chévere

chévere
This is not an exclusively Venezuelan word…but it gets used a million times a day by everybody, here.

Chévere (CHE-vreh), used as an adjective, can describe a person who is extremely well-liked, cool, nice, fun, good, clever, and so forth.

It also describes things, places, events, situations that are great, fun, entertaining, agreeable, excellent. Una pelicula chévere…(an excellent movie), “el destino más Chévere del Caribe…”(“The coolest place in the Caribbean…” -from an advertising campaign by Venezuela’s Ministry of Tourism).

Whittled down to a word or two, it is used in expressions like “¡Que chévere!” (Awesome!), the statement “Chévere.” (Cool.) or the question “¿Comó estas, Natalia…chévere?

Of course I am…having a fantastic time, painting these fun little canvases of Venezuelan slang words, as a kind of side-project while I am waiting for gourds to dry…

We will be sailing away this week, after four fantastic months in Venezuela. As always, I hate to leave, now that I know the place reasonably well, have made friends, finally feel relaxed and at-ease, established a ‘home routine’ (not much more than reading a lot and painting), going about on my own. We have so much to thank Venezuela for. Despite the troubles and the difficulties, it is a gorgeous country, and the people really are super pana. We also made huge inroads in learning the Spanish language while we were here, and I will never really be able to speak the language without remembering these past four beautiful months.

But there’s also so much to look forward to: Jamaica, Cuba (woo hoo!), Colombia, Haiti, Guatemala, Panama…Chévere!

Hasta luego, mis panas!
chévere

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15 thoughts on “chévere

  1. Dear Love, I can imagine how you feel about leaving Venezuela…it will always have a warm place in your heart! Now, Cuba: did you read the link I think I sent you (but probably lost with your laptop crash (by the way, surely you will extract and keep the hard disk from inside…all the data and even apps are very likely recoverable). I hope you can visit and watch this great little film (many good people in social and ecology solutions cooperated from the U.S., Australia, etc. to make it). Go to: http://www.communitysolutions.org and watch the movie “The Power of Community…How Cuba Survived Peak Oil”. There you will see that the people learned very quickly how to plant their little home and rooftop gardens so they wouldn’t starve. Plus, many people use bicycles instead of cars, etc. I’m almost afraid the lifting of the embargo now will not actually be good for Cuba…the U.S. has a lot to learn from the Cubans now! So, I know you will live there like the Cubans do; they have wonderful “farmers” markets (everybody became a farmer, and to be a farmer became a prestigious occupation!) Other amazing things to note: They have wonderful free medical assistance for the people, not only for Cubans, but the help other Latino countries with their doctors, nurses and teaching. You’re going to really enjoy this movie! At the end, many names and references you can perhaps use while you’re there. Now that you speak Español, you’re gonna love the people, their happy music, dancing in the streets (I think!) and more! OK, I don’t pretend to be an expert on Cuba, but I’m only quoting from international experts who work and worked there… En tanto, te amo!
    Tu Padre (Estoy aprendiendo también!)

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    1. Just read Jamie’s comment below! I’ll bet he will be a good online guide as you go around Cuba! He has a right to be proud of his country! How happy he would be if you can find and visit his folks there in Camagüey,

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    2. Thanks, Dad, will have a look when i get the internet sorted out. For now, we will have to communicate via this blog, as I can’t use gmail here, they’ve blocked Cuba. It’s a great place, I love it here, the people are super nice, there are absolutely no billboards or public advertisements, so I can really enjoy the old buildings. It’s perfectly safe, I can walk around with camera and laptop, leave my bag on a park bench when I get up to look at something, and Kris leaves all the groceries in the basket of his crazy bicycle, tied to a lamp post, while he walks around. Lots of tourists, though, very touristy, and lots of touts, but when I am alone I get passed over. It’s only when I am with Kris that we get approached. They are polite, though persistent. It’s a wonderful country, they have no idea how much better off they are, in so many ways, than the capitalist countries…though it is, of course, not utopia, and lots of Cubans are unhappy because well, I guess the grass is greener on the other side. They want stuff, and believe they are missing out, don’t realise that materialism is the beginning, not the end, of worries and stress. If only we could be happy where we are, but even I am living away from my home country, so I guess movement is just human nature. Gotta go, battery about to die. Love, N.

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  2. my dad is from cuba, and i so desperately want to visit, i am feeling a tad envious, but also excited because there’s no one whose travel blogging i’d rather see convey the wonders of cuba. i hope you go to camagüey, where my family’s from, hint hint! 😉 it’s fairly appropriate that you should visit by boat, because the city’s labyrinthine layout was specifically designed to disorient pirates. and i think that sounds magical and fun to anyone not there for a hurried looting! well, i am crossing my fingers that you stay in cuba a while and post a lot! 🙂

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    1. That’s awesome! Cuba’s expensive for foreigners, but we certainly hope to stay there at least for three months. We have a few friends who live over there, and were told that cycling across the country is perfectly safe, so fingers crossed that Kris will think that’s a good idea (because the Captain makes the rules, and good thing, too…I’m hopeless) and that he’ll take me along, slow as I am on bicycles, and uphill. I will try to make Camaguey seem like it was his idea, and then he’ll probably want to go there. LOL I promise to post a lot, apparently it’s so safe, cameras and all that, no problems.

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  3. You’ve done a great job with that canvas. Looks amazing. Wish I could actually use that word around here but I’d probably get punched. They like to keep it simple here like: “G’day mate!” xx Rowena

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    1. And to Venezuelans it sounds more like “go die”, and they get very confused! LOL there are lots of words, here, that I would get punched for in, say, Peru, so it really keeps me on my toes, this slang thing. 😉 Another few months n’ I’ll be full bottle on lingo, no worries…

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      1. LOL. It’s funny how things mean different things in different places. On a lighter note, there’s quite a different between what the English and Americans call scones. Americans eat biscuits and gravy, which is I think their equivalent of English scones but to me as an Australian, it sounds truly disgusting! xx Rowena

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