Friday, September 28, 2012

two dialogues

These dialogues are taken from Tilanteesta toiseen: A Finnish Course (From one situation to another) by Salli-Marja Bessonoff and Eila Hämäläinen. The book is well worth getting as it is full of dialogues and other texts complete with lists of the new vocab and grammar explanations. There is also a number of appendices at the back of the book as well as a grammar summary for each chapter.

1: Asiakas kysyy neuvoa

Asiakas: Anteeksi, osaatteko te sanoa, missä täällä on posti?
Myyjä: Posti on aika kaukana, tuon puiston ja torin takana. Se on Torikadulla. Minulla on tässä kartta ja voin näyttää, missä se on.
Asiakas: Ahaa, tuossa. Kiitos. - Voinko minä ostaa tämän kartan?
Myyjä: Valitettavasti minulla on vain tämä, mutta tuolla aseman ulkopuolella on infopiste. Sieltä saatte kartan.
Asiakas: Aha. Ai tuolla päin?
Myyjä: Niin, tuosta ovesta.
Asiakas: Kiitos. Näkemiin.
Myyjä: Näkemiin.

1. Klient küsib nõu.

Klient: Vabandage, kas saaksite öelda, kus postkontor asub?
Müüja: Postkontor on üsna kaugel, tolle pargi ja väljaku taga. See paikneb Väljaku tänaval. Mul on kaart olemas ja võin Teile näidata, kus see on.
Klient: Ahaa, sealpool. Aitäh. - Kas ma saaksin selle kaardi osta?
Müüja: Kahjuks on mul see ainuke, aga jaamast väljas asub infopunkt. Sealt saaksite kaardi.
Klient: Ahaa, selles suunas?
Müüja: Jah, sellest uksest välja.
Klient: Aitäh teile. Nägemist.
Müüja: Nägemist.

1. A customer asks for advice.

Customer: Excuse me, can you tell me where the post office is?
Seller: The post office is quite far, behind that park and square. It's on Square Street. I have this map and I can show (you), where it is.
Customer: Ah, there. Thank you. - Can I purchase that map?
Seller: Unfortunately I only have this one, but outside the station there is an information point. You can get a map there.
Customer: Ah, this way?
Seller: Yes, out this door.
Customer: Thank you. Bye bye.
Seller: Bye bye.

2. Väärinkäsitys

A: Päivää. Minä ostaisin nämä suklaarasiat.
M: Kaksi rasiaa... Yhdeksän euroa.
A: Mutta eikö se ole vain neljä ja puoli euroa? Minulla on tämä ilmoitus.
M: Anteeksi, mikä ilmoitus?
A: Tässä on, että "kaksi yhden hinnalla".
M: Saanko katsoa? Nyt en oikein ymmärrä... Ai jaa. Kuulkaa, tämä on kaupan mainos. Meillä ei ole tällaista tarjousta.
A: No voi hyvänen aika! Miten minä nyt näin erehdyin?
M: Sattuuhan sitä. Kauppa taitaa olla jo kiinni, mutta... Tarjous on voimassa vielä huomenna. Ehditte vielä saada ne rasiat huomenna.
A: Juu, niin. Kiitos ja anteeksi nyt.
M: Ei se mitään.

2. Arusaamatus

K: Tere. Palun need šokolaadikarbid.
M: Kaks karpi... Üheksa eurot.
K: Kas see ei peaks olema ainult neli eurot ja viiskümmend senti? Mul on see kuulutus.
M: Vabandage, aga mis kuulutusest te räägite?
K: Siin see on, "kaks ühe hinnaga"
M: Kas saaksin seda näha? Ma ei saa aru, mis... Ah jaa. Kuulge, see on poekuulutus. Meil kahjuks ei ole sellist pakkumist.
S: Isver, kui rumal minust! Kuidas ma võisin teha sellise vea?
M: Pole viga, juhtub ikka. Pood on vist juba kinni, aga...  Homme on pakkumine veel kehtiv. Saaksite need karbid homme.
S: Tõesti. Tänan ja palun veelkord vabandust.
M: Pole tänu väärt.

2. Misunderstanding

C: Hello. I would like to buy these boxes of chocolate.
S: Two boxes... Nine euro.
C: But isn't it just four and a half euro? I have this advert.
S: Excuse me, what advert?
C: Here it is, "two for the price of one".
S: May I have a look? I don't quite understand....Ah yes. This is a advertisement from a store. We do not have such an offer.
C: Stupid me! How did I make such a mistake?
S: These things happen. The store is probably already closed, but... The offer will still be valid tomorrow. You'll be able to get those boxes tomorrow.
C: Indeed. Thanks and apologies.
S: Don't worry about it.


  1. This reminds me that, if I ever get serious about learning Estonian, I'm really going to have to deprogram my "always remember vowel harmony" instinct.

  2. :-D From your experience was vowel harmony a difficult concept to get used to? I'd imagine it'd make the language a little easier to reproduce as it reduces the number of possible subsequent vowels.

  3. Yes, it definitely makes things easier for exactly that reason. It was hardest to get used to in the beginning, but it became automatic quite rapidly. Although, oddly, I sometimes have a hard time with English loan words or English titles, particularly when speaking. "Pidän Vertigo..sta..stä? Ajaa, kirain 'o', okei, Vertigosta."

    It also generally makes pronunciation easier, for me at least. That's one reason why I think it might be hard to stop using it if I were to start speaking Estonian. :)

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