Lost in Translation while we travel – Part I

Part I - Spanish, is it all the same everywhere? Spoiler alert: it’s not! It’s actually pretty different and even me, as a South American, get lost and confused sometimes when I hear someone talking from another Spanish speaking country.
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Part I – Spanish, is it all the same everywhere?

Spoiler alert: it’s not!

It’s actually pretty different and even me, as a South American, get lost and confused sometimes when I hear someone talking from another Spanish speaking country.

I must say that for a Spanish speaker the difference is huge not only in words but also in accents!

After spending a few months in beautiful Mexico I learned a few things I thought I had for granted in my Rio de la Plata Spanish…

 

  1. Trastes in our Spanish means butt… in Mexico it means something else, I’m not so sure what it is but you can get an idea here:

 

 

  1. Cajeta, well… I’m starting to think that our Southamerican Spanish is a bit naughtier than the Mexican one… This one means… that lady part I don’t want to say really, you know. While in Mexico this is some kind of caramel. Cajeta is made by simmering goat’s milk, or occasionally a sweetened liquid, stirring frequently, until it becomes very viscous due to evaporation of water, and caramelized. While goat milk is the most usual base, other liquids or juices may be used. (Wikipedia)

 

  1. Pendejo: I can say that in this example, the Mexicans are the naughty ones! Saying Pendejo in Mexico is not nice, you’d be referring to someone in a very condescending way. This word means some kind of idiot or assh**e, while in Southamerican countries, it refers to teenagers or young people.

 

  1. We can say the same with some fruits like pineapple or banana.

This one is a little simpler,

It’s called banana in Southamerican countries, and a plátano in Mexico

This is an ananá in South America, but it’s called piña in Mexico.

 

 

 

  1. Plazas, shopping and parques

In Mexico a plaza is a shopping mall; while in Uruguay, a ‘plaza’ is a park, or parque in Spanish.

 

  1. Some other words:

Bus

Latinoamerican Spanish: omnibus

Mexican Spanish: camion – which this means truck in South America.

 

Hungover

Latinoamerican Spanish: Resaca

Mexican Spanish: tener cruda

 

When something likes you

Latinoamerican Spanish: está buenisimo!

Mexican Spanish: está chido!

You can always find exceptions in some cities or towns since globalization is a huge thing now so some words can get mixed up, but this is what we found in our local town of Puerto Morelos.

 

If you’re a Spanish speaker or you understand something, I’m sure you can relate to this funny video! You can also cheat a little and read the subtitles!

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