Cool Spanish Encounter

A great sign I saw this morning – Watch out! Wild boars! Slow down!

Queridos amigos,

It’s time for some more real Spanish for you (and a secret page at the bottom of this post!)

I was walking to my car this morning in a small village near Madrid where I like to come and work some days, when a man approached me and said, ‘Caballero, ¿dónde puedo comprar una baraja?’

I saw his wife packing a picnic in the back of their car and so thought he had asked where he could buy ‘una navaja’ – a pocket knife. So, unsure, I said ‘¿Perdón?’

‘Una baraja’ he repeated, and made the sign of shuffling a deck of cards with his hands.

‘¡Ah!’ I said, ‘Aquí a la derecha hay una papelería’ – Here on the right there is a stationary shop.

‘¡Gracias!’ he said and off he went.

This encounter made me happy for two real-Spanish-related reasons. First of all, I love it how the Spanish will often start an encounter with a complete (male) stranger with ‘Caballero…’ which can be translated as gentlemen, honorable man, or knight!

And I loved the fact that he reminded me of the word ‘baraja’ for a deck of cards. There’s something satisfying about that word! It reminded me too of the verb, barajar, to shuffle, and the phrase ‘barajar varias posibilidades’ – to consider various options.

For example, ’Después de barajar varias posibilidades, acabamos reservando una mesa en La Taberna Miranda’ – After considering various possibilities we ended up reserving a table at La Taberna Miranda.

12 thoughts on “Cool Spanish Encounter

  1. Simon

    Gracias por compartir tu historia de hoy, y enseñarme ‘barajar opciones’ 🙂
    ¿Dónde econtraste esa señal en Madrid? He pasado mucho tiempo en la capital pero no me puedo imaginar donde estuviste…

    Saludos, Simon

      1. Simon

        Ah tiene sentido ahora!
        Pensé que te referías a la ciudad en lugar de la Comunidad de Madrid, y así que ¡no me pude imaginar un grupo de jabalíes pasando por Sol! xD JAJA

  2. Jon Hundt

    La Taberna Miranda! I remember that from our NIS Madrid Weekend many years ago. It’s about time to get back there, I think.

  3. Tony Woodcock

    Oye Ben, perdone pero la lianza para confirmer la pedida de notas no funciona.

  4. Kimberly McHugh

    Thank you for sharing your stories and encouraging language learning and cultural learning.

Comments are closed.