Last week I learned that …
Last week I learned that life is hard enough without learning about it in a foreign language.
I am not the best communicator; even in English. So when I discovered that my daughter’s partner was Brazilian, who I might add speaks good English, I did foresee many difficulties.
These of course have been overcome or are not a problem.
The language differences at first were stressful for my daughter; because she had to translate a lot. This has improved as the relationship grew and understanding on both sides developed.
This year for the first time my husband and I spent a holiday in their home in Rio. They live in the favela Babilonia.
One night we sat after a meal listening to the noises of the night. Nearby we heard a man wailing a drunken song .
I asked my son-in-law ‘What he was singing?’
He replied ‘’ My heart is in pieces’
‘Oh dear poor man, I wonder what has happened to cause this unholy row?’
My imagination went into overdrive.
‘No! the song is my heart is in peace(s)’
‘He has much peace … he is happy!’ he added.
So the conversation went on; not about the poor soul and his broken heart or his great happiness.
Rather more about the irregularity of the English language and the intricacies of translation.