October 29, 2014
Lo Que Mi Abuela Me Dijo: What My Grandmother Told Me
Practical Wisdom from Spanish Proverbs and Sayings
I may have graduated with the mandatory twelve units of Spanish from college, but since I never used it, that language skill soon fell by the wayside. And I’m never more sorry for that than today, when Tahanan Books recently launched Lo Que Mi Abuela Me Dijo: What My Grandmother Told Me.
Written by Maria Paz Eleizegui Weir, this collection of pithy folk sayings (or dichos) distill the practical wisdom of the abuela (grandmother) through the years.
“Although the words were usually her own, what I remember best are the Spanish proverbs that she often quoted, adding flavor to her speech, like salt-and-pepper in everyday meals. She sincerely believed that dichos, with their unique blend of sound and sense, delivered important messages of useful and lasting value. Over time, she hoped, they would inspire me to lead a better life. Which is what they did, and why I remember them to this day”, Weir said in her introduction.
The dichos are divided into six categories, or one per chapter. Chapter 1 dealt with Childhood (Juventad), Chapter 2 looked at Friendship (Amistad), Chapter 3 talked about Manners (Comportamiento), Chapter 4 on Work and Strife (Lucha y Trabajo), Chapter 5 focused on Wisdom (Sabiduria) and Chapter 6 examined Love and Destiny (Amor y Destino).
Out of over a thousand Spanish proverbs, Weir showcased a collection of 109 folk sayings, all done in Spanish and its English translation. Complementing the proverbs are the charming illustrations by Mahala Urra. Finishing the entire book are two personal essays bookending the collection, which ends with the proverb “En tus apures y afanes acude a los refranes (When needs and difficulties arise, take refuge in the proverbs).”
Lo Que Mi Abuela Me Dijo: What My Grandmother Told Me is a handy 208-page book that serves as a friendly reference for students of Spanish, or as a guide from somebody who had lived a full life. For inquiries or to get a copy, call Frances Ong at 813-7165 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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