36. Moving to Another Country (English Podcast Conversation Lesson)

February 15, 2017
00:0000:00

moving to another country

In this English podcast, we tell you all about our experiences preparing to move to another country and all the stuff we had to get rid of. You will hear us talk about everything from selling our house, letting go of collections, garage sales and even a fight with our couch to get it out the door!

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English Conversation Tip:

If you have a question, send it to us: contact@realenglishconversations.com

Mari from Brazil asks us a question:

Dear Amy and Curtis,

I’ve been studying English for more than three years now. I feel like it’s easy for me to understand English when I’m listening and I’m good at reading and writing. But when I try to speak, I feel like the words do not come out of my mind very easy and I make a lot of mistakes. Do you know why this is happening to me?

Here is an article that explains more about this called: Why is Speaking Soooo Hard

 

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Real English Podcast Conversations Podcast

English Podcast Episode 36: Moving to Another Country

35. Carnival in Colombia - English Podcast Conversation Lesson

January 14, 2017
00:0000:00

English Podcast Episode 35: Carnival in Colombia

 

english conversation carnival pic

 

We've been gone from recording conversations for more than a year but we are back with a new English podcast format that is better than ever!

In this English conversation, we are going to tell you about our experiences visiting Colombia during their world-famous Carnival. We discuss the difference it can make when you know someone who is from the region you are visiting and how you can really have the opportunity to discover the culture on another level.

Free PDF transcription download

The transcriptions for each podcast will available for 7 days for free!

Click here to download it now to read along while you listen.

English Conversation Tip:

If you have a question, send it to us: contact@realenglishconversations.com

We answer our Hassan's question about a problem he is having with listening.

Dear Amy and Curtis,

I've been learning English for 3 years but I've noticed I have a lot of problems with my listening. I feel like I listen to a lot of audio, maybe 1 hour a day. When I watch movies with subtitles, I know most of the words... but I am not able to hear the words when I listen without subtitles. Please help me. 

Read the article related to Amy's advice on listening deeper here.

Video about slowing down audio: Using Audacity to improve listening skills

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Real English Podcast Conversations Podcast

34: Funerals - English Conversation Podcast Preview

October 30, 2015
00:0000:00

In this conversation we discuss the sensitive topic of death and funerals. We wanted to make sure that you had access to the best things to say to someone to express your sympathy for their pain and loss.  To access the entire conversation including the English tip for this episode, you can sign up as a premium member at our website.

Check out a preview of the transcription and audio player near the bottom of this page.english conversations funerals

Real English Conversation Tip:

Hear some of the most expressions people use to talk about someone who is really old or who has died.

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Get access to special lessons, free resources and helpful tips that will help you to quickly improve your speaking and listening skills too! click here.

 

English Podcast Transcription Preview:

Amy:  Hey guys, this is Amy and Curtis here. And we thought today we would discuss a topic that is pretty difficult, even for native speakers to talk about in a sensitive way. And that is talking about someone who has recently died.

Curtis:  Right.

Amy:  To a family member or a close friend, somebody who knew that person.

Curtis:  Yeah.

Amy:  That is probably suffering from a loss.

Curtis:  Um-hum. Of some sort.

Amy:  Yeah. Like they're having some pain associated with that person not being in their life anymore.

Curtis:  Yeah.

Amy:  So what is a common word, that...or a verb that we use instead of saying someone has died?

Curtis:  Someone has passed away.

Amy:  Yeah, or passed on.

Curtis:  Yeah.

Amy:  Those are...those are really common. So when we do say to die though, it's just...we use that more when we're talking about someone that we didn't know.

Curtis:  Yeah, something less personal.

Amy:  Yeah, so if it's somebody, like you're talking to somebody, and it was their relative or their friend, you'd probably want to use the word pass away.

Curtis:  Yeah.

Amy:  But if it's just talking about a news event that happened, like for example, there was a tragic1 accident on the highway, and three people died on scene, or whatever. You know, I guess you could say three people passed away, but it doesn't...it doesn't sound right.

End of the English podcast transcription preview. To get access to full transcripts, all the conversations, practice activities and more, click here.

Real English Podcast Conversations Podcast

English Podcast Episode 34: Funerals

33. Applying for Jobs - Free English Conversation Podcast

October 20, 2015
00:0000:00

In this free English conversation we talk about applying for jobs. Hear about some of our experiences applying for jobs as well as when we hired people for our own business.

Check out a preview of the transcription and audio player near the bottom of this page.applying for jobs english conversations

Real English Conversation Tip:

We talk about a popular expression that we use to say you have a lead or an opportunity for a job offer. 

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English Podcast Transcription Preview:

Curtis:  Well, hey, guys. It's Curtis, and I'm hanging out with Amy. We're from RealEnglishConversations.com. Today we're going to kind of continue our conversation about jobs, and applying for them, actually.

Amy:  In the last episode we talked about resumes. And what was normal to see in a North American resume. And comparing it to a resume that we've recently seen from another culture or another country.

Curtis:  Yeah, from Colombia, and it was 27 pages long.

Amy:  Yeah. The total opposite of a North American resume, which is like a...the most concentrated summary you can possibly imagine of your work history.

Curtis:  Yeah, they're almost opposites.

Amy:  Yeah. Complete opposites. So, anyway, we thought that obviously the next step, now that you have a resume.

Curtis:  Yeah, you've created a resume.

Amy:  This is the first step in applying for a job.

Curtis:  Yeah.

Amy:  What do you do?

Curtis:  Well, you go out there, and hand out your resume to the places that you would probably prefer to work at. Sometimes, you know, you can't get too picky if you really need a job really bad, you apply everywhere.

Amy:  Right.

Curtis:  So you've got your stack of resumes with you, and then you go out there and you walk into businesses or places with that resume. You ask for the boss or the manager, that does the hiring, usually that's what I would do, that's who I want to give my resume to.

Amy:  Yeah, can I speak to the manager, please.

Curtis:  Yeah, you want to make that...

Amy:  That's where you would...you're using...

Curtis:  First impression.

Amy:  The most formal speech that you possibly can, but, yeah, can I speak with the manager, please is definitely, I mean, if you're making a complaint at a restaurant, you would say the same thing, but if you're applying for a job, it's, oh, hi, I was wondering if the manager is around, I'd like to speak with them.

End of the English podcast transcription preview To get access to full transcripts, all the conversations, practice activities and more, click here.

Real English Podcast Conversations Podcast

English Podcast Episode 33: Applying for Jobs

32: Resumes For Jobs - English Conversation Podcast Preview

October 10, 2015
00:0000:00

In this conversation we discuss résumés that are used to apply for jobs. This is a general discussion of what is important to include and some of the things we have done to prepare our resume.  To access the entire conversation including the English tip for this episode, you can sign up as a premium member at our website.

Check out a preview of the transcription and audio player near the bottom of this page.Resume for jobs english conversations

Real English Conversation Tip:

We are going to give you some of the funny expressions related to losing your job. (Premium Members)

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The bonus lesson, 3 full transcriptions with slower audio can be accessed by becoming a free member here.

 

English Podcast Transcription Preview:

Curtis:  Hey, guys. It's Amy and Curtis from Real English Conversations. And today we're going to talk about resumes. And how did we come about this topic?

Amy:  Well, this topic was inspired by seeing a resume from another culture. And, okay, so actually just yesterday I was talking to my friend from Colombia and he wants to basically...he would like to work in the United States.

Curtis:  Okay.

Amy:  And the American resume is very, very different than the Colombia resume. And I have never seen a resume from another country, or another cultures.

Curtis:  Well that must have been pretty interesting.

Amy:  Yeah, I mean, of course it's all in Spanish, because it's a Spanish speaking country, and the jobs he's applying for are in Spanish. But the part that surprised me the most was that this thing is like a mini book.

Curtis:  Well, the actual size of the resume.

Amy:  How many pages was it, Curtis?

Curtis:  Was it 28, 27 or 28 pages?

Amy:  The last page was blank. So 27 pages.

Curtis:  When you showed this to me, my jaw dropped.

Amy:  Me too.

Curtis:  I was like I can't believe what I'm seeing here.

Amy:  I...that's exactly what I said to my friend too. I said, never in my life have I seen a resume this long. This is insane.

Curtis:  It's going to take me a month to read it.

Amy:  I'm like, this is normal? And he's like, oh, yeah. Yeah, you need to have everything on your resume. So the first page, which, um, okay, on an American, North American-style resume, you put your contact information at the very top. And it takes up like maybe an inch or an inch and a half. Like three centimetres, maximum, on the front of the top page.

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Real English Podcast Conversations Podcast

English Podcast Episode 32: Résumés for Jobs

31: Family Vacations - English Conversation Podcast Preview

September 30, 2015
00:0000:00

Listen to some stories about how Amy & Curtis typically spend their childhood with their families during vacations. One family liked to go camping, while the other family often took a trip to a sunnier destination. To access the entire conversation including the English tip for this episode, you can sign up as a premium member at our website.

Check out a preview of the transcription and audio player near the bottom of this page.Family Vacation English Conversations Thumb

Real English Conversation Tip:

Learn how to talk about going away on vacations. (Available to Premium Members).

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The bonus lesson, 3 full transcriptions with slower audio can be accessed by becoming a free member here.

 

English Podcast Transcription Preview:

Amy:  So we just got back from a little mini-vacation that we had a few days ago. This is Amy and Curtis from RealEnglishConversations.com, as everybody probably knows by now. And, ah, it was...I call it a mini-vacation because it wasn't far.

Curtis:  Yeah.

Amy:  And it wasn't very long.

Curtis:  Yeah. You can also call it a road trip.

Amy:  Yeah, it was a bit of a road trip because we drove by car. You know, so that's a common way that we talk about it. But we actually went to go visit my parents. And they live about five or six hours from where we live.

Curtis:  Yeah.

Amy:  And, you know, it was a place that I went to when I was a child all the time.

Curtis:  Oh, so you went there as you were growing up?

Amy:  Yeah, yeah, it was something that we typically did for a family vacation, and we would go for a week or something like that. And I just thought that it would be a kind of an interesting conversation for us to talk about what our vacations were like with our families growing up. And, I mean, I think it's kind of different because my family, especially my dad, he's kind of an outdoorsman1, so he's a fisher, a fisherman, and he hunts, and he likes going up into the bush in the middle of nowhere.

Curtis:  He likes the outdoors.

Amy:  He likes the outdoors. And your family is definitely more domestic.

Curtis:  Yes.

Amy:  You know, like, you wouldn't be four-by-fouring2 into some random lake in the middle of nowhere.

Curtis:  No.

Amy:  You know, it's a little bit more comfortable the way that you travel and what you did. So, anyway, why don't we start with you. So what are some of the family vacations that you had with your family growing up?

End of the English podcast transcription preview to get the full transcription visit this page.

Real English Podcast Conversations Podcast

English Podcast Episode 31: Family Vacations

30. Airport Travel - Free English Conversation Episode

September 20, 2015
00:0000:00

In this English conversation we talk about travelling through airports that speak a different language than us. Hear about some of the experiences where it was really helpful to know a basic level of the language while travelling and communicating important information. This is our full Free English Conversation for the month and it is available on our English Podcast and website.

Check out a preview of the transcription and audio player near the bottom of this page.airport travel english conversations 

Real English Conversation Tip:

How to talk about different time zones when you are travelling or you need to set up an appointment with someone who lives in another part of the world.

Additional Links:

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Visit our website

Check out our Blog where Amy shares the challenges and experiences she has learning a second language.

Get access to special lessons, free resources and helpful tips that will help you to quickly improve your speaking and listening skills too! click here.

 

English Podcast Transcription Preview:

Amy:  Hey, guys, this is Amy and Curtis, and today we're going to do a conversation that one of our listeners actually suggested to us. So who was that?

Curtis:  That was Alfredo. And he's living in Venezuela.

Amy:  No, he is from Venezuela.

Curtis:  Oh, okay. Where's he living?

Amy:  He's living in Argentina and working as a pilot.

Curtis:  Oh, that's a cool job.

Amy:  So what did he ask us to talk about?

Curtis:  Well, because he is a pilot, he asked us to talk about some of our experiences in airports.

Amy:  And specifically doing it in another language.

Curtis:  Yeah. This can be tricky at times.

Amy:  Yeah, so if you guys have been listening to the podcasts for a while, you're going to know we've done quite a bit of travelling. I mean, where have we been? We've been to...we went to Hawaii.

Curtis:  Yeah.

Amy:  And we've been to California.

Curtis:  We've been to Costa Rica.

Amy:  Yeah. Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Panama, Ecuador. And upcoming we have a trip planned to Ecuador again. And to Colombia. And this next vacation is going to be three months, and I think we might be able to this time when we go to the airports, we might actually have an experience to do the whole process of the customs and like checking in with the customs agent and getting our passports stamped and stuff. I think we might be able to do it completely in Spanish this time.

Curtis:  Yeah. I'm feeling a little more confident, that's for sure.

Amy:  Yeah. So the last times that we've travelled, we've really had a fairly limited level of the language.

Curtis:  Yes.

Amy:  You know, because I know when we came back from Ecuador, after we came back, after I had been there for six weeks, I was still just a beginner, looking back now. I thought I was  than I was, but looking back now I can see I was...I was pretty basic.

Curtis:  And I...I was basic basic.

Amy:  You were like a newbie1, like...

End of the English podcast transcription preview To get access to full transcripts, all the conversations, practice activities and more, click here.

Real English Podcast Conversations Podcast

English Podcast Episode 30: Airport Travel

29. Small Talk #1 - English Conversation Podcast Preview

September 10, 2015
00:0000:00

In this English conversation we discuss some recent things that have been happening with us and some recent events in the area we live. Hear about how everything from pro-wake surfers to our efforts to build a spare room for our house sitter while we are away.

Check out a preview of the transcription and audio player near the bottom of this page.Small Talk 1 English Conversations


Real English Conversation Tip:

How to respond in a natural way if someone asks you "whats up?"

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The bonus lesson, 3 full transcriptions with slower audio can be accessed by becoming a free member here.

 

English Podcast Transcription Preview:

Curtis:  Hey guys, it's Curtis. I'm hanging out with Amy and we're from RealEnglishConversations.com and we're going to have some small talk today. What's small talk, Amy?

Amy:  Small talk is when you're talking about, I don't know, topics.

Curtis:  Yeah.

Amy:  That aren't really important. Right? So it's actually pretty funny. We're sitting here right now, we're recording in our bedroom because we find that we get the best sound quality for our conversations in our bedroom. And we just poured ourselves a cup of coffee.

Curtis:  Yeah. We've got two cups of coffee sitting right beside us. It's really good coffee today.

Amy:  Yeah. And we're just going to talk about some things I guess that are kind of, I don't know, that have happened recently. But they're not really topics where we can base a whole conversation around them, so we're probably going to end up talking about three or four different topics. And just kind of see where the conversation goes. So Curtis, what did we wake up to yesterday morning?

Curtis:  We woke up to, well, it looked like a lot of fog.

Amy:  And what did it smell like?

Curtis:  It smelled like a camp fire.

Amy:  What does that mean?

Curtis:  Our city was completely filled with thick forest fire smoke.

Amy:  And how has it been this year, I guess, like as you guys, anyone who's listened to the episode we had a couple episodes ago, about forest fires, we kind of talked about this, smoke being in the valley and stuff. But although we've had one of the worst forest fire seasons in history, a long history, anyway. Um, this year, despite that, we haven't had a lot of smoky days, right?

Curtis:  No. Until yesterday.

Amy:  So what...like yesterday, okay. About the smoke, I just...I don't know how to kind of describe this to people. So it was forecasted to be a sunny day, like no clouds, pure sun.

Curtis:  Clear blue sky.

Amy:  Yeah. Clear blue sky. And when I woke it was like I...I could see through the blinds, the light coming in through the blinds, that it definitely wasn't a bright sunny day.

Curtis:  No.

Amy:  And I could smell the smoke. So I wasn't surprised when I wandered out to the kitchen in the morning to start making coffee, that there was smoke. I just wasn't expecting to see as much as we saw. What was it like the day before? Like I just want to try to explain how quickly this happened. So...

Curtis:  The day before it was completely beautiful.

Amy:  Clear.

Curtis:  Clear, blue sky once again.

Amy:  Like no indication of smoke even lingering1 around the area.

End of the English podcast transcription preview to get the full transcription visit this page.

Real English Podcast Conversations Podcast

English Podcast Episode 29: Small Talk #1

28. Weddings - English Conversation Podcast Preview

August 30, 2015
00:0000:00

In the episode, we discuss weddings and talk about one that we attended recently.
Do you know what a shot gun wedding is? Hear about that and much more in this episode. For the real English tip we give you a couple of popular expressions that people use to talk about getting married.

English Podcast Transcription Preview:English conversation about weddings

Curtis:  Hey, guys, it's Curtis and I'm hanging out with Amy. We're here from Real English Conversation. And usually we like to talk about things that we're doing or have recently done. And this past weekend we went to a special event. It was a wedding. And who was it that got married, Amy?

Amy:  Well, it was a couple of friends of ours. And they're people that I guess we've both known for, I don't know, I guess our entire relationship, we've known Laura.

Curtis:  Yeah.

Amy:  And her...her new husband is Russ. And I think they've been together about five years or so.

Curtis:  Yeah.

Amy:  And then finally decided that they...they wanted to get married. Now this was a fairly quick wedding, in respect to1 wedding planning. Do you remember when we got invited to the wedding?

Curtis:  It was only three months ago.

Amy:  Yeah.

Curtis:  Yeah.

Amy:  I think it was at the beginning of June. Maybe even two and a half months.

Curtis:  Yeah.

Amy:  Yeah, so when I was actually at the wedding I was talking to one of the girls that was there. Of course, people talk about getting married and having weddings and stuff like that of their own. And this one girl that I was talking to, she was saying that her and her fiancée are...are wanting to get married, but when she started calling around trying to book a venue2 and, you know, the...the guy that makes the marriage legal...what is that called?

Curtis:  Well, a justice of the peace.

Amy:  Oh, right. That's if you don't have a religion. Like if it's not a wedding that's in a church, right?

Curtis:  Yeah. Like the pastor or priest would do that...

Amy:  Right.

Curtis:  ...and marry people if you have a religious background.

Amy:  Right. Right. You would...you would have the pastor, yeah, they would come and they say the vows3, and they have the authority, I guess, to say that this man and this woman are now husband and wife, and they're married, right?

End of the English podcast transcription preview to get the full transcription visit this page.

Real English Podcast Conversations Podcast

Additional Links:

View the English podcast episode on our website here to leave a comment on our Facebook comment area.

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Check out our Blog where Amy shares the challenges and experiences she has learning a second language.

The bonus lesson, 3 full transcriptions with slower audio can be accessed by becoming a free member here.

27. Forest Fires - Free English Conversation Episode

August 20, 2015
00:0000:00

english conversation about forest firesIn this English podcast conversation we discuss some recent forest fires that have started in the area where we live, how firefighters work against the fires and the procedures that are in place to help people and animals that need to be evacuated if a fire is near to their homes.

Check out a preview of the transcription and audio player near the bottom of this page.

Links: 

View the English podcast episode on our website here to leave a comment on our Facebook comment area.

 

Real English Conversation Tip:

Hear about what a looky-loo is and what they do when an emergency situation is happening.

Follow us on FacebookTwitter, or Google +

Additional Links:

Visit our website

Check out our Blog where Amy shares the challenges and experiences she has learning a second language.

Get access to special lessons, free resources and helpful tips that will help you to quickly improve your speaking and listening skills too! click here.

 

English Podcast Transcription Preview:

Curtis:  Hey, everybody. It's Amy and Curtis from RealEnglishConversations.com and today we're going to be talking about a natural disaster that happens in our area where we live, and it's forest fires. Now what are forest fires, Amy?

Amy:  Well, forest fires are fires obviously that start in the forest, just like it sounds. But these are...are accidents or sometimes they're caused naturally.

Curtis:  Yes.

Amy:  But it's a fire that is wild in the forest, it's...it's uncontrolled.

Curtis:  Yes.

Amy:  It's unintentional that it's there. So for example, a forest fire might start by being either human caused, which would make it an accident.

Curtis:  Yeah.

Amy:  Or it might be something in nature that has happened. So what happens in nature that causes forest fires to start?

Curtis:  Well, sometimes thunderstorms.

Amy:  Yeah.

Curtis:  Come through our area and with thunderstorms is lightning, of course.

Amy:  Yeah. And lightning strikes1a can definitely start fires.

Curtis:  Yeah.

Amy:  Like if a lightning bolt1b hits a tree it will light on fire.

Curtis:  On fire. And it's because forest fire season is in the summertime. And everything around us is super dry, so a fire will start quicker.

Amy:  Yeah. So if it has been raining, and there was a lightning strike that hit a tree in the forest, it wouldn't likely start a fire. Like it might...that tree might burn, or get charred a little bit, but it's not going to start a fire. But right now what's happened is we've had the hottest and driest summer in...isn't it over 50 years or something like that2?

Curtis:  Something like that.

Amy:  Yeah. So we've had very little rain and extremely hot temperatures, so it...in the forest, it's so dry. If there's like, for example, human caused, like a cigarette butt, a lit cigarette butt that is flicked out the window.

Curtis:  Yeah.

Amy:  And it lands in a ditch with some dry grass, what happens?

Curtis:  It takes within seconds for a fire...

Amy:  Yeah, a grass fire to start.

End of the English podcast transcription preview To get access to full transcripts, all the conversations, practice activities and more, click here.

Real English Podcast Conversations Podcast

English Podcast Episode #27: Forest Fires