Tag Archives: Nicaragua

Dicho for Enthusiastic Agreement

One of the most common expressions you’ll hear among Nicaraguans is the following:

Dale pues! (pronounced dah-lay pw-ace) – Yes.  Absolutely!

Few dichos are as simple and effective at signaling your Nicaraguan street cred as dale pues.  Two main characteristics of Nicaraguan Spanish are their abundant use of the filler word pues, and also not pronouncing the “s” at the end of the words.  Therefore, if you really want to impress your Nica friends, get rid of that s!

Nica: ¿Querés ir al cine? (Wanna go to the movies?)
You: ¡Dale pue! (For sure!)

Nica: Nos vemos mañana a las 9am. (See you tomorrow at 9am)
You: Dale pue. (Sounds good.)

Nica: ¡Estás más Nica que gringo!  ¿Querés un cafecito?
(You’re more Nicaraguan than American!  Want some coffee?)
You: Dale pue.  🙂

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Who needs an aisle?

banquitos

How many does the express bus seat? Depends if you’re counting just the seats, or also counting the plastic stools placed along the entire aisle and floor space in the back and front of the bus.

Dicho for Karma

Regardless of how people feel about the recent election results, this phrase may apply equally well to solace or celebration:

A cada chancho le llega su sábado – For every pig his Saturday will come.

Yet another dicho full of cultural depth and deliciousness!  Chancho is the more common term used for pig in Nicaragua (and eight other Latin American countries), and, along with corn, is an important dish is many Nicaragua typical foods.  Back in the day, Saturday was slaughter day for the chanchos of Nicaragua, as many pork dishes were (and still are) mainly prepared on the weekends.  Nacatamales are a great example.

The equivalent saying for this dicho in English could be “what goes around, comes around.”  In these times of political change in the U.S., it can be trying to be a representative of the American people when all of our dirty laundry is being aired out to dry.  However, I have to keep hope that the arc of history is bending towards justice, and that my work and relationships here in country help, in some small way, to move it closer.


For more Nica slang, visit Gringo Guide 200.  Cred for the awesome pig picture goes to them!

Happy Tears

NESTS and NNESTS

I had the pleasure of giving a charla (workshop) a few weeks ago with one of my counterparts to the new group of Peace Corps Trainees and their new counterparts they’d just met. The charla was about how we can work together as Native English Speaking Teachers (NESTS) and Non-Native English Speaking Teachers (NNESTS) to both be better teachers.  Peace Corps LOVES acronyms…can you tell?  haha!

At one point during the session, Ana Cecilia and I were to share our prepared remarks about what we’ve learned from each other these past two years and how working together has made us better teachers.  We practiced and had it all planned out…..until we both broke down crying trying to share in front of close to 60 people.  It was embarrassing.  It was heart-warming.

I’m not ready to say goodbye yet…and that hit me hard in the middle of this session.  I feel so lucky to have had the chance to get to work with amazing teachers like Ana Cecilia, and feel beyond honored to have her say that I have forever changed her teaching and her life for the better.