Snowdon Scene 1

Stephen and Ashlie arrive at the hotel in Snowdonia, but they don't have the same idea about how to relax!

Do the Preparation task first. Then watch the video. Next go to Task and do the activity. If you need help, you can read the transcript at any time.


Before you watch

Think about the following questions:

  • What kind of outdoor activities and sports do you like doing?
  • What kind of sports do you think Ashlie and Stephen enjoy?

Now watch Stephen and Ashlie during their trip to North Wales.



Stephen: Right, I think we’ve got everything.

Ashlie: Here, let me help you with that.

Stephen: No, it’s OK, I’ve got it.

Ashlie: We’re here in the beautiful mountains of Snowdonia in North Wales. We’re here for a short relaxing break. We’re going to put our feet up and have a complete rest for a couple of days. That’s right, isn’t it Stephen?

Stephen: Speak for yourself, Ash. Snowdonia is a great place for outdoor activities. You can go climbing, cycling, walking... I can’t wait to get out onto the mountains and get some fresh air. Come on Ash. Let’s check in.

Receptionist: Hi - Can I help you?

Ashlie: Hi, yes. We have a reservation for two nights.

Receptionist: OK, what’s the name, please?

Ashlie: Walker.

Receptionist: Walker. Is that Stephen and Ashlie?

Ashlie: Yes.

Receptionist: Two rooms for two nights?

Ashlie: Yes.

Receptionist: Can I just get you to fill this in, please?

Ashlie: Sure.

Stephen: Hey Ash, have you seen all these leaflets? There’s loads of stuff to do here. I’m going to hire a bike and ride to the top of the mountain. Do you want to come?

Ashlie: What, now? You’re joking, aren’t you?

Stephen: Yeah – take these, can I have my room key, please? Thank you. I’m going to go get changed. I’ll meet you back here in twenty minutes.

Ashlie: OK.


Ashlie: OK, so I think I'll have the manicure, the pedicure...

Assistant: OK.

Ashlie: Oh, and I’ll have that Indian head massage, too. And can you just tell me, what’s the hot stones massage?

Assistant: Well, we use volcanic rock. You know, stones from a volcano; we heat them up and then we massage them over your body. It’s really relaxing.

Ashlie: Yeah, that sounds nice. Maybe I’ll have that, too. Oh, and I see you do treatments for men?

Assistant: Yeah, we do a lot of treatments for men.

Ashlie: Stephen doesn't know what he's missing.


Ashlie: Look at you!

Stephen: It’s great, isn’t it? I’m all set to go. What are you going to do while I’m racing to the top of the mountain?

Ashlie: Well, I thought I might try this… It looks really relaxing and much better than cycling to the top of some old mountain.

Stephen: Yeah, it looks like hard work.

Ashlie: Go on you, get going. Have a good time – and call me later.

Stephen: Bye.

Ashlie: Bye.


Ashlie: This is just so relaxing.


Ashlie: Hello.

Stephen: Hi, Ashlie.

Ashlie: Hi, Stephen. How are you doing?

Stephen: I’m... exhausted. I can hardly speak.

Ashlie: Me too. This is lovely. I’m so relaxed.

Stephen: Ah, this is really tough. I’ve got a long way to go but I'm going to make it to the top.

Ashlie: OK, then – well you just take it easy.

Stephen: Yeah, alright.

Ashlie: OK, see you later.

Stephen: OK, bye!

Ashlie: Snowden Mountain Railway. I think he’ll see me sooner than he thinks!

Task 1

Comprehension Task

What did you learn about Snowdonia?

Choose the best answer to these questions.


Task 2

Comprehension Task 2

Read the statements about Stephen and Ashlie and decide if they are true or false.



Language level

Average: 5 (1 vote)
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Submitted by Renia1111 on Mon, 20/11/2023 - 07:33


I really enjoy listening to your podcasts.
I have a little problem and I don't understand some grammatical complexity.
Why Ashlie says: 'And can you just tell me, what’s the hot stones massage?' instead of 'And can you just tell me what the hot stones massage is?

All the best,
Renata Maksymiuk

Hello Renata,

Great question! When Ashlie says this, she is speaking informally and is constructing her sentence as she goes along. So they are like two different sentences. This is fine in informal conversation.

If she were writing or speaking in a more formal situation, then the version you suggest would be the best one to use.

As I expect you have noticed, your version is the one taught in English grammars and her version could be considered incorrect. There are two ways to look at this. One is that when we're thinking as we speak, it can sometimes seem like we break the rules because we change what we're going to say as we're speaking. Another is that the grammar of informal spoken English is looser than what the grammar references allow.

I hope this helps you make sense of it.

Best wishes,
LearnEnglish team

Hello Renata,

Both forms are possible. Your version is an indirect question whereas Ashlie's version is a direct question introduced by a signalling sentence which lets the other person know that a question is coming. The best way to think of what Ashlie says is not as a single grammatical sentence (as your example is) but rather as two separate utterances with different communicative functions: (1) indicating that a question is coming and (2) asking the question.



The LearnEnglish Team

Profile picture for user Juliya

Submitted by Juliya on Sun, 16/12/2018 - 06:08

Hello, everybody! I'm Juliya! I feel sorry for Stephen. As for me, I prefer jogging, because it's good for my health. Besides, jogging is not exhausting.
Profile picture for user Juliya

Submitted by Juliya on Sat, 15/12/2018 - 18:47

Poor Stephen... I feel sorry for him. As for me, I prefer walking, because it's good for my health and it isn't exhausting.

Submitted by Nguyen thi Hai Huyen on Fri, 25/05/2018 - 17:40

Hi, All I don't understand about sentence:"Have a complete rest a couple of days" -A complete rest?what does that mean? What is different between: Get out and go out, When we use relax and relaxing? I'm going to get changed-> changed is noun not Verb, it is right? Thanks
Profile picture for user Peter M.

Submitted by Peter M. on Sun, 27/05/2018 - 07:07

In reply to by Nguyen thi Hai Huyen


Hi Nguyen thi Hai Huyen,

The phrase in the text is have a complete rest for a couple of days. A complete rest means to do nothing: no strenuous activity, no stress and no work. Stephen says "You speak for yourself" because he does not want a complete rest - he wants to be active and to go up the mountain.

Get out and go out can be used in different ways in different contexts. You can find examples in any good dictionary:

If you have a particular example then we can comment, of course.


Relax is a verb. Relaxing is an -ing form which could be a participle, a gerund or an adjective. They are used as any of these types of words are used, in accordance with the grammar system of the language. There is nothing special about the words relax and relaxing to make them different from any other words of these types.

In the phrase get changed we have get + a past participle, so changed is a verb form. The construction shows a change of some kind and is quite common in English: get married, get changed, get divorced, get fired, get hired, get promoted etc.



The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by Radek on Mon, 19/02/2018 - 10:47

I prefer outdoor activities so probably I would like to climb,to walk or to do samething elese but obviesouly outdoor.So I think I would spend my free time in North Wales just like Stephen do.Some different forms of relax is listening to the music or reading books and I would do it probably every evening.
Profile picture for user Baahubali

Submitted by Baahubali on Wed, 24/01/2018 - 05:37

hello, i usually come across with some types of structures like"a variety of,too great a variety of,a great variety of".sometimes it takes singular verb and sometimes plural verb. is any definite rule about it whether it takes singular of plural veb. i checked it in oxford dictionary .it says when a is preceded before variety,it takes plural verb. please give me suitable advice. thanks.
Profile picture for user Peter M.

Submitted by Peter M. on Wed, 24/01/2018 - 07:38

In reply to by Baahubali


Hello Baahubali,

Quantifiers such as a lot of can be followed by either singular uncount nouns or plural count nouns. The verb matches the noun:

There is a lot of money on the table. ['money' is singular so the verb 'is' is singular]

There are a lot of apples on the table. ['apples' is plural so the verb 'are' is plural]


The quantifier a great variety of can only be used with plural count nouns and so the verb is always plural. It is similar to other quantifiers such as a great number of.


Best wishes,


The LearnEnglish Team