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How do you learn Spanish quickly?

At least 5 letters and 75 numbers at a time?

Play BINGO, of course!

I was hanging in town yesterday and it seemed extra quiet for some reason.  I asked a lady and she said there was a benefit for the fire dept.  I asked what it was and she said it was Bingo.  Well, those of you who know me well know that I cannot let a game go by that I dont go have fun with.


Here is the back half of the crowd.  I would estimate between 1-200 people were present for San Clemente Bingo!


Here are my 2 cards with the local style markers for your board.  Corn, I love it!!

So then I called my mom figuring she might be able to make it there in time to play a couple of games.

When I realized it was quite a walk for her, I asked nicely if one of the firemen would mind picking her up in the fire truck.  They asked the chief, and off we went on a goodwill mission.


Moms first ride in a fire truck!


Mom getting ready for her first bingo session.

Now, if you are like me and still learning Spanish, you will know that repetition is fantastic for learning.  Whelp, there was plenty of repetition here with 5 letters (drum roll please…  B I N G O ) and numbers 1-75.  Great practice.


Some people were Bingo veterans and brought along their own personalized markers instead of the corn.  The lady in white across the table had decorative marbles while the guy 2 people away was using pennies.  I must say, I might have to come up with my own markers next time.  The corn tended to roll around and not stay on the correct #.  It was hard enough comprehending the man on the microphone speaking Spanish with children crying nearby and other ambient noises, without having the numbers become “unmarked” by rolling corn.  I think it pays to get there early for a good seat so you can hear better.



This guy was handing out other cards for people who were constantly changing out their cards hoping for better luck.


The beginning of a game.  I dared not take a picture while a game was going on for fear of missing a number and not getting to yell BINGO.


Here was my card when someone yelled BINGO!  What the heck was going on here?  I only had 1 # on each board.  haha


The fire trucks lined up.


This man won a game of BINGO with his lucky pennies.  His prize was a bundle of food.  It turns out that all the prizes are donated by families or businesses for this.  I am going to make a bundle of fun stuff for the next BINGO.

At one point, I yelled BINGO because I had a line filled in.  Problem was that they were playing COVER ALL, not regular BINGO.  I ducked under the table and everyone laughed.  Now, I’m still learning Spanish, but most games they announced as being “esquina”.  I thought esquina meant “corner”, but here this meant 1 simple line of BINGO.  Pretty easy for us foreigners to mess this up.

Again, I just fell into finding this as it was happening.  I asked a friend when there would be another BINGO session.  She did not know as they dont have the equipment to do this very often.  If I hear of another upcoming BINGO session, I will let everyone know.

It was a great way to spend a Sunday afternoon and really put my Spanish #’s skills to the test.

Figuring it out… 1 # & 1 letter at a time


15 thoughts on “How do you learn Spanish quickly?

  1. Looks like fun, haven’t had a chance to try it yet. The mothers day festival is Saturday starting around 3-4 Ecuadorian time and I believe Patty said they were going to have a bingo on Sunday to benefit the schools…but you may want to check up on that. We don’t want you to get all excited and then be disappointed 🙂

  2. Saturday, huh? I heard Sunday. Love it, its always changing. I will try to find out, I wanna win a bundle o’ goodies!! haha Im blaming you if there aint no BINGO!! haha

  3. I love your blog. It is much easier to picture your lives down under with stories and photos. Hello to your mum from me.

    • Hey Sue, glad to see you here. Reminds me of the time I went on a motorcycle trip and sent email updates. Brianna couldnt figure out why she kept getting “those strange emails”. Hahahaha
      Glad you are enjoying it. I will sure tell her!!

  4. How very dear of you to think of…and arrange for…your Mom’s first fire truck ride on
    Ecuador’s first celebration of Mother’s Day! (they celebrate this event on both the first
    and second Sunday in May). Also, how neat that she clambered aboard (quite a big
    step-up to the cab for two bothersome knees to manage!) with such good humor and
    willingness to participate! Good Son! Great Mom! Happy both Mother’s Days, Libby!
    (Perhaps your lack of luck in mastering this particular “corny” style of Bingo is you didn’t
    consider that this is a Catholic country and the Catholic Church OWNS Bingo?) nice. Je

  5. this was a GREAT POST! i especially loved the part about the firetruck ride! how thoughtful of you to ask, and what better transport than that bright red truck!!!

    just two days ago i asked my neighbors down the beach when they would have another bingo gathering. our last one was at night, and i enjoyed the challenge of balancing all of my kernels like little weeble wobbles!

    have fun on the bingo coming up for mothers’ day! z

  6. David, great story. Libby looks like a natural Ambassador in the Fire Truck. Really enjoy your stories.

  7. Y prepárense para el Bingo antes de las fiestas de la Virgen de la Caridad del Cobre. Ese es EL BINGO… muchos premios: colchón, TV, equipo de sonido. Suerte.
    Y gracias porque disfruté muchísimo esta historia.

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