Tag Archives: Peace Corps

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.

Hurricane Otto

On Thanksgiving Day 2016, a Category 2 hurricane came ashore along the Nicaragua/Costa Rica border.  This historic storm forced Peace Corps Nicaragua to consolidate all of our volunteers in Managua, as they take our safety very seriously.  Luckily, for us, it went farther south.  And since we were already in Managua, we were all able to attend a nice Thanksgiving meal at the home of an embassy or Peace Corps staff member.  For the third year in a row, we were blessed to attend the home of our second-in-command and chef extroidonaire, Miguel Lindhout.  We stuffed ourselves silly and felt at home. Hopefully it will be our one and only Thanksgiving during a hurricane.  One is enough for our lifetimes.

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!