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Fernando: “After time passes, making a fresh start in Spanish”. Hola JP ¿cómo estás?
JP: Muy bien, gracias. ¿Tú Fernando?
Fernando: Muy bien.
JP: Fernando, what are we going to hear about in this lesson?
Fernando: En esta lección vamos a revisar la palabra “al” con un infinitivo. Esta conversación toma lugar en un departamento. La conversación es entre Ilse y Jacobo y estarán utilizando el registro familiar.
JP: All right. Let’s take a listen.
Ilse: Sé que te debo una disculpa. Y te la debí pedir hace tiempo. Mi dilema fue en no saber si la aceptarías.
Jacobo: Somos mejores amigos desde hace mucho tiempo. Claro, me dolió mucho lo que pasó y sobre todo el distanciamiento.
Ilse: Sí. Fue un error que se fue haciendo aún más grande al pasar el tiempo.
Jacobo: Y yo también debí decirte algo. Pero no saber qué pasó me hizo pensarla dos veces.
Ilse: ¿Entonces aceptas mis disculpas?
Jacobo: Claro. Pero ahora sí no me dejes esperando en el altar como las otras tres veces.
Iles: I know I owe you an apology. And I've owed it to you for a long time. My dilemma was in not knowing whether you'd accept it.
Jacobo: We've been best friends for a long time. Of course, what happened hurt me a lot, especially the growing apart.
Ilse: Yes. It was a mistake that got bigger as time passed.
Jacobo: And I should have said something to you as well. But not knowing what happened made me think twice about it.
Ilse: So, do you accept my apology?
Jacobo: Of course. But this time you're not going to leave me waiting at the altar like the last three times.
JP: All right, we’re back. Fernando, what kind of relationship is this? Forget the sakes.
Fernando: Híjole, es una muy buena pregunta.
JP: Ok.
Fernando: Una respuesta que solo ellos te van a poder dar.
JP: Ok. Elsie and Jacobo are having an intimate conversation, right?
Fernando: Bastante intima, sí. Se está disculpando con Jacobo.
JP: Right, she’s apologizing.
Fernando: “Sé que te debo una disculpa. Y te la debí pedir hace tiempo.” Es decir, pedir disculpas.
JP: So, “I owe you an apology and I should’ve given you in a long time ago.” “I’ve owed it to you for a long time.”
Fernando: “Te la debí pedir” – “should’ve asked for your forgiveness”. “Mi dilema fue en no saber si la aceptarías.” Es decir, no sabía cómo iba a reaccionar Jacobo.
JP: So, she just didn’t apology. Usually, if you owe someone apology, you should just apologize.
Fernando: “Somos mejores amigos desde hace mucho tiempo.” Esto es lo que le contesta Jacobo y: “Claro, me dolió mucho lo que pasó y sobre todo el distanciamiento.”
JP: Ok. So, Jacobo is expressing his pain at this time. He’s saying “We’ve been best friends for so long, and what happened did hurt me.”, you know, and especially the growing apart.
Fernando: Eso fuelo que más le dolió al parecer a Jacobo. Ilse le contesta: “Sí. Fue un error que se fue haciendo aún más grande al pasar el tiempo.” Es decir, entre más tiempo dejas pasar, más dificil se vuelve pedir disculpas o pedir perdón.
JP: In English we’d probably say “It’s a mistake that got worse over time.”. in Spanish “fue un error que se fue haciendo aún más grande ”, ok? It was getting bigger.
Fernando: Que se fue agrandando, también podemos decir.
JP: Right. It got bigger. In English we’d say “it got worse”. And Jacobo is going to compromise, too. He’s going to say “I should’ve told you something, too.”
Fernando: “Y yo también debí decirte algo”. Pero en este caso el compromiso... Es decir, no es tanto bueno yo acepto error. Sino yo te debí haber dicho algo para que… para saber que paso. “Pero no saber qué pasó me hizo pensarla dos veces.” Entonces Jacobo no sabía como llegar con Ilse y decirle esto o lo otro.
JP: Now, up to his point, they’re just talking about their pain and how much, you know, they owe each other an apology, whatever. They haven’t exactly mentioned what the problem was in the first place. We don’t know yet.
Fernando: Sí en este caso Jacobo no le debe ninguna disculpa es más bien Ilse quien le debe disculpa y esto lo vamos a saber en unos cuantos segunditos.
JP: Ok.
Fernando: “¿Entonces aceptas mis disculpas?” Le pregunta Ilse a Jacobo.
JP: “Do you accept my apologies?”
Fernando: Jacobo le contesta “Claro.”
JP: “Of course I do.”
Fernando: “Pero ahora sí no me dejes esperando en el altar como las otras tres veces.”
JP: “Don’t leave me standing at the altar like the last three times.” Ok. So, now we find out that she keeps leaving him at the worst possible time.
Fernando: Poquito, cómo se le dice... “cold feet”?
JP: Yes. I’ll say cold feet. So, what’s happening here is that she’s apologizing to him for it, but it seems like the cycle is going to start all over again. I think there’s going to be a fourth time. I don’t have a lot of hope for these two people.
Fernando: JP la esperanza es lo ultimo que muere.
JP: Ok.
Fernando: Pasemos al vocabulario.
JP: Let’s do that.
Fernando: la disculpa
JP: “Apology”, “forgiveness”
Fernando: la dis-cul-pa, la disculpa. Doler
JP: “To hurt”, “to cause pain”
Fernando: do-ler, doler. El distanciamiento.
JP: “Emotional distance”, “drifting apart”
Fernando: el dis-tan-cia-mien-to, el distanciamiento. Pensar dos veces.
JP: “To reconsider”, “to think it over”
Fernando: pen-sar dos ve-ces, pensar dos veces.
JP: Let’s take a closer look at some of these vocabulary words.
Fernando: Empecemos con “la disculpa”.
JP: “La disculpa”. Clearly, “disculpa” means “an apology”, but we can also translate it as “forgiveness” when we say “pedir disculpas”, as you know, “to ask for forgiveness” in English. “Pedir disculpas” is “to ask for forgiveness”, so usually it means “apology”, but “pedir disculpas” is “to ask for forgiveness”. So, “apology”, “forgiveness”. “La disculpa”. What’s next?
Fernando: Doler.
JP: “Doler” – “to hurt”. The grammar of “doler” is very different from the English “to hurt”. “Doler”, literally is “to cause pain”, but the grammar is different because there’s always going to be an indirect object pronoun there. So, in English we say something like “My hand hurts, my head hurts.” In Spanish you’re going to say “The hand is hurting to me.” or “The head is hurting to me.”
Fernando: Me duele la cabeza.
JP: Ok, that’s “My head is hearting to me.” “The head” “Me duele la cabeza” “it’s hurting to me the head.” In our dialogue today we’re talking about some emotional pain. Jacobo says “Of course. What happened hurt me a lot, especially the emotional distance.”
Fernando: Claro. Me dolio mucho.
JP: Ok, “It hurt me a lot.” “It caused pain to me.” “Doler”.
Fernando: El distanciamiento.
JP: “El distanciamiento”. So, this is “emotional distance”. Regular, physical distance would be “la distancia”, but “el distanciamiento” is, can be some, some distancing, right? Some emotional or spiritual distancing. We can use some more dramatic words like “rift” or “schism”, but sometimes when you’re just talking about girlfriend or friend and it just means like some, you know, you haven’t been talking a lot. “El distanciamiento”
Fernando: Pensar dos veces.
JP: “Pensar dos veces” – “to reconsider”, “to think it over”. In English we have an expression, “to think twice” and it’s not exactly the same. “Pensar dos veces” just means to reconsider. In English, “to think twice” can mean “to hesitate”, but “pensar dos veces” just means “to think it over again”. Literally, “to think two times”. “Pensar dos veces”. Shall we move on to the grammar?

Lesson focus

Fernando: ¿De que vamos a hablar ahora en la gramática, JP?
JP: Well, we’re going to talk about the use of Infinitives, especially when we prefix them with the word “al”, ok? The Infinitive, of course, is the verb form that is the dictionary form of the verb. When you look up a verb in the dictionary, it’s going to be in the Infinitive. In English, all Infinitives begin with the word “to” – “to run”, “to jump”, “to cook”, “to scream”, “to sleep”. You know, all of those action words begin with “to”. And in Spanish, as you know, the Infinitives all end with an “r”, either, whether “ar”, “er”, “ir” - “dormir, hablar, comer, beber, bailar”. All those actions words are going to end with an “r”. So, we have the structure in Spanish that’s “al” plus the Infinitive. And in English it translates in a kind of a formal way to upon doing this thing. So, if I wanted to say “Upon arriving”…
Fernando: Al llegar.
JP: “Al llegar” – “Upon arriving” “we said hello.”
Fernando: Al llegar saludamos.
JP: “Al llegar” – “Upon arriving”. Now, in English I don’t ever say “upon arriving”, I say “When I arrived”, “When I showed up”. So , in colloquial English we might use a depending phrase that starts with “when” – “When I did this”, “When you did this”, “When”, “When”. In Spanish it’s going to be “al” plus an Infinitive. “Al comer, al beber, al bailar”. If it helps you, you can think of it as upon doing something – “upon eating”, “upon dancing”, “upon, upon drinking”. I know most of us don’t talk that way, but if that helps you, the grammatical structure is a little bit closer to the Spanish. So, let’s hear some sample senses for them.
Fernando: ¿Sientes alegría al ganar un premio?
JP: “Sientes alegria ” – “Do you feel joy” “al ganar un premio”, there’s the “al” phrase, “upon winning a prize”. Ok, so, “Do you feel joy when you win a prize?” “ ¿Sientes alegría al ganar un premio?”. Ok? Give us another one, Fernando.
Fernando: Al comer mucho me da mucho sueño.
JP: “Al comer mucho ” – “Upon eating a lot” or “When I eat a lot”, “ me da mucho sueño”– “it makes me sleepy”. So, “When I eat a lot, I get really sleepy.”
Fernando: ¿Quieres descansar al terminar el proyecto?
JP: “Do you want to rest” - “Quieres descansar”, “when” “ al terminar el proyecto” – “when the project is finished” or “upon finishing the project”. “¿Quieres descansar al terminar el proyecto?”, and the answer is “Yes, I want to rest when I finish this project.”
Fernando: Reviso mi correo al levantarme.
JP: “Reviso mi correo ” – “I check my mail” when “al levantarme” – “upon getting up” or “when I get out of bed, check my mail.”


JP: Pretty straight forward, if you’d like to review this, you can look at the written form of this lesson, in the lesson notes. That’s it for today, Fernando. Hasta luego.
Fernando: Adios


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