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Lesson Transcript

Jason: C’est Jason. Jason here! Arranging a French Meeting
Ingrid: Bonjour à tous, Ingrid here!
Jason: In this lesson, you’re going to learn how to set an appointment with friends. You will be able to tell your friends where, when, and how can you meet them.
Ingrid: You will see that in French, interrogative adverbs are really useful to fix an appointment. You will see how to use them in simple questions, in order to choose a meeting point and hour.
Jason: Yes Ingrid, this lesson will be very useful in daily life, if you’re going to France, for example. We will focus in this lesson on informal ways to set an appointment with people you already know.
Ingrid: And where does our conversation takes place?
Jason: It will be a phone conversation between Tristan and Vanessa who are two good friends. They will speak informal French.
Ingrid: Yes they will try to fix a “rendez-vous” in Paris that’s right?
Jason: That’s right, and we will see together which words they use to choose the place, the time and the transportation to go to their meeting point. In fact, it’s a conversation you could have every day with a friend in France, so please listen carefully!
Ingrid: Ok, let’s listen to this conversation.
1st time: natural native speed:
(On the phone)
Vanessa: Salut Tristan, ça va? Où peut-on se retrouver ce soir ?
Tristan: On se retrouve devant la Pyramide du Louvre, qu'en penses-tu? Vanessa: Parfait! Quelle heure t'arrangerait? Dis-moi!
Tristan: On dit 8h ?
Vanessa: Très bien, et tu viendras comment ?
Tristan : Je prendrai le métro comme toujours !
Vanessa : Ok, à ce soir alors!
(1 time slowly)
(On the phone)
Vanessa: Salut Tristan, ça va? Où peut-on se retrouver ce soir ?
Tristan: On se retrouve devant la Pyramide du Louvre, qu'en penses-tu? Vanessa: Parfait! Quelle heure t'arrangerait? Dis-moi!
Tristan: On dit 8h ?
Vanessa: Très bien, et tu viendras comment ?
Tristan : Je prendrai le métro comme toujours !
Vanessa : Ok, à ce soir alors!
(1 time natural native speed with the translation)
Vanessa: Salut Tristan, ça va? Où peut-on se retrouver ce soir?
Hi Tristan, how are you? Where should we meet tonight?
Tristan: On se retrouve devant la Pyramide du Louvre, qu'en penses-tu?
We can meet in front of the Louvre Pyramide, what do you think?
Vanessa: Parfait! Quelle heure t'arrangerait? Dis-moi!
Perfect! What time is better for you? Let me know!
Tristan: On dit 8h ?
We could say 8 o’clock?
Vanessa: Très bien, et tu viendras comment ?
Great and how will you get there?
Tristan : Je prendrai le métro comme toujours !
I’m taking the underground, as usual!
Vanessa : Ok, à ce soir alors!
Ok, see you then!
Jason: Ingrid do you know their meeting point, “La Pyramide du Louvre”?
Ingrid: Yes I know it and I think it’s a really beautiful place in Paris. It is located within the Louvre Museum’s yard and it’s a kind of “modern remake” of an antique Egyptian Pyramid!
Jason: Really? I know about the Louvre Museum which is very famous but what is the story of this Pyramid building?
Ingrid: Actually it is a work piece building, opened to public in 1989 and ordered by the former French President Mitterrand. In France, this building is really related to this president because at the time, he was the only one to support this project!
Jason: What do you mean? French people don’t appreciate this Pyramid?
Ingrid: To be honest, it was strongly criticized at the beginning because its architecture was really different from the Louvre classic style. The pyramid is made of only glass and steel, which are modern materials.
Jason: It’s a well-known fact that French people generally love to protest, but what about now? Is the Pyramid still controversial?
Ingrid: No, now I think Parisians have accepted it and the building has succeeded in becoming a part of the Louvre; mentalities have evolved and the development of the Pyramid’s basement has helped it be considered as a nice place to be.
Jason: What can you find in the Pyramid’s basement?
Ingrid: The basement called “Le Carrousel du Louvre” is now a kind of mall where you can find many cultural stores and exhibitions but also a big Apple Store, which opened recently!
Okay, so now, let's take a look at the vocabulary for this lesson.
The first expression we shall see is:
Où ? [natural native speed]
Meaning “Where?”
Où ? [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Où ? [natural native speed]
Devant/ en face de [natural native speed]
Meaning “In front of”
Devant/ en face de [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Devant/ en face de [natural native speed]
Quelle heure? [natural native speed]
Meaning “What time?”
Quelle heure? [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Quelle heure? [natural native speed]
Dis-moi ! [natural native speed]
Meaning “Let me know!”
Dis-moi! [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Dis-moi! [natural native speed]
Arranger [natural native speed]
Meaning “to suit”
Arranger slowly - broken down by syllable]
Arranger[natural native speed]
Très bien[natural native speed]
Meaning “Great, perfect”
Très bien [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Très bien [natural native speed]
On dit… [natural native speed]
Meaning “Let’s say…”
On dit… [slowly - broken down by syllable]
On dit… [natural native speed]
Comment? [natural native speed]
Meaning “How?”
Comment? [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Comment? [natural native speed]
Let's have a closer look at the usage for some of the words and phrases from this lesson.
Jason: The first word is?
Ingrid: “où?”, which means “where?”
Jason: Next we have?
Ingrid: Next is “devant” which means “in front of”.
Jason: Could you say it again slowly for our listeners?
Ingrid: (Slowly) « devant »
Jason: And now in natural speed
Ingrid: (Natural speed) « devant »
Jason: Great! So this word can be used to specify the place where you will be waiting for example?
Ingrid: Yes, you can say “Je t’attends devant la Poste” for example which means “I’m waiting for you in front of the Post Office” or as in our conversation “On se retrouve devant la Pyramide du Louvre”
Jason: Yeah, so really convenient to find your friend! Next expression is?
Ingrid: Next is “Quelle heure?” which means “What time?”
Jason: Yeah, and this is really useful to set an appointment of course! What’s the next one?
Ingrid: Next is “Dis-moi!” which is the informal way to ask your friend “Let me know!” or “Please tell me!” Be careful not to use it in formal situations because it would sound rude!
Jason: What could you say for formal situations?
Ingrid: You could say « N’hésitez pas à me dire ce qui vous arrange le plus » which literally means « Do not hesitate to tell me what is better for you »
Jason: So we heard in your last example the verb “arranger.” What does it mean?
Ingrid: The verb “arranger” is the one to use for asking what would be the best solution for the other person. It implies that you are asking for the most suitable hour or place to have an appointment with this person.
Jason: So what is the next expression?
Ingrid: It is “Très bien,” which means “great” or “perfect” and serves to agree and to say something fits perfectly with your expectations.
Jason: Great, and what is the next expression?
Ingrid: Last expression is “On dit…” which would be the equivalent to “Let’s say…” You can use when talking about hour or place.
Jason: Yes, for example, what if you are suggesting to your friend an appointment at the Tour Eiffel at 3 o’clock?
Ingrid: We would say “On dit 3h devant la Tour Eiffel?”
Jason: And finally, the last interesting word here is?
Ingrid: It is “Comment?” which is an interrogative word meaning “How?” you will find more info about it in the grammar point just after this.
Jason: Great so now let’s move on to our grammar point!

Lesson focus

Jason: So today’s grammar point will help you to fix an appointment with a friend, telling him or her the place, the hour and the transportation thanks to an interrogative words such as Where? When? And How?
Ingrid: Yes you will learn about using the French interrogative adverbs “Où?”, “Quand?” and “Comment?”
After this lesson, you will be able to set an informal appointment by asking your friend where and when they want to meet, but also how they can get to the meeting point.
Jason: So the 1st adverb is : “Où?” what it is used for?
Ingrid: The adverb “Où?” is used to ask about places. You can use “Où” in many different sentences to ask about a meeting point. For example in our dialog we had “Où peut-on se retrouver ce soir?” which means “Where can we meet tonight ? ”
Jason: Here we notice that the word “Où” is placed at the beginning of the sentence. Is this always the case Ingrid?
Ingrid: Normally it should be, yes, but in everyday language French people often change the word order. For example “Où peut-on se retrouver ce soir?” can become “On se retrouve où ce soir?” which means exactly the same thing.
Jason: But the general rule for asking about a place in French is : Où + verb + subject, isn’t that right?
Ingrid: Right! And this is the case for every interrogative verb. It also works for the next one we will learn, which is “Quand,” which means “When?” You can also say “A quelle heure” which is “What time?”
Jason: Could you give us an example with these expressions?
Ingrid: “Quand viens-tu?” which means “When will you come?” or “A quelle heure viens-tu?” which is more precise and means “What time will you come?”
Jason: Can you explain to us the difference between “Quand” and “A quelle heure”?
Ingrid: Yes in fact, “Quand” is really general. You can ask “quand” when you don’t have a specific date in mind, for example, “Quand viens-tu?” is not asking about a precise timetable, so the person is likely to answer “Je viendrai demain” which is “I’ll come tomorrow”.
Jason: And what if you need to be more specific?
Ingrid: So in that case you would use “A quelle heure” which literally means “At which hour” . This is a way to set a precise timetable, an hour.
Jason: Could you tell us the common mistake that you have to avoid in French when it comes to setting times?
Ingrid: Yes, many foreigners say “Quel temps?” instead of “Quelle heure?” Please note in French, the word “temps” means “time” in general but cannot be used to set something specific.
Jason: So use “A quelle heure” to be sure of the hour! So now let’s see. The last interrogative adverb of this dialog is?
Ingrid: It is “Comment?” which means “How?” or also “Quel moyen” which also means “How”
These expressions are used to ask about the means—the best way to get to the meeting point.
Jason: So if you want to ask what is the best method of transportation to get to a meeting point, what would you say?
Ingrid: You would say “Comment faire pour y aller ?” which means “How to do to get there ? ” or you can also say “Quel est le meilleur moyen pour y aller?” which is “What is the best way to get there?”
Jason: And then your friend can answer…
Ingrid: He could tell you “Le mieux c’est de prendre le metro” if the best solution in to take the underground. Otherwise he could say “Le mieux c’est de marcher” if ever the best way is to walk to the meeting point.
Jason: Great! So this lesson should be very useful if you don’t want to miss an appointment!
Ingrid: Yes that’s true, it would be a pity to go to the wrong place!


Ingrid: A bientôt!
Jason: See you soon everybody! A bientôt!
Sample Sentences
Dis-moi si tu peux! | 3924
"Let me know if you can!" | 3924_e
Dis-moi à quelle heure elle sort ce soir. | 3923
"Let me know at what time she is going out tonight." | 3923_e
On dit demain à 5h? | 3922
"Let’s say tomorrow at 5 o’clock?" | 3922_e
Dis-moi à quelle heure elle sort ce soir. | 3921
"Let me know at what time she is going out tonight." | 3921_e
La station de bus, c'est en face de la gare. | 1521
"The bus station, it's in front of the train station." | 1521_e