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By Train

You have a choice about how you want to travel, depending on cost, how quickly you want to get there, whether it is a pleasure trip or a business trip.

Comment y aller? How do I get there?
On peut y aller en train. One can go there by train.
On peut y aller en voiture. One can go there by car.
Je prefere y aller en taxi. I prefer to go there by taxi
Je prefere y aller en bus. C'est moins cher. I prefer to go there by bus. It's cheaper.
Je prefere y aller en avion. C'est plus vite. I prefer to go there by plane. It's faster.
En vacances, c'est tres ageable d'y aller en bateau. During vacation, it's very enjoyable to go there by boat.
Je travail en ville. Il faut y aller en velo. I work in the city. I have to go there by bike.
Moi aussi, mais je prefere y aller en moto. So do I, but I prefer to go there by motorcycle.
Moi je n'ai ni velo, ni moto. J'y vais a pied. I don't have a bike or a motorcycle. I go there by foot.

"Y" means there. (Remember "il y a", there is or there are?) It precedes the verb in a declarative sentence. Notice another new negative, Je ne.ni.ni. Je n'ai ni velo, ni moto. I have neither a bike nor a motorcycle. Elle n'a ni chapeau ni gants. She has neither a hat nor gloves. Practice with some other pair items.

Let's get on the train:

Je voudrais un billet, sil vous plait. I'd like one ticket, please.
Allez simple ou allez retour? One way or round trip?
Allez retour, s'il vous plait. Round trip, please.
C'est combien? How much is it?
Ca fait dix Euros, s'il vous plait. That will be ten Euros, please.
A quel heure part le prochain train? At what time does the next train leave?

(Practice this sentence with "le premier train" (the first train) and "le dernier train" the last train, or the five o'clock train. Refer to Lesson 8 for times.)

Le prochain train part a sept heures dix, dans dix minutes. The next train leaves at 7:10, in ten minutes.
Allons-y. Let's go
Il est tard. It's late.
Vites! Hurry!

Everyone likes to do something different to pass the time on a train.

Monsieur Dupres lit un roman amusant et fume sa pipe. Mr. Dupres reads an amusing novel and smokes his pipe.
Robert est fatigue et il dort. Robert is tired and he sleeps.
Madame Dupres n'est pas fatiguee et elle parle avec une autre dame. Mrs Dupres is not tired, and she is talking to another lady.

Notice once again that Robert (masculine) is "fatigue", but Madame Dupres (feminine) is not "fatiguee".

La Dame demand quel age a Robert. The lady asks how old Robert is.
Madame Dupres repond qu'il a treize ans. Mrs. Dupres replies that he is thirteen (He has thirteen years).

In French, we say that someone "has" so many years, rather than that he "is" so many years old. Practice saying how old everyone in your family is. Look at the numbers in Lessons Seven and Nineteen. Hopefully, you'll get a chance to practice some high numbers.

What Did We Learn?

  1. Comment peut-on aller a Paris? On peut y aller par _____, par _____, par_____.
  2. C'est _____ ____ d'y aller en bus.
  3. C'est plus convenable d'y aller en ____.
  4. J'y vais en _____ (your choice!)
  5. Translate:

  6. I have neither a hat nor gloves.
  7. I have neither a bicycle nor a motorcycle.
  8. How much is a ticket to Paris?
  9. What time does the next train leave?
  10. How old is Robert?
  11. Robert is ten years old.


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