ITALIAN ROBERTO-STYLE. I first met Bob and his then partner, now husband, Donald in a language school in Lucca. Despite the class being described as Advanced, all our levels of Italian were very mixed. This was intimidating for some who were less fluent. Bob felt he had no aptitude for the Italian language and on one occasion he became completely overwhelmed and started to cry: It was so sweet! This led me to introduce myself to the two of them, offer my sympathy, and we have been friends ever since. What impressed me about Bob was that despite his sometimes hilarious mistakes, he still soldered on and chatted happily to native Italians who were charmed by him and his efforts, and he and Donald – who was really good at speaking the language – wee invited to all sorts of lucchesi functions. I was intrigued when Bob tole me he was writing a book about his experiences and I think it is a wonderful idea and very encouraging for those of who struggle with learning Italian. We all make mistakes in a foreign language but the key is to be able to laugh about it and keep on talking!
Dr. Mary Hewlett