Well it’s raining buckets outside and unfortunately one of our airconditioners has decided to start leaking so the rain isn’t staying outside like it should. I knew it was going to rain today – over the last few days it’s been feeling a lot cooler and I’ve been celebrating the end of summer. Today it was much muggier again and everyone was complaining about the heat (again) but I
knew it was because it was going to start raining later. Clever, aren’t I? :-)
Now before I start going over the homework (Ana Paula you are right – the present perfect is indeed a minefield) I thought I’d write a little bit about my wedding and compare it to weddings here in India. One of our readers, Manoj, asked me about this and I thought it might be an interesting topic to discuss.
Ed and I met when we were at university in 1998. He was a friend of a friend. The first time I met him properly was at my 21st birthday party and then shortly after that we bumped into each other in the library on campus (although I later found out that he had engineered this ‘chance meeting’). Anyway, so we got on really well and started to hang out. Once we’d finished university we did a lot of travelling together (mostly around India) and then in 2004 we got married – just before we moved to Delhi.
Our wedding was quite small by English standards and teeny weeny by Indian standards! We only had close friends and family to the actual ceremony. This took place in a lovely town hall in a town in Dorset, near Ed’s mum’s farm. Neither of us are religious (although as you know, I am very interested in learning about different religions) so we decided against having the ceremony in a church. In England it’s quite common these days to have what they call ‘civil marriages’ were the wedding is performed by a person called a registrar, who works for the government, rather than a priest.
After the ceremony (which only lasted about 20 minutes!) we had a big lunch for everyone back at the farm, with lots of delicious vegetarian food and a beautiful cake. In England the cutting of the cake is one of the big traditions – the bride and groom are supposed to do the first cut together while everyone watches and cheers.
In the evening we had a big party on the farm that we lived on at the time (about 40 minutes away) for all of our friends. About 150 people came which I guess is quite a lot and we had a blast. We had fireworks and champagne and then a big breakfast in the morning that my Costa Rican friend Paula cooked for everyone – it was quite a job!
In contrast, Indian weddings tend to be huge, lavish affairs. I’m speaking mostly about Hindu weddings here as I don’t know much about Muslim or Sikh ones I’m afraid. Guest lists can reach up to 500 people or more and families tend to rent out large halls to have the weddings in. Traditionally, marriages are arranged by the families of the bride and groom who may not have met each other before the day of the wedding. However, these days, in the big cities, it’s much more common for weddings to be partially arranged. By this I mean that families still help the bride and groom to find each other but very often they will meet several times before the wedding to get to know each other a bit. Also, both the boy and girl can refuse someone if they don’t like them – they don’t have to agree to marry the first person their families choose.
Ed and I had known each other for about six years before we got married and my parents had nothing to do with us meeting. Ed did ask my parents for my hand in marriage before he asked me though. That’s the tradition in England although I think it might be becoming less common.
Anyway, here’s a photo of us cutting the cake. Do you like my dress? :-) It’s not the traditional white! It only cost me 20 pounds from a charity shop - bargain!
Now I guess we should get down to work. First of all, let’s look at Adriana’s answers to the present perfect homework I set you… it was pretty difficult, I know.
1) So what are the consequences of this figure? The market became highly specialized for the benefit of the population.
Adriana’s answer: 1- has become – CORRECT!
2) I’ve noticed you’ve brought the religion issue up today.
Adriana’s answer: 2- I think it's correct or I have to swallow the word 'today'. OOPS! Well, it’s almost right. You just need to change the first verb to ‘I noticed’ – past simple. This is because the noticing is over, you only needed to do it once in this case.
3) After a short trip ‘by car’ to Domingos Martins city, at the last moment, I’ve changed my plans to take a long trip ‘by bus’ to the historical cities ( Ouro Preto, Mariana and Tiradentes) in Minas Gerais state.
Adriana’s answer: 3- I changed my plans YES!
4) My unique option was to take the long trip ‘by bus’ to Minas Gerais. I’ve had a great time there, visiting museums and churches dotted around the cities.
Adriana’s answer: 4-My unique option would be taking the long trip...I had a great time there. ALMOST! No need to change the first verb. ‘My unique option’ sounds a bit strange… can you suggest something else?
5) I’ve had a look at the dictionary but I don’t think it’s the same rave here
Adriana’s answer: 5-I've looked at the NO! This is the correct sentence! It’s fine as it is.
6) Apart from the unproven theory that the Phoenicians (incidentally coming from Africa to the Brazilian coast) have had been here firstly, all we learn since our childhood is that Brazil was discovered by Portugal
Adriana’s answer: 6-had been here NOT QUITE! It should be ‘were here first’ and ‘all we have learnt since our childhood’
7) Isn’t strange that the independence of Brazil has been declared by a prince from Portugal?
Adriana’s answer: 7-was declared YEP! CORRECT!
Well done Adri and all our readers who got some or all of the answers right. It’s a very difficult tense so don’t get disheartened with your mistakes. Practice makes perfect! Adriana you have used it nicely a couple of times in your most recent post, well done! Just try to be aware of it when you are using it and double check with yourself that you are using it correctly.
Okay now today I’m going to give you some easier homework. I’ve noticed (you see here it is over a period of time so the present perfect is appropriate) that sometimes you make mistakes with your noun-verb agreement and use of plurals. Have a look at these sentences and see if you can correct the mistakes.
1) zillions of them doesn’t know that, because the main oponents are themselves.
2) All the money are on the politicians' pockets.
3) What we brazilian dentists do, most part of the population doesn’t know because we work silent among 4 walls.
4) Simple and poor people who has sold all their belongings believing in a new wonderful life here.
5) I started other activity
6) We made a good profit and everybody wanted our sandwich
7) One of the trainnings was at the company where I work today.
Thanks for your last two interesting posts, Adriana. I particularly enjoyed hearing about your funny conversation with your son, as well as your creative ways of getting money together to fund your studies. Very interesting!
Okay that’s plenty for today.
…but of course I won’t go without going over the vocabulary…
Knackered: extremely tired
Anaesthetic: a drug you can be given to take away all feeling in a particular part of your body, or you whole body if it is a ‘general’ anaesthetic
Horrid: horrible, very bad
Bane: if something is the bane of your life it is the thing which causes you the most unhappiness or trouble
Nincompoop: old-fashioned (but funny) way of saying ‘a stupid or silly person’
To follow someone (see context): to understand what someone is saying
Cliff: the edge of a country or island which drops suddenly, often into the sea
Bionic: electronic and more powerful than normal human ability - superhuman
Truckloads: a very large amount
HEAPS of new words and phrases
To rain buckets
To bump into
To engineer (see context)
To hang out
To take place
A blast (see context)
To ask for someone’s hand in marriage
A charity shop
To be disheartened
And some old ones for revision…
To put your finger on something
Phew! What a long post!
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