Linguaphone   Lessons 24-32

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Lessons 24-32

Lesson twenty four (24)
Twenty-fourth (24th) lesson

At the Post Office

Excuse me, can you tell me where the nearest Post Office is?
I'm sorry, I can't. I'm a stranger here myself.
Perhaps that gentleman over there will be able to help you.

Thank you. ... I'm sorry to trouble you,
but can you direct me to the nearest Post Office?
Yes, it's in the High Street.
As a matter of fact, I'm going in the same direction myself,
so if you come with me, I'll show you.
That's very kind of you.
There it is, that building over there.
Thanks very much.
Don't mention it.

I want to send a telegram.
Where can I get a form?
You'll find some over there.
... Will you put your name and address on the back?
That will be 3/6 (three and six).
Do you mind telling me where I can get stamps and a registered envelope?
At the next counter.

A five-shilling book of stamps, please, and a large registered envelope.
Will that size do?
Yes, thank you, that's just right.
... Would you mind telling me what the postage on this letter will be?
Threepence by ordinary post, or sixpence, if you want to register it.

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Lesson twenty five (25)
Twenty-fifth (25th) lesson


Those who wish to travel, either for pleasure or on business,
have at their disposal various means of transport.
There is, for instance, the humble, inexpensive bicycle.
Then, there's the motor-cycle, with which you can travel quickly and cheaply,
but for long journeys it's rather tiring.
With a motor-car, one can travel comfortably
for long distances without getting too tired.

Luxurious ships cross seas and oceans from one continent to another.
Aeroplanes carry passengers to various parts of the world
in almost as many hours as it takes days to do the journey by other means.
But most of us still have to use trains.
Look at this picture of a busy railway station.
A train is standing at one of the platforms ready to leave.
Some of the passengers are looking out of the windows
watching the late-comers who are hurrying along looking for empty seats.

The engine is ready to draw the train out of the station.
On another platform a train has just come in;
some passengers are getting out, others are getting in.
Those who've not taken the precaution of getting their tickets beforehand
are waiting in queues at the booking-office.
At the bookstalls people are choosing books,
magazines, or newspapers for the journey.
At the cloakroom others are depositing or withdrawing their luggage.
Further along there are refreshment rooms
crowded with people snatching a hasty meal,
while those with time to spare are sitting in the waiting rooms.

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Lesson twenty six (26)
Twenty-sixth (26th) lesson

At the station

Porter, will you see to my luggage, please?
Where for, sir?
I'm going by the 10 o'clock train to Glasgow.
Will you have this trunk labelled and put in the luggage-van.
The suitcase, and bag can go on the luggage-rack.
Right, sir. What class?
First. Try and find me a corner seat in a smoker, facing the engine, if you can.
Have you got your ticket yet, sir?
Not yet. Where's the booking-office?
Come along with me and I'll show you.
Here it is. I'll meet you on the platform.
Which platform is it?
No.8, over there.
One first to Glasgow, please.
Single or return?
Single. ... Do I have to change anywhere?
No, no change, it's a through train.
Thank you.
Here you are , sir.
I've found you a corner seat next to the corridor.
Your carriage is near the dining-car,
and you can order lunch when the attendant comes along.
What time do we get to Glasgow?
You're due to arrive at 6.15.
Thank you. Here you are.
Thank you, sir. I hope you'll have a comfortable journey.
Well, I've still got a few minutes to spare,
so I'll go and get myself a novel or a detective story
to while away the time during the journey.
Mind you don't miss the train, sir.
That't all right.
The train doesn't leave for another ten minutes,
and it won't take me more than five minutes to get a book.                      

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Lesson twenty seven (27)
Twenty-seventh (27th) lesson

Travelling by sea and air

Last Wednesday week I went down to Southampton Docks
to see my partner off to New York on one of our largest liners
What colossal ships these steamers are
when you see them from the landing-stage alongside the quay.
I had a pass, so I went on board and had a look round.

From the top deck I could see the huge cranes
lifting the cargo and depositing it in the holds.
I saw members of the crew carrying out their duties in various parts of the ship,
while the captain watched the operations and gave his orders from the bridge.
Then the siren sounded and the visitors made for the gangways.
Finally the ship began to move off,
and the passengers, leaning over the rails,
waved good-bye to their friends standing below amongst the crowd.
Slowly she left the harbour,
passing beyond the pier, and gradually disappeared in the distance.

A few days later I myself had to go to Paris.
The journey was urgent and I went by air.
I went to the airport by a special bus provided by the company.
On the airfield we saw a large plane waiting for us.
We climbed into it, and at exactly twelve o'clock it took off.
Very soon our "magic carpet" reached the sea,
and shortly afterwards we saw the French coast.
It wasn't long before we arrived at our destination.
Our pilot made a perfect landing, and we got out of the plane.

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Lesson twenty eight (28)
Twenty-eighth (28th) lesson

On the boat

This way for the Dover boat!
Have your passports ready, please.
Pass up the gangway!
First class on the right, second class on the left.
Here we are! Would you like to stay up on deck, or go down below?
Oh, I don't know. I'm not much of a sailor.
Oh, you won't be sea-sick today; the sea's perfectly calm;
we're sure to have a good crossing.
I'll get a couple of deck chairs, up here, in the sun.
Oh well, I'll risk it,
but if the worst comes to the worst, don't blame me.
Do you travel much?
Not more than I can help by sea.
I've crossed the Channel once before, but frankly I did not enjoy it.
Why don't you fly across?
I think I shall, one of these days.
It couldn't possibly be worse than a really bad sea-crossing,
and it's very much quicker anyhow.
I can see the English coast already, can you?
Yes, just.
Well, I suppose we'd better get ready for landing.
... I say, you haven't got anything dutiable, have you?
If you have, you'd better declare it.
Whatever you do, don't try to bribe a customs officer,
or you'll get into trouble.
I don't think I'm quite as foolish as that.
As a matter of fact, I don't think I have anything to declare.
Still, thanks all the same.

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Lesson twenty nine (29)
Twenty-ninth (29th) lesson

A street in London

We're now in Oxford Circus, half-way along Oxford Street,
one of the busiest streets in the West End of London,
and that street over there is Regent Street,
famous all over the world for its splendid shops.
Near one of the street-corners you can see an entrance to the subway
leading to the Underground Railway, or "Tube", as we call it.

On both sides of the street there are shops, banks and restaurants.
In the roadway there's a constant stream of cars, taxis, buses and lorries.
In some parts of London there are trolley-buses and trams as well.
The noise is deafening, but one soon gets used to it.
The pavements are crowded with people,
and it's dangerous to attempt to cross the road until the traffic is stopped,
either by a policeman on point duty
or by the red traffic lights.
In any case, before crossing the road,
take care to look to your right,
and when you reach the middle of the road, look to your left.

At night, the streets are lit by electricity,
or in some districts, by gas.
You can see the lamp-posts and standards on the pavements,
and on the "islands" in the middle of the road.
The main streets are flooded with light
from the brilliant shop-windows and the illuminated signs and advertisements,
so that after dark everything looks as bright as in broad daylight.

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Lesson thirty (30)
Thirtieth (30th) lesson

Asking the way

Excuse me, can you tell me the way to Trafalgar Square?
Certainly. Go down Regent Street to Piccadilly Circus,
and then go down the Haymarket.
Turn to the left at the bottom
and in less than a minute you'll be in Trafalgar Square.
Thank you very much. How far is it from here?
If you walk, it'll take you ten minutes or a quarter of an hour.
Is there a bus?
There's sure to be.
But you'd better ask the policeman over there.
He'll give all the information you want.
Thank you.

Excuse me, officer, is there a bus from here to Trafalgar Square?
Yes, sir, any bus'll take you.
There's a bus-stop just over there.
Ask the conductor to put you down at Trafalgar Square.
Thank you.

Does this bus go to Trafalgar Square?
Yes, sir. Come along, hurry up.
... No room on top, inside only ...
no standing on the platform ...
pass down the bus, please.
... Sorry, full up, ...
Sorry, sir, you can't smoke inside,
you'll have to wait until there's room upstairs. ...
Fares, please.
Trafalgar Square, please ... and will you tell me when we get there? ...
Trafalgar Square! This is where you get off, sir.
Thank you.

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Lesson thirty-one (31)
Thirty-first (31st) lesson

A visit to London

If you can stay only a few days in London,
you won't have much time for your sightseeing;
and how to spend your time to the best advantage is rather a problem.
If I were you, I should make up my mind beforehand.
It all depends on your tastes.
You may, for instance, be interested in shops,
or in art-galleries, or in museums,
or you might prefer to start with the principal historical buildings and monuments.

In that case, you might begin in the West End
and see the Houses of Parliament, Westminster Abbey, Whitehall, and Nelson's Column.
From there you could go along the Mall to Buckingham Palace
and have a look at Queen Victoria's Memorial, facing the Palace.
Then stroll up Constitution Hill to Hyde Park Corner
and take a walk through the Park and Kensington Gardens to the Albert Memorial,
which faces the Albert Hall.
There's really more than enough for one day,
but still, if you want to see more,
you might get on top of a bus going towards the City.

The bus goes along Piccadilly to Piccadilly Circus and Charing Cross,
then along the Strand and Fleet Street to Ludgate Circus.
There you might as well get off and walk up to St. Paul's Cathedral.
After that, you could go further east, to the heart of the City,
and see the Bank, the Mansion House and the Royal Exchange,
and then, if you had time and weren't too tired,
you could go to the East End and see the Tower of London,
Tower Bridge over the Thames, the Mint and the Monument.

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Lesson thirty-two (32)
Thirty-second (32nd) lesson


Is it possible to see anything of London in one or two days?
Well, yes, but, of course, not half enough.
What do you think I ought to see first?
Well, if you're interested in churches and historical places
you should go to Westminster Abbey, the Houses of Parliament, St. Paul's and the Tower.
Do you like art-galleries?
Then why not go to the National Gallery and the Tate?
I'm told one ought to see the British Museum.
Do you think I shall have time for that?
Well, you might, but if I were you,
I should leave that for some other day.
You could spend a whole day there.
It's much too big to be seen in an hour or so.
I suppose it is. What about going to the Zoo?
That's not a bad idea.
You could spend a couple of hours there comfortably,
or even a whole afternoon, watching the wild animals, birds and reptiles.
You could have tea there too.
I'll do that, then. How do I get there?
Let me see. Where are we? Oh, there's the BBC
I think your best way from here is to walk across Regent's Park.
Is it much of a walk?
Oh no, a quarter of an hour or so,
but, if you're in a hurry, why not take a taxi?
I think I will. Ah, here's one coming. Taxi!
The Zoo, please.

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