Episode 07

Episode 07

Adam and Rob discuss your favourite times of day. Also, Tess and Ravi talk about something British people love, but most people hate!


Adam and Rob

Both: Hello!

Adam: I’m Adam.

Rob: And I’m Rob.

Adam: Welcome back, Rob.

Rob: Thanks very much.

Adam: How was your trip?

Rob: It went very well, thank you. And welcome listeners to Episode 7 of LearnEnglish Elementary Podcasts. Once again, thanks for all your comments – great to read them as usual.

Adam: You remember that we asked you about your favourite time of day. I said that my favourite time was night. A few of you agreed: Yakup in Turkey, Madera in Russia who likes to go dancing at night and Sergio in Italy who said:

I love the night too, Adam, even though it's not healthy... After spending a day working, eventually the night is my own time in which, when my wife and my daughter sweetly sleep, I can read what I want, listen to my favourite music, write my physics books, watch sci-fi movies and so on... To wake up in the morning become really tough, but this is the way I feel alive!

Rob: That’s a very nice comment, Sergio. But you’re in the minority – there are more people who prefer the morning. Too many to mention all of you, but let’s have a look at some of them. Emin in Turkey says:

It’s the very early morning, when most people are asleep and there is a soothing and peaceful silence. It's a little difficult to wake up very early, but I think there is no moment in the world that makes me feel better than that.

Adam: Lamai in Thailand agrees:

My happiest time of the day is in the morning, I get up at 5.30 am, with the singing of the birds in the trees near my house and then with a cup of coffee, I walk in my garden, fresh and at peace.

Sounds lovely.

Rob: It does. FRG likes ‘breakfast time’, but I think that’s because he likes breakfast! Baijuka, who’s in the UK, likes mornings but not Monday mornings when she starts work again.

Adam: Last word to Mohammed in Iraq:

You can see me happy at any time of the day when I don't have something to worry about. For example, when I'm off work, considering I'm a junior doctor working in a public hospital in Baghdad. I try to relax and enjoy each and every minute I get because the next day I could be staying in the emergency room or in the ward looking after patients.

Rob: Thank you once again for all your comments and remember you can join in and add your own comments by going to www.britishcouncil.org/learnenglish or by finding us on Facebook – look for Elementary Podcasts.

Adam: OK! Tess and Ravi are back. Before you listen to them, do you know what a ‘queue’ is? It’s a line of people, one behind the other and some people think it’s very British. Let’s see what Tess and Ravi think.


Tess and Ravi

Tess: Hello again. I’m Tess.

Ravi: And I’m Ravi and as usual we’re going to talk about something you think you know about Britain – fish and chips, the British weather, drinking tea – all those typically British things.

Tess: And we’ll tell you just how typical they are.

Ravi: Or aren’t.

Tess: All the things we talk about were suggested by you, our listeners, and our topic for today is something I think you’ll enjoy, Ravi – it’s queuing – standing in line to wait for things.

Ravi: Aaargh. I hate queuing! I hate waiting for things!

Tess: I knew you would hate it. But lots of people said that they thought queuing was very British and I think it’s true. Think about the things we queue for; we form a queue when we wait for a bus, we queue up in supermarkets, to buy tickets for things, in the bank, we’re always queuing.

Ravi: But people queue for things all over the world, Tess. How can you say it’s typically British?

Tess: True, but what we heard from our listeners is that British people are very good at queuing.

Ravi: How can you be good at queuing? All you have to do is stand behind the person in front of you.

Tess: Well, have you ever tried joining a queue in… No, I don’t want to say a country, in case some of our listeners get upset. Have you ever tried joining a queue in another country?

Ravi: Erm… yeah, I suppose I have.

Tess: People say British queues are more polite than in… some places. Like we almost enjoy queuing.

Ravi: My grandma does. She joins a queue whenever she sees one, even if she doesn’t know what it’s for.

Tess: I bet she never jumps the queue though, does she?

Ravi: You don’t know my grandma.

Tess: Jumping the queue is when you don’t go to the back of the queue but you try to push your way to the front of the queue instead of waiting for your turn. Do you ever jump the queue, Ravi?

Ravi: Me? I’m too polite to do that.

Tess: See? That’s what people think about the British, that they like queuing and they’re very polite so they make nice, tidy queues.

Ravi: Hmm.

Tess: I think it’s true, more or less. British people do make very organised queues. What about the queues for the winter sales, Ravi, or to buy tickets for the tennis at Wimbledon? It’s almost a national tradition; it’s on the TV news and everything. Every year, some people queue up for days to get the best bargains at the start of the winter sales in the shops after Christmas. They sleep outside in the cold and they seem to enjoy it – that’s a bit crazy, isn’t it?

Ravi: It is a bit. Do people in other countries do that sort of thing?

Tess: I don’t know, actually. Maybe our listeners can write in and tell us about queuing in their country? I bet they don’t queue like the British do.

Ravi: OK. If you’re listening, write and tell us about queuing in your country. Do you think the British queue differently?

Tess: We’re looking forward to hearing from you.


Adam and Rob

Adam: What do you think about queuing, Rob?

Rob: I hate queuing. I can’t stand it.

Adam: I don’t mind it. And it’s interesting, because when I go to a foreign country where people have a different approach to queuing, I find it very hard to change my style.

Rob: How do you feel about queuing? If you’ve been to Britain, do you think it’s true what Tess and Ravi said – are the British good at queuing?

Adam: How about queues in your country? Do people queue up politely or do they jump the queue? Do you jump the queue? We’d love to hear from you. Write and let us know at www.britishcouncil.org/learnenglish

Rob: Right, let’s look at some of the language Tess and Ravi used:

Ravi: Aaargh. I hate queuing. I hate waiting for things.

Tess: People say British queues are more polite than in… some places. Like we almost enjoy queuing.

Tess: See? That’s what people think about the British, that they like queuing and they’re very polite...

Adam: Firstly, Tess and Ravi used different ways to talk about liking and not liking things. Ravi said he hates queuing and Tess said that British people enjoy queuing. We can use positive words like ‘like’ ‘love’ ‘enjoy’ and negative words like ‘hate’ ‘can’t stand’ ‘dislike’. How many more can you add to each list? Try the exercise on the website.

Rob: Next, though – listen to what comes after the like and dislike words:

Ravi: Aaargh. I hate queuing. I hate waiting for things.

Tess: People say British queues are more polite than in… some places. Like we almost enjoy queuing.

Tess: See? That’s what people think about the British – that they like queuing and they’re very polite...

Rob: I hate queuing – we enjoy queuing – they like queuing. That ‘ing’ form is the gerund and we use it after some verbs – like those verbs of liking and disliking. We also use gerunds after prepositions – words like ‘at’ ‘on’ or ‘in’ – like in this clip:

Tess: True – but what we heard from our listeners is that British people are very good at queuing.

Rob: If you use a verb after a preposition – use a gerund – the ‘ing’ form. For example, ‘good at queuing’, ‘interested in learning English’.

Adam: We’re running out of time now, but there are lots of exercises about this on the website, so if you want to know more – check it out there.

Rob: That’s all for this time. We’ll be back with Carolina next time.

Both: Bye.


Language level

Average: 5 (6 votes)

Submitted by singgihrs on Wed, 08/03/2023 - 02:57


Indonesia has a culture of queuing that is quite diverse. as is the case when queuing to get gorceries just before eid and when queuing on public transportation most likely jump the queue but different when we go to supermarket or bank people tend to do queuing politely because one of the factor is comfort or organized environment

Submitted by May Thida Su on Wed, 17/02/2021 - 15:37

I've never been to Britain and I've never heard that British are good at queuing. In my country, honestly, people always jump the queue so the queues are always not tidy and very difficult. Honestly, I've ever been jumped queues. So the queues in my country are terrible.

Submitted by claudiacaluff on Sun, 14/02/2021 - 05:14

Queues in my country are very difficult and boring becouse always very longer and I waste to mucho time in it. While I'm queuing I never can't be sure if I could buy the stuff I'm looking for becouse there aren't enough for all and it makes me feel so angry and strefull. Is quite hard to explain about queues in my country, people queue up very unpolite and some of then try to jump it.
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Submitted by Joelma on Tue, 05/01/2021 - 20:40

Here in my country people are used to queueing all the time. I dont like much queueing but i never jump it.

Submitted by Sajja on Sat, 02/01/2021 - 07:07

I hate queuing very much. It is very boring and wasting the time. I can't stand waiting for many hours only to buy tickets or products . I remembered when I went to Cairo tower and waiting for hours only to enter in the left . I think lots of people in my country hate queuing like me because we get angry quickly. I don't remember I have jumped a queue before but like everywhere there are many people do that in my country

Submitted by jmajo on Wed, 30/12/2020 - 14:58

Well, I think that queuing it's a waste of time nowadays because we have the technology tools to avoid them, in my country(Uruguay) you can schedule an appointment on the internet before you go to any service, so you don't have to queue most of the times, but when you want to go to the cinema or to a football match or to a music concert, you'd have to queue to get in. I've never been to Britain so I don't know how is queuing there, but many movies and internet videos shows that they're very polite to queue. In my country most of the people is polite but although most of the times people behave politely at queuing, you can find some people that always try to jump positions in a queue to save time, so I think here we're polite but not as much I would like. I don't like to jump the queues because It's not polite and I think that if you want to save time, you can go to the same place earlier without jumping the queue positions later. In general I can say we're good at queuing but not so good at other countries. Thanks for the episode. Great site!

Submitted by nram.1983 on Sat, 28/11/2020 - 03:25

I hate very much waiting in queue. But I respect other people those who stand in queue and I will be polite, In my country many people do not obey these queue rules that is annoying things many times.

Submitted by Mohammedalbassami on Tue, 17/11/2020 - 17:43

Good evening everyone Nowadays in anywhere there's queue to organize people and give everyone turn so I think everyone must respect queuing. If there exceptional circumstances will people except it. However in Oman everyone applicable queuing and everyone respect it but a little people try to jumping it. I respect queuing because gives me my right. If I feel hurry first I take permission from all people in front of me and give him reason. My regards

Submitted by OnR on Wed, 04/11/2020 - 18:19

Queuing is very boring and annoying thing for me. But rules are rules you didn't jump the queue

Submitted by Mazoon AL.Ghssani on Mon, 05/10/2020 - 09:10

I don't like queuing at all because it is very boring and I always jump the queue when I have something emergency.