Intermediate - Misunderstood Taxi Destination
(I am not ready to start on this myself, but it is the next one in order going back in time from 'Fight on a Plane'. Someone else might want to start.)
John: Hey guys, I'm John, this is an Intermediate lesson.
John: Right, so this is another Intermediate taxi lesson, and this lesson makes the case that occasionally even Chinese people hear the tones wrong.
John: So listen to the dialog and see if you can catch where the miscommunication happens.
John: So first line of the dialog we hear where the passenger wants to go. What's the street?
John: Two 1st tones. Now, you should know that in China there are two provinces with very similar names. 山西 is two 1st tones.
John: But what's the name of the one with 西安 in it?
John: And that one is 3rd tone, 1st tone.
John: [So big hint right there to the answer that we gave in the interim]. And then the driver wants to know whether or not he should take the elevated highway.
John: So the word for 'elevated highway' is ...
John: 1st, 4th. 高架. Now he uses 走高架, which is kind of like 'go along the 高架', 'take the 高架'.
Dilu: 对的。就是要不了从高架上面走。(Not sure about this line. It doesn't make much sense to me.)
John: But I've also heard 上 高架.
John: So 上 emphasises 'get on' the 高架, but occasionally they can both be used.
John: And there's a reason that this person wants to 走高架.
John: So if you're not on the 高架, you're on the 地面. Is that right?
John: The surface of the ground.
John: Two 4th tones.
John: This can occasionally contrast with being underground or being on the surface.
John: And that contrasts with 地面 as well.
John: So what's the deal with this surface?
John: 红绿灯 meaning 'traffic light'.
John: Literally 'red-green light'.
Dilu: 就是那个traffic light，对吗。
John: So in Chinese 红绿灯, 红灯, 绿灯. In English we say 'traffic light', 'red light', 'green light'.
John: That makes sense - the Chinese makes sense. So in order to get on the 高架 he has to make a U-turn.
John: So the word for 'make a U-turn' is ...
John: 4th tone, 2nd tone. And sometimes you can add a little 个 in there to make it a little more 口语, is that right?
John: 掉头 also OK. So notice when you want to say 'make a U-turn up ahead', the 在前面 needs to be 在前面.
John: It needs to come before the verb.
John: So they're on the 高架 and they're getting to the place where its time to make an exit, and apparently the street that they're going to is perpendicular, so its coming up. So they're maybe going from west to east, and they're getting off, and they have to choose now - do they need to make a right or a left onto this street.
John: So he doesn't know which way he needs to go to find this specific address. So 'on the left side or on the right side?'
John: Practically speaking, he's also asking 'do I need to turn left or turn right?'