I turned to Philipp: “Never mind what I said…” I don’t know if the two understood everything I told Philipp before, but he did. In any case, it was the right time to start laughing at myself 🙂


Delicious home-made  food we ate


4 thoughts on “Dinner in Tarvis and my language blunder

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