Tag Archives: Spanish

¿Cachaco o Rolo?

Here are some random expressions and slang words used by Colombians, more specifically from Bogotá:

qué chanda – how awful!

me están robandoen mi cara – (They are) cheating me to my face.

aye Dios mío – My God! (bad)

juemadre vida – crap! I can’t believe it!

juemadre – crap!

qué increíble – incredible! (good or bad)

¿En serio? En serio. – Really? Really. (“He took my car without my permission!” “Really?” “Really.”)

severo – cool

chévere – really cool

chimba – really really cool (but not used by older generations. This is kind of a derogatory word to describe something you really like, so be careful how you use it. Not usually used by women either, unless they are ‘rough’.)

gringo – foreigner, more specifically from the United States [“¿Tu eres una gringa?”] (“Are you a foreiner?”)

¿Qué más? – what’s up? [“¿Qué más, parce?”] (What’s up, buddy?)

Usted está igualito. – “You haven’t changed.”

thinner/aquadiente – strong, clear ligueur that smells and tastes like black licorice. sold in cartons or bottle

flaca – thin [“Ella es flaca.”] (“She is thin.”)

charlar – to chat [“Charlamos.”] (“Let’s chat.”)

chino – quite literally means ‘chinese’ but is used more commonly to refer to a small child

marica – means faggot, but is used among friends

nonas/nonos – no

sisas – yes (kind of street slang)

parce/parcero – friend

al pelo – cool, okay, perfect, very good (This is a confusing expression, because it doesn’t have an English translation and can change meaning depending on context.) [“¿Va a venir esta noche?” “Si.” “Al pelo.”] (“Are you coming over tonight?” “Yes.” “Perfect.”)

qué video – lie, overreaction, problem (again, depending on context)

borracho – drunk [“¿Estás barracho?” “Sisas.”]

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Posted by on October 9, 2012 in Colombia, Español


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Sonido Soundwave

Yesterday I found this cute little authentic South American restaurant near the city called Sonido (Sound in spanish). Their prices were decent and the decor was fantastic. I walked through the wooden front door with the peeling white paint, and stepped into Colombia. The walls were a pale blue with accents of bright yellow everywhere. The kitchen, which was in the middle of the cafe, looked exactly like a Colombian kitchen with metal pots and pans hanging everywhere, ready to be served with hot chocolate (Colombian style) or perico (coffee with milk).

Hanging on the walls were a variety of knickknacks from the mother country, such as old bus signs, leather pouches and shoes, and stickers of their beer and soda. The menus had jackets of old albums of native music that they played throughout the restaurant. All of the tables and chairs were mismatched in a way that went together. I particularly liked my pale green that had jumped out of the 1970s. On each table, there were a multitude of books about the countries of South America, perfect for flipping through while waiting for your meal.

I ordered jugo de lulo (Lulo juice) and arepas con queso (arepas with cheese). Lulo is a native tropical fruit found in South America that isn’t very sweet, but refreshing with a slight bitter taste, although not as bitter as a grapefruit. Arepas are a kind of corn pancake that Colombians and Venezuelans eat with most of their meals and can come in many different ways: with cheese, eggs, jam, meat, or plain. They are deliciously golden and round that fit perfectly in the palm of your hand. I topped mine with butter, picadillo (salsa), guacamole, and hot sauce. Then I eat it like a one-sided sandwich. Mmmm!

For that short little hour, I felt I was back in Colombia, a country filled with laughter, beer, music, and dancing! It was such a nice feeling… almost like a mini-vacation.


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Posted by on September 25, 2012 in Colombia, Food


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