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Posted by on Jan 19, 2014 in Spanish, Uncategorized | 8 comments

Spanish Sundays – Número Tres

Spanish Sundays – Número Tres

DexterTodays Spanish Sunday post will be brief – it will be as short as the amount of time as I spent on Spanish this week. The week started with some sort of stomach bug or virus that put me on the couch for 3 days.

A wise person, or at least, one that was truly on a Spanish learning MISSION would have used this couch-time to plug in the iPod or grab the computer and watch, listen and read Spanish program after Spanish program.

I may be on a Spanish learning MISSION but I am horrible sick person. Instead of using my downtime to work on Spanish I chose to watch Dexter – episode after episode after episode. And you know what I found? I was still exposed to a bit of Spanish.

Dexter, a morbid morality-tale of a show from Showtime, takes place in Miami, Florida, a city that has a large Cuban population. In fact, 2 of the main characters on the show play Cuban Americans and they often drop Spanish words and phrases on the at-home viewer.

Sí, se puede

One of the multitude of episodes of Dexter I watched while holding down the couch was titled Sí, Se Puede. So, feeling guilty for not really learning Spanish while being ill, I Googled the phrase and received a history lesson from Wikipedia.

“Sí, se puede (Spanish for “Yes, it is possible” or, roughly, “Yes, it can be done”; pronounced: [ˈsi se ˈpwe.ðe]) is the motto of the United Farm Workers. In 1972, during Cesar Chavez’s 24 day fast in Phoenix, Arizona, he and UFW’s co-founder, Dolores Huerta, came up with the slogan.

The phrase has been widely adopted by other labor unions and civil rights organizations and drew widespread political and media attention as a rallying cry during the 2006 U.S. immigration reform protests, and was also used in the 2002 Disney film Gotta Kick It Up!.

The saying Sí Se Puede has long been a UFW guiding principle that has served to inspire accomplishment of goals even in what at times may seem insurmountable situations. Sí Se Puede is a federally Registered Trademark of the UFW so the UFW can maintain the original meaning of this special saying.”

So there, I learned something…maybe not specifically related to Costa Rica Spanish but SOMETHING. I was eventually able to get out of the house and purchase a couple of things in town that let me practice hearing and comprehending numbers spoken in realtime – which was my goal for the week.

Finishing Strong

I may have stated the week weak (in at least 2 senses of the word), but I finished up very strong. This morning, along with my lovely wife and our friends, we went for a nice long hike. This may not sound like a very Spanish intensive activity; however, last night over wine and dinner, we determined that we would hike this morning while speaking Spanish only.

While we did not follow this rule 100%, having a native speaker hiking with us, firing questions, answers, words and wisdom in/about Costa Rica and Spanish was great fun; a very entertaining and informative way to learn. I really hope these hikes continue.

Hasta Pronto,



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Greg Seymour is a quitter. At 41 Greg and his wife Jen quit their jobs, sold damn near everything they owned and became Intentionally Unemployed and retired early to Costa Rica.
In addition to writing on this blog, Greg has written for other online publications and has written two popular books about living in Costa Rica:
Greg Seymour Amazon Author Page

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Latest posts by Gregorio (see all)

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  1. Como siempre Greg, me encanta tu blog. Jajaja!

  2. Nicely done, Greg! I enjoyed learning the history of Si, se puede. I admire your resolve to learn Spanish. !Si, se puede! Write on.

    • Thanks Carole! The blog is really a great tool to help me along – because I cringe at having to tell everyone I slacked. Whatever works, Right? Thanks for reading.

  3. Hi Greg,

    We got back from 10 days in the US a couple of weeks ago, much of which has left Marilyn with some kind of bug. She is just getting her strength back now. So far, I have been lucky. I’m nearly done with the first draft of a screenplay and have been working in my little Tico workshop. (It’s the Tico house next to our house) I have been way too sedentary and am walking up and down our little hill several times each day. It’s much more interesting than a treadmill. I’d like to walk with you some morning. (Phone 2444-1601)

    When we all get better, we’d like to do something with you and Jen. Maybe have you over for lunch? Let us know.



    PS- I enjoy your blog.

    • That’s funny…I think I just saw you walk by. I walk just about every morning – sometimes solo, sometimes with friends. I am sure we can get together and do a hike sometime and a get together is indeed in order. I hope Marilyn gets feeling better.

  4. Te escribo en español, porque veo que lo estás estudiando. Me gusta mucho tu blog y el coraje que transmiten tus palabras, felicidades! Esperamos nosotros también poder tomar una decisión tan valiente como tú cuando llegue el momento y no conformarnos con cualquier tipo de vida que no nos guste. Muchísima suerte! Un abrazo!

    • Gracias (and a bunch of pantomime while I search for the words). Thanks for checking out the blog and buenas suerte in your quest to follow your bliss.

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