Hello Kiran! Great to hear from you and I really enjoyed reading your post and seeing the photos. It was so interesting to see all the different kinds of houses and hear about how they are made. I’m interested to know what kind of building regulations there are in Nepal? Can anyone build whatever they want wherever they want? Or do they have to get permission? In the UK the planning and building laws are very strict and it’s very difficult to get permission to build a house on a piece of empty land these days. Some friends of mine have just started going through the process and it’s a real headache for them.
The photos of the flowers are very beautiful but I’m afraid I can’t help with the names of them… anyone got any ideas?
I just thought I’d give you all the answers to the tasks I have set you recently before replying to our readers comments…
“Just like everything and everybody changes a little everyday, Nepal has also changed. Before the ruling power was in the(1) hand of the (2) king, so it was a kingdom. Now it has become a (3) republican country. The (4) first president of Nepal was elected July 2008. Nepali people are patiently waiting for a(5) new constitution in this 21st century with political stability as well.”
Direct vs indirect questions
(Remember you can use lots of different phrases at the beginning, but the grammar of the question part remains the same)
1) How often did you have to work in the dairy? - Could you tell me how often you had to work in the dairy?
2) How do you spend your free time? - Please could you explain how you spend your free time?
3) Have you ever been abroad? – Would you mind telling me if you have ever been abroad?
4) What books are you reading at the moment? - I’d be very grateful if you could tell me what books you are reading at the moment.
Notice that the last one doesn’t have a question mark as it’s more of a statement than a question. Well done to everyone who got them right.
Okay, now onto some replies. Oh and before I forget, please do let me know if there’s anything in particular you’d like me to blog about… I’m always open to suggestions! :-)
Hi Pary - thanks for all the links to the different dances, I’ll have a look at them. That’s really interesting to hear that camping is popular in Iran… I really hope to visit there one day and now I know to bring my tent :-)
Hello Zaya - yes I agree, the 60s and 70s were pretty cool. If you say ‘I haven’t been up to much’ it means ‘I haven’t been doing much’. You can also say ‘What are you up to?’ instead of ‘What are you doing?’
Hi Habooba - yes that’s a great idea, I wish we could look at the past in that way… I always have problems imagining it in colour, because all the old photos we have are in black and white :-)
Hello Schuyler - I’m sorry I didn’t ask my Granny your exact questions but I hope you enjoyed reading the interview anyway :-)
Hello Maryam - yes I agree, the state of society these days is quite depressing… it’s interesting that similar things seem to be happening all over the world.
Hi Gaitrie - many thanks for your good wishes, I’ve passed them on to my Granny too :-)
Hi Vijay - Well done on the direct/indirect questions task. As for your problems when starting to write, I think lots of people have this problem! I think it’s called ‘writer’s block’, where you just can’t think of what to write… I’m afraid I don’t have any suggestions for how to overcome it but I’d like to hear of some! Yes I did wear a sari once for a staff Diwali party. They’re so beautiful.
Hello Wisarut - sorry I didn’t get to ask my Granny your questions but I hope you liked the interview anyway. Your degree sounds interesting… I imagine that are increasing numbers of jobs related to this field all over the world.
Hi Michela - nice to meet you :-) I’m glad you’re enjoying the blogs. I hope your camping trip was drier than mine!
Hello Ana Paula - yep you got the definition for ‘brainwave’ exactly… well done on the latest vocab as well, although check ‘flesh’ as it kind of has two (very similar) meanings.
Hi Maria - thanks for your comment! I’m glad you enjoyed the interview, I also enjoyed doing it :-) Welcome to the blogs!
Hi Pritam - that’s interesting that you moved into another house with your parents and siblings… it seems like many people in India are moving away from the joint family arrangement. Which do you prefer? As for the snakes, you just have to make sure that you do the zips up tightly on the tent! :-) I think the Indian government used to give everyone who was born there citizenship but then they changed it in the 80s. Well done on the homework!
Hello Anita - thanks so much for your lovely comment! I’m so pleased that you enjoyed it. Hope you’re having a good weekend too.
Thanks Pilar - I’m really glad you found it interesting :-)
Hi Leila - glad you enjoyed the post. I told my family that you had been in Polperro when you felt your baby move for the first time and they thought that was lovely.
Hi Marianna - yes, I’d forgotten that I posted a photo of her last time too! I wish my mother and Granny had kept some of their old outfits from previous decades… they all seem to have gone. Do you sew now like your Mum?
Hello Mahjabeen - well done on the indirect/direct questions homework! Just one little thing, you’re missing the word ‘have’ in question 3. That’s really interesting about families not bothering with their neighbours because they think it raises their status, I didn’t know that.
Yes Diema, I think you’re right about people who have survived the 2nd World War, or any war. Those of us who have never experienced one can’t really understand what was like, I think.
Thanks for your lovely comments Mauricio - I will definitely pass on your regards to my Granny. I think you should definitely try camping!
Hi Ernesto - that’s so funny that you think she looks British, I guess you’re right! I’d never thought of it before. No need for the auxiliary verbs ‘do’ and ‘did’ in indirect questions :-)
Hello Jorge - I’m glad you liked the interview. I feel like there’s so much that I don’t know about my Granny’s life… I need to find out before it’s too late.
I love that, Monica: ‘A trip sponsored by butter’! Fabulous! I was so interested to hear about your family’s dairy. Of course I remember you :-) If I could package up some rain and send it to you I would, I’m so fed up with it!
Hi Marjan - I’m glad you’re enjoying the blogs. Hope to hear from you again soon!
Hello Bia - that’s a good idea for a blog, I’ll have a think about it. The only problem is that I wasn’t educated in England until I went to university so I’d have to do a bit of research, but I can do that!
Hi Cristina - well done on the direct/indirect questions task. You should definitely try camping, just try and do it when it’s not raining!
Hello Farha - yes, I totally agree: camping for pleasure is lots of fun but living in a tent because you have no choice is a different story all together. I’ll see if I can show you some of the inside of my house in a later blog!
Hello Trinie - yes I’ll try and do one about Bath as it’s quite an interesting city. ‘Frome’ is pronounced ‘Froom’, by the way. Well done on the direct/indirect questions task.
Hi Felicitas - well done on the indirect/direct questions task. Just one small error in sentence 3, can you spot it? I agree, it’s great learning about different cultures and hearing from people from so many different countries :-)
Hello Concetta - sounds like you had a lovely childhood. It’s similarly social on my street and so nice for Louie. We also have a market in Frome, twice a week but I haven’t been very often – I should!
Hi Guzin - I’m afraid I’m not sure why your comments haven’t appeared :-( I’m sorry about that. I think you’re right about it being difficult to find time to establish relationships with neighbours… sad but true. It’s interesting that readers from so many different countries seem to be saying the same thing. Well done on the vocab.
Hi Silwal - well done on the direct/indirect questions task, just a small error in question 3 – can you find it? Well done on the vocabulary too!
Hello Vy - welcome to the blogs! Yes the blogs are centred around English language learning but aren’t exactly ‘lessons’ – sometimes we talk about grammar but not always, but there’s usually new words and phrases, highlighted in bold. I’ll try and answer your questions!
Hello Hyoshil - I think Louie would ride a thousand miles on his bike if we let him :-) We had an Indian takeaway for the first time last night and it was okay but not like our favourite place in Delhi :-( I’m glad you live in a nice neighbourhood too, I think it’s really important.
Hello Paulraj - yes I think it was because of the modernization of the industry that weaving has died out in Frome. Louie and Oslo were both born in Delhi, but they don’t get Indian citizenship :-( I have been following the unrest in Indian politics… it’s a strange time at the moment.
Hi Thao - welcome to the blogs :-) Yes having kids is a full time job, there’s no doubt about it. Well done on the vocabulary and extra well done for guessing the answers from the context… just double check the meaning of ‘upmarket’
Hello Maione - well done on the vocabulary! Good for you guessing the meaning, it’s a very good skill to develop.
Hi Bruno - thanks for your comment! I hope you enjoyed the interview… you can find out more about the history of Polperro in Wikipedia if you’re interested. Have you visited that site before? :-)
Yes I agree, Adriana, wild camping can sometimes be a bit frightening. I went once to a beach in New Zealand and I found it quite scary! It’s okay if there are a bigger group of you though.
Hi Chiladi - yes camping in the rain is rarely fun, unless you have a huge tent and lots of things to do!
Hello Tanya - that’s an interesting question. I try not to simplify what I write too much… it’s pretty much as I would write normally I think, if I were writing to a friend, for example. Newspapers do tend to use more complicated vocabulary though… always try to guess the meaning from the context before checking in the dictionary.
Hi Ahsanul - your caravan experience sounds quite chilly! They can be here too, although some have heaters in them.
Hello Parin - yes I enjoyed watching dandiya dancing when I was in India, I’ve never done it myself though. I was teaching English in Delhi for the British Council. I don’t have much time for hobbies at the moment :-( but I have recently taken up knitting!
Hello Beatriz - don’t worry if you can’t do 5 a day everyday, just do what you can… remember, little and often is the best way to learn a language!
Okay that's it from me today...
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