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Carbon Monoxide: The Silent, Odorless, Tasteless Killer

While we consider ourselves fairly seasoned travelers, we never once thought that packing a carbon monoxide detector would be an essential and life-saving item in our travel preparedness until tragedy struck when my retired firefighter husband was poisoned by carbon monoxide at a “boutique hotel” in Lake Chapala, Mexico.

After dropping our twins off at their much-anticipated 6th grade camp in a rural community outside of Guadalajara, Frank and I set out to enjoy our weekend together, knowing that our children would be in good hands in the company of their classmates and counselors.

But instead of sightseeing and relaxing, we spent it fighting for Frank’s life at the Red Cross, ER and a Hyperbaric Chamber Facility.

Carbon Monoxide: The Silent, Odorless, Tasteless Killer

 

How could such a thing happen? 

Do mistakes and bad things just happen? Absolutely.

So does gross negligence.

After several hours of working next to the open window—with a yellow-flamed, carbon monoxide-leaking heater just on the other side of it—my husband Frank, upon standing up, was overcome by severe visual disturbances, weakness, confusion, headache, difficulty speaking and vomiting.

Carbon Monoxide: The Silent, Odorless, Tasteless Killer

Retired Firefighter Fighting for His Life

Carbon Monoxide Leaks Found in Hot Water Heater

Confirmation by the hotel staff that two carbon monoxide leaks had been found in the hot water heater, together with all of Frank’s symptoms and intake diagnostics pointed clearly towards carbon monoxide poisoning.

All further medical diagnosis and treatment confirmed that it was indeed carbon monoxide poisoningthat the simple installation of an affordable CO detector would have prevented, not to mention proper maintenance of the hot water heater itself.

Carbon Monoxide: The Silent, Odorless, Tasteless Killer

Hospital Diagnosis of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

Only removal from the source of the CO, immediate medical intervention and continuous high-saturation oxygen therapy saved Frank’s life…prayers and support from family and friends as well. 

Carbon Monoxide: The Silent, Odorless, Tasteless Killer

Hyperbaric Chamber~One of Two 80-Minute Treatments

As a result of this terrifying, near-death experience, we now ALWAYS travel with carbon monoxide detectorsone for each of the bedrooms and one next to any gas appliances.

We can’t emphasize enough the importance for others to do so too. Carbon monoxide detectors for home and travel are an essential component of personal safety.

Protect yourself with a CO alarm.

Something so simple and affordable can save your and your loved one’s lives in the event of a carbon monoxide leak. 

*Carbon monoxide is silent, odorless and tasteless*

Carbon Monoxide: The Silent, Odorless, Tasteless Killer

CO Detectors Save Lives

I hope this information saves just one life. Please share it with your loved ones.

~Katie O’Grady

New York Couple Dies of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

The Sharp Family

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While Mexico has been home to us for the past six years, we O’Gradys also have our wanderlust sights on other countries, not only for family travel, but also for a potential relocation when our teenage twins are in college…something that seems to be just around the corner with time traveling like the speed of light!

All great plans begin with an idea, and lots and lots of research!

We have decided to partner with some reputable travel brands as part of our own process of discovery and will be sharing some of the information with you all– just in case you too might get an inkling to explore beyond!

Hiking can be more than just an activity for getting healthier.  It can also be a spiritual and peaceful journey, making it an extremely holistic experience. 

There’s nothing quite like reaching a summit while enjoying the beauty of nature at the same time.  Indeed, it is one of the best ways to spend time outdoors even if you’re not the outdoorsy type.  Below is a list of the lesser-known hiking locations where you can have a blissful experience.

Sri Lanka

This small island has fairytale-like landscapes with beautiful mountain peaks.  Marvel at the clouds while at the mountaintops of Ella, go to the second highest peak in the island called Adam’s Peak or Sri Padaya and watch the beautiful sunrise, hills, valleys that surround this holy mountain. 

If you’re the type who likes to go on trails with an abundance of flora and fauna, then you’d surely enjoy hiking through the largest virgin forest in the island called Sinharaja or the enchanting trail in Kirigalpoththa where its surrounded by beautiful flower fields and lush lands. Not only does Sri Lanka boast rich nature, culture and wildlife, then it also has some incredible accommodations to explore.

Explore Idyllic Up-and-Coming Hiking Locations

Northern India

Featuring trails with natural beauty and picturesque sceneries, this country isn’t called hiker’s haven for nothing. It’s not just their long trails of snow-capped mountains and glaciers that you can visit here. You can also come across to India’s dream-like trails like the Valley of Flowers in Garhwal, as which its name suggests, features a sea of flowers bursting with vibrant colors during autumn or spring.

If you’re craving a challenge, you can also hike through the Pin Parvati Pass in Himachal Pradesh. This trail features the sight of magnificent lakes and massive glacier crests which will give you a very extraordinary experience.

Explore Idyllic Up-and-Coming Hiking Locations

Vietnam

Rich in culture and history, this country also features some beautiful hiking trails that are less known and explored.  To start off, you can go for a multi-day hike on the spectacular Ba Be National Park which features stunning waterfalls and majestic caves. 

If you just want a casual hike away from the busy city, then you can go to Mai Chau and experience a peaceful walk through its spectacular landscape of rice paddies and tiny villages.  Whatever fitness level you’re at, you can always find a hiking path in Vietnam that you can truly enjoy.

Explore Idyllic Up-and-Coming Hiking Locations

Morocco

You can go on a hike on the Moroccan trails that feature the majestic views on Mount Toubkal, the highest peak of North Africa. One of these trails is the Paradise Valley, a small section of the Moroccan Atlas Mountains; it has small natural pools and breathtaking cascades of waterfalls. 

You can also get in touch with nature in one of the greatest parks of Morocco, the Tazekka National Park which is located on the highest mountain of the Middle Atlas Range.  The most stunning feature of this park is the stunning Friouato Caves. There are a number of different tours that run throughout Morocco that can take you on a journey to suit your preferences, be it to the city, the desert, the ocean or the mountains.

Explore Idyllic Up-and-Coming Hiking Locations

Thailand

We’re capping off the list with the land of smiles, a small country that is rich in unique landscapes and spectacular trekking trails. Thailand has vast amounts to explore, with its delicious cuisine, obscure nightlife and fascinating culture. Whilst there, you can hike through the city of Ban Ruam Mit.  This unexplored city offers more than just elephant rides as it is here that you can also experience the mountainous community as you hike alongside the astounding Kok river. 

Explore Idyllic Up-and-Coming Hiking Locations

Wherever the trail takes you, always be mindful of yourself and mother nature.  Best of all, take in the benefits of hiking for the mind, body, and soul.  This list reminds you that, sometimes, it’s good to “take a hike.”

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*When traveling (and at home), please protect yourself and your loved ones with a portable carbon monoxide detector.*

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Spinal Surgery in Mexico Success! From Wheelchair to Walking

“Sometimes we encounter things that profoundly change our outlook on life and when it happens, it doesn’t matter that former joys have lost their allure or that our foundations have been shaken. All we know is that the walls we’ve built around ourselves have crumbled into dust. All we know is that our unsatisfied yearnings no longer throb inside us and something restorative is taking place deep inside our souls… ~Will Kautz

It is nothing short of a modern miracle and a testament to the strength of the human body that I underwent and survived two major surgeries in less than six months. The skills of each of the specialists, together with my undeniable grit and gumption, saw me through one of the more difficult years of my life and returned to me the gift of function without debilitating pain or partial paralysis.

To say that I am grateful is an understatement. 

I had a history of back challenges with a fracture at 17 years of age that together with the demands of competitive sports and a twin pregnancy with a 60-pound weight gain…collectively rendered me in need of some serious TLC and repair at the age of 45. 

I had done all the “right things”—chiropractic care, deep tissue massages, physical therapy, acupuncture, rest, ice, heat, a prayer that the pain would go away…and sometimes it would. Most of the time, I just dealt with it, brushed it off as part of my reality and hoped for a better, more pain-free tomorrow and always the ability to continue my active lifestyle. 

No guts, no glory

The whole “no guts, no glory” mentality has carried me through life and in my physical prowess I have found the stronger, never-give-up, courageous parts of myself.

This time, however, I was knocked down for the count. 

Practicing yoga in our home in San Miguel, I felt a searing pain down the left side of my body, never imagining that I had just herniated two of my discs. Collapsing to the floor and calling out for my husband in agonizing pain, I knew that there was no amount of strong will nor determination that was going to get me back up on my feet.

Unable to move nor stand unassisted, my husband and a wheelchair were my only forms of movement and transportation prior to my surgery.

I hoped and prayed with all my might that the doctors would successfully repair my spine so that I would not be sentenced for the rest of my earthly years to a chair. I refused to accept that reality.

Spinal Surgery in Mexico Success! From Wheelchair to Walking

2 herniated discs, left side paralysis and awaiting my MRI

Flat out on a hospital bed in central Mexico like a turtle on its back, I have never felt so helpless and (almost) defeated. The streams of tears flowed without restraint as I lay with eyes closed, not believing the surreal reality I found myself in. There is no dignity in semi-paralysis, peeing in a pan or bed baths. I refused to accept that as my long-term reality. 

The night before my surgery, I laid in my hospital room–alone, in great pain, and without my family. Frank needed to hold down the fort back at home in San Miguel and continue our normal life routine as much as possible for our twins. I am eternally grateful to all of our friends that stepped up and helped us out while I was unavailable. Thank you.

Spinal Surgery in Mexico Success! From Wheelchair to Walking

Waiting, night before surgery

Laying there in the dark and cold and solace of the night, I was in and out of a pain-induced trance of sorts, experiencing some truly powerful revelations about myself and my life…about balance and honoring oneself first–like the airline safety instructions of putting on your own oxygen mask first.

Silver lining, lemonade out of lemons.

My God and I got to spend some one-on-one, quality time together…He and I have always been together since I was a little girl, like the Sclemeel, Schlemazel, Hasenfeffer Incorporated song of the good ol’ Laverne and Shirley Sitcom that I so loved as a kid. Connected at the hip, He and I, always present in my little girl heart.

Making Our Dreams Come True:

One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight.
Sclemeel, schlemazel, hasenfeffer incorporated.
We’re gonna do it!

Give us any chance, we’ll take it.
Give us any rule, we’ll break it.
We’re gonna make our dreams come true.
Doin’ it our way.

Nothin’s gonna turn us back now,
Straight ahead and on the track now.
We’re gonna make our dreams come true,
Doin’ it our way.

There is nothing we won’t try,
Never heard the word impossible.
This time there’s no stopping us.
We’re gonna do it.

On your mark, get set, and go now,
Got a dream and we just know now,
We’re gonna make our dream come true.
And we’ll do it our way, yes our way.
Make all our dreams come true,
And do it our way, yes our way,
Make all our dreams come true
For me and you.

I knew what lay ahead of me and that I had to put my big girl panties on and confront it with determination and courage. That was my only option. That was the only reality I would entertain…getting to the other side—out of the wheelchair, functioning and enjoying my life again with my family and friends. 

During what ultimately ended up being a six-hour surgery, Dr. Salvador Galvan completely removed my L3 L4 and replaced it with a 12 mm silicone prosthetic spacer. My L4-L5 was so severely damaged that it was just a matter of time before it failed, so it was fortified it with a 10mm spacer. Apparently the trauma to my spine was so severe that I lost over three times the amount of blood that is normally lost during one of these surgeries. No doubt that was part of my recovery challenge.

Spinal Surgery in Mexico Success! From Wheelchair to Walking

First Steps. Power of The Polka-Dot-Pajamas!

Surgery Success

My surgery was on a Tuesday morning and come Wednesday night I took my first assisted steps. By Thursday I was able to take my first unassisted ones and be discharged home.

I had a road ahead of me, taking one step at a time. Walking back and forth to the bathroom, taking a shower and being able to stand long enough to brush my hair and teeth were huge accomplishments. Poco a poco, I got there, back to a newer, improved, and “bionic” version of my former self, with my family right by my side cheering me along and literally and figuratively picking me up when I would fall.

My running, kickboxing and horseback riding days are a thing of the past, but I have learned a new “new”. I can walk, dance, trot, stretch, yoga, swim and live a very fulfilling existence with 90% mobility and minimal pain. My limp is gone, cane thrown away and joy and gratitude forever imprinted in my heart. Looking at me, you’d never imagine the scars behind the clothes. We all have them, I just choose to speak about some of mine in the hopes that by bearing my story, I am helping someone else out there. 

Several of my nurses questioned why I didn’t return to the States for my surgeries where the medicine is “more modern”.

“Because Mexico is my home”, I told them each, This is where my heart is, where my family is, where my life is.”

Mi Querido Mexico, I love you.

I want to express my extreme and eternal gratitude to Dra. Rosario my physical therapist, to Dr. Salvador Galvan my neurosurgeon, to Dr. Paolo my pain specialist and to all of the nurses and operating room staff at Hospital Santiago de Querétero. You will forever be my earth angels.

Spinal Surgery in Mexico Success! From Wheelchair to Walking

Me & Dr. Salvador Galvan, Discharge 3 Days after Spinal Surgery

The gift of walking and of health is not to be taken for granted, ever.

May we all pause to give thanks for the many blessings in our lives. They are there.

Peace & Health to you all….

~Katie

For more on healthcare in Mexico:

Surgery in Mexico~A Tale of Survival

Post-Surgery Pain Management in Mexico

Carbon Monoxide: The Silent, Odorless, Tasteless Killer

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Must See Italian Destinations to Explore by Foot

Maybe it’s that the Italian and Mexican flags share the same colors, just in the opposite order…

Maybe it’s that my husband is half Italian…or because when I was in my 20’s I floated down a Venice canal in a gondola and it left me longing for more southern-European adventures in this boot-shaped peninsula .

While Mexico has been home to us for the past six years, we O’Gradys also have our wanderlust sights on many other countries–Italy being just one of them–not only for family travel, but also for a potential relocation when our teenage twins are in college…something that seems to be just around the corner with time traveling like the speed of light!

All great plans begin with an idea, and lots and lots of research!

We have decided to partner with some reputable travel brands as part of our own process of discovery and will be sharing some of the information with you all– just in case you too might get an inkling to explore beyond!

Must See Italian Destinations to Explore by Foot

If you interested in Italy and curious about which areas to visit, here are some of the top must-see tourist destinations:

Florence

Florence or Firenze is one of the most important Renaissance art and architectural centers of Italy. Its Baptistery and Duomo are magnificent and many tourists are coming here to marvel at their large piazzas. This city has multiple excellent museums where you can see some of the famous sculptures and paintings including Botticelli’s “Birth of Venus” and Michelangelo’s “David”. You can also see Medici gardens and palaces here.

Must See Italian Destinations to Explore by Foot

Venice

Venice or Venezia is an unusual city which is built on water in the center of a lagoon. It is one of the most romantic and beautiful cities of Italy. Piazza San Marco is the heart of Venice where you can see its magnificent church, the Saint Mark’s Basilica. There are many places, churches, and museums to wander and visit along the canals of Venice as well.

Must See Italian Destinations to Explore by Foot

Sorrento

Popular for its limoncello and lemons, Sorrento has a lot of things to offer for its visitors, and this place makes a great base to explore the region. One of the famous places that can be seen here is the Cathedral of Sorrento, the Duomo. The Cathedral of Sorrento can be easily seen due to its gorgeous clock tower, and it is also located centrally in Corso Italia which is the heart of Sorrento.

Aside from the Duomo, the Old Sorrento is a beautiful place to wander around in its alleyways and narrow streets and is home to some beautiful villas. In this place, you can see multiple quaint trattorias and colorful shops. It is also the home of many historical buildings namely the San Francesco’s complex and Sant’Antonio Basilica.

Must See Italian Destinations to Explore by Foot

Milan

Milan or Milano is one of the wealthiest cities in Europe. It is popular for its stylish galleries, restaurants, and shops. This city also has rich cultural and artistic heritage. You can see the Gothic Duomo here with its magnificent marble façade. One of its top attractions is the “The Last Supper” of Da Vinci and one of the most popular opera houses in the world, the “La Scala” can also be seen here.

Must See Italian Destinations to Explore by Foot

Rome

Rome is the capital of Italy and a famous tourist destination for those who are interested in history, good food, and art. There are many beautiful places that you can explore here and various different tours that run throughout the city. One tourist attraction that must be explored is the Colosseum, this big oval amphitheater is considered as one of the Seven Wonders of the Modern World.

Aside from the Colosseum, you could also visit the Fori Romani. It is located in the center of Rome. You can see a series of monumental public squares or “foro” here. Another must-see place here in Rome is the Trevi Fountain. It is a baroque statue with 49-meters width and 26-meters height.

Must See Italian Destinations to Explore by Foot

These are just a few of the many must-see places in Italy.

Here’s to exploring the beauty of this country with family, friends and loved ones…enjoying their food, magnificent art, and unforgettable history.

~Viva I’Talia

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*When traveling (and at home), please protect yourself and your loved ones with a portable carbon monoxide detector.*

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Only in Mexico"...Things That Make Me Go Hmmm

Even after six years as a permanent resident of Mexico, there are certain things about our lives here–some of the cultural and regional norms and facets of day-to-day living–that still cause me to pause, laugh, or even gasp in intrigue and bewilderment. 

Take for example:

1. Three lanes on a two-lane highway

"Only in Mexico"...Things That Make Me Go Hmmm

Navigating oneself on the highways often feels like a game of Russian roulette, as there seems to be a nebulous middle lane, created and bordered by nothing more than the driver’s risk-taking spirit and willingness to tempt fate.

Riding as a passenger usually has me alternating between holding my breath and blurting out various unladylike profanities as an attempt to distract myself and make the ride as tolerable as possible.

You can imagine how much my husband Frank loves this when he’s behind the wheel!

2. Ice Cream, Knife Sharpener or Trash Truck?

I wasn’t too sure at first if the loud, clanging noise was the ice cream vendor, the knife sharpener (he actually blows a whistle) or what, until I asked a nearby shop owner who informed me that it was the trash truck—on its way down a narrow, one-way, cobblestone street with pedestrians on both sides.

Stand back!

3. From Farm to Market

A walk through a tianguisan outdoor market filled with a potpourri of every imaginable regional fruit, vegetable, handmade craft and meat—certainly leaves no doubt as to the origin and same-day-freshness of the carne asada tacos you might find yourself eating at one of the many open-air stalls–likely having been delivered that very morning from a nearby rancho.

"Only in Mexico"...Things That Make Me Go Hmmm

Tuesday Market, San Miguel de Allende

If you are accustomed to purchasing your t-bone steak or chicken bits all cleaned up, trimmed and nicely packaged–or if you are a vegan–prepare yourself for a bit of a surprise while meandering through one of these vibrant and dynamic markets.

It is not uncommon to see an entire cow or pig head sitting on the corner of a butcher’s stand, along with various other parts of the animal that in the States are normally discarded and not necessarily considered edible, let alone desirable to look at on full display. 

"Only in Mexico"...Things That Make Me Go Hmmm

Cabeza (Cow Head) Tacos

 

"Only in Mexico"...Things That Make Me Go Hmmm

Refrigeration? Arrive early!

When I took my Mom through the mercado during one of her visits with us, she was quite startled to come face-to-face with a large cow’s head, eyeballs and all, sans the skin. I suppose if one were playing with the idea of veganism, a walk through a tianguis just might seal the deal. For carnivores, it is an important reminder to support farmers who are raising their animals in the most ethical conditions possible.

4. Consume Today or Let Ripen

It’s the small things in life…

Many thanks to the supermarkets for separating their avocados into consumo para hoy (consume today) and a para madurar (let ripen) piles.  Also, when going into a Mom & Pop’s frutería, you might have to ask for the avocados as they are usually behind the counter, hidden away and protected from public fondling.

"Only in Mexico"...Things That Make Me Go Hmmm

Consume Today/Let Ripen

5. Round and Round The Glorieta We Go

Glorietas…those perplexing roundabout traffic circles that serve as an intersection for oncoming vehicles from all four different directions, often converging at the same time. If you are not careful, alert and prepared as you enter this whirlpool of automobiles, you just might find yourself getting stuck, going around and around, like on a spin toy at a child’s playground, feverishly trying to calculate the right moment to jump off and get out!

I have learned that I must enter the glorietas with confidence, ready to kick ass and take on the fast and furious obstacle-like course of oncoming cars, trucks and motorcycles. I do find myself holding my breath until I have successfully exited the glorieta and am, hopefully, headed in the right direction! 

"Only in Mexico"...Things That Make Me Go Hmmm

Round and Round

6. The Mysteries of A Left-Turn Signal

It is not safe to assume that a blinking left turn signal means that a left turn is about to be executed by the driver in front. Quite the contrary, it often means “go ahead, it is safe to pass me now—on the left”.

However, don’t assume that either, for a pass on the left, when in fact a left turn is in the making can be a risky assumption. Additionally, in Mexico, it is common road etiquette to pull to the right-hand side, before making a left turn.

Are you following all of this?

Keep in mind too, while you are mentally and tactically navigating the road conditions, that there are often burros, cows, horses and dogs on the shoulders that one must avoid for both their safety and yours.

Similar to the dynamics of a glorieta, stay alert, aware of your surroundings and able to respond quickly and safely!

"Only in Mexico"...Things That Make Me Go Hmmm

Decisions

7. Metric, Who?

Algebra and metric conversions, admittedly, are not my strong suit. Fahrenheit to celsius, inches to cm, kilos instead of pounds…it’s enough to make a girl dizzy!

Upon my first few trips to the local butchers, I held my breath, wide-eyed, waiting to see what the two kilos of salchicha that I had just ordered would amount to. Fortunate for me, my family loves Mexican sausages and over four pounds of them could easily fit into our fridge and freezer!

Time to get to work and study this helpful chart!

"Only in Mexico"...Things That Make Me Go Hmmm

Photo Credit: K5 Learning Blog

8. Translate with Caution

"Only in Mexico"...Things That Make Me Go Hmmm

Jerck Beef

9. Where There’s a Will…

Determined, resourceful, ingenious, skillful are all adjectives I would freely use to describe the Mexican people. Whether it is reusing, reconfiguring and repurposing or coming up with the most interesting ways to assign function and form to something that might otherwise be thrown out or thought impossible, the Mexican ingenuity truly embodies the “where there’s a will, there’s a way” expression.

During one of my morning walks around Parque Benito Juarez, I saw this woman in the photo below balancing what appeared to be a very heavy load on her head, navigating her way down the slippery cobblestone streets in flip flops! Impressive indeed!

"Only in Mexico"...Things That Make Me Go Hmmm

Determination & Will

10. Is That Side Mirror Really Necessary?

To avoid collisions and keep your side mirror intact as part of your car, pull it in on narrow, cobblestone streets. Trust me, you’ll be happy you did if you deem it a necessary part of your car.

"Only in Mexico"...Things That Make Me Go Hmmm

11. Hard-Working Burros

In many parts of México, burros are used for field work, transportation and delivery. It is not uncommon to be out and about and come across a pair of them hard at work.

"Only in Mexico"...Things That Make Me Go Hmmm

Knock-Knock, Special Delivery!

12. A Different Kind of Saint

One morning after dropping our twins off at school, Frank stopped by the tortillería to pick up a medio kilo of flour tortillas. Next door was a small furniture store that had this little treasure on display out in front:

"Only in Mexico"...Things That Make Me Go Hmmm

Art Is in The Eye of The Beholder

I’m sure you can use your imagination to to guess what this darling little saint statue looked like from behind. I’m thinking the creator of this treasure had a laugh or two.

13. Pig on A Leash

This was a first.

"Only in Mexico"...Things That Make Me Go Hmmm

As seen in El Jardín

14. Trampoline on Third Floor Terraza

Yes, and yikes! No playdates for my kids at this house!

"Only in Mexico"...Things That Make Me Go Hmmm

Life Without Safety Nets

While not an exhaustive list, these are some of the more noteworthy sightings and experiences I have had in these past 6 years. I am grateful that I get to live in a country that keeps my senses alive and teaches me to take things in stride. 

Have you ever experienced or witnessed something in Mexico that has made you wonder, pause, or question in fascination, confusion, amusement, and gratitude?  

I would love to hear about it in the comments section below!

Saludos,

~Katie

Last but not least, today’s Spanish Lesson:

The Spanish Teacher in me just can’t help herself! You will notice that many of the words throughout this article are cognates–words that sound alike or are possibly spelled exactly alike as their English counterpart. Another reason that Spanish is one of the easiest languages to learn—truly!

1. Carretera: highway

2. Tianguis: open-air market

3. Centro: center

4. Mercado: market

5. Consumo para hoy: consume today

6. Para Madurar: need to ripen

7. Frutería: fruit shop

8. Glorieta: roundabout

9. Salchicha: sausage

10. Tortillería: tortilla shop

11. Medio: half

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All photos taken by Katie M. O’Grady

© Katie M. O’Grady @ Los O’Gradys in Mexico, 2012-2018. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts, photos and links may be used, provided that permission is granted and full and clear credit is given to Katie M. O’Grady @ Los O’Gradys in Mexico with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. 

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