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Old 31st December 2007, 06:58 PM   #55
Isabelita
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Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Germany
Posts: 16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cervecero View Post
The only problem I ran into in spain was after I FINALLY found a mail box and asked a local street vendor to borrow a pen to finish writing a few addresses.

Me: "Tienes una pluma que puedo usar?"
hombre: "una que??" - looking at me like I'm crazy.
Me: "una pluma" - making the motions of writing
hombre: "ahhh, un boli!"

He gave me a pen and went away, probably telling his coworker that I'm crazy. That was the only time I felt embarrased speaking spanish in spain. I didn't feel so bad though because after I left, on the very same street I saw a store called something like "Papeles y plumas." At that point I didn't know which was the correct word to use in spain.
This shows clearly that besides learning vocabulary it is important to learn strategies to describe things. In this case it would have been: algo para escribir which includes lápiz, pluma, lapicera/-o, birome, plumafuente, estilo, portaminas, rotulador ...
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