Thursday was Kate’s birthday so she invited a bunch of us to lunch.
Kate is from Australia and I met her at the contrada dinner the school organized last Thursday night. Of course, she knows Linda so we bonded over some funny stories. She is in the intermediate class and hangs out with two other girls from her class; Lucy from London who is going home this weekend, and Helen who is also from the Australia (Adelaide). They are a funny, inseparable lot.
Last weekend I ran into them as they were going to a cooking class near where I am staying. They all agreed it was great fun and recommended it to everyone at lunch so I’ll have to check into it.
At lunch I sat next to a Japanese woman, Yuko, who is also in the Intermediate class. She only speaks Japanese and the Italian she has learned so far so when we found ourselves in a place where we didn’t know the Italian words for what we wanted to say we had no other language (i.e. English) to help bridge the gap.
The conversation became complicated when Yuko started asking me about my work as it presented me with the challenge of explaining being downsized, etc. Helen did her best to help explain it but she was at a bit of a loss, too! Yuko then asked if I had a counselor (my goodness, poor Charlie, I haven’t thought about him in ages!) which led to the issues of translating outplacement, etc. It’s funny as it was obvious that she was circling the answer and I knew she knew what all these terms meant it was just a matter of reaching that place where we knew we were on the same page.
Yuko ended up having one of those translation gadgets in her bag so she had to pull it out (Casio, of course!). It was a riot as the screen was jam packed with things in Japanese symbols with just a little space for me to enter the English words so she could do whatever she then needed to do to get the translation. There was a lot of glare so the photo is poor and doesn’t convey how “busy” the screen actually was.
We had a glass or two of prosecco with lunch which was nice on a sunny afternoon.
Naturally, Linda was also there and she had ‘a moment’ as she tends to do most every day!