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Lesson Transcript

Hi, guys! Welcome. 你好。 (nei5 hou2.) My name is Olivia and welcome to Cantonese Top Words. Today, we are going to talk about 10 ways to say hello. Hello, hello! So of course, you can say in English like, “Hello!”, or with a Cantonese accent, 哈囉。 (haa1 lo3.). So let’s start with the word list.
1. 哈囉。 (haa1 lo3.) "Hello."
The first word is 哈囉。 (haa1 lo3.). So it’s hello, but with a Cantonese accent. It came from the English hello of course.
2. 早晨。 (zou2 san4.) "Good morning."
The next is 早晨。 (zou2 san4.) "Good morning." So in the morning like before noon, whenever you see people, you can say 早晨。 (zou2 san4.).
先生早晨。(sin1 saang1 zou2 san4.)
警察叔叔早晨。(ging2 caat3 suk1 suk1 zou2 san4.)
3. 你好。 (nei5 hou2.) "Hi./ Good day."
That’s like hi and good day so 你好。 (nei5 hou2.) literally means “you well” so 你好。 (nei5 hou2.). It’s a bit formal or… well, not exactly formal, but it’s more for polite way to say it. So I would say 你好。 (nei5 hou2.) to say to security guard of the building, 你好。 早晨。(nei5 hou2. zou2 san4.) “Hi. Good morning.”
4. 大家好。 (daai6 gaa1 hou2.) "Hello, everybody."
So if I’m talking to a group of people, say I’m talking to you guys, you listeners and watchers, I would say 大家好。 (daai6 gaa1 hou2.), 大家好。 (daai6 gaa1 hou2.). 大家 (daai6 gaa1) means like “everyone”, 好 (hou2) is “well”. So if it’s one person, it’s 你好。 (nei5 hou2.), if it’s a group of people, say 大家好。 (daai6 gaa1 hou2.), 大家好。 (daai6 gaa1 hou2).
5. 好耐冇見。 (hou2 noi6 mou5 gin3.) "Long time no see."
好耐 (hou2 noi6) “long time”, 冇見 (mou5 gin3) “no see,” literally. So if I run into someone that I haven’t seen in a long time so 喂,好耐冇見。 (wai3, hou2 noi6 mou5 gin3.) "Hey, long time no see." How have you been?
6. 最近點呀? (zeoi3 gan6 dim2 aa3?) "How have you been?"
You say this with people you haven’t met for quite some time so 最近 (zeoi3 gan6) is recently and 點呀 (dim2 aa3) is like “How is it going?” so “How are you recently / How are you lately?” or you can combine all of them like - 哈囉。 好耐冇見。 最近點呀? (haa1 lo3. hou2 noi6 mou5 gin3. zeoi3 gan6 dim2 aa3?)
7. 點呀? (dim2 aa3?) "How's it going?"
This is very casual. I would use it with my friends so 點呀? (dim2 aa3?). Watch your tone because if you say it angrily like 點呀? (dim2 aa3?), it’s like “What do you want?”. If you say it without patience, you can say like 點呀? (dim2 aa3?). It’s like, “What do you want now?”. It’s like, “What now?”. So say it with a nice voice, 點呀? (dim2 aa3?). It’s like “Oh, how are you? / How are you feeling? / How have you been?”.
8. 食咗飯未呀? (sik6 zo2 faan6 mei6 aa3?) "Have you eaten yet?"
So Asian people love to eat and we greet others by asking if they have eaten yet. So 食咗飯未呀? (sik6 zo2 faan6 mei6 aa3?) "Have you eaten yet?" Maybe I would use it around lunchtime like 1:00 or 2:00 to see if they have had lunch yet, but yeah, it’s a very casual way to ask how someone is.
9. 你幾時返嚟㗎? (nei5 gei2 si4 faan1 lei4 gaa3?) "When did you get back in town?"
So if you run into someone that you thought is not in town, you can say - 喂,你幾時返嚟㗎? (wai3, nei5 gei2 si4 faan1 lei4 gaa3?).
好耐冇見。你幾時返嚟㗎? (hou2 noi6 mou5 gin3. nei5 gei2 si4 faan1 lei4 gaa3?) “Long time no see. When did you come back?”
10. 你父母身體好嗎? (nei5 fu6 mou5 san1 tai2 hou2 maa3?) "How are your parents?"
你父母 (nei5 fu6 mou5) “your parents”, 身體好嗎 (san1 tai2 hou2 maa3), 身體 (san1 tai2) is “body / health”, 好嗎 (hou2 maa3) is “wealth” so literally it means, “Are your parents healthy? / Are your parents well?”. So how are your parents?
哈囉。好耐冇見。 你父母身體好嗎? (haa1 lo3. hou2 noi6 mou5 gin3. nei5 fu6 mou5 san1 tai2 hou2 maa3?) "Hello. Long time no see. How are your parents?"
It’s a nice way to greet people and ask about their parents.
So that’s it for today. Today, we talked about 10 ways to say hello. Hi, hi, hi! I’m going to say goodbye for now. See you next time. My name is Olivia. Bye!