Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Olor

The WOTD is: 'olor' = smell*

In Spanish, the noun 'olor' is a masculine noun of Latin origin, the meaning of which is the smell (the emanations perceived by the sense smell). The Spanish noun 'olor' may also be used to refer to a suspicion of something being hidden.

*NB The noun 'olfato' should only be used when referring to smell as a sense/ sensory organ. The Spanish noun 'olfato' may be used to refer to intuition/ shrewdness/ insight which some people have (as in "to have a nose for something").

The main Spanish action word/ verb is 'oler'. The verb 'oler' may be used to refer to the general meaning: to smell. Another related  Spanish verb is 'olfatear'. The verb 'olfatear' may be used more specifically when meaning: to sniff or to follow an investigative trail.


A related Spanish describing word/ adjective is: 'oloroso'. The Spanish adjective 'oloroso' describes someone or something as being smelly, but mainly smelling nice.


Some expressions containing the word 'olor' or the related words in them are:
  • De olor (perfumed/ aromatic).
  • Olor a ... (smell of...).
  • En olor de multitudes (with admiration of people/ crowds)
  • En olor de santidad (holy/ like a saint... but also with fame/ reputation).
  • Mal olor (bad smell).
  • Oler a... (to smell of...).

Examples of the use of the words 'olor', and related words are:
  • Hemos recogido unas hierbas de olor (we have picked some perfumed herbs).
  • Eso me da olor a queso (that smells of cheese).
  • ¡Qué mal olor! (what a bad smell/ what a pong!)
  • A María la recibieron en olor de multitudes (María was welcomed by huge crowds).
  • Teresa vivó en olor de santidad (Theresa led the life of a saint).
  • ¡Qué olfato tiene Pedro para los negocios! (what a nose for business Pedro has!).

Love-Spanish.com loves the word 'olor' in the YouTube clip: El Olfato
 
For more on the word 'olor', visit: Wordreference.com/es/en/ Olor

*NB 'Click' on the speaker icon next to the word “olor” in the link to hear the word pronounced.

This is another Free online Spanish lesson from Love-Spanish.com. We conduct lessons online on this and many other topics using the latest video conferencing facilities. Online lessons are the ideal way to improve listening and speaking skills. For more details on our lessons online and how to book them, please visit:

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Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Where Is Your Mother From?

SCENARIO
Imagine you are talking to someone who doesn't know you very well. You are getting to know each other and some point the other person ask you: "where is your mother from?".

He/ she could choose to be less formal and ask you:
¿De dónde es tu madre?

Alternatively, he/ she could choose to be a little bit more formal and say:
¿De dónde es su madre?


OUR TIP
This is a straightforward question about your your mother (a third person). When saying something about a third person (that is, neither you nor the person asking the question) you DO NOT need be concerned about the degree of formality in the original question. You can just concentrate on answering the question.

Questions like this one are usually answered by indicating:
  • The nationality of your mother
  • The country your mother comes from
  • The city/ town your mother comes from

Assuming your mother is English, from London, you could say:
  • Mi madre es inglesa (my mother is English).
  • Mi madre es de Inglaterra (my mother is from England).
  • Mi madre es de Londres (my mother is from London).
  • Mi madre es inglesa, de Londres (my mother is English, she is from London).

Now you should practise answering the question:
¿De dónde es tu madre?


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Monday, 28 November 2011

Tell Me When You Would Prefer... (2)

SCENARIO
Imagine you are talking to a relative, a friend or a colleague.  Perhaps you are talking about that relative, friend or colleague coming along with someone else and jointly pay you a visit. You might have said something which gave the impression that perhaps there are some times when their arrival might be inappropriate. The other person wants you to tell him/ her "when you would prefer them to arrive".

He/ she could choose to be less formal and say to you:
Dime cuando preferirías que llegásemos

Alternatively, he/ she could choose to more formal and say to you:
Dígame (usted) cuando preferiría que llegásemos



OUR TIP
You DO NOT need be concerned about the degree of formality in what your relative/ friend/ colleague says to you. Whether the other person uses a more/ less formal register is irrelevant to your choice of reply. 

Situations like this one invite answers which should include a 'conditional' tense. There is a 'conditional' verb in the request, which should be reflected in the reply. Basically, your answer depends on whether you want to say that you would prefer them to:
  • Visit jointly at a specific time.
  • Visit jointly after a specific period of time.
  • Visit jointly on/ before/ after a given date.

Here some examples which deal with those basic possibilities:
  • Preferiría que llegaseis a la una y media (I would prefer you to arrive at 1:30)*
  • Preferiría que llegaseis dentro de media hora (I would prefer you to arrive in half an hour)*
  • Preferiría que llegaseis antes del lunes (I would prefer you to arrive before Monday)*

Now you should practice answering the question:
Dime cuando preferirías que llegásemos

*Please see grammar below


Grammar-Subjunctive
Please note this form of expressing a preference is a typical example of the use of the imperfect subjunctive. You should use the imperfect subjunctive in expressions such as:
  • "I would prefer <you to do something>".
  • "I would prefer <him/ her to do  something>".
  • "I would prefer <us to do something>".
  • "I would prefer <you-plural to do something>"
  • "I would prefer <them to do something>".

In order to express this in Spanish, you could use:
  • "preferiría que <subjuntivo>... "

Some examples of imperfect subjunctive are:
  • Preferiría que me llamases mañana (I would prefer you to call me tomorrow).
  • Preferiría que me llamaras mañana (I would prefer you to call me tomorrow).
  • Preferiría que fuésemos a bailar (I would prefer us to go dancing).
  • Preferiría que fuéramos a bailar (I would prefer us to go dancing).
  • Preferiría que me llamaseis el lunes (I would prefer you-plural to call me on Monday).
  • Preferiría que me llamarais el lunes (I would prefer you-plural to call me on Monday).
  • Preferiría que Pedro y María viniesen a verme (I would prefer Pedro and María to come and see me).
  • Preferiría que Pedro y María vinieran a verme (I would prefer Pedro and María to come and see me).

Now you should practise imperfect subjunctive and conditional expressions of this type of your own.




This is another Free online Spanish lesson from Love-Spanish.com. We conduct lessons online on this and many other topics using the latest video conferencing facilities. Online lessons are the ideal way to improve listening and speaking skills. For more details on our lessons online and how to book them, please visit:

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© Copyright 2011 Love-Spanish.com. by Jose M González. All Rights Reserved

Sunday, 27 November 2011

Oído

The WOTD is: 'oído' = hearing/ ear

In Spanish, the noun 'oído' is a masculine noun of Latin origin, the meaning of which is the ear (anatomy organ) and hearing (sense/ faculty). The noun 'oído' may be used in Spanish to refer to an aptitude for music.

A related Spanish action word/ verb is 'oír', the meaning of which is: to hear.


A related Spanish describing word/ adjective is: 'audible'. The Spanish adjective 'audible' describes a sound which can be heard.


Some expressions containing the words 'oído' or the related verb 'oír' in them are:
  • Abrir los oídos (to listen intently/ to prick up one's ears).
  • Aguzar los oídos (= Abrir los oídos/ to 'sharpen' one's ears)
  • Al oído 
    • 'by word of mouth'
    • whispering/ speaking to someone's ear.
    • confidentially
  • Cerrar los oídos (to refuse to listen to reasons or excuses).
  • De oído (someting learned just by ear-no other aids or training).
  • Dolor de oidos (earache)
  • Duro de oído (hard of hearing/ a bit deaf)
  • Entrar por un oído y salir por el otro (in one ear out the other).
  • Hacer oídos sordos (to pretend not to hear something).
  • Regalarle a alguien el oído (to flatter)
  • Ser todo oídos (= Abrir los oídos/ to be all ears).
  • Taparse los oídos (sign of displeasure/ avoid hearing something considered unpleasant).
  • Tener buen oído (to have an ear for music).
  • Tener oído (to have an ear for music)
  • Zumbar los oídos a alguien (ears are burning).
  • ¡Oiga! (excuse me!/ try to attract someone's attention).
  • ¡Oye! (hey!/ try to attract someone's attention-less formal than '¡oiga!').

Examples of the use of the words 'oído', are:
  • Pedro es todo oídos (Pedro is all ears/ listening intently).
  • Pedro se hace oídos sordos (Pedro is pretending not to hear/ doesn't want to listen).
  • María no tiene oído (María does not have an ear for music).
  • Aprendí a tocar la guitarra de oído (I learned to play the guitar by ear).

Love-Spanish.com loves the word 'oído' in the YouTube clip: La Oreja de Van Gogh - Cuentame Al Oído
 
For more on the word 'oído', visit: Wordreference.com/es/en/ Oído
 
 *NB 'Click' on the speaker icon next to the word “oído” in the link to hear the word pronounced.

This is another Free online Spanish lesson from Love-Spanish.com. We conduct lessons online on this and many other topics using the latest video conferencing facilities. Online lessons are the ideal way to improve listening and speaking skills. For more details on our lessons online and how to book them, please visit:

For more Free Spanish:
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© Copyright 2011 Love-Spanish.com. by Jose M González. All Rights Reserved.

Saturday, 26 November 2011

Where Are You From?

SCENARIO
Imagine you are exchanging personal details with someone. The other person may already know you, but does not know where you come from. In order to find out, he/ she decides to ask you: "where are from?

The other person could choose to be a bit less formal and just say:
¿De dónde eres?

Alternatively, he/ she could choose to be a little bit more formal and say:
¿De dónde es (usted)?



OUR TIP

You DO NOT need be concerned about the degree of formality in the question you are asked. Whether the other person uses the more/ less formal question is irrelevant to your choice of answer. Your answer depends only on what you want to say about where you come from.

There are many different ways in which you could reply. Please remember that some of the answers depend on whether you are male or female.  With that in mind, maybe you would like to choose a reply which says that you:
    • Are of a particular nationality.
    • Come from a specific country.
    • Come from a specific city.

Assuming you are English, here are some examples which deal with those basic possibilities:
  • Soy inglés (I am English-male).
  • Soy inglesa (I am English-female).
  • Soy de Inglaterra (I am from England).
  • Soy de Birmingham (I am from Birmingham).

Now you should practice answering the question:
¿De dónde eres?

This is another Free online Spanish lesson from Love-Spanish.com.We conduct Spanish lessons online on this and many other topics using the latest video conferencing facilities. Online lessons are the ideal way to improve listening and speaking skills. For more details on our lessons online and how to book them, please visit:

For more Free Spanish:
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© Copyright 2011 Love-Spanish.com. by JM González. All Rights Reserved.

Friday, 25 November 2011

Tell Me When You Would Prefer...

SCENARIO
Imagine you are talking about going shopping with a relative, a friend or a colleague. You might have said something which gave the impression that perhaps at this time, you would rather do something else. The other person wants you to tell him/ her "when you would prefer going shopping".

He/ she could choose to be less formal and say to you:
Dime cuando preferirías ir de compras

Alternatively, he/ she could choose to more formal and say to you:
Dígame (usted) cuando preferiría ir de compras



OUR TIP
You DO NOT need be concerned about the degree of formality in what your relative/ friend/ colleague says to you. Whether the other person uses a more/ less formal register is irrelevant to your choice of reply. 

Situations like this one invite answers which should include a 'conditional' tense. There is 'conditional' verb in the request, which should be reflected in the reply. Basically, your answer depends on what you want to say about your preferences. Maybe you want to say that you would prefer:
  • Going shopping on a specific date
  • Going shopping at a specific time
  • Going shopping after a specific period of time
  • Going shopping "on some condition"

Here some examples which deal with those basic possibilities:
  • Preferiría ir de compras el sábado (I would like to go shopping on Saturday).
  • Preferiría ir de compras a las siete (I would like to go shopping at 7:00).
  • Preferiría ir de compras dentro de veinte minutos (I would like to go shopping in 20 minutes time).
  • Preferiría ir de compras si tuviese dinero (I would like to go shopping if I had money)*

Now you should practice answering the question:
Dime cuando preferirías ir de compras

*Please see grammar below


Grammar-Subjunctive
Please note this form of expressing your preferences is a typical example of the use of the imperfect subjunctive and conditional:
  • "I would prefer <doing something> if  <something happened>".
  • "I would prefer <doing something> if  <someone did something>".

NB The tell-tale sign in these expressions is the English use of the past tense (as in: "if something happened"/ "if someone did something"). Please note also that the order could also be changed to:
  • "If  <something happened>, I would prefer <doing something>".
  • "If  <someone did something>, I would prefer <doing something>"

In order to express this in Spanish, you could use:
  • "si <subjuntivo>..., preferiría... "
  • "preferiría..., si <subjuntivo>... " 

Some examples of imperfect subjunctive and conditional are:
  • Si hiciese sol, preferiría ir a la playa (if it was sunny, I would would prefer going to the beach).
  • Si hiciera sol, preferiría ir a la playa (if it was sunny, I would would prefer going to the beach).
  • Si yo no estuviese cansado, preferiría ir a bailar (if I wasn't tired, I would prefer going dancing).
  • Si yo no estuviera cansado, preferiría ir a bailar (if I wasn't tired, I would prefer going dancing).
  • Preferiría ir a verte, si pudiese (I would prefer going to see you, if I could).
  • Preferiría ir a verte, si pudiera (I would prefer going to see you, if I could).

Now you should practise imperfect subjunctive and conditional expressions of this type of your own.



This is another Free online Spanish lesson from Love-Spanish.com. We conduct lessons online on this and many other topics using the latest video conferencing facilities. Online lessons are the ideal way to improve listening and speaking skills. For more details on our lessons online and how to book them, please visit:

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© Copyright 2011 Love-Spanish.com. by Jose M González. All Rights Reserved

Thursday, 24 November 2011

Vista

The WOTD is: 'vista' = sight/ eyesight

In Spanish, the noun 'vista' is a feminine noun of Latin origin, the meaning of which is sight/ eyesight (the sense which allows seeing things).

In Spanish the noun 'vista' may also be used to refer to insight, shrewdness or vision. The noun 'vista' may also even be used to mean the eyes. Other common meanings of the noun 'vista' are:
  • An apparition
  • A meeting
  • A view or scene
  • A window or similar opening in a building.

A related Spanish action word/ verb is 'ver', the meaning of which is: to see.


A related Spanish describing word/ adjective is: 'visible', the meaning of which is: visible


Some expressions containing the words 'vista', in them are:
  • A la vista (on sight/ on display).
  • Bajar la vista (to look down)
  • Conocer (a alguien) de vista (to know someone, but not very well).
  • Echar una vista (to look after something).
  • En vista de (in view of).
  • Fijar la vista (to focus)
  • Hacer daño a la vista (to hurt the eyes).
  • Hacer la vista gorda (to pretend not to see something/ to look the other way).
  • ¡Hasta la vista! (see you later!/ til we meet again!). 
  • Levantar la vista (to look up).
  • Operar de la vista (to perform an eye operation/ surgical procedure)
  • Perder de vista (to loose sight of someone/ something).
  • Perder la vista (to become blind).
  • Saltar a la vista (to become obvious/ difficult to ignore).
  • Ser corto de vista (to be short sighted)
  • Tener buena vista (to have good eyesight).
  • Torcer la vista (a alguien) (to look avoiding eye contact).
  • Vista cansada (eyestrain).
  • Volver la vista atrás (to take a look at the past/ to remember/ reminisce).

Examples of the use of the words 'vista', are:
  • ¡Tierra a la vista! (land ahoy!).
  • A Pedro solo lo conozco de vista (I know Pedro, but not very well).
  • Creo que Pedro está haciendo la vista gorda (I think Pedro does not want to know/ is looking the other way).
  • Salta a la vista que no lo has hecho (it is obvious that you have not done it).
  • No pierdas de vista la mochila (keep an eye on your rucksack).

Love-Spanish.com loves the word 'vista' in the YouTube clip: T2 Hasta La Vista, Baby
 
For more on the word 'vista', visit: Wordreference.com/es/en/ Vista
 
  *NB 'Click' on the speaker icon next to the word “vista” in the link to hear the word pronounced.

This is another Free online Spanish lesson from Love-Spanish.com. We conduct lessons online on this and many other topics using the latest video conferencing facilities. Online lessons are the ideal way to improve listening and speaking skills. For more details on our lessons online and how to book them, please visit:

For more Free Spanish:
Follow us on:
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Facebook: Facebook.com/ Love.Spanish
© Copyright 2011 Love-Spanish.com. by Jose M González. All Rights Reserved.

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Where Is This Bus Going To?

SCENARIO
Imagine you are talking to relative, a friend or a colleague. It could even be a complete stranger you meet at the bus stop/ station. You are both looking at the same bus and the other person feels the need to ask you: "where is this bus going?

The other person could choose to be a bit less formal and just say:
¿Adónde va este autobús?

Alternatively, he/ she could choose to be a little bit more formal and say:
Perdón, por favor, ¿adónde va este autobús?



OUR TIP

You DO NOT need be concerned about the degree of formality in the question you are asked. Whether the other person uses the more/ less formal question is almost irrelevant to your choice of answer. Your answer depends mainly on what you want to say.

There are many different ways in which you could reply. Maybe you would like to reply saying that:
    • You don't know where this bus goes
    • The bus goes to a specific destination:
      • Another town/ city
      • Another area of the town/ city you are in

Here are some examples which deal with those basic possibilities (assuming you are in Barcelona):
  • No sé a donde va este autobús (I don't know where this bus goes)*
  • Este autobús va a Madrid (this bus goes to Madrid).
  • Este autobús va a la Barceloneta (this bus goes to Barceloneta-an area of Barcelona).
*NB In this case you could choose a more formal way to reply:
  • Lo siento, pero no sé a donde va este autobús (I am sorry, but don't know where this bus goes).

Now you should practice answering the question:
¿Adónde va este autobús?

This is another Free online Spanish lesson from Love-Spanish.com.We conduct Spanish lessons online on this and many other topics using the latest video conferencing facilities. Online lessons are the ideal way to improve listening and speaking skills. For more details on our lessons online and how to book them, please visit:

For more Free Spanish:
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© Copyright 2011 Love-Spanish.com. by JM González. All Rights Reserved.

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Tell Me When You Would Like That...

SCENARIO
Imagine you are talking about your parents with a relative, a friend or a colleague.  Perhaps you are talking about making a joint call to them. You might have said something which gave the impression that perhaps you are not sure about when you would like do it. The other person wants you to tell him/ her "when you would like to make that joint call".

He/ she could choose to be less formal and say to you:
Dime cuando te gustaría que llamásemos a tus padres

Alternatively, he/ she could choose to more formal and say to you:
Dígame (usted) cuando le gustaría que llamásemos a sus padres



OUR TIP
You DO NOT need be concerned about the degree of formality in what your relative/ friend/ colleague says to you. Whether the other person uses a more/ less formal register is irrelevant to your choice of reply. 

Situations like this one invite answers which should include a 'conditional' tense. There is a 'conditional' verb in the request, which should be reflected in the reply. Basically, your answer depends on whether you want to say that you would like to:
  • Make that joint call at a specific time.
  • Make that joint call after a specific period of time.
  • Make that joint call before/ after a given event.

Here some examples which deal with those basic possibilities:
  • Me gustaría que los llamásemos a la una y media (I would like to call them at 1:30)*
  •  Me gustaría que los llamásemos dentro de media hora (I would like to call them in half an hour)*
  • Me gustaría que los llamásemos antes de salir (I would like us to call them before leaving)*

Now you should practise answering the question:
Dime cuando te gustaría que llamásemos a tus padres

*Please see grammar below


Grammar-Subjunctive
Please note this form of expressing what you would like is a typical example of the use of imperfect subjunctive. You should use the imperfect subjunctive in expressions such as:
  • "I would like <you to do something>".
  • "I would like <him/ her to do  something>".
  • "I would like <us to do something>".
  • "I would like <them to do something>".
  • "I would like <something to happen>".

In order to express this in Spanish, you could use:
  • "me gustaría que <subjuntivo>... "

Some examples of imperfect subjunctive are:
  • Me gustaría que me llamases mañana (I would like you to call me tomorrow).
  • Me gustaría que me llamaras mañana (I would like you to call me tomorrow).
  • Me gustaría que fuéramos a bailar (I would like us to go dancing).
  • Me gustaría que fuésemos a bailar (I would like us to go dancing).
  • Me gustaría que me llamaseis el lunes (I would like you-plural to call me on Monday).
  • Me gustaría que me llamarais el lunes (I would like you-plural to call me on Monday).
  • Me gustaría que Pedro y María viniesen a verme (I would like Pedro and María to come and see me).
  • Me gustaría que Pedro y María vinieran a verme (I would like Pedro and María to come and see me).

Now you should practise imperfect subjunctive and conditional expressions of this type of your own.




This is another Free online Spanish lesson from Love-Spanish.com. We conduct lessons online on this and many other topics using the latest video conferencing facilities. Online lessons are the ideal way to improve listening and speaking skills. For more details on our lessons online and how to book them, please visit:
© Copyright 2011 Love-Spanish.com. by Jose M González. All Rights Reserved

Monday, 21 November 2011

Hombro

The WOTD is: 'hombro' = shoulder

In Spanish, the word 'hombro' is a masculine noun of Latin origin, the meaning of which is shoulder. In Spanish the noun 'hombro' may also be used to refer to the part of a jacket or other clothing garment which covers the shoulder.

Some expressions containing the words 'hombro', in them are:
  • A hombros (shoulder high, as in to carry someone shoulder high in triumph).
  • Al hombro (on the shoulder or hanging from the shoulder).
  • Arrimar el hombro (to pull one's weight).
  • Echarse algo al hombro (to take resposibility for something/ to take something on).
  • Encogerse de hombros (to shrug shoulders, an action which could be used to indicate:
    • Fear.
    • Inability or unwillingness to reply to a question.
    • Indifference
  • En hombros (=A hombros).
  • Estar hombro a hombro (to rub shoulders)
  • Hombro con hombro (shoulder to shoulder).
  • Meter el hombro (=Arrimar el hombro in some parts of Latin America). 
  • Mirar por encima del hombro (to look down on someone).

Examples of the use of the words 'hombro', are:
  • A ese hombre lo llevaron a hombros por la calle (that man was carried along the streeet shoulder high/ in triumph).
  • Esa bolsa se puede llevar al hombro (that bag can be carried hanging from the shoulder).
  • ¡Tienes que arrimar el hombro! (you have to pull your own weight!/ put your shoulder to the wheel!).
  • Cuando Pedro oyó lo que le dijeron se encogió de hombros (when Pedro heard what they said to him, he just shrugged his shoulders).
  • A nadie le gusta que le miren por encima del hombro (nobody likes to be looked down).

Love-Spanish.com loves the word 'hombro' in the YouTube clip: Cabeza, Hombro, Rodilla y Pie
 
For more on the word 'hombro', visit: Wordreference.com/es/en/ Hombro
 
 *NB 'Click' on the speaker icon next to the word “hombro” in the link to hear the word pronounced.

This is another Free online Spanish lesson from Love-Spanish.com. We conduct lessons online on this and many other topics using the latest video conferencing facilities. Online lessons are the ideal way to improve listening and speaking skills. For more details on our lessons online and how to book them, please visit:

For more Free Spanish:
Follow us on:
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Facebook: Facebook.com/ Love.Spanish
© Copyright 2011 Love-Spanish.com. by Jjose M González. All Rights Reserved.

Sunday, 20 November 2011

Where Are You Going?

SCENARIO
Imagine you are talking to relative, a friend or a colleague. You in particular appear to be 'on the move' (perhaps walking/ rushing around the home/ the office). The situation is such that the other person feels the need to ask you: "where are you going?

The other person could choose to be a bit less formal and say:
¿Adónde vas?

Alternatively, he/ she could choose to be a little bit more formal and say:
¿Adónde va (usted)?



OUR TIP

You DO NOT need be concerned about the degree of formality in the question you are asked. Whether the other person uses the more/ less formal question is irrelevant to your choice of answer. Your answer depends only on what you want to say.

There are many different ways in which you could reply. Maybe you would like to reply saying that you are going to:
    • Do something
    • A specific place/ somewhere

Here are some examples which deal with those basic possibilities:
  • (Me) voy a desayunar (I am going to have breakfast)
  • (Me) voy a trabajar (I am going to work).
  • (Me) voy al trabajo (I am going to work-alternative)
  • (Me) voy a la piscina (I am going to the swimming pool)
  • (Me) voy a casa (I am going home)

Now you should practice answering the question:
¿Adónde vas?

This is another Free online Spanish lesson from Love-Spanish.com.We conduct Spanish lessons online on this and many other topics using the latest video conferencing facilities. Online lessons are the ideal way to improve listening and speaking skills. For more details on our lessons online and how to book them, please visit:

© Copyright 2011 Love-Spanish.com. by JM González. All Rights Reserved