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Old April 08, 2012, 09:43 AM
PeterRed PeterRed is offline
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Beginner letter

Hi forum members,

I'm new to this forum and, as a hobby, I have been learning Spanish for a few weeks now. Now I have written a made up letter in which I tell a little bit about myself and mainly the directions to my school. So I hope someone wants to correct my letter.

Here it goes:

"Querido Ricardo,

Soy Peter y tengo 18 años. Soy un estudiante de español. Vivo en Amsterdam, la capital de Holanda. En Amsterdam hay muchas actividades divertidas. Para ir a mi escuela de mi casa tiene que tomar el autobús 231 y bajar en el ayuntamiento. Allí tiene que caminar 200 metros al norte.

Cordiales saludos,

Peter"

It's a bit of a silly letter, describing how to get somewhere from my house. But it's practise and I really like to know if I made any mistakes. Also I have a little question I like to ask as well, in my Spanish study book it is said that to ask directions to someone you can use the phrase: "¿Para ir a ...., por favor?". What does this exactly mean or can't you translate this word by word? Because if I try to do this it makes no sense at all "For going/to go to ...., please?".

Thanks alot for anyone willing to take the time to help me out,

Peter
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  #2  
Old April 08, 2012, 03:23 PM
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Rusty Rusty is offline
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Welcome to the forums, Peter!
Quote:
Originally Posted by PeterRed View Post
Querido Ricardo,

Soy Peter y tengo 18 años. Soy un estudiante de español. Vivo en Amsterdam, la capital de Holanda. En Amsterdam hay muchas actividades divertidas.
Para ir a mi escuela de mi casa (the correct preposition conveys 'starting from')
tiene que tomar el autobús 231 (you should use an impersonal construct instead)
y bajar en (missing something here) el ayuntamiento.
(a preposition is missing here - you need to convey 'starting from') allí
tiene que caminar 200 metros al norte. (use an impersonal construct instead)

Cordiales saludos,

...

¿Para ir a ...., por favor?
= To go to ...., please?
(shortened question)
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Old April 08, 2012, 04:18 PM
PeterRed PeterRed is offline
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Thank you very much for your reply!
I do get most of the corrections, just some of them aren't very clear to me.
You said:

"y bajar en (missing something here) el ayuntamiento."
Should it be something like this:

"y bajar en la parada del ayuntamiento" ?

Furthermore, you said the following:

"(a preposition is missing here - you need to convey 'starting from') allí"
Here I do get what you mean but how do you say this in spanish? I've not covered this subject yet in my course but is it something like "Comenzado de allí ..." ?

And 1 more question I'd like to ask you is about the phrase "¿Para ir a ..., por favor?". You said this is sort of like a shortened question. But what will be the complete question for the phrase "How do I get to ....?" in Spanish?


Thanks in advance,

Peter
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Old April 08, 2012, 04:57 PM
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Rusty Rusty is offline
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The preposition that conveys 'starting from' is also used to mean 'since a certain time'. That same meaning can extend to 'a place', in Spanish. What preposition did you select for the first thing I marked?
You can use the same preposition later, in front of 'allí'. 'Comenzando allí' also works.

'... bajar en la parada del ayuntamiento' is more complete, yes.

How do I get to ...? = ¿Cómo llego a ...?
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Old April 09, 2012, 03:41 AM
PeterRed PeterRed is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rusty View Post
The preposition that conveys 'starting from' is also used to mean 'since a certain time'. That same meaning can extend to 'a place', in Spanish. What preposition did you select for the first thing I marked?
You can use the same preposition later, in front of 'allí'. 'Comenzando allí' also works.
Well I was thinking at the first thing you marked to replace 'de' by 'desde'.

Then the corrected letter should be something like this:

"Querido Ricardo,

Soy Peter y tengo 18 años. Soy estudiante de español. Vivo en Amsterdam, la capital de Holanda. En Amsterdam hay muchas actividades divertidas. Para ir a mi escuela desde mi casa tienes que tomar el autobús 231 y bajar en la parada del ayuntamiento. Comenzado allí tienes que caminar 200 metros al norte.

Cordiales saludos,
Peter"

Is the use of 'desde' correct here? And if so is the letter now correct, or are there any improvements I can make?

Thanks in advance,
Peter
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Old April 09, 2012, 08:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PeterRed View Post
Querido Ricardo,

Soy Peter y tengo 18 años. Soy estudiante de español. Vivo en Amsterdam, la capital de Holanda. En Amsterdam hay muchas actividades divertidas. Para ir a mi escuela desde mi casa tienes que tomar el autobús 231 y bajar en la parada del ayuntamiento. Comenzando allí, tienes que caminar 200 metros al norte.
I see you conjugated the verb tener in the second person instead of the third person, perhaps misinterpreting my suggestion to use an impersonal construct. You have most likely not learned how to make the sentence impersonal, though, so using either the third (your original design) or the second person is good enough for now. When you do learn about the impersonal se, you'll use it whenever you aren't addressing a specific individual.

Good job!
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