Go on a shopping spree

Indulgent and excessive buying

“Now wonder their house is full of clutter, they go on shopping sprees at every opportunity.”


Far from it

Not at all true.

“Vegetarian food is not bland. Far from it! Try some of the recipes in this book and you will see for yourself.”


To be close to someone’s heart

If something is close to your heart, it is extremely important to you and you are very concerned by it.

“The fight against climate change is a cause that is very close to her heart and she has inspired millions of people around the world to take a stand.”


No time like the present

It means, don’t leave something for later; it’s better to do it now.

“Let’s get it done as soon as possible and have a worry-free weekend. No time like the present.”


To be or get under way

In progress.

“The long-awaited changes to the regulation are already under way.”


Take somebody up on an offer

Accept the offer that somebody has made.

“I’ll take you up on your offer to spend a week in the South of France with you, guys. If it’s still on, that is.”


A hard pill to swallow

Something difficult to come to terms with.

“The management refusal to renew their contract after years of dedicated work and outstanding results, was a hard pill to swallow.”


Deep in thought

Very reflective. Thinking hard.

“The doctor sat there for what seemed like hours, deep in thought, until she came with a solution.”


Pass the buck

To make someone responsible for a problem that you should be dealing with. Click here to read about the origin of this idiom.

“Passing the buck to your friend is not going to help you learn to solve your own problems.”


Float somebody’s boat 

If something floats your boat, you are interested in it.

“Tell somebody else to come along, a massive rock concert like that doesn’t really float my boat.”


Stuck in traffic (or in a traffic jam)

Unable to keep moving at the speed you wish because there are too many cars.

“We left home during rush-hour and inevitably, ended up stuck in traffic.”


Meet halfway

To find a compromise between two people or groups of people.

“Seeing that we couldn’t convince them to join forces with us, we understood that we had to accept some of their points they were making and meet halfway.”


A speedy recovery

If an ill person makes a speedy recovery, they get better quickly.

“I hope you will make a speedy recovery. Take care!.”


A hard act to follow

An achievement which sets a standard regarded as being hard to measure up to.

“After the success of her first novel, she had a hard act to follow when writing her second.”


Distance yourself from

Become less involved with something or be separated mentally from it

“The journalist distanced himself from the controversial opinions he was reporting.”


Purchasing power

The amount of good or services that someone can afford to buy.

“Pensioners are fighting to make sure that their future purchasing power doesn’t dwindle.”


Think on your feet

To think as you speak and make decisions without prior thought, 

“The emergency workers were prepared to think on their feet and that saved lives and further damage.”


A knee-jerk reaction

A quick automatic response without thinking (similar to the reflex movement of the knee when hit sharply),

“His knee-jerk reactions get him into trouble once and again. He should take more time to ponder important decisions.”


Rush off 0ne’s feet

Terribly busy

“I’ve been rushed of my feet all day. Not much energy left for cooking an elaborate dinner, I’m afraid.”


Go over the top

To do something in an extreme, unreasonable way.

“They’ve gone over the top with their wedding.”


Go off on a tangent

To change from one subject to another. Also, go off-topic.

“The podcaster often goes off on a tangent and that makes his programme very entertaining to listen to.”


Walls have ears

Be careful what you say in certain places as somebody may be eavesdropping.

“Tell me when we get home, walls have ears.”


Play fair

Behave according to the rules or the principles of justice

“It is essential that all participants play fair or they will be excluded.”



Clases de Inglés en Vitoria – Gasteiz. Particulares y grupos reducidos.