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Lección Veinte (20)

  No he podido...

(I) have not been able (or could not).

1 Además de las pensiones profesionales,
con muestra en la calle,
hay un sinfín (1)
de pensiones particulares, « en familia ».
In addition to the professional boarding-h.
with a sign in the street,
there is an infinity of private b. h. "in family".
2 Eso es precisamente lo que yo necesito :
quiero vivir en familia, con españoles,
para hablar español todo el día.
This is precisely what I need;
I want to live (as) in (a) family, with Spaniards, to speak Spanish all day.
3 Usted habla bastante bien;
¿Cuánto tiempo hace que está usted aprendiendo (2) 7
You speak well enough.
How long have you been learning [How much time that you are learning] ?
4 Hace cuatro meses.
- ¡Dios mío! En cuatro meses ha aprendido usted tanto?
y yo en dos años de lecciones no he podido...
[(It) makes] four months,
My God! In four months you have learnt so much!
And I in two years of lessons I could not [have not been able]...
5 será mi cabeza; ya no tengo yo la cabeza para estudiar (3). it will be my head; I have no longer [already have not] a head for learning.
6 La señora jóven, que escuchaba, sonriendo, exclama :
- ¡Pero Doña Amelia! qué va a creer el señor...?
The young lady, who listened smiling, exclaims :
- But, Mrs. Amelia, what is the gentleman going to believe [wh. is going to b. the g.]?...
7 No le dice usted que durante las lecciones de francés hablaba usted español sin cesar, (4) You don't tell him that during the French lessons, you spoke
Spanish without ceasing,
8 y que si usted no ha aprendido nada, en cambio la francesa, ha perfeccionado (5) mucho su español. and that if you have [not] learnt nothing, on the other hand [in exchange], the Frenchwoman has much improved her Spanish.
9 Tiene usted razón, Victoria; después de todo, esas lecciones han servido para algo (6). You are right, Victoria; after [of] all, those lessons have been good [served]
for something.

1 Yo tomo, tomaba, tomaré;
él, (ella, usted) toma, tomaba, tomará.
I take, was taking, shall take;
he, she, you [your H.] takes, was taking, will take.
2 Yo pago, pagaba, pagaré;
él, (ella, usted) paga, pagaba, pagará.
I pay, was paying, shall pay;
he, she, you [your H.] pays, was paying, will pay.
3 Yo busco, buscaba, buscaré;
él, (ella, usted) busca, buscaba, buscará.
I seek, was seeking, shall seek;
he, she, you [your H.] seeks, was seeking, will seek.
4 Yo miro, miraba, miraré;
él (ella, usted) mira, miraba, mirará.
I look, was looking, shall look;
he, she, you [your H.] looks, was looking, will look.
5 Yo llamo, llamaba, llamaré;
él, (ella, usted) llama, llamaba, llamará.
I call, was calling, shall call;
he, she, you [your H.] calls, was calling, will call.

Tomar, pagar, buscar, mirar, llamar.
(El =
the; él = he. Same prononciation).

To take, pay, seek, look, call.

1 Un sinfín : a " without-end" : una infinidad.
2 Ago and for are translated by hace, (it) makes.
Three years ago : Hace tres años, (it) makes three years. -
For : está usted aprendiendo, see less. 21, par. 6.

Ya, already, is used to translate no longer.
Ya no sé : I no longer know.
Ya no me gusta esta música : this music pleases me no longer.
In ya no tengo yo la cabeza, the "yo" gives vigour to the sentence, which corresponds to : I have no more...

4 Cesar (pron. thaissar) to cease.
- César (pron. thaissar) : Caesar.
5 Perfeccionado : pron. : pairfecthionnado.
6 For esas (ayssass) see less. 21, par. 2.

Note the imperfect (progressive preterite), in -aba :
yo escuchaba, ella escuchaba (escootchabba) : I, she, was listening.
Yo hablaba : I was speaking.
Él hablaba : he was speaking.

They are verbs of the 1st conjug., infin. in -ar.
A few more examples : preguntar, to ask;
yo preguntaba, el or ella preguntaba : I, he or she was asking.

Let us see these three verbs in the present :
yo escucho, hablo, pregunto;
él (or ella or usted) escucha, habla, pregunta

In the future : yo escucharé, yo hablaré, yo preguntaré;
(or ella or usted) escuchará, hablará, preguntará.


We apologize for this Wile grammatical "crisis", in which, in fad, there's nothing we don't know.
This kind of exercise is sometimes useful but not very attractive.
We will not overdo it.

And here is one which scorns our well lined up verbs in -ar.
It's dar, to give, an irregular, a whimsical one.
We do have yo daba, yo daré, I was giving, I shall give,
and él da, daba, dará, he gives, was giving, will give.
But I give is yo doy and not "do".