Monday, February 21, 2011

No veo la hora de volver a verte

In Spanish, when you want to talk about doing something again, your Spanish textbook will mention these two options, "otra vez" and "de nuevo".  

There's absolutely nothing wrong with either of those two options, and you shouldn't hesitate to use them. 

Here's an example:

No te voy a molestar de nuevo
I'm not going to bother you again

Nunca voy a hacer eso otra vez
I'm never going to do that again

This is where things get interesting.   There's a very good chance that you'll never hear a native speaker say either of those.

I wish I could see the deer in headlights look that I'm sure some of you have right now.  I bet it looks exactly like the one I had.  But getting back to the subject at hand, if a native speaker might not say "de nuevo" or "otra vez", then what would they say?

No te vuelvo a molestar
I'm not going to bother you again

Nunca vuelvo a hacer eso
I'm never going to do that again

It's extremely common to use "volver a" talk about doing something again.  Let's look at a some more examples to help you get the hang of it.

Rápidamente lo volví a llamar
I quickly called him back

Por favor, vuelve a introducir tu contraseña
Please enter your password again

No me digas que fuiste por el hielo, las cocas, mas ron y se te volvio a olvidar el limon
Don't tell me you went for the ice, the cokes, more rum and you forgot the lime again?

Cultural tip:  Notice I translated limon as lime.  That's because if you go to any Spanish speaking country and ask for a "limon" you'll get what we call a lime.  I touched on this in another post, which you can read about here.  You'll also learn how to order one of my favorite cocktails in Spanish.

Decidí volver a llamar
I decided to call again

Nunca más volveré a enamorarme
I will never fall in love again

And at this point I'm guessing you can easily translate the title of this post.  Or at least half of it.

No veo la hora de volver a verte
I can't wait to see you again

"No veo la hora"  might have thrown you for a loop, but if you got it right, you just earned yourself some extra credit.

¡Ya¡  Our work is done for today. 

Hasta pronto.

5 comments:

  1. This is really interesting, but I asked a few of the Spanish teachers at my school (one of them actually being a native speaker), and they said they've never heard of/wouldn't use the expression "volver a" to mean "again." The example I gave them was "they stop again." I asked if it would be better to say "se detienen de nuevo/otra vez" or "se vuelven a detener". All of the mentioned Spanish teachers said "se detienen de nuevo" would be better and that they have never heard of using "volver a" to mean again.

    What is your opinion on this?
    Any help would be appreciated!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hey Joseph,

    Thanks for reading my blog and taking the time to comment as well.

    As for your question, "volver a" is a very common construction, and you can confirm this by going to this link:

    http://www.wordreference.com/es/en/translation.asp?spen=volver+a

    WordReference is both a dictionary and a forum where you can find answers to any questions about Spanish you may have. The answers are given by Spanish speakers from all over the world. You will see numerous examples of "volver a" at that link, so have fun with it and take pride in teaching your teachers a thing or two about Spanish. :>)

    I have to admit I'm a bit surprised that you have a native speaker for a teacher that has never heard of "volver a". However, it's not uncommon that what is unheard of to one Spanish speaker is very commonplace for another.

    Don't hesitate to ask any more questions!

    ¡Buena suerte!

    ReplyDelete
  3. One last thing...

    While "volver a" does mean to do something again, that doesn't mean it's always the best choice or the most natural way to talk about doing something again. Context is everything, and knowing when one choice of words is better or more natural then another is a matter experience for us non-native speakers. Over time you will develop an ear for these things.

    ReplyDelete