Sunday, May 22, 2011

Off the previously charted linguistic map.

I went to the beach today with Cleide’s daughter Melisse – and Tebe and the Italian guy. So this is one American, two Italians, and a Brazilian. I speak English and bad Portuguese, Tebe and Giovanni speak bad Portuguese, Tebe also speaks bad English, and everyone but me speaks good Italian. So they all talk to each other in Italian, Tebe and I speak English to each other, the daughter and I speak Portuguese, and the Giovanni and I really only talk to each other through Tebe and the daughter because our mutual Portuguese is just too horrible to get by. It was an interesting linguistic experience. Italian sounds enough like Portuguese that I didn’t always realize they were speaking it, and sometimes just thought I wasn’t paying enough attention. It was frustrating until I realized I wasn’t supposed to understand, and stopped paying attention unless people were talking directly to me.

I have also learned that Cleide’s daughter Melisse was born as Pedro, and then chose the name Melisse. Cleide’s other daughter is Melissa. So that explains a number of confusions I had.

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