Native (American) English speakers don't typically pair nearby with a location like that. We are nearby. It is nearby. He's nearby. Not we are nearby the cafe.
"Del" is just a shortened "de el", but Spanish requires that "de el" must be shortened, so whenever you have to use a "de" and an "el" side by side, you have to shorten it into "del". It is the same principle with "al"; it is also the shortened "a" + "el" and is a requirement whenever you have an "a" followed by an "el".
• La puerta [de el] del cuarto es azul = The door of the room is blue
• Camino [a el] al supermercado todos los días = I walk to the supermarket every day
How come "We are close to the cafe" is "Estamos cerca del cafe" instead of "Estamos cerca al cafe"?
I've been trying to understand al vs del and from what i have found, al = to the and del = of the. Is this case an exception to this rule?
In this case it's because it's always "cerca de" for near to/close to.
Why is near incorrect, when it has worked for every other "cerca" in this lesson?
What's going on is an error of some kind in your sentence. Probably something tiny that escaped your notice.
This section has many sentences using 'cerca' and all so far have translated the word as 'close to' and not the more economical 'near'. ¿Por qué? Duolingo.
I've been using "near" for almost all of these cercas here and Duolingo's so far never rejected them.
But usually you say "close to the café", not to the coffee. When you say "estamos cerca del café", it should be automatically understood as "we are close to the café".
Café --> Cafe And the question mark will make it a question so it is "Are we close to the café?"
I have listened to the speaker many times, normal and 'turtle' speeds. As many times as I repeat listening, it still sounds at normal speed as if she says "de café" and at turtle speed "del café". It's as if they were two separate recordings. Any one else experience this?
It should be "are we close to the cafê" because the question mark makes it a question.
Are the people developing this course native speakers or is it an algorithm? There is no difference between close and near.
Estamos = we are. The verb Estar. I'm: Estoy / you are: Estás / he is: Está / we are: Estámos / you are (plural): Estáis / they are: Están
Where's the ' over th a in estamos in the question? ... Should it have one or no?
Estamos means "[We] are"; Nosotros means "We".
You can say Nosotros estamos cerca del café or just Estamos cerca del café and you'll be correct because both mean the same. (It's very common for Spanish speakers to omit the subject pronoun [in this case "We"/Nosotros] because it's already established by the verb [estamos, in this case].)
Estamos cerca del café is already good (without nosotros) because estamos cannot mean other than "We are".
"Son" is 3rd person plural for "ser." It is used with "ellos/ellas/ustedes." It is never used with "nosotros."
"Estamos" is 1st person plural for "estar." It is used with "nosotros.
"Ser" and "estar" both mean "to be" but they are used in different circumstances. If you look them up, you can find everything you need to know.
Please help me in understanding why the change from "nosotros" to "estamos". I was going to write, "Nosotros somos cerca de café". Why would the estamos be a better translation? TIA
"Somos" and "estamos" both mean "(We) are", but "somos" is from ser while "estamos" is from estar. Estar (or estamos) is the correct one to use (not somos) because this is talking about where you are. (The rhyme "For how you feel and where you are, always use the verb estar!" can be a good mnemonic.)
Going back to your first question, there is no change from "nosotros" to "estamos". Duolingo only omitted the "nosotros since "estamos" already tells us that "nosotros" ("We") is the subject. So whether you write/say "Nosotros estamos cerca del café or "Estamos cerca del café", you'd be correct.
(Note: Don't forget the "l" in "del", because it's from "de el". You can't just use "de" here without that "l".)