When someone makes a decision or acts without considering possible problems and consenquences, in Italian we can say that “ha fatto i conti senza l’oste” (he reckoned without his host) using a famous Italian idiomatic expression.

The oste is the owner of an osteria, a typical Italian inn where people can drink a good glass of wine and eat some nice food. I conti refers to the bill, so literally the expression means that you can’t calculate the bill without the innkeeper.

In this case the meaning of the two idioms, Italian and English, is pretty much the same.

Let’s see how to use this expression in Italian!

Italian English
Ho prenotato la vacanza senza sapere se il mio capo ha approvato le mie ferie. Ho fatto i conti senza l’oste! I booked my holiday without knowing if my boss approved my time off. I reckoned without my host!
 Anna ha fatto i conti senza l’oste: non ha detto al nuovo padrone di casa che ha un cane.  Anna reckoned without her host: she didn’t tell her new landlord that she has a dog.
 Pensavo che anche sui prodotti di marca ci fosse lo sconto del 50% ma avevo fatto i conti senza l’oste!  I thought there was the 50% discount on branded goods as well but I had reckoned without my host!


Do you know any similar expression?


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