It’s Saturday! That means a nice long lie-in and a leisurely breakfast. How nice!
Ha, glad to have you back with us and sorry to hear you haven’t been feeling so great. I hope your loaf is working better now.
Which reminds me, here are the answers to that Cockney Rhyming Slang:
I rushed down the apples and pears (stairs). The dog and bone (phone) was ringing.
‘Hello?’ I asked.
‘Where are you, you idiot?’
It was the trouble and strife (wife).
‘You were supposed to be at the church an hour ago!’
I’d forgotten about the wedding! Oops!
‘I don’t Adam and Eve (believe) it! For God’s sake, can’t you use your loaf (loaf of bread = head) for once? Put your whistle and flute (suit) on and get here straight away!’
And there were two more sneaky ones: ‘lemon squeezy’ means ‘easy’; and ‘mince pies’ means ‘eyes’.
And Ha, I noticed you used a Cockney Rhyming Slang phrase of your own – ‘a cup of Rosie Lee’ is indeed ‘a cup of tea’. Well done!
Ha, no need to apologize for making mistakes. I think it was Adek who wrote in (Hi, Adek!) and said ‘people who do nothing make no mistakes’. This is very true, isn’t it?
And, in you last blog, you corrected all your tenses perfectly, like this:
1) It was very sunny all day so I just stayed at home and _slept_.
2) Tourism in Vietnam _is developing_ more and more.
3) But I hope that I _have just shown_ you an overview of my beautiful country.
Brilliant! This is great news for two reasons. One, it means that you know what all the tenses are. Two, it means you know how to use them.
Which means Ha, all you need to do to really improve your English is to relax, chill, take it easy, OK? It sounds as though your job is a bit manic, so I understand you don’t have much time to blog. I wonder then, whether you can make your blogs shorter, so that you can spend more time thinking about tenses? I think it’s better to have a short and sweet piece of writing that is grammatically correct, than a long piece of writing containing lots of mistakes. I think this is a good idea for any kind of writing – blogging, emails, or indeed any writing you have to do in English for your job. Do you agree?
Now, a couple of blogs ago, I posted some pictures of my village, West Meon. I also told you how the thatchers ‘sign’ their work with a shape, usually an animal. The picture I took wasn’t very clear, so my chap Richard took this photo so you can see what I mean:
Those are the two pheasant shapes I was talking about.
Jill asked me how it is that the thatch roof doesn’t rot in the rain and the snow. I didn’t know, so I did a bit of googling. Here’s what I found out: the UK has more thatched houses than any other country in Europe. It was used for centuries because it is lightweight, and readily available – people just used whatever material grew near to them. As the top layer of thatch degrades, a new layer is placed on top, but thatch can last for up to 50 years without any problems. Thatch is naturally resistant to water, so it does not absorb water when it rains. Also, a thatch roof should be made fairly steep, so the water can run off it easily. A pro of thatch is that it is a good insulator, but a con is that it can catch fire easily.
So thanks for your question, Jill. I’ve learned a lot!
Enjoy your weekends!
leisurely – in a relaxed way
chill, take it easy – relax
manic – very busy
short and sweet – small but perfect
chap – man, fella
googling – the search engine ‘Google’ now has its own verb, ‘to google’. You can say ‘I googled it and got 55,000 results’.
degrade – to wear out, to erode
insulator – something that traps heat
Answers to your comments
Wisarut – I’m a bit of a tomboy (a girl who likes some things boys like) so I’m not so keen on pink. I think we’re never too old to appreciate cartoons, right? What makes you like Doraemon so much? I like a cartoon called Dilbert. But it’s American, not British. It makes fun of the way big companies work. It even includes a dog, called Dogbert. You can see it here: http://www.dilbert.com/
Ahmed – I’m so glad you find BBC learning English useful, and thanks for all your comments and your vivid description of your village. You’re right, ‘terrific’ means ‘wonderful’; ‘terrible’ means ‘awful’.
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