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Last updated at 12:27 GMT, Tuesday, 05 February 2013

Go to town


Why does Abigail keep saying she's 'going to town'? And what has it got to do with red food? Find out more in this programme.

Red food - berries, apples, strawberries, tomatoes

Is Abigail going to 'go to town' with red food at her dinner party?

The script for this programme

Abigail: Hi. You're listening to The English We Speak. I'm Abigail and... actually Neil, sorry, I can't stay long, I've got a lot to do.

Neil: Hi, I'm Neil. And - what do you mean you've got a lot to do?

Abigail: Oh, well, you know I'm having that dinner party this evening.

Neil: I know you're having a dinner party, I'm coming. So? That's this evening, why do you need to start now?

Abigail: Oh no but I have really big ideas. I'm really going to town.

Neil: You're going to go to town? We're in town already. Just go to the supermarket and buy a ready meal. No one will know.

Abigail: A ready meal?! No, I'm really going to town.

Neil: Will you stop saying you're going to town? You're supposed to be working.

Abigail: Come on, you know - 'Going to town'. As in... going to a lot of trouble, making it really special.

Neil: Oh I thought you were just making some simple snacks. Actually, I was going to eat before I came round to your house.

Abigail: Eat before my dinner party? That's so rude! No it isn't going to be a snack. As I say, I'm going to town. And I'm not the only person to use this very useful expression. Have a listen to these people:

  • The wedding was beautiful, they really went to town. Everything was decorated pink and white.
  • This is lovely food – they've really gone to town.
  • Have you seen the admin team? They're really going to town on that paperwork.

Neil: Well, I can see you can go to town on a party, a wedding, a big meal... But how can you go to town on paperwork?

Abigail: Hmm - good point. I suppose they're going to a lot of trouble, making a special effort?

Neil: Being very thorough perhaps. So, if you're not doing paperwork tonight - in what way are you 'going to town' at this dinner party?

Abigail: I still have to think about it. Maybe I'll buy flowers. I could make cocktails. Oh, I know - all the food could be red!

Neil: All the food will be red! When you go to town you really go to town!

Abigail: Oh, wait, no. All the food could be silver!

Neil: Silver food? You keep planning, I'm just going to get some ready meals.

Abigail: Oh, no, wait, everyone could dress as animals! We could eat on the roof!


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