Monday, November 14, 2011

Mandarin Mondays: 洗手间

We're so excited that my parents are coming for a visit really soon. They'll be here on Friday! They are spending a couple of days first touring famous sites on their own, so we sent them some phrases we thought would be useful to know. Nate made a pronunciation guide for each one trying to approximate how you would normally read it in English as much as possible. Since Chinese pinyin uses English letters as a phonetic guide (but certain letters are often pronounced quite differently) this will give you a better idea how these words are supposed to sound. We thought we'd share it with everyone in case you'll be traveling soon and want to impress someone or teach your mouth some new tricks. If you are ever coming for a visit or planning to tour China, at least learn the first one. Even if you don't like their bathrooms (xǐshǒujiān, 洗手间) because of the squatty potties, it's better than the sidewalk. You'll thank me later.

Useful Mandarin Phrases

"Where is the bathroom?"
she show jen zai na lee

"Where is this place?"
jigga dee fang zai na lee

"Excuse me, can I ask you a question?"
ching when

"How much does this cost?"
doe-a shaow ch-yen

"That is too expensive!"
tai g-way la

"Can you make it cheaper?"
pi-yen e di-yen

"I want the police!"
woa yaow jing cha

The last one was by special request; I've never had to use it.

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