Fifth meeting – Finnish homework and verbs

Today we met at cafe Taikapapu behind Stockmann. We recently discovered it’s one of the few cafes in town that offer a student discount, so especially filter coffee is a very good price. Also it’s some good quality coffee. But enough about that. I helped Ignasi with his Finnish homework, and he taught me some Spanish verbs.

I’m not 100% sure how we ended up on the topic, but Ignasi told me of a Spanish poet called Antonio Machado, who was exiled in France after the war and whose memorial grave can be found in Collioure. We decided to translate one of his more famous poems:


I did know some of the verbs and words, but even when Ignasi filled in the ones I didn’t know, it was very challenging for me to translate. It’s a poem, and as per usual, the words are not in a normal order. The poem goes as follows:

Wanderer, the path is your footprints and nothing more;
Wanderer, there is no path, the path is made when walking.
When walking the path is made, and when you turn your sight back, it is seen the path must never again be stepped on.
Wanderer there is no path but foam trails on the sea.

Some things that I learned from the poem were that because caminar is “to walk”, caminante means wanderer. Just like how cantante is “a singer” and cantar is “to sing”. I also learned the words huellas (footprints), atrás (behind/back), senda/camino (path), estela (wake/trail) and a more common verb for walking (as opposed to caminar, which I’ve been using so far), which is andar.

We also revised on some common verbs that I had forgotten, and I made some sentences with them:

Miro la tele – I’m watching TV

Me gusta andar – I like walking

Escucho música – I’m listening to music

No veo bien – I don’t see well

Puedo ver mi casa desde aquí – I can see my house from here

Vuelvo a casa – I’m returning home

Overall a pretty good lesson, and I feel like it’s getting easier to form sentences with words I know. Even if I sometimes doubt myself, I’m rarely far from the correct answer.

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