A little while back, I attended my first proper Swiss wedding. They tend to be intimate but lively affairs. This one was mostly family and some friends, a grand total of perhaps 30 people and only one American, me. I pride myself on my intuition regarding languages. I can sit at a table listening to a conversation in a say Swiss-German and just tie together the couple of words I know to get the gist. Needless to say, this takes a lot of concentration.
My skills also tend to degenerate after a glass of wine and then miraculously improve after a couple. It turns out that the main course that night hit me squarely in the middle. As the gentleman to my left began to tell me all about the bärlauch risotto, I must have stopped paying attention for long enough to lose the plot entirely or perhaps my perceived talent as a universal linguist is vastly over blown. Either way, I stared at him blankly and replied “How delicious!” I learned later that he had been telling me about how one had to be careful in harvesting the wild garlic or ramps, as the foxes like to use them to clean their nether regions. Thankfully his English was just about as good as my Swiss.