From time to time I have a small success,
That lets me hold my head above the mess
That I could be convinced my life's become.
(Well not exactly I. But you know. Some.)
Last night I went to eat in Montreal.
I wasn't in a groove for French at all.
I couldn't understand the waiter's greeting.
The only thing I had in mind was eating.
And so I switched to English, which was tough,
Because the waiter barely spoke enough.
I tried a couple phrases here and there,
But he was clearly rattled. He would stare,
And mumble something, then return to working.
And I was just relieved he wasn't smirking.
I paid and then I walked to my hotel,
Afraid a taxi wouldn't go as well.
This morning, feeling just a trifle down,
I visited a client here in town.
I tried a little French while signing in.
The concierge responded with a grin,
And complimented me on how I spoke
(Completely ignorant that I was broke!)
So I explained that having been divorced
(The first time, not the second) I was forced
To occupy my time, and French became
A great escape from sorting out the blame.
The concierge responded with a smile:
He'd done the same with German for a while.
I took the elevator feeling stronger,
And hammered at my French a little longer,
Indulging everywhere in pleasant greeting,
Till I discovered I was in a meeting
Where I would be presenting, all alone,
To someone who was not an anglophone.
The tiny little thing that made my day?
I did it.
One fear has gone away.