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Topic - Learning Spanish

Articles with Topic: Learning Spanish

Mind Your Vocabulary

Topics: Learning Spanish

Published: Monday, July 20, 2015

Spanish

Habitual readers of Mexican newspapers discover that some of the best stuff is found in the opinion columns, of which there are many, with a typical daily containing three full pages or more of them, not including the business columns in separate sections . . .

A Saying For Every Occasion

Topics: Culture & History | Learning Spanish

Published: Monday, June 8, 2015

Easel and Brushes

Mexico has a wide variety of dichos or refranes – sayings, maxims, or phrases – some of Mexican origin and others evidently not. By analogy or through rhyme, the dichos are supposed to convey time-honored truths that admit no argument . . .

Pride and Prejudice: The Naco Versus the Fresa

Topics: Learning Spanish

Published: Monday, June 1, 2015

Spanish

Naco is a derogatory term with racial and class roots that Mexicans use to describe people whose manners and tastes are considered to pertain to the lower classes. The word apparently originated in colonial times and referred to an indigenous servant of the Spanish gentry. In modern times, its use has become more widespread and its application broadened to include anyone deemed to show a lack of education in their use of language, taste in music, food, cars, or anything else . . .

Ordinal Numbers in Spanish

Topics: Learning Spanish

Published: Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Spanish

Cardinal numbers in Spanish are fairly straightforward until you get into the billions, whereas ordinal numbers – first, second, third, etc. – get complicated way before then, and are certainly more complex than they are in English . . .

Bring This With You When Yo Go

Topics: Learning Spanish

Published: Friday, May 1, 2015

Spanish

Teachers of English frequently find themselves explaining the difference between “bring” and “take,” and when to use one and when the other. The Spanish verbs “traer” (bring), and “llevar” (take), are applied almost in the same way. That is, traer is mostly used when the action is toward the place where the speaker is, and llevar when the action is away from the current location . . .

Terremoto or Temblor? Well, It Depends

Topics: Learning Spanish

Published: Monday, September 1, 2014

Spanish

Mexicans have three words for earthquake. The choice of word can depend on where the person was at the time of the quake, and under what conditions . . .

A Donde Hablo? Vs Quien Habla?

Topics: Learning Spanish

Published: Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Spanish

The phone rings when you weren’t expecting a call, so you pick up the receiver and mumble the usual “bueno” into the mouthpiece.

¿A dónde hablo? (where am I calling?) comes a sharp, testy voice . . .

Numbers in Words

Topics: Learning Spanish

Published: Monday, March 25, 2013

Spanish

It’s said that even people who can waltz through a lie-detector test without so much as blinking will stumble if required to do arithmetic in a foreign language . . .

¿Mande Usted?

Topics: Learning Spanish

Published: Thursday, February 21, 2013

Spanish

A visiting Colombian student at one of Mexico’s universities complained about the expression ¿mande? the Mexican way of saying pardon? or of responding to someone who has called your attention. Literally, it means command hence the dismay of the student who failed to see why one would submit to the orders of the speaker just because he or she wanted you to hear something . . .

Speaking with the Right Accent

Topics: Learning Spanish

Published: Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Spanish

Thanks to modern technology, there’s no longer any need to learn how to put accents on Spanish words. Instead of bothering with complicated, picky rules, just announce firstly and loudly that the keyboard on your smart phone “doesn’t do accents”: contemporaries will take this as a perfectly acceptable euphemism for “you don’t do accents,” — and will say no more about it . . .