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Idioms

Study Spanish
in Xalapa (Jalapa), Mexico

Spanish Immersion at The Language Immersion School, Xalapa, Mexico.

Learn Spanish in Xalapa, the city many refer to as the Santa Fe of Mexico.

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Talking with locals is even more fun if you now and then use a well chosen idiom and colloquialism for emphasis and humor. These Spanish idioms and colloquial expressions are ones you'll hear in the State of Veracruz, Mexico.

Take some time to practice them with our staff, and then, at just the right moment, use them as you're out and about.

We only recently began to collect these. The list will grow continually.

 
Voy a hacer changuitos.
I'm crossing my fingers (or I'll cross my fingers). Hacer changuitos literally means to make little monkeys. The idiom means to cross ones fingers.
 
!Ponte las pilas!
hurry up, get moving, get in gear, get going
 
a lo hecho, pecho
You have to face the music.
 
aguafiestas
used to describe a spoilsport or a party-pooper
 
en un dos por tres
(something finished or accomplished)lickety-split
 
Del dicho al hecho hay mucho trecho.
(it's a long way from words to deeds) simpler said than done
 
Echando a perder se aprende
Experience is the best teacher.
 
lo agarró con las manos en la masa
caught him with his hand in the cookie jar
 
No puedes andar y quieres correr
Literally, you can't even walk and yet you want to run. Our equivalent saying is you have to walk before you run.
 
no pongas mis palabras en saco roto
don't put my words in a broken bag, don't ignore my advice
 
donde hubo fuego, cenizas quedan
used only for those once deeply in love, where once there was fire, hot ash remains, thus suggesting that a strong love now lost can be easily be rekindled
 
Más vale tarde que nunca.
Better late than never.
 
¿Ya te cayó el veinte?
Do you get it? Has the light bulb come on? This comes from old payphones in Mexico that took twenty centavos. When the twenty centavos fell, the phone clicked to life.
 
No hay mal que por bien no venga.
Every cloud has a silver lining.
 
¡Qué chido!
Good!, that something or some idea or action is good
 
bajo el agua
(to do something) under the table
 
estar clavado
to be head over heals in love
 
Si una vela se te apaga, que otra te quede encendida
Don't put all your eggs in one basket
 
Te estoy tomando el pelo.
I'm pulling your leg.
 
Las noticias malas siempre tienen alas.
Bad news spreads fast.
 
Con dinero baila el perro
(With enough money even the dog dances.) Money makes the world go 'round.
 



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Enjoy Spanish Immersion in this Arts Center in the undiscovered State of Veracruz

Learn Spanish as you actively participate in the art and culture of today's Mexico and yesterday's Totonacapan.

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