Today, someone wrote me a short email and ended it like this:
te recuerdo mucho chaooooo
Since it was such a brief message, I read it quickly and didn’t dwell on it. I read that last part as “I remember you a lot” or “I remember you well.” I was about to go on with my day, when something gave me pause. I remember you a lot? We don’t say that in English. I remember you well? Surely that would be expressed better by Te recuerdo bien. In any case, it would be silly for this person to tell me out of the blue that she remembers me well. Of course she does. We’re extremely close, talk frequently, and have played very unique and unforgettable roles in each other’s lives. Remember me a lot? Se sobreentiende. As it would be impossible for us to ever forget each other, I knew that I must have been misunderstanding the phrase. It’s not like it would be the first time or anything.
So, what was she trying to express with te recuerdo mucho? That she thinks of me a lot. Ahhhh, now that makes so much more sense! The mucho refers to frequency, not extent. It’s like saying Te recuerdo muy a menudo. I think of you frequently. I bring you to mind often. I regularly recall memories of you. Another equally valid and natural option would be me acuerdo mucho de ti.
As you can see, you don’t have to have forgotten someone to remember them, at least not in Spanish. All they have to do is come to your mind. So, which way do you prefer? Would you rather be thought of or remembered? I think I like the Spanish way better. (I know, shocker.) While you’re turning it over in your mind, here’s another post I wrote a while back where I pondered another facet of recordar. You have to give the verb some credit–he’s much more interesting than you’d initially think.