It’s always a bit disconcerting when a notion forms in your mind and you cannot find a good word for it. Memory going bad? Mental energy running out? Bad vocabulary? In many cases, it is one of the above – or more.
Also, when you are bilingual or multilingual, that kind of experience tends to happen quite a lot. Some notions come into easy expression in one language but not in another. I am sure you know how you sometimes switch languages right in the middle of a conversation – within a train of thought – in order to be able to express an idea or achieve a socio-lingual move.
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