I miss the phrase “ni modo.” It’s a wonderful Mexico City idiom meaning “oh well, this is not good, but it can’t be changed either, so we might as well accept it and deal with it.” They say few languages are as concise as English, and Spanish usually isn’t. But ni modo takes an English sentence to translate.
This is left over from my nine years living in Mexico City, many years ago.
Repeat after me: ni modo. Pronounce it as if it were neemodo. When you’re stuck in traffic, ni modo. When you really need to work but your Internet connection is down, ni modo. When you said the wrong thing and you’d love to take it back, ni modo.
I’m not sure whether this is just Mexico City slang or if it also applies in other Spanish-speaking cultures like the rest of Latin America or Spain. I learned my Spanish during those years living in Mexico City. Idioms like these are hard to gauge. Sometimes they’re very local, sometimes not.
What I do know is that it’s a wonderful mix of language, philosophy, life style, and karma. When things go wrong, ni modo.