I was recently asked how to say the word from in Chabacano and while I was thinking about this question, I realized just how difficult it is to say the word from in our language. You see, the English from translates to different words in Chabacano depending on the context. In this post, I will illustrate how to say the word from in Chabacano during different scenarios.
Getting something from somewhere:
Chabacano: Favor man withdraw para conmigo cen na banco.
English: Please withdraw money for me from the bank.
Chabacano: Puede tu anda na mi cuarto y saca mio aretes na mesa?
English: Can you go to my room and get my earrings from the table?
Getting something from somebody (definite person):
Chabacano: Puede tu saca el vaso con Arlene?
English: Can you get the glass from Arlene?
Chabacano: Puede tu saca el libro con Misis Aguilar?
English: Can you get the book from Mrs. Aguilar?
Getting something from somebody (indefinite person):
Chabacano: Puede tu anda na casa de mi amigo y saca con ele suyo pago?
English: Can you go to the house of my friend and get his payment from him?
Chabacano: Puede tu saca con ele el regalo?
English: Can you get the gift from him/her?
Chabacano: Favor saca el papel na tuyo tata.
English: Please get the paper from your father.
Chabacano: Cuando tu saca el libro na tuyo amigo?
English: When will you get the book from your friend?
When saying to get something from someone such as your father, your friend, your teacher, etc., one can also use con instead of na.
When asking where someone is from or when telling someone where you are from, use the word de:
Chabacano: De donde tu?
English: Where are you from?
Chabacano: De Tetuan yo.
English: I’m from Tetuan.
When asking where or from whom something came from or when telling someone where or from whom something is from, use the word estaba:
Chabacano: Donde estaba ese?
English: Where is that from?
Chabacano: Estaba na mi tata este regalo.
English: This gift is from my dad.
As you can see, when telling that something is from someone, you need to add the word na after estaba. It is also good to note that the sentence above can also be constructed like this: Na mi tata estaba este regalo. If the sentence is constructed like this, then it should begin with the word na.
Remarkably, the word estaba doesn’t exist in Camins’ Chabacano dictionary. The Chabacano dictionary of Santos (2010) does list this word but only defines it as ‘used to be’ (which is another definition of estaba).
Chabacano: *Desde San Roque hasta Santa Maria, no hay gayod gente na camino.
English: There was nobody in the streets from San Roque until Santa Maria.
I would just like to insert a little geographical note here
Chabacano: Desde Zamboanga hasta Manila, no hay quien gana conmigo!
English: Nobody can beat me from Zamboanga to Manila!
San Roque and Santa Maria are barangays (villages) in the west coast of Zamboanga city.
You know how reporters say 'from New York, this is Mary Sanchez (reporter's name) reporting? Well, I recently heard a reporter in one of the cable channels report from Zamboanga city and say 'estaba aqui na ciudad de Zamboanga when he said 'from Zamboanga city'. I'm not very sure if this was the best way to say 'from Zamboanga city'. I'm thinking that 'desde'l ciudad de Zamboanga' is a better way. What do you think?