Does knowing another language make you more open to others?

For five years now I’ve been bringing my French/English books to the local post office here in France. OK, I’m no JK Rowling, so we’re not talking thousands, but we are talking a steady stream.  Not once did someone ask me what the books were about.

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Change of village.  The post office in the mairie is suddenly allowed to dispense the coveted Tarif Livre et Brochure (yet another way for France to spread the French language abroad; the rate is not available domestically). My first trip in last Thursday, I sent two sets of books – one to England and one to Canada.

Today, I went in again, and sent a bunch of books. I took one to show, and maybe display at the Mairie. When I showed the secretary the book, she said, “Oh, I know! I was curious and so I went on line and had a look at your books!”  She then said some complimentary things which I’ll spare you. I was chuffed.

But here’s the thing: This woman had lived for six years in Italy.  She had had a daughter in Italy and lived there till the child was six. They’re both bilingual. So, does being bilingual make you more curious about other languages, other cultures? I feel the answer is “yes”, and am often confronted with what I consider as proof.

We now share a warm fuzzy connection, as well as Chez Betty & Cat At Home.  I gave her the book for her daughter – once you’re bilingual, what’s a third or more languages!

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