Dialogue

Vocabulary

Learn New Words FAST with this Lesson’s Vocab Review List

Get this lesson’s key vocab, their translations and pronunciations. Sign up for your Free Lifetime Account Now and get 7 Days of Premium Access including this feature.

Or sign up using Facebook
Already a Member?

Lesson Notes

Unlock In-Depth Explanations & Exclusive Takeaways with Printable Lesson Notes

Unlock Lesson Notes and Transcripts for every single lesson. Sign Up for a Free Lifetime Account and Get 7 Days of Premium Access.

Or sign up using Facebook
Already a Member?

Lesson Transcript

Introduction
Virginie: Bonjour à tous! Hello!
Eric: Bonjour! Eric here, Gengo French lesson 26 –The best French Dish you will ever have.
Virginie: Hi, this is Virginie and I am with Eric again.
Eric: Again, Virginie is with me. What are we gonna be looking at today?
Virginie: Today we will learn about the verb être, “to be,” in the past tense.
Eric: Then we are also gonna be using indirect pronouns and phrases such as tell me.
Virginie: Our dialog takes place at Yves and Catherine’s place, still.
Eric: And they are talking about tomorrow’s big plans.
Virginie: Let's listen to the conversation.
Dialogue
Yves : À table !
Joe : Ce repas est vraiment incroyable !
Catherine : Oui, j'ai un mari exceptionnel. J'ai beaucoup de chance.
Joe : Une belle maison, un repas délicieux, c'est le paradis !
Catherine : Oh, arrête. Alors dis-moi, c'est comment la France ?
Joe : Oh, c'est génial ! Les gens sont sympas, et c'est magnifique.
Yves : Et comment c'était, l'hippodrome de Longchamp ?
Joe : C'était vraiment génial. Et il faisait très beau.
Catherine : Ah ! L'hippodrome de Longchamp ! Nous avons beaucoup de souvenirs là-bas.
Yves : Mais c'était il y a longtemps ...
Catherine : À propos, nous allons à Vincennes demain.
Joe : Ah oui, j'ai hâte !
Eric: One more time, a little more slowly.
Virginie: Encore une fois, plus lentement.
Yves : À table !
Joe : Ce repas est vraiment incroyable !
Catherine : Oui, j'ai un mari exceptionnel. J'ai beaucoup de chance.
Joe : Une belle maison, un repas délicieux, c'est le paradis !
Catherine : Oh, arrête. Alors dis-moi, c'est comment la France ?
Joe : Oh, c'est génial ! Les gens sont sympas, et c'est magnifique.
Yves : Et comment c'était, l'hippodrome de Longchamp ?
Joe : C'était vraiment génial. Et il faisait très beau.
Catherine : Ah ! L'hippodrome de Longchamp ! Nous avons beaucoup de souvenirs là-bas.
Yves : Mais c'était il y a longtemps ...
Catherine : À propos, nous allons à Vincennes demain.
Joe : Ah oui, j'ai hâte !
Eric: One more time, with the translation.
Virginie: Encore une fois, avec la traduction.
Yves : À table !
Eric: Dinner is ready!
Joe : Ce repas est vraiment incroyable !
Eric: This meal is really incredible!
Catherine : Oui, j'ai un mari exceptionnel. J'ai beaucoup de chance.
Eric: Yes, I have an outstanding husband. I'm very lucky.
Joe : Une belle maison, un repas délicieux, c'est le paradis !
Eric: A beautiful house, a delicious meal, it's paradise!
Catherine : Oh, arrête. Alors dis-moi, c'est comment la France ?
Eric: Oh, stop it. So tell me, how is France?
Joe : Oh, c'est génial ! Les gens sont sympas, et c'est magnifique.
Eric: Oh, it's great! People are nice, and it's gorgeous.
Yves : Et comment c'était, l'hippodrome de Longchamp ?
Eric: And how was the Longchamp racetrack?
Joe : C'était vraiment génial. Et il faisait très beau.
Eric: It was really great. And it was very sunny.
Catherine : Ah ! L'hippodrome de Longchamp ! Nous avons beaucoup de souvenirs là-bas.
Eric: Oh, the Longchamp racetrack! We have a lot of memories there.
Yves : Mais c'était il y a longtemps ...
Eric: Yes, but it was a long time ago.
Catherine : À propos, nous allons à Vincennes demain.
Eric: By the way, we're going to Vincennes tomorrow.
Joe : Ah oui, j'ai hâte !
Eric: Oh, yes, I can't wait!
Post Conversation Banter
Eric: So Joe enjoyed his day at the horse racing. Is that like a usual thing to do?
Virginie: To bet on horses?
Eric: Yeah, is that like a typical French weekend? You go to the casinos and bet on horses?
Virginie: No, not really. But yeah, some people do, actually. I had some friends that were hooked on betting on horses.
Eric: Wow, gamblers anonymous friends.
Virginie: Exactly. But it’s like actually when you go there it’s a fun day, and suddenly you are gambling because there are a lot of people, usually it’s sunny, it’s in the summer and you have horses and it’s just – the atmosphere, you know, it’s like when you go to a game or
Eric: Yeah. It’s like a sports event, I guess. What was the name of the place? The Longchamp hippodrome?
Virginie: Yeah, L'hippodrome de Longchamp.
Eric: You’ve been there, you said?
Virginie: I’ve been there once, yeah. Otherwise, we have casinos too in France, but I’ve never been to a French casino, ever.
Eric: Really?
Virginie: Yeah, because they are not usual. They are usually on the Riviera and in Monaco, obviously, but that’s not France. And there are some around Paris, but they are forbidden in the cities, so we don’t have any within the cities.
Eric: You have to go out and do this?
Virginie: Yeah, exactly.
Eric: Interesting.
Virginie: It’s not as exciting as Vegas.
Eric: Have you been to Vegas?
Virginie: Yes.
Eric: Ok. But you haven’t been to the one in France, so you really can’t compare.
Virginie: Yes, maybe it’s true.
Eric: Ok. In any case, let’s get into a little vocabulary.
Vocab List
Virginie: une table [natural native speed]
Eric: a table
Virginie: une table [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Virginie: une table [natural native speed]
Virginie: un repas [natural native speed]
Eric: a meal
Virginie: un repas [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Virginie: un repas [natural native speed]
Virginie: incroyable [natural native speed]
Eric: incredible
Virginie: incroyable [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Virginie: incroyable [natural native speed]
Virginie: exceptionnel(-le) [natural native speed]
Eric: outstanding
Virginie: exceptionnel(-le) [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Virginie: exceptionnel(-le) [natural native speed]
Virginie: beaucoup de [natural native speed]
Eric: a lot of
Virginie: beaucoup de [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Virginie: beaucoup de [natural native speed]
Virginie: la chance [natural native speed]
Eric: luck
Virginie: la chance [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Virginie: la chance [natural native speed]
Virginie: le paradis [natural native speed]
Eric: paradise
Virginie: le paradis [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Virginie: le paradis [natural native speed]
Virginie: beau, belle [natural native speed]
Eric: beautiful
Virginie: beau, belle [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Virginie: beau, belle [natural native speed]
Virginie: génial(e) [natural native speed]
Eric: great
Virginie: génial(e) [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Virginie: génial(e) [natural native speed]
Virginie: les gens [natural native speed]
Eric: people
Virginie: les gens [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Virginie: les gens [natural native speed]
Virginie: magnifique [natural native speed]
Eric: gorgeous
Virginie: magnifique [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Virginie: magnifique [natural native speed]
Virginie: un hippodrome [natural native speed]
Eric: a racetrack
Virginie: un hippodrome [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Virginie: un hippodrome [natural native speed]
Virginie: un souvenir [natural native speed]
Eric: a memory
Virginie: un souvenir [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Virginie: un souvenir [natural native speed]
Virginie: il y a longtemps [natural native speed]
Eric: a long time ago
Virginie: il y a longtemps [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Virginie: il y a longtemps [natural native speed]
Virginie: à propos [natural native speed]
Eric: by the way
Virginie: à propos [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Virginie: à propos [natural native speed]
Virginie: avoir hâte [natural native speed]
Eric: can't wait
Virginie: avoir hâte [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Virginie: avoir hâte [natural native speed]
Virginie: ah, oui [natural native speed]
Eric: oh, yes
Virginie: ah, oui [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Virginie: ah, oui [natural native speed]
Vocab and Phrase Usage
Virginie: So our first phrase is "à propos”
Eric: And that means "by the way"
Virginie: Yes. Catherine uses it as a transition to talk about their trip to Vincennes with Joe the following day
Eric: So, it's used just like "by the way"
Virginie: Yes, at the beginning of a sentence, to mark a transition
Eric: The first word in this expression is the preposition "a"
Virginie: Oui and it's followed by "propos", which means statement, or speech
Eric: Again, à propos.
Virginie: à propos. Eric, we have another little phrase in our dialogue, and it's "j'ai hâte"
Eric: Which means “I can't wait.”
Virginie: let's see what the expression is
Eric: It's from "avoir hâte," to literally, have haste.
Virginie: So when you conjugate it, it's what Joe says, j'ai
Eric: “I have”
Virginie: And hate
Eric: “Haste.”
Virginie: Right, I have haste, “I can’t wait.”
Eric: Now if you want to say "I can't wait to work.”
Virginie: You will add the preposition "de" right after j'ai hâte.
Eric: j'ai hâte de travailler.
Virginie: j'ai hâte de, then your verb, travailler.
Eric: Now if the verb starts with a vowel, we all know what to do, right?
Virginie: Yes, I think by now we know. The E of de will drop.
Eric: So it’s j'ai hâte d'aller a Vincennes. And the j'ai hâte d, is d’aller, ALLER.
Virginie: I can't wait to go to Vincennes, j'ai hâte d'aller a Vincennes. Or j'ai hâte d'être bronzée.
Eric: “I can't wait to be tanned.”
Virginie: Ok now. One last phrase, or expression if you prefer.
Eric: Ok, that’s "il y a longtemps.”
Virginie: Yes in our dialogue, our characters talk about memories, about the past
Eric: Yves says, il y a longtemps, “a long time ago”
Virginie: Yeah, I think he's talking about the longchamp racetrack, l'hippodrome de longchamp, right.
Eric: Yeah, our characters are really into betting!
Virginie: Yeah, I know. So Il y a longtemps is “a long time ago”
Eric: And this structure is very easy. It's - il y a
Virginie: Remember it means there is
Eric: And then longtemps
Virginie: Which is literally "long", or "a long time"
Eric": So, in the end, we have "there is long" or “there is a long time”
Virginie: Right, that’s “a long time ago.” Now if you want to be more specific about the amount of time. Just use - il y a
Eric: And then add the more precise time. For example, five days ago
Virginie: Il ya cinq jours
Eric: Or one hour ago
Virginie: Il y a une heure.
Eric: Or what about "two months ago"
Virginie: Il y a deux mois
Eric: Ok so you get the pattern. Again, it’s - il y a “there are,” and then the time.
Virginie: Oui!! à propos, Eric. By the way, Eric, since we're talking about the past, why don't we jump to our grammar point, which is the imperfect, l'imparfait?
Eric: Great, it is one the French past tenses.
Virginie: Virginie:Ok.

Lesson focus

Eric: So what is the imparfait in our dialogue?
Virginie: First we have "c'était" in the sentence "c'était génial"
Eric: This is when Joe is talking about horse betting
Virginie: He says c'était genial, it was great
Eric: Could you spell that for us?
Virginie: Bien sûr. It’s c'était. C'était
Eric: This is the imperfect form of être
Virginie: Right, that means “it was.” Let's talk about our tense, the imparfait, a bit more, the usage, for example.
Eric: Well, what is the imparfait used for?
Virginie: First, you will use it when describing an emotional state in the past.
Eric: For example, in our dialogue "it was great!”
Virginie: Yes, Joe is expressing his past enthusiasm.
Eric: Great, so, emotions, what else?
Virginie: Then you can use it to describe enduring states in the past, like the weather, for example.
Eric: I think we have that in our dialogue as well?
Virginie: Oui. Yes, we do. Joe says "il faisait beau", which is "the weather was nice,” or "it was sunny.”
Eric: Basically, the imparfait is describing a general state of how it was in the past. That’s what is going on here, a description.
Virginie: Yeah, exactly. And again, “the weather was nice” in French is il faisait beau.
Eric: One other use of imparfait is to describe a repetitive action in the past.
Virginie: It would be the equivalent of the English, “I used to” or “I would.”
Eric: Can you give us an example?
Virginie: Mais oui, bien sûr. Talking about your childhood, for example. You wanna say you would go to school every day, so you’re gonna say - J'allais a l'école tous les jours.
Eric: I would go to school every day. J'allais is gonna be in the imperfect tense, it’s gonna be - J'allais.
Virginie: And it’s a repetitive action. Every day I would go to school, then you use the imparfait.
Virginie: Now there are other uses but we'll stick to what we have for now.
Eric: Ok, great good introduction.
Virginie: Ok. Now let's see how to construct your imparfait conjugations.
Eric: The imparfait is one of the easiest tenses to construct in French.
Virginie: Yes! So, to conjugate an imparfait, let's take the verb “to be,” être.
Eric: What you will do is actually keep the first part of the infinitive
Virginie: Yes, usually it's the part before the ER ending of your verb, or the IR ending of your verb.
Eric: For être, it's a little more specific. We’re gonna change the accent circumflex over the E to an accent acute, accent acute.
Virginie: So what we do is we keep ÊT, E with an accent acute, and then we get rid of RE, the end of the verb.
Eric: And then we just add on the normal imparfait endings. For example, how do we start off with “je.”
Virginie: Well, the ending for "je" in the imparfait is AIS, which is pronounced /e/
Eric: So our verb will be ÊT and then AIS.
Virginie: Yes, and that sounds like étais
Eric: Do a little sense for us?
Virginie: Sure! J'étais malade hier.
Eric: “I was sick yesterday.”
Virginie: Ok, so again, that’s - J'étais, “I was,” malade hier, “sick yesterday.”
Eric: And again, we’re using the imparfait because it’s sort of describing a state in the past or a feeling and illness, something like that.
Virginie: I could have said - j'etais heureuse hier.
Eric: “I was happy yesterday.”
Virginie: Exactly. Now the ending for "tu" is the same as for "je," which makes it very simple.
Eric: Great. So it's going to be spelled étais
Virginie: Oui. Eric, hier tu étais triste.
Eric:” Yesterday you were sad.”
Virginie: Yes, that’s what I told Eric, but is not true, I hope.
Eric: No, I was happy, j'étais heureux.
Virginie: Ok, good. Again, “you were sad” is - tu étais triste.
Eric: Now let's see the endings for il, elle, and on.
Virginie: It will be AIT and it’s still pronounced /e/.
Eric: For example, Joe était à l'hippodrome de longchamp hier.
Virginie: “Joe was at the longchamp racetrack yesterday.”
Virginie: As for the rest of the conjugation, you can check in our lesson notes, and you will have the imparfait with nous, vous, ils and elles plural. And you will also find some insights about the indirect pronoun as in "dis-moi," which is
Eric: Tell me.
Virginie: Here, the indirect pronoun is moi.
Eric: Right. We've seen this pronoun a bit in our earlier lesson. For example, chez moi, chez toi, chez nous.
Virginie: Absolutely!

Outro

Virginie: So, I think we're done for this lesson, Eric.
Eric: Sounds good. Thank you for listening!
Virginie: Thank you! Merci beaucoup.
Eric: Au Revoir!
Virginie: Bye-bye!

7 Comments

Hide
Please to leave a comment.
😄 😞 😳 😁 😒 😎 😠 😆 😅 😜 😉 😭 😇 😴 😮 😈 ❤️️ 👍

FrenchPod101.com Verified
Sunday at 04:23 AM
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Bonjour Tony Finoro !


Merci beaucoup for posting. Don't worry, just try to keep your studies as a regular habit! You will see, your French will skyrocket if you are able to do it regularly. I'd advise that you create a development plan, including how much time and what lessons you will study every next week. And then stick to it! 😉


Let us know if you have any questions.


Kind regards,

Levente

Team FrenchPod101.com

Tony Finoro
Wednesday at 04:50 AM
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

😄 Very Good!, but the work alone part is hard. One must visit a French speaking population to take in the French language and culture more fully.

FrenchPod101.com Verified
Thursday at 07:36 PM
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Hi Peggy,


Thank you for your positive feedback!


Let us know if you have any questions.


Sincerely,

Cristiane

Team FrenchPod101.com

Peggy
Sunday at 08:18 PM
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Excellent lesson

FrenchPod101.com Verified
Tuesday at 12:55 PM
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Hi Manuel,


Thanks to your feedback we were able to fix the issue.

We apologize for the inconvenience.

Please let us know if you have any question or other feedback!


Regards,

Ofelia

Team FrenchPod101.com

Manuel
Friday at 12:21 AM
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

INTRODUCTION, LESSONS MATERIAL, REVIEW...This 3 sections are not present in this lesson...Can you please verify? Thanks! Manuel

Manuel
Friday at 12:04 AM
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Where are the exercises?