As I am sure you have been able to tell from the website, we are rather keen on Italy and Puglia in particular. However we are not the types to try and turn a small part of Italy into little England. To that end for the last few years we have been trying to learn Italian, who knows another language may even help us on our travels.
We started with some lessons bought through the internet with Listen and Learn UK. This didn’t work out very well for us, since the requirement that the lessons be in our home seemed to be missed and so we were travelling across Colchester for our lesson. We started to get into a rhythm of having these when our tutor got pregnant and decided to give it up. When we went back to the company they told us that the money we had paid was non refundable and that the fact these had not been completed quickly due to our tutor’s availability was immaterial. On top of that they were expensive but a total the time we didn’t know anyone who could teach us Italian and so a large mark up had to be stomached. A pretty poor experience all round.
In Ipswich, we have our haircut at an Italian hairdresser and one of the team there spoke to us about our Italian recently. He mentioned that his wife was in the process of starting up a small business to teach Italian and so we jumped at the opportunity to restart our lessons – something that our Italian friends will be grateful for, I’m sure! We previously had been using the espresso books, but our lessons had been dotted around these, rather than structured, and we didn’t feel we were learning conversational Italian. Our new teacher has a slightly different approach and a new book (Contatti 1 Italian Beginner’s Course). We are looking forward to developing our language skills further….I think our Italian friends are probably looking forward to it even more than we are :). Having had our first lesson, it has reignited our love for Italy and I think will help us to keep the dream alive when we are in England. Our final help will be a Easy Italian: Photo Phrase Book (Collins) which will apparently help perfect our pronunciation.