Tu: So, Todd, how was your trip to Vietnam?
Todd: It was good. It was really good. I mean I had a great time.
Tu: Is it? Tell me about it? What was the most thing ... what was the thing you remembered most about Vietnam?
Todd: Well, there's lots of things to remember, maybe too many, it was just great, but I think one thing I thought was special was a haircut. This guy cut my hair on the street, and I had never had that happen before, you know, get my haircut on the street.
Tu: Tell me about it?
Todd: Well, I was at a cafe, a beautiful little garden cafe on the corner, and .... oh, by the way, your country has amazing coffee.
Tu: Really, you think so?
Todd: Ah, the coffee was so good.
Tu: Yeah, we love it.
Todd: So, anyway, so I come out of the cafe, and there's this guy and he has a chair and a mirror under a tree and he's motioning with his scissors for me to come over.
Tu: I see. It's a very common thing in Vietnam.
Todd: Really, to have barbers on the street?
Tu: Barber on the street with the tree and one mirror, one chair only.
Todd: Oh, really.
Tu: Yeah, common thing.
Todd: So, it seems pretty unique, so I talk to him and he was trying to convince me to get a haircut and I didn't know how much.
Tu: Did you speak English?
Todd: He didn't speak any English, and embarrassingly I didn't even know numbers in Vietnamese. I didn't know anything, so I just held out my money, and he pointed to how much the hair cut would cost, and it was quite cheap. I couldn't believe it. I think he only wanted to charge me two dollars.
Tu: Two dollars?
Tu: It's normal though.
Todd: That's the normal price? And then he sat down and he started cutting my hair.
Tu: How was it?
Todd: It was amazing. Like he had all these little tools. He had these little metal tools I had never seen before, and he was cutting my hair and moving about and he was very professional. You could tell ...
Tu: Were you scared?
Todd: No, I wasn't really scared. I thought that maybe, he might chop up my hair, but in actuality, the man was incredibly professional, really really good. Very skilled at his job, and I thought he did a fantastic job on my hair and he also did things that we don't get like in the states, like he cut my hair and then he shaved of course and then he took out this ear cleaner, these like stuff, and he cleaned my ears.
Tu: Oh, I see.
Todd: Yeah, that doesn't happen in America.
Tu: Everyone does that.
Todd: Oh, wow, like it's interesting, cause like in Thailand, I lived in Thailand for many years and what they do it, they massage your head.
Todd: Yeah, and it's really nice, so when you get a haircut, they massage your head, but I guess in Vietnam, it's they clean your ears.
Tu: Yes, now that you talk about it, I think it's only unique to Vietnamese barber.
Todd: So only Vietnamese barber's clean your ears?
Tu: I think so.
by the way
Oh, by the way, was it expensive?
We say 'by the way’ when we suddenly think of something we want to say. Notice the following.
- By the way, Jack wants you to call him.
- Oh, by the way, are you coming to the party tomorrow?
So, anyway I paid the check and left.
Here, ‘so anyway’ is used to return to an earlier point. Notice the samples.
- So anyway, what did you finally do?
- So anyway, I’m having coffee and I see an elephant walking down the street!
Embarrassingly, I forgot her name.
When we do something foolish we feel embarrassed. Here are two samples.
- I forgot to use the ATM so embarrassingly my guest paid for dinner.
- In Paris I embarrassingly ordered café Américain. The waiter just laughed.
So like, what did you do there?
Sometimes in American English, ‘like’ is used in conversation as a pause. It’s very informal. Notice the samples.
- I was like, shocked to hear the news.
- He was like, so happy that he passed the test.
now that you talk about it
It’s interesting now that you talk about it.
We say ‘now that you talk about it’ when a topic of conversation reminds us of something or someone. Notice the following.
- I thought he was rude too, now that you talk about it.
- Now that you talk about it, when is the final exam?
like • talk about it
Aiste from Lithuania talks to Christophe about his running.
Tu asks Todd about his recent trip to her country.
Talks about getting a unique hair cutting experience.
Diego and Hana debate the current financial crisis.
Diego and Hana debate teaching kids about finance.