Stevie’s Lost In Translation

If you know Stevie, as many of you do, then you know she LOVES to talk. She’ll talk to anyone, anywhere, anytime. She is by nature a communicator. She is also Sicilian, so you cannot expect her to suppress her vibrant verbal nature just because she doesn’t know the language. Perhaps that is why she is learning Spanish so much faster than the average student.

Language is a funny thing. You take a bunch of letters and string them together to make a single word. Group those words together and you can verbally communicate just about anything.  Now, take those same words and try to translate them into another language with the intent of communicating the same message. This is where my lovely Sicilian communicator keeps getting herself into trouble.

For instance, when we were at the ferry terminal Stevie had a conversation with a nice old man. He asked if we had kids, and Stevie patted her belly and said “Ya No, Ya No.”  Her intention was to say “Not Yet,” but what she actually said with a big smile as she rubbed her tummy was “Not Anymore.” And that explained the horrified look on the poor Catholic mans face as he walked away shaking his head.

Another example… My little lady has quite a temper, and for a while she was fond of saying “Tengo rabia,” meaning “I’m enraged.” Thanks to our friend Miguel, we now know she was actually saying “I have rabies,” which I personally like a lot better, especially when directed at me.

We got a curious smile from a guy in Baja when Stevie said “Estoy caliente,” intending to say “I’m hot” (because of the weather). What she actually said was “I’m horny.” Despite the fact that she now knows the correct word is calor, all I ever hear is caliente, caliente, caliente.

Want more? There are many native Indians still living around Mexico and we’ve been interested in meeting indigenous people. Stevie, being fearless, has told these people… “Quiero mas aprender sobre indigentes,” trying to say that she wants to learn more about indigenous people. Only “indigentes” means “homeless people.”  I don’t think they took it personal, but it’s real hard to tell.

My favorite one of all was when Stevie was talking to a Mexican couple about surfing. She shamelessly stated… “Yo tengo mierda,” meaning “I have fear“… except the word for fear is “miedo.” Stevie, with all of her dramatic hand expressions, informed everyone that “I have shit“.

I don’t expect these moments are over. We’ve got too many countries to go through, and there are too many people for Stevie to practice on. At least I’m getting really good at reading facial expressions. At this point when I detect confusion, skepticism, or plain horror, I just break out the dictionary. TREE


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  1. oh lovely… yes, I can see all of these going down. I love it

  2. Alexis Schulman says:

    Ah hahahahhaha lol. Awesome. I took Spanish for a long time in high school and 10 yrs of waitressing…I should have practiced with you.

  3. hhhaaaaaaahahahahahhahahahahahha!!!!! Nice one Stevie…

  4. Mi financia balones son picazón

  5. My balls are itchy funds?

  6. Oh wait, my financial balls are itchy!

  7. made me laugh a lot thanks!!

  8. Love it!!!

  9. I love you guys. Remember, I'm not laughing with you I'm laughing AT you.

  10. Stevie…you just stay lost…I have complete faith there will be no international incident from your delightful use and learning to speak Spanish…:-)
    PS:I am anonymous only because I cannot seem to type my name in any of the profiles…remember the opening of the wine bottle:-(

  11. I LOVE this post! Way to go Stevie, getting out there and experiencing…learning from immersion. What a good team the two of you make…Stevie with her brave expression and Tree with the dictionary. Beautiful!
    Miss you. cheryll

  12. Hysteriocos y pocos locos! Te amo! Blogisimo Magnifico!
    Love it! Love you!

  13. jeremy jones says:

    i love it! please keep recording all the linguistic comedy of errors. they should have their own corner. priceless. signs are HA-larious. not from sayulita though, huh?

  14. OMG Stevie this blog is hilololarious. You haven’t changed. I love it!

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