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Lesson Transcript

Eric: Hello and welcome to the Lower Beginner series at CantoneseClass101.com. This is Season 1, Lesson 18, Getting Around Hong Kong. I’m Eric.
Teddy: 大家好!(daai6 gaa1 hou2!) And I’m Teddy!
Eric: In this lesson, you’ll learn about loanwords in Cantonese. Loanwords are words borrowed from another language and incorporated into Cantonese.
Teddy: The conversation takes place on the street.
Eric: It’s between two friends, Jane and Wendy.
Teddy: And as usual, the speakers will be using casual Cantonese.
Eric: Let’s listen to the conversation.
Wendy: 有冇巴士返酒店?(jau5 mou5 baa1 si2 faan1 zau2 dim3?)
Jane: 不如搭的士。(bat1 jyu4 daap3 dik1 si2.)
Wendy: 點解呀? (dim2 gaai2 aa3?)
Jane:買咗啲芝士好重。(maai5 zo2 di1 zi1 si2 hou2 cung5.)
Eric: Let’s hear the conversation one time slowly.
Wendy: 有冇巴士返酒店?(jau5 mou5 baa1 si2 faan1 zau2 dim3?)
Jane: 不如搭的士。(bat1 jyu4 daap3 dik1 si2.)
Wendy: 點解呀? (dim2 gaai2 aa3?)
Jane 買咗啲芝士好重。(maai5 zo2 di1 zi1 si2 hou2 cung5.)
Eric: Now let’s hear it with the English translation.
Wendy 有冇巴士返酒店?(jau5 mou5 baa1 si2 faan1 zau2 dim3?)
Eric: Is there a bus that can take us back to the hotel?
Jane 不如搭的士。(bat1 jyu4 daap3 dik1 si2.)
Eric: Let's take a taxi.
Wendy 點解呀? (dim2 gaai2 aa3?)
Eric: Why is that?
Jane 買咗啲芝士好重。(maai5 zo2 di1 zi1 si2 hou2 cung5.)
Eric: The cheese we bought is very heavy.
Eric: I’ve found that catching a taxi is very common and easy in Hong Kong. Hundreds of taxis seem to be on the road day and night.
Teddy: That’s true, but keep in mind that they may all be full during rush hour.
Eric: When do you find it hardest to catch a taxi?
Teddy: In the morning when everyone is rushing to the office around 8:30, and between 3:30 to 4:30 in the afternoon.
Eric: Is that because kids are getting off school at that time in the afternoon?
Teddy: The main reason is that most taxi drivers change their shifts at that time. Many of them cover their meters with a sign, a signal indicating that they are not in service.
Eric: I see. Can you call ahead for a taxi during the rush hours?
Teddy: Yes. They’ll tell you how long you have to wait. Sometimes during rush hour or in remote areas, people may offer $10 or $20 more to entice a driver into providing service.
Eric: That’s good to know. Okay, now let’s take a look at the vocabulary for this lesson.
The first word we shall see is:
重 (cung5) [natural native speed]
重 (cung5) [slowly - broken down by syllable]
重 (cung5) [natural native speed]
有冇 (jau5 mou5) [natural native speed]
Do you have...?,is/are there any
有冇 (jau5 mou5) [slowly - broken down by syllable]
有冇 (jau5 mou5) [natural native speed]
巴士 (baa1 si2) [natural native speed]
巴士 (baa1 si2) [slowly - broken down by syllable]
巴士 (baa1 si2) [natural native speed]
返 (faan1) [natural native speed]
to return
返 (faan1) [slowly - broken down by syllable]
返 (faan1) [natural native speed]
酒店 (zau2 dim3) [natural native speed]
酒店 (zau2 dim3) [slowly - broken down by syllable]
酒店 (zau2 dim3) [natural native speed]
不如 (bat1 jyu4) [natural native speed]
how about, why not
不如 (bat1 jyu4) [slowly - broken down by syllable]
不如 (bat1 jyu4) [natural native speed]
的士 (dik1 si2) [natural native speed]
的士 (dik1 si2) [slowly - broken down by syllable]
的士 (dik1 si2) [natural native speed]
And Last:
芝士 (zi1 si2) [natural native speed]
芝士 (zi1 si2) [slowly - broken down by syllable]
芝士 (zi1 si2) [natural native speed]
Eric: Let’s take a closer look at some of the words and phrases from this lesson. What are we starting with?
Teddy: 有冇. (jau5 mou5.)
Eric: What can you tell us about this phrase?
Teddy: It’s an expression asking whether there is something or not. 有 (jau5) means "to have," and 冇 (mou5) means "to not have."
Eric: In English, we’ll ask, "Is there any...such and such?"
Teddy: Yes, and in Cantonese, we’ll ask, "有冇 (jau5 mou5)….such and such?"
Eric: So how would you say "Do you have any money?"
Teddy: 你有冇錢呀 ? (nei5 jau5 mou5 cin2 aa3?)
Eric: I have no money!
Teddy: 我冇錢. (ngo5 mou5 cin2.)
Eric: So, in the dialogue, Wendy asked if there was a bus…
Teddy: 有冇巴士? (jau5 mou5 baa1 si2?)
Eric: How about, "Are there any taxis?"
Teddy: 有冇的士? (jau5 mou5 dik1 si2?)
Eric: So "has, has not" becomes a question phrase.
Teddy: Right. Combining 有 (jau5) and 冇 (mou5) together forms a question. 有冇(jau5 mou5). 有冇錢? (jau5 mou5 cin2?)
Eric: Do you have any money?
Teddy: 有冇人? (jau5 mou5 jan4?)
Eric: Is there a person?
Teddy: Right. This is a very useful phrase 有冇 (jau5 mou5).
Eric: Okay. What’s the next phrase you want to teach us?
Teddy: It’s another useful phrase for when you want to make a suggestion; it’s 不如. (bat1 jyu4.)
Eric: In the dialogue, Jane suggested, "How about taking a taxi?"
Teddy: 不如搭的士. (bat1 jyu4 daap3 dik1 si2.) 不 (bat1) means "no" or "not," and 如 (jyu4) means "if." Together they indicate a suggestion.
Eric: Okay. How do you suggest, "How about taking a bus?"
Teddy: 不如搭巴士. (bat1 jyu4 daap3 baa1 si2.)
Eric: "How about learning Cantonese?"
Teddy: 不如學廣東話. (bat1 jyu4 hok6 gwong2 dung1 waa2.)
Eric: Great. How about you repeat the word for our listeners again? Listeners, repeat after Teddy.
Teddy: 不如. (bat1 jyu4.) [pause] 不如. (bat1 jyu4.)
Eric: Excellent! Okay, now onto the grammar.

Lesson focus

Eric: In this lesson, you’ll learn some common loanwords in Hong Kong.
Teddy: In the dialogue, we have already seen three of them – 巴士(baa1 si2)﹐的士 (dik1 si2) and 芝士 (zi1 si6).
Eric: They are "bus," "taxi," and "cheese."
Teddy: Right. When Hong Kong was a British colony, many English words were used by local Chinese. Each syllable in the words was replaced by a character that could be written in Chinese and read by local people.
Eric: Are these loanwords still commonly used nowadays?
Teddy: Yes. For many, you can simply guess what they mean in English.
Eric: Great! Let’s try a few.
Teddy: Okay. How about 柯打 (o1 daa2)? 柯打 (o1 daa2)
Eric: "Order?"
Teddy: Right! Now, how about 多士? (do1 si2?)
Eric: Hmm…
Teddy: 多士. (do1 si2.) [pause] 多士. (do1 si2.) Okay, let me say it faster. 多士. (do1 si2.)
Eric: "Toast?"
Teddy: Excellent. Okay, one more: 士多? (si6 do1?)
Eric: Hmm ... Is it another food?
Teddy: No, it’s a place. 士多. (si6 do1.)
Eric: "Store?"
Teddy: Good! If you listen carefully, you may hear a lot of loanwords during conversations in Hong Kong.
Eric: Teddy, please give us another example.
Teddy: Okay. A lot of food was originally introduced by the Western world. Therefore, the names of foods will be similar to their original foreign name. Let’s see… Try this one. It’s a kind of fruit: 士多啤梨. (si6 do1 be1 lei2.)
Eric: This one, we’ll let our listeners guess…
Teddy: 士多啤梨. (si6 do1 be1 lei2.)
Eric: Listeners, repeat after Teddy; then you can guess it.
Teddy: 士多啤梨. (si6 do1 be1 lei2.) [faster]
Eric: You can find the answer and other examples in the lesson notes! And we’ll use a few more loanwords in our next lesson. You may also be able to guess those too!


Eric: And that’s all for this lesson. Thanks for listening, everyone, and we’ll see you next time. Bye!
Teddy: 下次見!(haa6 ci3 gin3!)


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