Intros: Cavarsela (v.)

I’m an ex-teacher, so forgive me by starting my blog with a language lesson. Old habits die hard and all that.

Cavarsela (v., idiomatic)
1. to manage (to do something); to get by
2. to get away with; to find a way

Italian was the first language I ever learned. I did it because I was studying for an MA in Music and a language was advised. The music degree was the first thing I ‘just got by’ with. I passed with a 55. It took me the whole year to prove to them I deserved to be there.

Folks, for a high-achiever, it was a harsh lesson. In my own, middle-class-parents-who-were-obsessed-with-giving-their-son-a-great-education way, I grew up arrogantly thinking that I’d be brilliant at everything with very little effort.  I passed my undergrad with a first. I thought I was going to be the next Bowie.

If I could revisit that point in my life, I could probably find you the moment when my oversized head deflated like a party balloon. Thbbbbbbbbbbbt.

Una collezione of my most important Italian memories

By the time I got to Italy I was tired of cavandomela, so I took a language course over there. I got a lot better, but by this point I’d made some actual Italian friends – and again I was just surviving in their tricky discussions on life, the arts, and politics.

But I didn’t hate the feeling.

I loved the idea that I was going out of my comfort zone, indulging in new culture and language, learning new things and yes, I was ridiculed a fair bit (come non sai questo?) but #noregrets, right kids? YOLO.

Other things I feel like I got by in, or got away with somehow:

  1. Being a science teacher
  2. Studying acting
  3. Every language I’ve ever learned
  4. My health
  5. My sexuality
  6. My day job
  7. Calling myself a writer

Betwixt and between, I’ll review some great places and things I managed to do and see.

So follow me, won’t you?


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