Dialogue

Vocabulary

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Lesson Transcript

Intro

Jason: Hello everyone. Welcome to Upper Beginner Season 1, Lesson 7! C’est Jason. Jasone here!Ingrid: Bonjour à tous, Ingrid here!Jason: In this lesson, you’re going to learn how to use useful prepositions to talk about your itinerary and timetable when travelling.
After this lesson, you will be able to ask how to get easily from one place to another, thanks to several prepositions.
Ingrid: Yes Jason, this lesson will be very useful if for example, you are travelling to France and you get a bit lost. You will know how to ask the best way to go back to your hotel, for example!
Jason: You’re right! So Ingrid, what will be the topic of the coming conversation?
Ingrid: The conversation will take place at a train station. Sally, a young American girl, is a little bit confused about her destination and she’s asking for help from the railway employee. They both use formal French, as this is a customer-client relationship.
Jason: Great! And you will see that this dialog deals with a delicate issue in France… I’m sure you know what I mean!
Ingrid: Yes Jason! And this is a typically French issue indeed! So let’s listen to this conversation!
Dialogue
Sally: Bonjour, j'aimerais allez jusqu'à Montauban en train mais je ne sais pas comment faire.
Railway employee: Vous devez prendre le TGV de 8h00 et aller à Toulouse. Depuis Toulouse, vous devez prendre un train local pour Montauban.
Sally: Le train local passe vers quelle heure?
Railway employee: Il passe environ à 10h00, s'il n'y a pas de grève!
Sally: Les grèves! Ah oui j'avais oublié que j'étais en France!
English Host: Let’s hear the conversation one time slowly.
Sally: Bonjour, j'aimerais allez jusqu'à Montauban en train mais je ne sais pas comment faire.
Railway employee: Vous devez prendre le TGV de 8h00 et aller à Toulouse. Depuis Toulouse, vous devez prendre un train local pour Montauban.
Sally: Le train local passe vers quelle heure?
Railway employee: Il passe environ à 10h00, s'il n'y a pas de grève!
Sally: Les grèves! Ah oui j'avais oublié que j'étais en France!
English Host: Now let’s hear it with the English translation.
Sally: Bonjour, j'aimerais allez jusqu'à Montauban en train mais je ne sais pas comment faire.
Jason: Hello, I would like to go to Montauban by train, but I don't know how to.
Railway employee: Vous devez prendre le TGV de 8h00 et aller à Toulouse. Depuis Toulouse, vous devez prendre un train local pour Montauban.
Jason: You have to take the eight o'clock TGV and go to Toulouse. Once there, you have to take the local train to Montauban.
Sally: Le train local passe vers quelle heure?
Jason: At around what time is the local train?
Railway employee: Il passe environ à 10h00, s'il n'y a pas de grève!
Jason: It is at around ten o'clock, if there are no strikes!
Sally: Les grèves! Ah oui j'avais oublié que j'étais en France!
Jason: Strikes! Oh yeah, I forgot I was in France!
Post Conversation Banter
Jason: So Ingrid, of course we were talking about the famous French strikes!
Ingrid: Yes Jason! And it’s true that France is particularly well-known for it, unfortunately!
Jason: Yes some foreigners often even mention strikes before the Tour Eiffel when they think about France!
Ingrid: Yes, but actually we have the highest frequency of strikes so one thing explains another!
Jason: But why are there so many strikes in France?
Ingrid: Nowadays, the most important issue is concerning new laws put in place by the government against worker’s agreements. Our current president has launched many reforms related to retirement and these are very unpopular!
Jason: I see… but what exactly happens when a big strike starts?
Ingrid: French people have to really change their habits when a big strike is launched, especially on the public transportation. They have to go to work by their own means, by bike or with their colleagues’ car. If they have kids, they also have to ask someone to look after them as very often public schools are closed too.
Jason: What a pain! This is not the best French experience I guess!
Ingrid: You’re right Jason, let’s hope you won’t be in Paris during a strike!
Vocabulary and Phrases
Jason: Let's take a look at the vocabulary for this lesson.
: The first word we shall see is:
Ingrid: environ [natural native speed]
Jason: around, about
Ingrid: environ [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Ingrid: environ [natural native speed]: Next:
Ingrid: vers [natural native speed]
Jason: toward
Ingrid: vers [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Ingrid: vers [natural native speed]: Next:
Ingrid: jusqu’à [natural native speed]
Jason: until, up to
Ingrid: jusqu’à [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Ingrid: jusqu’à [natural native speed]: Next:
Ingrid: depuis [natural native speed]
Jason: since
Ingrid: depuis [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Ingrid: depuis [natural native speed]: Next:
Ingrid: oublier [natural native speed]
Jason: to forget
Ingrid: oublier [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Ingrid: oublier [natural native speed]: Next:
Ingrid: prendre [natural native speed]
Jason: to take
Ingrid: prendre [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Ingrid: prendre [natural native speed]: Next:
Ingrid: TGV [natural native speed]
Jason: French high speed train
Ingrid: TGV [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Ingrid: TGV [natural native speed]: Next:
Ingrid: grève [natural native speed]
Jason: strike
Ingrid: grève [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Ingrid: grève [natural native speed]: Next:
Ingrid: Le train passe à [natural native speed]
Jason: The train is at
Ingrid: Le train passe à [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Ingrid: Le train passe à [natural native speed]: Next:
Ingrid: là-bas [natural native speed]
Jason: there, over there
Ingrid: là-bas [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Ingrid: là-bas [natural native speed]
Vocabulary and Phrase Usage
Jason: Let's have a closer look at the usuage for some of the words and phrases from this lesson.
Ingrid: The first word/phrase we’ll look at is....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: “Jusqu’à” which means “to” or “until”.
Jason: Could you say it again slowly for our listeners?
Ingrid: (Slowly) « Etre originaire de »
Jason: And now at natural speed
Ingrid: (Natural speed) « Etre originaire de »
Jason: Great! So Ingrid, when can you use this expression?
Ingrid: This is one of the prepositions we are going to study today. “Jusqu’à” has different meanings according to the context. It can mean “to” as in “Va jusqu’à la gare” which means “Go to the station”.
Jason: Okay, what is the other meaning?
Ingrid: The other is quite close but implies an idea of maximum as in “Cette salle peut contenir jusqu’à 100 persones” which means “This room can accommodate up to 100 persons”.
Jason: Great, and what about next interesting word?
Ingrid: Next word are “environ” and “vers” that are synonymous. They both mean “around”. You can use it when you are not sure about a time or a place.
Jason: So these are words useful to describe approximate things, right?
Ingrid: Yes exactly. For example you can say “Il doit être environ 10h” which means “It must be around 10 o’clock”.
Jason: And what about an approximate place? When you are not sure about an address for example?
Ingrid: In this case you say “Le restaurant se trouve vers la Mairie” that means “The restaurant is around the city council area”.
Jason: This is quite useful indeed! What is the last expression?
Ingrid: Last is “Le train de 10h” as in “Le TGV de 10h” that means “The 10 o’clock train”. This a ready-made expression used to talk about a recurring things such as trains, that always have the same timetable.
Jason: Can you give us another example with the same expression?
Ingrid: For example, if you take the same train every morning, you will say “Je prends toujours le bus de 7h” which means “I always take the 7o’clock bus”.
Jason: This is an expression for people who have a daily routine then!

Lesson focus

Jason: So today’s grammar will be: how to use useful prepositions to talk about your itinerary. These prepositions such as “From”, “to” for example, will be essential to define your route and tell people where you want to go.
Ingrid: Yes Jason, above all, if you are lost or if you don’t know how to reach your destination in France!
Jason: So what will be our first group of prepositions?
Ingrid: It will concern the main prepositions for talking about your starting point, basically it would be the translation of “from”. In French we would use words “Depuis” or “A partir de”.
Jason: So for example, imagine you are lost in an unknown place in the middle of the French countryside and you want to go to Paris, how would you ask your route?Ingrid: You would ask “Comment aller à Paris à partir d’ici?” which means, literally, “How to reach Paris from here?”
Jason: Great so in fact you just use the preposition “A partir de”or “depuis” and add “ici” which means “there” it’s really simple! Does it work with every kind of places?
Ingrid: Yes for example, imagine you are in a station you can also say “Je voudrais aller à Paris depuis cette gare, quell train dois-je prendre? ” which means “I’d like to go to Paris from this station, which do I have to take?”.
Jason: And these 2 prepositions are working with all type of places, such as cities, stations or even regions, is that right?
Ingrid: Yes it is! And it’s the same system for next preposition which, this time, is used to talk about destinations. This preposition you could hear in the dialog is “pour” which literally means “for”. For example in “Le train pour Saint-Etienne a du retard”, which means “The train bound for Saint-Etienne is late”.
Jason: So “pour” is describing the destination – the arrival point – am I right?
Ingrid: Yes and more especially, “pour” is often used to talk about the terminal stop, as in “Prenez le métro pour La Vilette et descendez au 3ème arrêt” that means “Take the underground for La Vilette and get off at the 3rd stop”.
Jason: And the pattern remains the same, it is still preposition + location, here is the destination.Ingrid: Yes, it is always the same, the pattern: Preposition + place name (either starting or arrival point).
Jason: What about the preposition “jusqu’à”, we also heard it in the conversation “jusqu’à Montauban”, what does it mean?
Ingrid: “Jusqu’à” means “to” it has the same basic meaning of “à” or “pour” because it is also used to talk about destination. But, contrary to “à” or “pour”, the word “jusqu’à” implies a notion of distance, of route you have to cover before arriving at your destination.
Jason: Interesting! Could you give some examples for our listeners?
Ingrid: Imagine you are looking for a taxi in the countryside, someone could advise you “Vous devez marcher jusqu’à la route principale pour trouver un taxi” which means “You have to walk to the main road to find a taxi”.
Jason: Okay, and I know that “jusqu’à” also has other meanings, right?
Ingrid: Yes “jusqu’à” doesn’t only serve to talk about destination, it can also express an idea of limit, either for a quantity or for time. You can use it to talk about a maximum, as in “Ce bassin peut contenir jusqu’à 1000l d’eau” that means “This pool can contain up to 1000l of water”.
Jason: And with the idea of time limitation?
Ingrid: It would be for example “Tu dois attendre jusqu’à 8h” that is “You have to wait until 8o’clock”. You see that “jusqu’à” different nuances so don’t be surprised if you see it in other contexts.
Jason: Yes but anyway, “jusqu’à” will always deal with a limit. So Ingrid, what is our last word today?
Ingrid: Last word is actually two, as it is “environ” and “vers” that are synonymous and both mean “around”. These prepositions can be very useful when talking about a timetable you are not sure of.
Jason: So for example if you ask for a train schedule from a French railway employee, what might he respond with?
Ingrid: As trains are often late (or even cancelled because of strikes) he can answer you “Le train passe à environ 10h” as in our dialog, which means “Train is at around 10o’clock”.This is more vague so if the train has some delay, it remains true!
Jason: I see! And what about the other synonymous preposition you were talking about? Do you have an example?
Ingrid: It is “vers” which also means “around”, as in “Vers quelle heure passe le train local?” that means “ At around what time is the local train?”.
Jason: Great! So now, thanks to this lesson, even if you get lost in France, you will be able to find your way easily!
Ingrid: That’s true Jason, so listeners no more excuses when getting lost! Stay tuned et à bientôt for our next lesson!
Jason: Yes, see you soon everybody! A bientôt!

10 Comments

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FrenchPod101.com Verified
Tuesday at 06:30 PM
Pinned Comment
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Are there any strikes in your country? Try to tell us in French!

FrenchPod101.com Verified
Thursday at 11:21 PM
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Bonjour Nikolai!

Thank you for your comment.

Indeed, the translation is wrong. The correct one is "You have to walk to the main road to find a cab"


Bonne journée !

Marie Alice

Team FrenchPod101.com

Nikolai
Thursday at 02:22 PM
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Tu dois marcher jusqu'à la route principal pour trouver un taxi.

"You have to take the train to Lorient and then change there."


Is this really a correct translation?

Penny
Friday at 12:55 AM
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On ne se peut pas mettre en grève avec un contrat de zero heures. You can't go on strike with a zero hours contract.

FrenchPod101.com Verified
Tuesday at 05:28 PM
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Bonjour M !


Thank you for your comment !

You are right, there is a mistake on the PDF lesson ! :open_mouth:

I'm sorry for the inconvenience we will fix it soon !


Bonne journée !

Marie Alice

Team FrenchPod101.com

M
Friday at 03:36 AM
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Hello!


Why is it not 'j'aimerais aller' in stead of 'j'aimerais allez'?


Thank you for explaining,

M

FrenchPod101.com Verified
Saturday at 06:49 AM
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Bonjour Ben !


Merci pour votre message !

En France aussi nous avons le même problème, les enseignants peuvent faire grève pour les même raisons !

D'ailleurs aujourd'hui, en France, je n'ai pas pu utiliser le métro car les employés faisaient grève.


A bientôt et bonne journée!

Marie Alice

Team FrenchPod101.com

Ben
Thursday at 02:53 AM
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De temps en temps il y a de peur parce que le governor de mon etat souhaÎte reduire les argents distribué aux écoles publiques, alors les enseigneurs peuvent faire un grève.

FrenchPod101.com Verified
Sunday at 04:56 AM
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Hello Mason,


"J'aimerais" is more polite than "je voudrais". Literally "j'aimerais" means "I would like" and "je voudrais" means "I would". Their meaning is quite the same though.


I hope it's clear ! If not, let me know.

Have a nice day

Marie Alice

Team FrenchPod101.com

Mason
Monday at 05:31 AM
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Question:

Why not use je voudrais why use j'aimerais is that the formal way of writing "je voudrais"?