What’s stopping you from learning to speak & understand Italian?

Hint: it’s probably not the cost.

But we’ll get to that later.

What’s your dream?

We all have things that, ideally, in a perfect world, we’d like to achive.

I’d like to sail my (30-year old) yacht across the Adriatic Sea and cruise the islands of Croatia.


But there are all sorts of reasons why I’ll probably never do it.

There’s Italian bureaucracy (don’t ask).

Then there’s the engine, which has seen better days.

And of course it would mean leaving Stefi to run the school AND look after the kids.

She hates cooking, so they’d probably starve…

Clearly, this is not the right moment.

Maybe when I’m retired…

See how easy it was for me to talk myself out of living my dream?

I’ve got pretty damn good at it over the years.

You have a try:

“Studying Italian in Italy would be selfish. My husband / wife / kids /cats / boss need me here.”

“I’m not really good at languages. I don’t think I have the right kind of brain…”

“It’s a crazy idea… My friends / family / colleagues would laugh at me.”

“I could take a course here at home instead.”

“And anyway, it would be expensive!”

But hang about…

What if  your partner, kids, colleagues and boss actually admired you for daring to be different?

What if their jaws dropped when they found out you had the balls to get on a plane and go take a foreign language course in a city you’d never visited before?

(And in a foreign country, too!)

What if it turned out that you didn’t drown (oops, that’s me), but actually had a really great time?

Or that maybe you had a really lousy time, but didn’t regret it for a second?

But hey.

There’s still the cost to think about.

You can’t afford it?


You do know we’re not talking about designer handbags, sports cars, or diamond rings here?

I just booked a family holiday: low cost flights, a budget hotel, the cheapest car rental in Western Europe, and two weeks staying with my mom and dad.

Near a beach where the water is cold and it always rains.

Bet it costs me more than it would cost you to study Italian in Bologna.

You do the maths:

  • A two-week standard Italian course – €437
  • A single room in a ‘homestay’ – €240
  • Your flight…
  • Food, drink and entertainment

OK, if you live in Australia, the flight could be a pain in the wallet.

Plus Bologna is so chock-full of good things to eat and drink, you might want to be generous with that last item.

But total it all up, and you’ll likely admit that maybe the cost is not such a great excuse after all.

Your final words

You’ll have read those cheesy articles about the top 5 death-bed regrets:

“I wish I’d had the courage to live the life I wanted instead of what people expected of me.”

“I wish I hadn’t worked so hard.”

That won’t be you.

Oh, no.

Many, many, many years from now, you’ll raise your hand to push away the oxygen mask.

Look your concerned loved ones in the eyes for the last time.

And whisper your final words in fluent Italian!

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  1. Just have to leave a comment too, because I was just laughing out loud at work about the same last part of this blog, Kerry! That’s how it feels and how it is going to be!!;) Thanks Daniel for your endless inspiration and very nice exercises and deals!

    I already forwarded it to my boyfriend (who doesn’t know a word Italian, but who learned me that I wasn’t selfish at all to go to Italy to learn Italian for a couple of months a few years ago…and who had an even more interesting and inspiring girlfriend after that period at home…).

    Listening to italian radio while doing other things is one of my favorite ways of staying in touch with the most beautiful language in the world!

    Minke from the Netherlands

    • Absolutely! “A more interesting and inspiring girlfriend”. Thanks, Minke, I’ll try include that in our future marketing…

      Seriously, though, listening to the radio in Italian is a great way to improve your listening skills, vocabulary, grammar and ‘cultural knowledge’.

      Personally, I enjoy Rai Parlamento. You have to be a bit of a wonk, though.

  2. “Many, many, many years from now, you’ll raise your hand to push away the oxygen mask.
    Look your concerned loved ones in the eyes for the last time.
    And whisper your final words in fluent Italian!”

    LOL – I just loved this! I so enjoy your blogs and entries and you inspire me no end to keep going forward with my relentless pursuit to master this beautiful language.
    I am unfortunately one of those unfortunates you mentioned who lives in Australia 🙁 and it is a long way to anywhere…still it has never stopped me before (money permitting) to get to Italy as often as I can. I am already plotting how to get to your school in Bologna before this year is out.

    So che avrei dovuto dirlo tutto questo in italiano …. ma allora è per questo che ho bisogno di venire alla tua scuola!


    • Infatti, Kerry!
      Comunque, hai ragione – Australia è lontano…
      Thanks so much for taking the time to leave a comment. It’s great to know that people enjoy hearing from our school!