It’s the last week of school, in more ways than one!
Two of my three kids finish on Thursday and will no doubt spend the next three and a half months slumped in front of Netflix, if not otherwise engaged perfecting their Playstation skills (him) or varnishing their nails (her, or if they get really bored, both…)
The third (and eldest) still has her ‘maturità’ exams to look forward to – those are the national exams that Italian kids must endure in order to graduate from high school.
Rather her than me, I say.
On Saturday morning I have my last English class of the academic year, though I’ll still have some lessons at a local company one day a week for a while longer.
And this is my final week of studying Swedish intensively, as no sooner have my teaching committments ended then we’re off on holiday IN Sweden.
It’ll be the culmination of months of hard work.
This morning my online teacher told me I could speak ‘rather well’, though she’s still frustrated that my words come out in the wrong order.
In Swedish that would be…
This morning told me my online teacher I could speak rather well, though she’s still frustrated that my words come out in the wrong order.
After time adverbs, the subject and the verb invert.
A simple enough concept, you’d think, but it just won’t sink in.
I told her to chill.
I make mistakes, so what?
My brain will learn it when it’s ready.
At least I hope so.
This week I have four online lessons scheduled, with three different teachers – the exciting final sprint for the finish line!
Plus, I’m watching multiple news broadcasts each day (with no subtitles) so as to get the maximum listening practice.
That also helps with learning topical vocabulary which, due to the hot weather, are mostly words like ‘forest fire’ and ‘drowned’.
I now know how to say that ‘single-use barbecues are forbidden’.
We’ll see what happens after the holiday, but it’s certainly going to be less-intensive.
I’ve spent masses of time on Swedish since the New Year and have been really satisfied with the results.
But there are other priorities, as well as other languages I want to study.
So, five more days to go!
Anyway, what about ‘Pane e vino, fa bel bambino’ which I asked about on Friday?
Several of you were interested enough to write in with suggestions as to what it meant – though mostly that was ‘Bread and wine are good for you’, which I felt didn’t really add much.
Translating the words is one thing. Figuring out the meaning can be something very different!
For example, is this expression supposed to be a lifestyle guide?
Eat, drink and be merry!
Or perhaps it’s advice about ethical eating?
After all, a diet consisting mostly of bread and wine would be cruelty-free, vegan and potentially ‘kilometer zero’, as Italians say.
Given the reference to ‘bambino’ (baby-boy), could it even be a fertility tip?
Certainly pane and vino got me a bel bambino – the one glued to the Playstation – and two belle bambine, to boot!
No one seems to know, so I guess you can take your pick.
Now then, what about today’s new material?
I’ve some more expressions for you, this time with the word ‘aria’ (air).
For example ‘aria fritta’ (= fried air) which, according to the Italian ladies in the office where I’m writing this, means ’empty words’, in the sense of talking big, making false promises, castles in the sky, etc.
“After all, you CAN’T fry air, can you?” they explain.
I’ve been following the Swedish election campaign on the TV news and, as you can imagine, it’s all very sensible.
Whereas the mess that Italians have got themselves into?
Too much ‘aria fritta’.
Here are the links: