Yesterday, while at the beach, I needed to try to find a sun umbrella for my mother-in-law to rent. I couldn’t remember the word for “umbrella,” so I asked Matan.
Then, two minutes later, as I walked over to the kiosk, I realized that I didn’t know the word for “rent.” And, of course, I’d forgotten the word for umbrella.
But, I pushed forward, asking the lady, in my most dignified Hebrew, if she just might have a mushroom that we could borrow to create shade.
“Um, what?” she said, looking at me as if I’d come from outer space.
“You know, a mushroom (petria in Hebrew), for the shade for…what’s that word…to borrow for awhile.”
I soon realized that what I was saying didn’t sound right.
Red in the face, I slinked back to my family to describe what I had done. I quickly realized that I had asked her for a mushroom (petria) instead of an umbrella (metria).
When my children were able to pick themselves off of the floor, Matan agreed to go back to the lady and to ask for an umbrella himself.
With a twinkle in his eye, Matan arrived on the sand, handed me the umbrella and remarked, “Here’s your mushroom, Mommy.”
Just another day of adventures as an immigrant.