Vocabulary

  • Salpicadura And Other Helpful Spanish Vocabulary Words - While dining in a restaurant here in Medellin, Colombia tonight, a Colombian friend used a word when her wine glass fell and splattered wine all over her new dress. No, the word that she used was NOT a “grosería” (swear word, curse word). How To Say Stain In Spanish The word she used is one […]
  • Another Way To Say “Small” in Spanish - You probably already know that the Spanish word “pequeño” means ‘small’ in English. But there’s another way to express ‘smallness’ in Spanish. Recently, while at the “gimnasio” (gym), I noticed something interesting. After finishing my workout, I decided to order a small bottle of water at the juice bar. So I asked the “muchacha” working […]
  • How To Say Sitting, Kneeling, Squatting, Bending Down and Standing In Spanish - Let’s talk about 5 (five) phrases that seem to confuse English speakers learning Spanish: 1. How to say sitting 2. How to say kneeling 3. How to say squatting 4. How to say bending down 5. How to say standing The Spanish words for kneeling, squatting and bending down seem to be the three that […]
  • How To Say To Get Married in Spanish - This blog post is from an email that I sent to my customers back in 2007 before I moved to Medellin and still lived on the Atlantic coast of Colombia in Barranquilla. The email covered the topic of a common mistake that Spanish-language learners make when saying “someone got married” in Spanish. Here is the […]
  • How Many Days Are In a Week in Latin America? - “Patrick, you overlooked the obvious. The way you end your emails with ‘nos vemos.’ Isn’t that a perfect example of how native Spanish speakers often use the present tense when native English speakers would use the future tense?” Yes, I did overlook the obvious. “nos vemos” which literally means “we see each other” as opposed […]
  • Notes from Spain - When I took my recent trip to Marbella, Spain, I took plenty of notes from Spain and wrote down any differences between European Spanish and Colombian Spanish. Here are 6 things I noticed: 1. In Spain, they say “planta” in order to say “floor” as in “I live on the 2nd floor.” But in Colombia […]
  • How To Say “I Have A Cold” In Spanish - Today’s topic is how to say “I have a cold” in Spanish, as in the common cold. Something interesting happened to me on the phone today when speaking to a friend from the Dominican Republic who is living in Spain. I am always learning or being reminded that that Spanish speakers from different countries use […]
  • How To Trill The Double “R” In Spanish - One question that I am always emailed from customers is “how do you trill the double ‘r’ in Spanish?” Until now my response has not been too helpful. I usually respond by saying something like “flap your tongue on the roof of your mouth two or three times” or some other advice that I found […]
  • How To Sound More Like a Native Spanish Speaker - This blog post is actually a re-post of an email that I sent to my customers back in 2007. Before I moved to Medellin, Colombia, and when I still lived in Barranquilla on the Atlantic coast of Colombia. Here it is . . . I am emailing you to tell you about an interesting experience […]
  • How Would You Say “Branch” in Spanish? - Today’s blog topic is “How To Say Branch in Spanish.” I bank at a bank in Colombia called Bancolombia. Earlier this week, I heard an English speaker asking the teller a question. From his accent, I would imagine that he’s from Texas. Although I didn’t hear the whole conversation, I heard him ask: How To […]
  • How To Say The Names of the 5 Fingers in Spanish - Today’s topic is “How To Say The Names Of The Five Fingers In Spanish.” I am not going to get into a debate about whether or not the thumb is actually a finger or not. But I was browsing through the Net a few days ago and visiting some of the online community sites where […]
  • How To Say The 5 Senses in Spanish - Today’s topic is “How To Say The 5 Senses in Spanish” I was surfing the Net a few days ago and visiting some of the online community sites where people learning Spanish like to gather. And I found a question about Spanish vocabulary that someone posted and that no one had answered. So I thought […]
  • New Year’s Eve On The Coast Of Colombia - This blog post is actually from an email that I sent to my customers and subscribers on New Year’s Day of 2008. In the email, I discussed what it’s like to spend New Year’s Eve on the Coast of Colombia after spending New Year’s Eve 2007 in Colombia for the first time. Here’s the email: […]
  • 2 Mistakes Lovers Make When Speaking Spanish - I recently heard an English speaking friend here in Medellin, Colombia talking to his “novia” (girlfriend), actually she’s his “prometida” (fiancée) — while using his “celular” (cell phone). I heard him make two mistakes that English-speaking “amantes” (lovers) make when speaking Spanish. By the way, in some Spanish speaking countries, including countries in the Spanish […]
  • How To Say Facedown in Spanish - Let’s learn how to say “facedown” in Spanish while learning how to avoid a common mistake that English speakers make when speaking Spanish. I have mentioned in previous blog posts that I practice an “artes marciales” (martial arts) here in Medellin, Colombia. The “artes marciales” that I practice is called “jiu-jitsu brasileño” (Brazilian jiu-jitsu). Well […]
  • Adding “Ada” and “Azo” to Body Parts in Spanish - You may remember my recent blog post where I wrote that one thing that always makes me laugh about the Spanish language is how Spanish-speakers add “on” or “ona” to a body part in order to describe someone. I then gave the following examples by including in the first column the name of the body […]
  • How To Say To Do Something Again in Spanish - One thing that I have noticed about the Spanish language is that there is more than one way to express “doing something again” or “not doing something again.” The books that I used to learn Spanish taught me phrases such as: No voy a hacer eso otra vez. (I am not going to do that […]
  • Celebrating Christmas in Colombia - This blog post is actually from an email that I sent to my subscibers in December of 2008. Celebrating Christmas in Colombia   In 2007, I celebrated the holidays in Barranquilla, Colombia. But in 2008, I spent the holidays in Medellin. Barranquilla and Medellin, just like the rest of Latin America, actually celebrate Christmas on […]
  • 4 Ways To Spot a Gringo in Latin America - This blog post is a from an email that I sent to my readers in August of 2008. Here’s the email that I sent to my readers . . . I know it has been a while since my last email. That’s because I have been busy traveling this summer. I left Medellin, Colombia, to […]
  • How To Say I Almost Fell or I Almost Slipped in Spanish - Tonight, I heard a non-native Spanish speaker make a MAJOR mistake in Spanish here in Medellin, Colombia. It is a very common mistake that many native English speakers make with the Spanish language so I wanted to bring this to your attention while it is still fresh on my mind. Tonight, I was at the […]