New Growth Needs Sunshine and Fertilizer

The You Have Homework Community Newsletter - June 2024

New Growth Needs Sunshine and Fertilizer

It’s June, and these upside-down seasons in South America are still throwing me off. But I’m staying warm! More on that later.

Thanks to those of you who joined the You Have Homework community this past month. ¡Bienvenid@s!

This month’s newsletter includes:

🤠 Sounding like a Gringo

🥞 Understanding Chilean Spanish quirks

🥹 Are you enjoying The Spanish Verb Drill Workbook?

🤠 I’ll just avoid all words that contain R

I finally made it to a milestone this month – being comfortable having fluid(-ish) conversations in Spanish. In fact, I’m so comfortable my conversation partners tease me about my American Rs. I can’t help it, po

It’s pretty funny because I went to speech therapy as a kid because I couldn’t pronounce Rs, and sometimes I still have to make the effort to say girl, world, etc. Luckily, my shame has worn off with age, so I’m not afraid to sound silly while I work on speaking more clearly.

For now, I’m just doing my best to imitate a Puerto Rican accent by L-ing my Rs. I’m still failing, but I’ll keep at it!

🥞 Interesting chilenismos

Up until I came to Chile, I had never met a Chilean, or knew how odd their language was. Seriously, it’s a wonder these people can understand each other. (To be fair, all countries have their linguistic quirks!) If you ever meet one of these elusive Chileans in your home country, here are some vocab words you can use to exchange a few anecdotes.

Yeah, yeah, yeahya, ya, ya

I’m ashamed to say the amount of time I, along with three new friends, stood in line at an event during the Día de los Patrimonios, but we passed the time with some interesting conversations. One person in the group was Venezuelan, and he said that when he first came to the country, hearing “enough, enough, enough” threw him for a loop. 

Of course he was thinking about the usage of ¡ya! that is common throughout, I think, the rest of the Spanish-speaking world. I wonder if it has anything to do with the influx of Germans starting from the mid-1800s… Ja, maybe.

An Arab lineagesopaipilla, hallulla

Something we got curious about around hour three of our wait were the origins of various Chilean-specific words. We assumed that the bread names sopaipilla (I have a bit of an addiction to these) and hallulla were indigenous, but we were wrong. Both are the remnants of the Arabic influence on Spanish, though how it stuck to this part of the world is a puzzle.