[104] Panama Canal won’t be the only shipping route through Central America


Panama Canal won’t be the only shipping route through Central America: Nicaragua’s government has signed a deal with a Chinese firm to build and operate a new canal that will connect the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. The project will compete against the Panama Canal. But critics have warned that the Panama Canal is already going to be widened to double the amount of traffic. The canal through Nicaragua would have to take half of the current Panama Canal traffic in order to be profitable. The Chinese consortium will be paying only 10 million dollars per year to the Nicaraguan government, the equivalent of less than 2$ per year for each Nicaraguan citizen.


window shopping

Lynn: Do you want to come with me to the Christmas sale on Main Street?

Selena: I want to, but I’m afraid I don’t have any money left this month.

Lynn: Don’t worry. You don’t need to buy anything. We can just go window shopping.

Explanation: The phrase “window shopping” means to go to stores and have fun looking at the goods without actually buying.



Doctor Adel: Have you given the child his vaccine?

Nurse Laura: Not yet. We tried to give him the injection, but he is very combative and he won’t sit still. Do you want to try giving the injection yourself?

Explanation: The term “combative” means to fight against the medical staff. Young children are often combative, as well as some elderly patients and people who have a phobia of injections.


off the radar

Dear Ms. Ross:
I looked for the component supplier that you told me about last week, but I could only find one or two references to them with Google. It seems that it’s a very small company that’s off the radar.

Explanation: The term “off the radar” means something that is not well-known. A company that is off the radar is a company that is either very small, or that doesn’t look for publicity. It doesn’t show up on the ‘radar screen’ of other people in the business.