Spain’s Christmas lottery, “El Gordo” is not only the biggest lottery in the world but also one of the oldest, having started in 1812. It works differently to most lotteries. This year the total prize pool amounts to £1.95 billion being distributed around the country. There is a 1st, 2nd and 3rd prize, plus over a thousand small prizes to be won which is why the draw, held every 22nd December takes three and a half hours.
This year the draw is taking place in the Teatro Real Opera House in Madrid. Many people attend the live lottery draw wearing fancy-dress costumes (disfraces), armed with good-luck charms (amuletos), and holding placards (pancartas) with slogans on them. Find out how Spain’s Christmas lottery is drawn and how the winnings are divided here: Continue reading →
With Christmas almost here, maybe those people who are learning Chinese would like to learn a few Christmas-related words? Here are some seasonal greetings and festive words in Mandarin:
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Joyeux Noël! Merry Christmas!
Je te souhaite un joyeux Noël!
I wish you a merry Christmas !
Nous vous souhaitons un joyeux Noël!
We wish you a merry Christmas! Continue reading →
When you start learning Spanish you learn that all nouns are classed as either masculine or feminine, however in reality there are exceptions when you can use a word with either gender, each with a different meaning.
Normally this relates to someone’s occupation, for example, el policía = the policeman, la policía = la policía. El periodista = the (male) journalist, la periodista = the (female) journalist. Other words can be used with either gender but be careful as their meaning changes. There is no reason for this so you just have to learn the gender with the noun and try to remember the following:
boleto/a: el boleto = ticket (travel) / la boleta = ticket (fine/penalty)
bolso/a: el bolso = handbag / la bolsa = larger bag/sack Continue reading →