Welcome back for my first post of 2018!
I hope you all had a lovely holiday season. I certainly did, which is why I missed last week. In fact, I was traveling, but really, I was blogging without ever opening Blogger.
How? You ask, shocked.
Well, I will tell you. I was accumulating short stories, funny or interesting things that happened to me, Ilse, and now I shall share them.
1. Snapshot of a Pastry Shop
My father and I wandered through the streets of Venice one morning, searching for some pastries. We talked and thinned our shoes on cobblestones and photographed interesting buildings viewed across gondola-laden canals. Needless to say, we ended up lost. Dad turned the map supposedly leading to the very best pastry shop to every angle, and after many turns and pauses, we ended up in the right spot. Going into the shop, we waited for two customers to finish their business. The cashier was an Italian speaker and the customers said a few words to each other in a language I didn't recognize. But to each other, the two parties spoke English, a language neither was fluent in. The lingua franca is an incredible thing.
2. The Low-Key Paparazzi
Huddling on the hide-a-bed, my family watched a poorly translated Italian romcom, Bread and Tulips. It was a fun movie, not the best, not the worst. The day after we finished it, we were getting off a boat when we saw, maybe, possibly, Tatiana Lepore. Ms. Lepore played a minor role in the movie and we THOUGHT we may have seen her. Unfortunately, she was getting on and we were getting off, so we had no chance to ask her anything. After going through her social media, we found no documentation of where she was that day, so I guess we'll never know.
3. There Is No Language Barrier
Once again, I was in a pastry shop. But no, not a pastry shop-- a patisserie of France. Because I am the luckiest human in the world, I got to go to France to practice my French.
The plan was simple: Go in, say some simple French phrases, buy a pastry, get out.
Unfortunately, I got flustered.
It started out all right. I decided not to say "C'est un belle patisserie!" because it wasn't really, filled with magazine racks as it was, and I asked for an eclair. Then came the time to say the simplest word of all: yes.
I should have said oui. I knew to say oui. But I didn't say oui.
Flustered, I said "ja."
For those who do not know, ja is the German word for yes. German, not French. And the place I was being near the border... the cashier responded in German and my French practice was over.
So, three small stories that I hope interest you. Something else that may interest you is that I changed my Google name--I am now Ilse Helene, not Ilse the Imaginer. I know, I know, not so interesting-- but what you might have opinions on is this: I'm thinking about changing the blog name to Ilse Helene. Thoughts? Lucky you, you have a handy dandy comment widget just below this!