Before you watch
Think about the following questions:
- What famous Parisian landmarks can you think of?
- Have you ever eaten French food?
- What famous French dishes do you know?
Watch Ashlie and Stephen as they visit Paris together.
Ashlie: Come on, Stephen.
Stephen: I’m coming!
Ashlie: We’re going on a trip to Paris. It’s a very short train ride from London and it’s a chance to experience some French culture and do some shopping.
Stephen: Ashlie’s never been to Paris before. I’ve been loads of times and I’m looking forward to practising my French.
Ashlie: Come on, you. You can practise your French on the train. Paris, here we come!
Stephen: Avez-vous, avez-vous…
Ashlie: That’s good, Stephen, good to see you making an effort.
Stephen: Merci beaucoup – that’s 'thank you' in French.
Ashlie: Right. So how long does it take? About two and a half hours? So we will be in Paris just in time for dinner.
Stephen: We can get something to eat on the train.
Ashlie: No, let’s wait until we get to Paris. French food is fantastic. I want to eat in a French café. I don’t want to eat a train sandwich when I could eat a lovely French meal.
Stephen: OK, then.
Ashlie: Oh, and you can order the food in French.
Stephen: Great, I’m going to practise. What’s French for 'dinner'?
Ashlie: Wow, here we are. Ooh, it’s so exciting to be in Paris. Right, we need to get a taxi. I want to see the Eiffel Tower first and then we can have something to eat.
Stephen: There aren’t any taxis here. Let me ask someone. Excusez-moi.
Stephen: Où est le taxi?
Frenchman: Il y en a juste là-bas là.
Stephen: See, Ashlie, you would never have found a taxi without me.
Ashlie: Yeah, yeah, come on!
Ashlie: Right, now we’ve done some sightseeing, it’s time for something to eat.
Stephen: What do you want, Ash? Here comes the waiter.
Ashlie: Erm, can I have one of those, please?
Stephen: Are you sure?
Ashlie: Yes, I’m sure.
Stephen: Bonsoir. Je voudrais un steak-frites, deux cafés au lait et un escargots.
Waiter: OK. Des escargots, un steak-frites, deux cafés au lait.
Stephen: Erm, yes. Oui. C’est tout.
Stephen: That’s great, Ash, he understood.
Ashlie: Well, I certainly didn’t. That’s good, Stephen. It’s so good to see you trying to practise your French.
Stephen: Well, I need to work on my pronunciation. I didn’t sound very French, did I?
Ashlie: You got the food, that’s the important thing. Well done!
Stephen: Well, I think it’s polite. You have to try and speak the language of the country you’re visiting. You’ve got to practise if you want to learn.
Ashlie: Yeah, I suppose you’re right.
Ashlie: What are they? They look like snails. I didn’t order those!
Stephen: Yes, you did. That’s what you pointed to in the menu.
Ashlie: Stephen! I haven’t eaten snails before.
Stephen: Well, try them. You might like them. Bon appétit!
Ashlie: Hmm, they’re good. But I’m going to make sure I know what I’m ordering next time – so when I go shopping, I don’t make any mistakes.
We use the infinitive after some verbs, nouns and adjectives:
- I hope to see you soon. (verb + infinitive)
- It's time to go. (noun + infinitive)
- I'm pleased to meet you. (adjective + infinitive)
Make complete sentences using the infinitive forms.
You're right, it does seem a bit strange. I wouldn't do it, either, and I think many British people would also avoid it, though I also expect there are some who would. I'm not as sure about how common such a gesture would be in France.
All the best,
The LearnEnglish Team