Ambergris Caye Directory
Spanglish or Spamaya
In our present day San Pedro we speak a lot of Spanglish which is basically a lot of Spanish with some English words mixed into it. The reason for Spanglish is that we are living in a Spanish-speaking community influenced a lot by an English speaking environment such as television, radio, newspapers, education and street talk. So for us it is natural to say, “Quiero huevo con bacon”, (bacon being the English word for tocino). A child will say, Dame un bite”, ( bite being the English for un bocado) or “Dame un piece” (un pedazo) or “Me haces text y nos hacemos meet en el parquet.” It can really get Spanglish, interesting and colorful except for Spanish exams in school.
However, twenty five years ago, it was not Spanglish but SpaMaya, a combination of Spanish with a lot of Maya words and phrases- the influence of our Maya ancestors. So here we go, just in case that culture is being forgotten.
Wirix - (pronounced wirish) El arbol esta wirix. The tree is small and lean. La sopa esta wirix. (watery, not thick)
* Tu pirix - (pronounced pirish) your testicles or penis.
* Pirix pak – eggs and tomato cooked together.
* Chak- red or pink which is almost red
* Chak pargo - a red snapper. Pargo is Spanish; chak is Maya
* Che chak - a red fish soup using Chac pargo
* Tuuch - for umbligo which is the navel or bellybutton. Quiero ver tu tuuch.
* Estamos cabal - cabal used for iguales or equal.
* Chi Chi - grandmother.
* Tatix – (pronounced tastish) grandfather, then shortened to Tati.
* Shix - Solo me queda un shix – (pronounced Shish) for un poquito or a little bit.
* Cuuch - to carry on one’s back.
* Chan - like.. Lo chan aprendi. I learned it a little. Chan- small or little
* Looch - used for abrazar, to hug or hugging. Estaban los enamorados bien looch. The enamored couple was hugging tightly.
* Chuup - for probadita or in English a sip. Un chup de tu Cocacola ( a sip of your coke)
* Nich – un bocado or a small bite.
* Chilip - small twig of a tree or leaf.
* Shtoop - youngest child in the family
* Tzut- small barracuda.
* Tzuuts – short or small like a short person.
* Tulish- dragonfly
* Tzaikin- The August cricket.
* Tzits - brown chocolate mark on your underwear. (Shish - meaning a little bit can also be on your underwear)
* Jaan - meaning immediately therefore the Spanish is imediatamente or rapidamente.
* Pix - an obstacle in your way, so if you say I want to pix, you mean I want to clear the way.
Hey, here is a short free lesson in Maya. I am no expert, just the Maya words we used as children 25 years ago. Do you remember a few interesting ones? Call me so I can compile a list and use it some time for a Mestizo celebration contest.
- by Angel Nuñez, Columnist
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