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Phrases with Esté

In our previous lesson we discussed the memorization of short phrases as a strategy to gain confidence when conversing in Spanish. The idea is to memorize specific chunks of speech and use them as building blocks to create more complex ideas. In this lesson we will focus on exploring phrases that use the verb esté.
 

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The verb esté is a conjugated form of the verb estar (to be) in the present subjunctive. Let's see how speakers use it in everyday speech and learn how to build new sentences with it.
 
You can find many examples of the phrase para que esté in our catalog of videos. This phrase is used to express purpose and it's usually followed by an adjective or a verb in participio (-ado, -ido, -to, -so, -cho endings and its feminine and plural variants):

uno trata de abarcar lo más posible para que esté protegida lo más posible, ¿no?

one tries to cover as much as possible so that she would be as protected as she can be, right?

Captions 55-56, Biografía Natalia Oreiro - Part 5

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In this case the speaker is talking about another person, a woman. The pronoun ella (she) is not needed in Spanish but you can actually add pronouns, names, or noun phrases between que and esté. You can also use actual adjectives instead of participios. For example:
 
para que Luisa esté protegida | So that Luisa would be protected.
para que el niño esté sano | So that the kid is healthy.
para que el trabajo esté terminado | So that the job is finished.
 
Here's an example from our catalog:
 

para que la patata esté blanda, se tiene que cocer mucho la crema

in order for the potato to be soft, the cream has to be cooked a lot

Captions 43-44, Cómetelo - Crema de brócoli - Part 4

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Since the subjunctive esté is used for both the first and third person singular, you can use the same expression to talk about yourself. You can add the pronoun yo (I) between que and esté, or not. Check out the following example that also uses negation:
 
Compra un seguro de vida para que [yo] no esté preocupada \ Buy a life insurance policy so I won’t be worried.
 
Another common phrase that uses esté is aunque esté. This phrase is used to introduce the idea of a concession. The word aunque [aún + que] means although, even if, though.
 

aunque esté un poquito más deteriorado, ¿no?

even though it might be a little bit more spoiled, right?

Caption 24, Los Reporteros - Sembrar, comer, tirar - Part 4

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Here are some additional examples:
 
Todos los años visito al doctor aunque [yo] no esté enfermo / I visit the doctor every year even if I'm not sick.
Aunque esta camiseta esté vieja, me sigue gustando mucho / Even though this t-shirt might be old, I still like it.
El dentista te recibirá hoy aunque esté muy ocupado / The dentist will see you today even if he's very busy.
Aunque esté cansado, aún tengo que hacer ejercicio / Even though I may be tired, I still need to exercise.
 
Finally, the phrase que esté muy bien (informal: que estés muy bien) is sometimes used to say goodbye:
 

Al contrario Joaquín, me da mucho gusto, le mando un abrazo. Que esté muy bien.

To the contrary, Joaquin, it's a pleasure, I send you a hug. Hope you're well.

Captions 18-19, ¡Tierra, Sí! - Atenco - Part 1

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You can also use it as an introductory greeting by adding the verb espero (I hope), especially in written communications: Hola, espero que estés bien (Hi, I hope you are well).
 
There are of course many other uses of the verb esté. Try to find more examples in our catalog of videos. Please send your feedback and suggestions to newsletter@yabla.com.

Grammar Verbs

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Radicarse: To Relocate Yourself

Eso fue cuando hicimos Inconquistable Corazón que yo ya tenía que radicarme acá.

That was when we did Unconquerable Heart and I really had to settle here.

Captions 49-50, Biografía - Natalia Oreiro

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The verb radicar can mean "to be situated/located (in)," and so what Natalia is saying in the quote above is:
"This was when we did 'Inconquistable Corazón' that I had to settle here."

 

Bueno, yo llegué a... a radicar a Holbox del Estado de Morelos, pero ahora ya me siento Holboxeño.

Well, I came to... to settle down in Holbox from the State of Morelos, but now I feel Holboxian.

Captions 7-8, Yabla en Yucatán - Jorge

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Con la crisis económico, me tuve que radicar en España.
Given the economic crisis, I had to relocate to Spain.

 

Pero hace diez años sí, ya nos radicamos en Buenos Aires.

But ten years ago we did establish ourselves in Buenos Aires.

Caption 13, Karamelo Santo - Goy

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Radicarse en otro pais es dificil.
To establish yourself in another country is difficult.

 

La belleza del ámbar mexicano radica en su gama de tonos.

The beauty of Mexican amber lies in its range of tones.

Caption 6, Sergio en Monterrey - El ámbar mexicano

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El problema radica en la falta de presupuesto para este sector.
The problem lies in the lack of budget for this area.

 

Vocabulary

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