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''Easier than using chopsticks!" - PETER BOCZAR, leo Burnett ltd.

includes CD
with pronunciation aid
and full-length conversations
No Swea-t Caf'\-tOf'\ese

Asia 2000 Limited
Hang Kong
2003 Amy Leung
All Rights Reserved
ISBN:962-8783-29-7
Published by Asia 2000 Ltd
lB'h Floor, Hollywood Centre,
77-91 Queen' s Road West,
Hong Kong
http:/ /www. asia2000.com. hk
Typeset in Futuro by Julia Ng
Illustrated by Sunshine Wong
Printed in Hong Kong by You Yee Printing & Binding Co. (H.K.)
First Printing 2003
Second Printing 2005
Third Printing 2007
The rights of Amy Leung to be identified as the author of this work have been asserted in
accordance with sed ion 77and 78 of the United Kingdom' s Copyright Designs and Patents
Ad 1988.
This book is sold subject to the condition that it shall not, by way of trade or otherwise,
be lent, resold hired out or otherwise circulated without the publi sher' s prior written
consent in ony form of binding or cover other than that in which it is published and without
a similar condition including this condition being imposed on the subsequent purchaser.
Contents
Preface
How to Use the Book
Basics
Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Topics
Chapter 3
Chapter 4
Chapter 5
Chapter 6
Chapter 7
Chapter 8
Chapter 9
Chapter 10
Chapter 11
Chapter 12
Chapter 13
Chapter 14
Chapter 15
Appendices
What is Cantonese?
Numbers and Things
Greetings
Physical Appearance
Transportation: Going to Work and
Going Out
Around the Home
Finding your Way
Bargaining: At the Market and Shopping
Time, Dote and Day of the Week
Going on a Business Trip
First Visit to Hong Kong
Interests and Hobbies
Weather
In the Kitchen
Chinese Dim Sum and local Cafes
Appendix I Geographical Terms
Appendix II Idioms and Slang Expressions
Appendix Ill Glossary
Appendix IV A Chinese Recipe
Acknowledgements
About the Author
vii
ix
3
15
29
47
55
67
75
83
95
105
115
129
135
145
153
168
175
182
203
205
207
Preface
1\.1 o S w e a -t: C a 1'\ -t: o 1'\ e s e is designed to help non-
Cantonese speakers from all walks of life to learn to speak the
language while having fun. While it is written primarily for
expatriate residents and frequent visitors to Hong Kong, it can
be used by anyone interested in the language. Cantonese is
spoken by over 70 million people worldwide; aside from in Hong
Kong, Cantonese is spoken in many parts of China's Guangdong
and Guangxi provinces, as well as the Special Administrative
Region of Macau. It can be heard in "Chinatowns" in cities
across the world, and it is the language of Hong Kong's cinema,
which enjoys global popularity, particularly those featuring such
stars as Jackie Chan, Maggie Cheung, Chow Yun-fat, and Alan
Tam, just to name a few.
After July 1 st, 1997, English and Mandarin became Hong
Kong's tow official languages. However, Cantonese is still the
most widely spoken dialect used in everyday life. So while
knowing Cantonese may not be essential for doing business
in Hong Kong, you will have a lot more fun living here if you
know just a little. Although many Hong Kong people, such as
taxi drivers and shopkeepers, can speak at least some English,
expatriates will find it valuable to learn some basic Cantonese
phrases in order to find their way around. It is especially useful
while shopping at the market and for those who live on outlying
islands such as Lantau, Lamma and Cheung Chou, where the
use of English is more li mited. Speaking Cantonese may even
help break the ice at parties and among your co-workers in
the office, and earn you respect for your efforts. The local people
might have a laugh at your expense but they will certainly
appreciate your trying to speak their language.
This book has been written to guide you through learning
Cantonese in on enjoyable way. The chapters ore arranged by
"topics" or situations that arise most frequently in everyday
life. Each provides you with a list of useful words and phrases
so that you con speak with confidence local people. Guided
conversations, which ore accompanied by the CD recording,
help place what you hove learned into living context. In addition,
there ore explanations of grammar and sentence patterns for
your complete understanding of Cantonese. Lost but not least,
pop-up boxes containing fun and useful information on the
rituals of work, ploy and love guide you towards fully immersing
yourself in local culture.
So let's start learning Cantonese in a fun new way!
Amy Leung
Hong Kong
How to Use This Book
Over the years that I spent training non-Chinese students in
the Cantonese language. I come to realize that that there was a
Strong demand for on up-to-dote textbook focusing on the
Practical needs of expatriates. What's more, it needed to be
Presented in a manner that mode Cantonese. "that impossible
Language!" - easy and enjoyable to learn.
This book meets that demand. With its emphasis on
vocabulary and practical application, it is suitable for learners at
both beginner's and intermediate levels, as well as those more
advanced learners who simply wont to brush up on what they
already know. The unique integration of "pop-up" cultural boxes
with the more conventional elements of the textbook should guide
the business traveler, expatriate resident and anyone else keen
to learn Cantonese in the practical usage of newly acquired
vocabulary and phrases.
No Swea-t Car"li:Or"lese consists of a textbook and
a CD recording . The four elements to the textbook- Lingo,
Chit Chat, One-liners and Grammatical Notes - present
Vocabulary, guided conversation, useful expressions and basic
Grammar to the student. They should be approached in that
Sequence by beginners, who con then follow through the book
In its logical order.
Whenever you see the recording icon{) , you should
follow the text while listening to the pronunciation of the native
speaker on the CD, then repeat several times. You should keep
returning to the recordings to check the accuracy of yours
pronunciation. The CD begins with a brief introduction and
then continues into chapter 1 .Each subsequent chapter has its
own separate track on the CD e.g. for chapter 2 ploy track 2.
All of the Cantonese vocabulary is written phonetically.
Listening to the CD while studying the text will allow you to
become familiar with the method that I have used. On a few
occasions, I have used a colloquial pronunciation, rather than
the exact pronunciation, when the former is in general use in
Hong Kong.
For intermediate to advanced learners, the textbook serves
as a unique reference work on everyday language and culture,
and can be used according to individual needs. The recording
can also be used independently of the textbook - for instance,
while driving in the car or flying on a plane - as a way to keep
you thinking and pronouncing correctly in Cantonese.
In addition, the appendices are a useful reference for
students at all levels. The city and country names in Appendix I
are listed in the alphabetical order of their Cantonese
pronunciation, so as to promote listening comprehension. The
idioms and slang expressions in Appendix II are arranged
according to common theme. Appendix Ill serves as a mini
dictionary of all the vocabulary introduces in each chapter.
It takes time to learn a language. I suggest that you use
the CD and the textbook together at least three times a week
for 20 to 30 minutes to get the best results. Time management
is also important. To increase the frequency of your exposure
to the material, you may wish to regularly listen to the recording
on your way to work. Finally, learning requires a fun attitude
toward practice. The best way to learn effectively is to practice
loudly and unabashedly with friends or with co-workers every
chance you get.
13>asics
I
J What is Cantonese?
Cantonese is the most widely spoken dialect used in everyday
life in Hong Kong. It is a dialect of Chinese, a "tonal " language
- the meaning of the word depends on the tone used to
pronounce it (see 1 . 1 ). Chinese dialects are a closely related
group of languages which share a similar writing system of
" characters" , but which are spoken differently. The precise
number of these dialects is the subject of debate - there are
essentially seven main languages (including Cantonese) and
perhaps two hundred minor ones.
1 .1 What are Tones?
Tones are the most troublesome aspect of learning to speak
Cantonese for native English speakers. While Chinese grammar
is much simpler than that of English, tones provide a more
than adequate challenge for the novice. However, after a few
weeks or months you will have mastered the tones, and will be
able to pronounce Cantonese with confidence, astounding your
English-speaking friends in the process.
A tone is the relative pitch in the range of one' s voice.
While in English varying the pitch of one' s voice is used for
emphasis or to form a question, pronounci ng a Cantonese
word with a high pitched voice is almost certain to give the
word a different meaning than saying the same vowels and
consonants with a lower pitched voice. While other Asian
languages, e.g. Thai and Vietnamese, also make use of tones,
modern Cantonese has seven tones, which is more than most
other languages, making it difficult for most beginners to learn.
In Cantonese, the same vowels and consonants pronounced
with different tones can have six or seven different meanings.
An example of this is the word "Si :"
3
No Swea-t Can-tonese
Tone How the Cantonese Meaning
word is wriHen in the
Roman alphabet
High Falling Si or Si Poem
High
High Rising
Si Feces
Middle
Si Try
Low Falling
Slh Time
Low Rising
Sih City
Low
Sih Matter
To help you pronounce as you read we will use the following
system of writing tones.
1. For the high tones, we put the appropriate tone mark on
the top of the first vowel/final.
2. For the middle tone, there is no tone mark at all.
3. For low falling/rising tones, we put "h" after the vowel!
final. plus the appropriate tone mark.
4. For the low tone, we put "h" after the vowel/final.
4
Chap-ter/ wha-t is Can-tonese?
The following graphic illustrates the range of tones in
Cantonese:
--=--------
Q)
Cl
r:::
e
t




~ . ~ ;
High or High
Falling (Si or
Sl)
Middle (Si)
One simplification for the purposes of this book is that we will
not distinguish between the High Falling and High tones, as
for most speakers there is no audible difference. Therefore,
practically speaking, the number of tones is reduced to six.
See, it' s easier already!
5
1\/o Swea-t Can-tonese
TONAL TROUBLES
You may have heard from friends who have had some
exposure to Cantonese that occasionally, this aspect of the
language can lead to some interesting situations - either
amusing or embarrassing depending on your perspective.
Here are a few examples:
A
Ordering a Hot Dog - One of my students went Ia a cafe
to order a hat dog. Eager to practice Cantonese, he
confidently spoke the words that I had taught him the day
before. Unfortunately he made a slight mistake in the lone,
and asked instead for a "hot male organ". The staff couldn' t
help laughing but my student wasn' t embarrassed, as he knew
that practicing is the only way to learn a language.
The Canadian and The Armpit- Another of my students
was looking for his Canadian colleague at work and he used
the wards he had just learned to ask his Chinese colleague,
"Where is the Canadian guy?" However, he used the wrong
tone, and actually said, "Where is Mr. Armpit?" They all had
a laugh.
"Light up" before you "Hit the plane" - One time,
someone asked my student whether he had a lighter.
However, my student thought he said, "Hit the plane"- which
happens to be slang for "masturbate." He immediately
punched the unsuspecting smoker. The pronunciation is so
similar that he mistook it as something rude. It took him a
while to clear himself out of that mess!
... ~ ~
6
Chllpter 1 Wh;Jt is Cllntonese!
1 .2 Pronunciation Drill
Now try the following Pronunciation Drill (I promise not to hove
too many of these) . Repeat a few times after the recording,
then try it on your own:
High High Middle Low Low Low
Rising Falling Rising
Ba ba ba bah bah bah
Do do do doh doh doh
Si si si sih sih sih
Po pa pa pah pah pah
Gwa gwa gwa gwah gwah gwah
Syu syu syu syuh syuh syuh
Fan fan fan fohn fohn fohn
Congratulations! You' ve now correctly pronounced all six tones
for the first time! Just do that whenever you speak Cantonese,
and things will go smoothly.
7
0
N o Swe<!f C<!nfonese
1.3 Initials and Finals
In addition to tones, we have 19 Initials and 51 Finals in
Cantonese. Initials are the consonants that make up the be-
ginning of the syllable. Finals are the vowels and consonants
that make up the end of the syllable.
To summarize:
1. Initial = the beginning sound of the syllable.
2. Final = the ending sound of the syllable.
3. Tone mark = the relative pitch of the syllable.
Here are three examples of syllables:
tone mark
I
I\
initial final
initial final
initial final
8
Good
Good looking
Good quality
I, me
High tone
Middle tone
low tone
Ch<Jpfer 1
Wh<Jt is C<Jnfonese!
1.3.1 Initials
Here is a list of all the Initials you will find in Cantonese.
Initial Cantonese
Meaning Chinese
0
example
b be father

p pa
be afraid of
lie
d de dozen
n
ta he
flt!
g go home

k ka carriage
* fa flower
:
h he shrimp
Ji
n nah Ia take

Ia please
om
ja to drive
m
ch cha bad

m me mother
Ill
ng ngah teeth

gw gwa melon

kw kwa to climb over

sa sand
)Ul
w wah to say

y
yah also
tE
9
No Swe<Jt C<Jntonese
1.3.2 Finals
Here is a list of all the Finals you will find in Cantonese.
Q
Final
Cantonese
Meaning Chinese
example
The
0 fa flower
it:
single
ooi mooi to buy

and
double
Mil
"a "
oou beau bread
finals
oom sa om three
a on do on bill
m
oong haohng to walk fj
oak book hundred
i3
oop ngoop duck
!PI
a at boat eight
n
au gau nine
tl
om
sam heart
/{j
on
san
new
iii
ong
dang
light
m
ok
dak
OK

at
mat
what
h
oi
soi
small
fall
op
jap
juice
>t
10
Ch<Jpfer 1 Wh<Jt is C<Jnfonese!
Final Cantonese Meaning Chinese
0
example
e che car
m
The
ek sek
kiss

''e"
finals
eng I eng good looking

eu heu boot
II:
euk jeuk to wear

eung leuhng two (a couple)
m
ei bei
to give
tt
eui heui to go
n
eun seun letter
~
eut cheut exit
ll
si to try
~
The
"i"
iu siu laugh
~
finals
im
tihm
sweet
m
in
sin
first
~
ip dip plate
li}ll
it
yiht
hot
im
ing bing
ice
~
ik
sik
can/ able to
6M
11
No 5we;;t C;;ntonese
0
Final Cantonese Meaning Chinese
example
The
0 go song
11!
''o"
oi hoi
rm
finals
open
on gon dry

ong mohng busy
ijt
ot hot thirsty
Ill
ok lohk to get off
>1!
ou h6u good
lH
The
u fu biller
a
"u"
finals
ui bui cup

un bon to move

ut fut wide
Ill
ung dung cold
)m
uk ok house

The
yu syo book
il
"y"
It
finals
yun syOn sour
yut syut snow

12
Ch;Jpter 1 Wh<1t is C<1ntonese!
fa an
sOan
The Finals p, t, and k are "unreleased." These sounds are
pronounced as b, d and g in English.
The Initial < ng > can always be omitted . E.g. ng6h can be
pronounced as 6h.
The Initial <ch> reads as <ts > in Engl ish.
The Initial <n> may be pronounced as < I> , but not vice
versa , e .g. neih ("you") can be pronounced as lei h, but
lei , which is "pear" in Engl ish, shouldn' t be pronounced
as nei .
The Finals <aa > and < a >:
The vowel length of the Final could affect the pronuncia-
tion of the syllable. For example, a long vowel has a weak
ending and a short vowel has a strong ending.
(go)
~
fan (to divide)
fl
(mountain)
lll
sCm (new)
~
boon (class)
m
ban (run)
~
", .................. ~ ~ ~ ~ . . _ ~ , ... ._
Now that you can pronounce Cantonese words without diffi-
culty (or without too much difficulty), you're ready to begin to
learn how to make actual words and sentences!
Go to the next chapter and speak loudly and clearly!!!
13
2 Numbers and Things
For the first 9,999 numbers, the Chinese counting system looks
just like the one you are probably familiar with. From 10,000
onwards, things start getting complicated. However, once you've
been introduced to the basic concept behind the Chinese count-
ing system, you'll be counting sheep in Cantonese in no time.
2.1 Numbers
Here is a list of cardinal numbers (numbers we usually use for
counting) in Cantonese:
1 yat 20 yih sohp
=+
2 yih 30 scam sohp
=+
3 scam
40 sei sohp
lm+
4 sei
1m
50 ngh sohp
11+
5 ngh
11
60 luhk sohp
i\+
6 luhk
i\
7 chat
t:
250 yih book ngh
=s11+
8 boot
{\
sohp
(2x100+50)
9 g6u
1l
10 sohp
+
303 scam book
=a=
0 llhng

llhng saom
(3x100+3)
100 yot book
-8
1000 yo! chln
-=f
10000 yo! moohn
-
10002 yo! moohn llhng yih (1 0000+2)
-=
100,000 sohp moohn
+M
1,000,000 yo! book moohn
-sa
10,000,000 yo! chln moohn
-=fii
100,000,000 yat ylk
-fl
15
0
No Swei/t Ci!nfonese
Q
......... ...
When learning Ia count, children in Hong Kong recite their
numbers in a "nursery rhyme: "
1, 2, 3
3, 2, 1
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7
yot yih scam
scam yih yot
yot yih scam sei
ngh luhk chat
... which is sung to the same tune as " This old man, he played
one, he played Knick Knack on my drum."
Counting system comparison:
You may have noticed that the Chinese have a word for
10,000, maahn. Maahn acts as a counting unit just like sahp
(1 0), back (1 00) and chin (1 ,000) do.
To summarize, here is a comparison of the Chinese and
Western counting systems:
Chinese Western
Sahp
10
+
ten
Back
100
i3
hundred
Chin
1,000
=f
thousand
Maahn
10,000

ten thousand
Sahp maahn
100,000
+M
hundred thousand
Yet back maahn
1,000,000
-sM
1 million
Yet Yik
100,000,000
-m
lOOmillion
16
CJ.,apter2 NUMBers and 17-.int;,s
Building numbers :
Sahp yet 10 + 1
+-
Yih sahp scam 2x10+3
-+=
--
Yet back llhng chat 1 X 100 + 0 + 7

Yet back chat sahp 1 X 100 + 70
-st::+
Yet maahn llhng chat 1 X 10,000 + 7
-MIJ!t::
"Yih" and " Leuhng " compared :
In Cantonese, we have 2 words for the number "2:"
"Yih" (=) is used for numbers such as 2.
e .g My telephone number is 2345-6677 (yih scam sei ngh luhk
luhk chat chat)
"Leuhng" is used for persons or objects before the classi-
fier(see 2.2) .
e.g Leuhng gihn Sci do si.
(Two French toast please.)
Remember: "leuhng" is not used for specifying pairs of things
such os o pair of trousers, o pair of glosses, etc. because you
can' t spl it them aport. The word for "pair" is the classifier "deui"
(see 2.2) .
17
No 5we;Jt Ciinfonese

LUCKY NUMBERS
Despite their worldliness, Hong Kong people con be quite
superstitious. like in many other cultures, they believe in lucky
numbers. But unlike other cultures, these auspicious (or
inauspicious) numbers are chosen for their similarities in pro-
nunciation to other words. The most common ore:
Number Implied meaning Synonym
8 boot prosperous
g)
foot
18 sohp boot certain prosperity .g}saht foot
28 yih sohp boot easily prosper
9 g6u forever

g6u
3 sO am life

sOong
4 sei die/ death
9E
sei
14 sahp sei certain death II9Esaht slii
24 yih sohp sei easily die sei
That' s why some Hong Kong buildi ngs don't hove the 14th floor,
just like some Western buildings lock the 13th. Some people
even pay for license plates that have especially auspicious num-
bers on them. I used to work for a company in New Zealand
that sold such license plates. Prices ranged between a few hun-
dred to millions of New Zealand dollars!
-'11! ....... _____ 7111111- .....
Practice:
Try these on your own, then listen to the answer on the tape.
a)
b)
c)
18
17
68
305
d)
e)
f)
271
9,800
41,622
Cf.,apter2 A.lum5ers and 1J.,ir'o4s
2.2 Classifiers
A classifier is a measuring word that helps describe the quan-
tity of a noun.
It is used in the following way:
For example:
cardinal number + classifier + noun
one/a piece of toast
yet gihn do sf
The word "gihn" is the classifier of toast (do sf) .
one/a bowl of rice
yet wtJn foehn
The word "wun" is the classifier of rice (foehn).
Classifiers usually describe the shape, size or function of the
noun. Their assignment to specific nouns is sometimes logical
(i .e. you can have either a stick or a block of wood depending
on the visible shape of the object), and sometimes idiomatic
(i.e. the combination of the classifier and the noun is specific to
the language) . Being a particularly idiomatic language,
Cantonese tends to have many of the latter. Also, unlike English,
every noun denoting an object or a concept must be described
by a classifier in Cantonese.
((
19
No 5wei!f Ciinfonese
Here are a few more classifiers:
Bun
Go
Ji
nuh
Goon
Go
Jek
Gihn
Cheut
Fohn
Deui
20
1m
1JD
Tn
II
1!f:
ttl
fn
lj
for books (syu), magazines (jaahp ji)
publications, etc.
for persons, roundish objects, such as
oranges, small equipment (clock)
literally a "bottle", e.g. "Yet ji j<iu" means
"a bottle of wine". It is also used as a
classifier for long, slender and inflexible
objects such as cigarettes (yin)
for objects that are long and slender but
flexible such as trousers (fu) , necklace
(gE'mglin), dress (kwahn), fish such as
salmon (scam mahn yu), etc.
for buildings and contructians such as a
house (uk), companies or department
stores (gOngsi)
for machinery such as aircraft (fei-gei),
radio (sou yam gei), television (dihn sih),
etc.
for animals (excluding human beings),
ships (syuhn), utensils such as forks (cha)
and knives (dou), or songs (go), etc.
for clothes (scam) and individual garments
such as suit (sci jong)
for movies (hei)
for newspapers (boji), job (gung)
a pair, e.g. of shoes (yet deui haaih)
CJ.,apterZ
2.3 Ordinal Numbers
When a cardinal number is preceded by "Daih," it becomes an
ordinal.
Daih yat the first
Daih yih the second
.. . and so on.
In order to say the equivalent of "the first one/ piece/ etc." in
Cantonese you add the appropriate classifier after the ordinal :
e.g. Daih yih tiuh (kwohn) The second one (dress)
Daih sei jek (syuhn) The fourth one (ship)
This means that, in Cantonese, the word "one" in the sentence
"the first one" will always be the classifier relevant to the noun
you are talking about .
2.
,, __ _. .................. ....
21
No Swe<Jf C<Jnfonese
2.4 Specifiers and Money Terms
Specifiers:
Specifiers indicate to a particular noun (singular or plural
form) that you may be pointing to.
Ni-go this (one)
11Ft11
Ni-di these (ones) llftQ1
G6-go that (one)
PlmliJ
G6-di those (ones)
PI!@
Money terms:
The word "go" is also used when talking about money. To
begin with:
10 cents yet houh
-
20 cents *leuhng houh
JJ.j.
30 cents scam houh
=
40 cents sei houh
flY.
dollar man

half bun
*
*20 cents is read as "leuhng houh" rather than "yih houh"
(i .e. a pair x 10 cents, and not 2 x 10 cents) .
Leuhng is also used for telling the time as well. Details will be
discussed in a later chapter.
22
Chapter 2
We use "go" to express amounts of money with decimal places:
$7.50
$11.40
$30.20
Chat go bun
Sohp yat go sei
Saom sohp go llhng yih
How did that go again?
The formula:
number of dollars + decimal (go) + number of nhouh"
1. Think of "go" as the decimal point.
2. Build the number by saying the number of dollars + "go"
+ the number of "houh" (tens of cents) .
3. Omit the number of dollars (i .e. just say "go" + number of
"houh") if the number of whole dollars is one:
$1 .20 Goyih (the number "1" can be omitted)
4. If the number of dollars is a multiple of ten ($1 0, $20, $30
etc.) put lihng (0) after the word "go" :
$30.20 Scam sahp go lihng yih
5. The unit for dollar (man) must be used if the amount of
money is in whole dollars:
$30 Scam sahp man
23
0
No Swei/t Ciinfonese
To sum up:
$1.50 Go bun
11$
$2.30 Leuhng go scam

$2.40 Leuhng go sei

$79 Chat sohp g6u
t::+1l
$25.40 Yih sohp ngh go sei
=+nilll!l
Estimates :
When estimating amounts, substitute the word " gei" for the
number you ore uncertain about :
$1 ? Sohp ge i man ten odd dollars

$ ?0 Gei sohp man several tens of dollars

$1?? Book gei man hundred something dollars

$?00 Gei book man several hundreds of dollars

$1 , ??? Chi n gei man thousand something dollars
$? ,??0 Gei chin man several thousands of dollars
$1 ?,??? Moohn gei ten thousand something

man dollars
$??,??0 Gei moohn several tens of thousands

man of dollars
24
Chap-ter 2.
Practice :
Try to pronounce these on your own, then listen to the answer
on the tape:
a) $1.30 d) $1.50
b) $2.80 e) $40.20
c) $130 f) $600
Congratulations! You' ve mastered the basics of Cantonese. See,
no sweat!
Now you' re ready to learn to speak Cantonese in a variety of
everyday situations. Turn the page and have fun!
25
Topics
No Swe<tf C<tnfonese
Chit Chat kinggai
Nationalities <m1J6) gwok jihk:
Name or Verb "to be"
Nationality
pronoun ?
fl
haih II{*
tPmiA
Ng6h (is, am, are)
JOnggwok yahn
{I)
(Chinese)
haih
Tim
Yinggwok yahn
iQmiA
haih
(British)
Robert
Oi yi laahn yahn
fifllill
haih
{Irish)
Tara
Meih gwok yahn

haih
(American)
Barry
Ganahdaaih yahn
haih
(Canadian)
Renate
Dak gwok yahn

haih
(German)
Hayashida
Yaht bun yahn
BztiA
haih
(Japanese)
Ram
Yon douh yahn
EOliA
haih
{Indian)
Sophie
Foal gwok yahn
5fim11A
haih
(French)
Julian
Lauhsailaahn yahn fmilifliA
haih
(New Zealander)
Leslie
Ou jau yahn
itfJHHA
(Australian)
30
Chap-ter 3 t=.ree-tinc,s
Languages ~ ~ ) yuh yihn :
0
Neih sik g6ng
Gw6ngdung w<i
(Cantonese)
(you) (can) (speck) 1 1 1 m ~
fffi iii 61
P6utung w<i
(Mandarin)
M D ~
Yingm<in
(English)
e.g.
145<
Richard sik g6ng
Ychtm<in
(Japanese)
8)(
Hohngm<in
(Korean)
M><
Oakman
(German)
fi)(
Factm<in
>n><
(French)
31
No 5we<Jt C<Jntonese
0
Professions jik yihp:
Leuht si
f!Bili
Lawyer
Gfng cheat

Police
Yf sang
gg:
Doctor
GOng chihng si

Engineer
Sip yfng si

Photographer
Ging leih

Manager
Ch6i kau ging leih

Purchasing
Manager
Wuih gai si

Accountant
L6uh boon

Boss
Haahng gaai
fjffj Sales
Sfh cheuhng teui
i'fHJUft Iii
Marketing
gw6ng
Gei je

Journalist
L6uh si

Teacher
Fu jung choih
iiiUfl!ii
Vice President
Sou jihk jyu joih
00111
Chief Representative
yuhn

Hung je

Flight attendant
Gei si
IIIBili
Pilot
Gei jeung

Captain
Chit gai si

Designer
Gw6ng gou
rli3
Advertising
Mouh dahk yih

Model
Yin yuhn

Actor I Actress
32
CJ.,ap-ter 3
C.reetif14s
Conventions for greetings:
1. In the morning, we greet someone with "J6u sahn" or " Neih
h6u" and you should reply with the same phrase to be polite.
2. Nowadays, in the afternoon, instead of saying "ngh on, "
which is more formal , we use the colloquial way of greeting,
"sihk j6 faahn meih a?" which means " have you eaten?" in
English. This especially applies to greeting your colleagues or
friends.
3. In Cantonese, the greeting expression " j6u tau" means "good
night" in English and is used before bedtime.
4 . " Do jeh" is used to express your thanks for a gift, money or
gratitude for some special favour, compliments and invitations,
etc. " Mh goi " is used when tea or some other object e.g
cigarettes (a favorite of Chi nese businessmen) is offered.
Alternatively, you say " Mh goi " to thank someone for his or
her service. For example, after your hair is done at the salon,
you should say " Mh goi " to the stylist . However, if they ask
you for $300 for the bill , they have to say " Do jeh" and not
"Mh goi ." The most common way of answering " Do jeh" or
"Mh goi" is "Mh sci ," which means " it' s my pleasure" or " not
at all. "
5. " Deui mh jyuh" or "Mh h6u yi si " are expressions for apolo-
gizing and are both equivalent to the English "sorry." However,
"Mh h6u yi si " is only used for minor apologies; for example,
when you step lightly on someone's foot or elbow someone
in the MTR. " Deui mh jyuh" i s used to apologise for more
seri ous offenses, e.g. if you break someone' s Japanese
camera. Then you should say " Deui mh jyuh" because cam-
eras are usually expensive. In response to both of the above
expressions, we use "Mh gan yiu," which means " never mind"
or " it doesn' t matter."
33
No Swe<Jt C<Jntonese
6. The phrase "Neih h6u me? " translates as "how are you."
However, the correct way to respond to the local Chinese is
"Youh sam" (you are kind to ask, literally "you have a heart")
and not "Do jeh" or "Mh goi ."
7. The word "Mh goi " can be translated as "please" or "excuse
me" and can be put before or after questions or requests to
make them more polite.
8. In Cantonese, we simply use "me," "a" or "go" at the end of
a sentence to indicate that it is a question. E.g. "Neih h6u
me? " The word "me" is a question word and simply means
"?" (see 0 . 1 ).
9. There is another subtle difference to watch out for :
Neih h6u me?
Neih dfm a?
means "how are you?"
also means "how are you? "
but in an informal way, i.e you already know that person. It
is similar to the greeting "How' s it going?" in English.
10. The word "ne" means "how about" in English. E.g "How
about Patrick?" is translated as "Patrick ne?"
11 . "La" is a particle placed at the end of the sentence that
indicates the development of a new situation. e .g sihk j6 Ia .
(from not eaten to eaten) - It' s been eaten.
34
Chapter 3
B. Chit Chat
1. A businessman greets a client in the meeting room.
B: Businessman (seung yahn) C: Client (hook)
B: J6u sahn.
(Good morning.)
C: J6u sahn.
(Good morning.)
B: Neih h6u ma?
(How are you?)
C: Ng6h h6u, yauh sam, neih ne?
(I am fine, thanks, and you?)
B: Ng6h h6u, yauh sam.
(I ' m fine, thank you.)
2 . Self-introduction.
A: Siu je, gwai sing a?
(Excuse me, miss/madam. What's your surname?)
B: Ng6h sing Leuhng. Neih ne?
(My surname is Leung. How about you?)
A: Ng6h sing Schumann. Leuhng siu je neih h6u.
(My surname is Schumann. Nice to meet you, Miss
Leung.)
B: Schumann sin saang neih h6u.
(Nice to meet you, Mr. Schumann.)
35
No Swe<1f C<infonese
In Chinese, businessmen and others who engage in formal con- r
versat ion address each other by their surnames first , followed
by the appropriate title (Ms. Mr., Dr.).
3. Introducing another person.
A: Dang ng6h laih gaai siuh. Ni wei haih Ziemann
slnsoang.
(Let me introduce. This is Mr. Ziemann.)
B: Ziemann slnsoang neih h6u.
(Nice to meet you, Mr. Ziemann.)
A: Ziemann slnsoang haih Ylnggwok yahn. Keuih slk
gong Ylngman tuhng Gw6ngdung we.
(Mr. Ziemann is English. He can speak English and
Cantonese.)
4 . Chatting informally with colleagues.
Lauren is chatting with Mike in the office.
L: Neih h6u, Mike. Neih sihk j6 foehn meih a?
(Hello, Mike, have you eaten?)
M: Sihk j6 Ia.
(I have eaten already.)
L: Hoi bin douh a?
(Whereabouts?)
M: Hoi Yuhng Gei.
(At Yung Kee.)
36
CJ.,ap-ter 3
5. In the elevator.
A: Siu je, ngoh bong neih Ia?
(Miss, allow me to help you.)
B: Mh goi.
(Thank you.)
A: Siu je, neih giu mat yeh menQ a?
(Miss, what is your name?)
B: Ngoh giu Kathie.
(My name is Kathie.)
A: Neih jouh bin hohng go?
(What do you do?)
B: Ngoh haih Leuhtsl.
(I am a Lawyer.)
A: Neih hou.
(Nice to meet you.)
B: Neih hou.
(Nice to meet you.)
6. Romance .
Anthony is chatting with Debbie, a Eurasian.
A: Siu je, neih slk rhh slk gong Gwongdung w6 a?
(Miss, can you speak Cantonese?)
D: Sik, ngoh slk gong Gwongdung w6.
(Yes, I can speak Cantonese.)
A: Siu je, neih giu mat yeh meng a?
(What is your name, Miss?)
37
N o Sweii f Ciinfonese
D: Ng6h giu Debbie. Neih ne?
(My nome is Debbie. How about you?)
A: Ng6h giu Anthony. Neih di Gw6ngdung wa h6u h6u wo.
Ng6h h6 mh h6 yi cheng neih yam yeh a?
(Anthony. You speak Cantonese very well! Con I buy you
a drink?)
D: Gam ... h6u a.
(Well .. . ok.)
A: Gam, Debbie. Neih yauh m6uh naohm pahng yauh a?
(Well, Debbie. Do you hove a boyfriend?)
D: Yauh!
(Yes, I do!) '
... ...

38
CHINESE ROMANCE
Chinese women are generally more passive than western women
in starting a relationship. Some are more "mysterious:" in other
words, hide their feelings and are less straightforward than
western women. And they tend to appreciate a patient and hon-
est man. Therefore, if you try to buy her a drink in a bar or osk
for a date and are turned down by her, it doesn' t necessarily
mean she wants to be rude or discouraging to you. Her behav-
ior may be due to cultural difference instead.
Chapter 3
7 . Saying goodbye.
A: Do jeh neih cheng ng6h sihk faahn.
(Thank you for inviting me for dinner.)
B: Mh sai.
(It' s my pleasure.)
A: Baai baai .
(Goodbye.)
B: Baai baai .
(Goodbye.)
C. One-liners
Fill in the blanks with information about yourself.
1. Cheng mahn gwai sing a?
(May I ask what your surname is?)
2. Ng6h sing (surname).
(My surname is .)
3. Neih giu mat yeh meng a?
(What is your name?)
4. Ng6h giu (name).
(My name is .)
5. Neih jouh bin hohng a?
(What do you do?)
6. Ng6h haih (profession).
Ng6h jouh (business fielclj .
(My profession is .)
39
No 5we<J t C<Jn tonese
7. Neih sik gong mot yeh we a?
(What languages can you speak?)
8. Ngoh sik gong (language) .
(I can speak .)
9. Ni go haih ngoh koat pin.
(This is my name card.)
1 O.Neih sik mh sik (Robert) a?
(Do you know (Robert)?)
ll .Neih haih mh haih (Yinggwok) yahn a?
(Are you from (England)?)
12.Neih sik mh sik gong (Gwongdung we) a?
(Can you speak (Cantonese)?
13.Yeuh mouh yahn sik gong Gwongdung we a?
(Is there anyone who can speak Cantonese?)
14.Ngoh cheng neih sihk faahn Ia.
(Let me take you out for lunch/dinner.)
....
40
THE RITUAL OF FIGHTING OVER THE BILL
At both informal and formal dinners between business
associates, you will often see businessmen get into frightfully
loud arguments over who gets to pay. They are not really fighting;
this is the Chinese way of giving the other person face by letting
him pay for the meal. Or, conversely, of saving face by grabbing
the bill out of the other person' s hands. Meanwhile, the wait-
ress will stand smilingly to the side and enjoy the show!

CJ,ap-ter 3
D. Grammatical Notes
1. Final particles:
Cantonese has a number of particles that are used to express
mood. They are placed at the end of a sentence. The use of a
different particle at the end of sentence changes the meaning
of the sentence, even though all of the other words may be the
same. While English speakers use voice inflection to change
the connotation of a sentence, Cantonese speakers use indi-
vidual particles.
Here are some of the most common particles:
1. [l!2f "a" is used at the end of a yes-or-no question,
and can also mean "?" at the end of other
sentences.
e.g. Neih slk mh slk Eric a?
(Do you know Eric?)
2. Dffl " Ia" is used when you invite or suggest people
to do certain things.
e.g. Ng6h deih heui sihk faahn Ia.
(Let's go to have dinner.)
3. 11Ft "ne" means "how about" in English.
e.g. Peter ne?
(How about Peter?)
4. Ill "Ia" implies changing the situation.
e.g. Ng6h sihk j6 faahn Ia.
(I have eaten.)
41
No Swe:;t C:;ntonese
2 . Yes/No questions and answers :
"Mh" is a negating word and is always placed before the noun
or adjective to make it negative.
e.g. Ngoh sik gong Gwongdung w6.
(I know how to speak Cantonese.)
Ng6h mh sik gong Footman.
(I don' t know how to speak French.)
One way to build a yes-or-no question is to use this simple
formula :
(Addressee) +verb/adjective + mh+verb/adjectiye +a?
e.g. Neih sihk mh sihk aan a?
(you) (eat) (not) (eat lunch) (Question word)?
= Are you going to eat lunch?
g "Sihk aan" means eat lunch. Remember to only take the
first syllable to make up a yes-or-no question, i.e. "sihk mh
sihk aan" and NOT "sihk aan mh sihk aan."
e.g. Seung mh seung yet chaih sihk aan a?
(wont) (or not wont) (together) (eat lunch/ oction)(Question word)?
= Want to eat lunch together?
Here are some other examples.
Neih sik mh sik wohng siu je a?
(Do you know Miss Wong?)
Neih haih mh haih Ganahdaaih yahn a?
(Are you from Canada?)
Neih sik mh sik gong Yahtm6n a?
(Can you speak Japanese?)
42
Tip: To form a
quest ion, only re-
peat the first syllable
of the verb/ adjective
before "Mh", i.e !1Q!
sik gong Mh sik
gong, but rather sik
Mh sik gong.
CAap-ter 3 c=.ree-tinc.s
To change a Cantonese statement involving the verb "to have"
(Y6uh) or the phrase "There is/are," use this formula :
(Addressee/Pronoun) + yauh m6uhg + noun + a?
e .g. Neih y6uh m6uh sinsoang a?
(you) (have) (nat have)(husband) (Question word)?
= Do you have a husband?
Y6uh m6uh Gw6ngdOngw6 syu a?
(have) (not have)(Cantonese book) (Question word)?
= Do you have a Cantonese book?
Y6uh m6uh sip ying si a?
(have) (not have)(photographer)(Question word)?
= Are there any photographers?
Answering a Yes-or-no question
"Yciuh"
'' to have" and
"M6uh" means
" not have; "
never say " Mh

In English, we can simply say "yes" or "no" for an answer. In
Cantonese, however, our answer to the question depends on
the verb/adjective used in the question.
e .g. Neih haih rhh haih gei je a?
(Are you the journalist?)
Yes = Haih (literally: Yes, I am)
No = Mh haih (literally: No, I'm not)
Neih sik rhh sik g6ng Yingm6n a?
(Can you speak English?)
Yes = Sik (literally: Yes, I can)
No = Mh sik (literally: No, I can' t)
Neih yauh m6uh neuih pohng y6uh a?
(Do you have a girlfriend?)
Yes: Y6uh (literally: Yes, I have)
No: M6uh (literally: No, I don't have)
43
No Swe<Jt C<Jntonese
3. Chinese names:
Chinese names are made up of 2, 3 or even 4 syllables and
they follow a structure that is different from that of English names.
The surname always comes before the given names, which is
the opposite of how names are said and written in English.
Addressing people by their titles follows the same structure.
e.g. Leuhng Wai-wai ' s surname is Leung and her given
names are Wai-wai.
"Leuhng sin saang" is a gentlemen whose surname is
11
leung."
" Leuhng sfu je'' is a lady whose surname is "Leung".
Some people's surnames have two syllables, e.g. the surname
"Si-touh" (Seto/Szeto) .
... ...
While addressing your own wife, it is common to use "toai t6ai "
or "16uh p6h." However, you may also come across the word
"jyu faahn p6" (literally, "rice-cooking woman"). This used to
mean "housewife" in Cantonese. Nowadays, since women ore
pervasive throughout the business world in Hong Kong, this
phrase may no longer be appreciated!
When addressing a woman and you are not sure whether
she is married or single, it is better to say "siu je'' (Miss) to her.
Otherwise you might offend her, for even though she may be
over 50 years old she may still be single .
. _ ..... _____
5. Cheng:
The verb "Cheng" means " please" or "to invite" in different
contexts.
e.g. Ng6h cheng neih sihk faahn.
(I'll invite you to a meal.)
44
Cheng ch6h Ia.
(Please take a seat .)
CAap-ter 3
5. Personal Pronouns:
Cantonese personal pronouns are as follows:
Ng6h lorme
Neih you
Keuih he, him, she, her or it
However, when the particle "deih" is added after a personal
pronoun, it makes that pronoun plural :
Ng6h deih we or us
Neih deih you (plural)
Keuih deih they or them
6. Gwok:
The word "gwok" means "country."
e.g. Ylng gwok iQiil
Meih gwok
Hohng gwok filii
England
U.S.A
Korea
However, the names of some countries do not use "gwok" at
all.
e.g. Toih wean
Yi daaih leih
Taiwan
Italy
The exchange af business cards (Kaat pin) is normal practice for
businessmen in Hang Kong. The correct way ta offer and re-
ceive a card is with both hands, fallowed by a handshake. Also
expect to pass and receive a credit card the same way, but don't
expect a handshake far this .
r
._------
45
4 Physical Appearance
A. Lingo
Gou
iii
tall
Ng6i
M
short
Feih
II!
fat
Sou

thin
L6uh

old (age)
Hauh saang young
Leng (neui/j6i)
IHtl/G)
pretty/handsome
Gwong tauh

bald
Tauh foot
Hflfi
hair
Cheuhng tauh foot
{Hflfi
long hair
Dyun tauh foot

short hair
Lyun
II
curly
Jihk
fi
straight
Daai
m
wear
Ng6ahn geng
691ft
glasses
Sou

beard
Wuh sou

moustache
Waahng
,.
broad shoulders
Ng6ahn
09
eye
Beih

nose
T6uh n6ahm
lttOi
tummy
Daaih jek

big build/well built
Sai lap
MIIJll
small figure
47
No Swe<Jf C<Jnfonese
B. Chit Chat
1. Is Stefan tall?
A: Stefan gou rhh gou a?
(Is Stefan tall?)
B: Gou.
(Yes.)
2 . Is Chris fat?
A: Chris feih rhh feih a?
(Is Chris fat?)
B: Mh feih .
(No.)
3 . Tall or short?
A: John gou dihng ngai a?
(Is John tall or short?)
B: Gou/ngai .
(Tall/short.)
4 . Fat or thin?
A: Keuih feih dihng sou a?
(Is he/she fat or thin?)
B: Feih/sau.
(Fat/thin.)
5 . Does lan wear glasses?
A: ian yauh m6uh daai ngaahn geng a?
(Does lan wear glasses?)
B: Yauh . (Yes.)
M6uh. (No.)
48
Chap-ter <f Physical Appearance
6. What does Ray look like?
A: Ray dim yeung go?
(What does Ray look like?)
B: Keuih gou gou sou sou, y6uh wuh sou.
(He is tall and thin and has a beard.)
7. Who is taller?
A: Bob gou di dihng a y ~ a?
(Who is taller, Bob or Ray?)
B: Bob gou di.
(Bob is taller.)
C. One-liners
1. Craig
2. Niko
3. Sara
4. Keuih
(He/ She)
5. Mary
h6u
(is very)
gei
(is quite)
mhhaih gei
(is not too)
h6u
(is very)
h6u
(is very)
h6u
(is very)
h6u
(has a very)
gou.
(tall)
sou.
(thin)
lou h.
(old)
leng j6i.
(handsome)
leng neui .
(pretty)
daaih jek.
(well built)
sai lap.
(small figure)
49
No 5we;Jt C;Jntonese
6. Keuih
(He/she)
7. Barry
8. Julia
9. Lisa
10. Andrew
11 . Tim
12. Debra
13. Gary
14. Keuih
(He I She)
50
(is)
mh leng.
(not pretty)
h6u waahng.
(has very) (broad shoulders)
(has)
(has)
yauh/m6uh
(has/
doesn't have)
yauh
(has)
(has)
(has)
(is)
cheuhng tauh foot.
(long hair)
jihk tauh foot .
(straight hair)
[wuh] sou.
([a moustache] a beard)
daaih t6uh naahm.
(a big tummy)
ngaahn daaih daaih.
(big eyes)
beih gou gou.
(a long nose)
sou di.
(skinnier)
C!,apter if Physical Appearance
D. Grammatical Notes
1. "Name Adverb- Noun" statements:
One way to describe a person is to use this simple formula:
Nome or pronoun +adverb + noun/adjective
e.g. Sara h6u lengneui .
(Sara is very pretty)
2 . "Pronoun-verb-noun Rhrgse" statement :
Another way to describe people is to use the verb "have" as
follows:
Pronoun + verb + noun phrase
e.g Keuih y6uh daai ng6ahngeng.
(He/She wears glasses)
3 . Yes-or-no Questions:
This simple formula from the previous chapter con also be
used to discuss people's appearance:
Addressee+ verb/adjective+ mh +verb/adjective+ a?
/pronoun
e.g. A: Keuih leng mh leng a?
(Is she pretty?)
B: Leng. (Yes)
Mh leng. (No.)
e.g. A: Janet ge touhfaat cheuhng mh cheuhng a?
(Is Janet' s hair )Qng?)
B: Cheuhng. (Yes)
Mh cheuhng. (No)
51
No Swe<1f C<infonese
4 Dihng (Choice-type questions)
To make a choice, we use "or" in English, which is the same as
"Dihng" in Cantonese.
e.g. A: Anthony gou dihng ngc'Ji a?
(Is Anthony tall or short?)
B: Gou/ngai .
(Tall/ short)
e.g. A: Bob yauh sou dihng wuh sou a?
(Does Bob have a beard or a moustache?)
B: Sou/wuh sou.
(Beard/moustache.)
5 "Pronoun-verb verb-noun" questions
Remember, when "yauh m6uh" is used to ask the question, we
must answer either "yauh" or "m6uh," not" haih "or "Mh
haih."
e.g. A: Michelle yauh m6uh daai ngaahn geng a?
(Does Michelle wear glasses?)
B: Yauh. (Yes)
M6uh. (No)
6 Comparatives
"Di" means "more" in English. It is a comparative and is
placed after the adjective. For example, "h6u" means "good"
in English, "h6u di" means better.
e.g. leng (pretty) leng di (prettier)
ngc'Ji (short) ngc'Ji di (shorter)
52
CAapter '-1- Physical Appecrance
7 . "Go" :
"Go" is a final particle that replaces "a " when it is not a
simple question.
e .g. Susan dim yeung go?

{What does Susan look like?)
ANIMAL LIKENESS
Like English speakers, Cantonese speakers also use idioms to
describe people by associating them with certain animals:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
sheep (yeuhngl:
monkey (m6h lou):
wolf (lohng) :
e .g sik lohng:
pig (jyO):
cow (ngauh) :
innocent person
skinny person
desperate person.
rapist
lot person
hard working person.
53
5 Transportation:
Going fo Work anti Going Ouf
A. Lingo
Heui
n
to go
Che
m
car/a form of
transportation
Dik si
~
taxi
Syuhn
M
ferry
Basi
~
bus
Deih tit
ttl! II
Mass Transit
Railway (MTR)
Gou gong tit louh
11/lllllm
Kowloon-Canton
Railway (KCR)
F6 che
*ii
train
Siu ba
\ ~
mini bus
Dihn che
ill tram
Haahng louh
film
to walk
Ja che
:mm
to drive
Gei cheuhng faai sin
1111JM1UI
Airport Express
Laahm che
m
Peak tram
Fei gei
11111
plane
Choai dean che
~ m m
to ride a bike
Yatgojung
-Mil
one hour
Yih sahp fan jung
=+Bil
20 minutes
Bun go jung
=Filii
half an hour
Jeui

the most
Fongbihn
7Jit
convenient
55
IQ
56
No Swe<1 t C<in tonese
Gei yuhn
~ I
how for
Miuh gooi
filii
Temple Street
Neuih yon gooi
tlAii
Lady's market
Dim
IS
how
Jciu bo
~ U P :
pub
Gooi hciu
iiD
intersection
Dong wcii
mm
traffic light
Boon mcih sin
~ I ~ I t
pedestrian crossing
...
THE OCTOPUS CARD
Hong Kong has an excellent public transport system that is linked by
one common method of payment: the Octopus card. A small mag-
netic card the size of a credit card, it can be "recharged" and is a
very versatile product indeed. You only need to pay $50 deposit for
it.
The multipurpose Octopus card is called "boot dooht tong" in
Cantonese, which literally means "all eight arrive in connection. "
There' s no need to toke it out of your wallet when you get on the bus
or go through the turnstiles; the cord con be read by the machine
through your wallet or even handbag, thus eliminating the need to
fumble for money and tickets, as well as the chances of not having
the right change.
The Octopus cord con be recharged at any MTR station and at
convenience stores such as Circle K and 7 -Eleven. In some places
you con even purchase other items with the money stored on the
cord: a drink, bogs of groceries, even a cup of coffee at Starbucks.
Cf.,ap-ter 5 Transporta-tion
Common directions (]JrQJ) fong
Jyun j6
.tt
Jyun yauh
.E
Jihk heui
lin
Tihng

Ni-douh
!Ftf
G6-douh
PI Of
Chihn mihn }lOilj
Gwo j6
Yllltc

B. Chit Chat
1. A: Nicola jyuh hoi bin-douh a?
Literally, "Nicola lives where?"
(Where does Nicola live?)
B: Keuih jyuh hoi JOngwaahn.
(She lives in Central.)
heung:
turn left
turn right
go straight
stop
here
there
before/in front of/
just ahead
after/passing by
2. A: Brian gei dim jong faan gOng a?
Literally, "Brian what time ga fa work?"
(What time will Brian go to work?)
B: Keuih boat dim faan gOng.
(He goes to work at Sam.)
3 . A: Alan daap mat yeh che faangOng a?
Literally, Alan fakes which car fo go fo work?
(What transport does Alan take to go to work?)
B: Keuih ja che faan gOng.
(He drives to work)
57
0
No 5wei/f Ci!nfonese
4. A: Mark daap gei noih syuhn a?
Literally, "Mark takes how long boat?"
58
(How long does Mark's ferry take to get here/there?)
B: Sei sahp fan jung.
(40 minutes.)
FERRIES
There are two main types of ferries in Hong Kong. The first is
the cross-harbor ferry, more famously known as the Star Ferry,
which takes you from the Tsim Sha Tsui Pier to Central and
Wanchai or from Central's Star Ferry Pier to Tsim Sha Tsui East.
There is also a ferry line from Wanchai Ferry Pier to Tsim Sha
Tsui East. The Star Ferry is one of the best and cheapest ways
to appreciate the everchanging Hong Kong skyline from a farm
of transport that seems timeless.
The second main type of ferry takes you to the Outlying
Islands - Cheung Chou, Lamma, Lantau -,which have become
popular residential areas for many adventurous expatriates
looking for a cheaper place to live. The ferries depart mainly
from the Outlying Islands Ferry Pier just a few minutes further
out from Exchange Square (the main bus terminus) and Cen-
tral/Hong Kong Station (MTR) . You can take a trip on one of
these boats to see a completely different aspect of life away
from the busy city.
Chapter 5 Traf15porta-tion

TRAMS
Trams first started running in Hong Kong in 1904. Tromlines
trace the route of Hong Kong's coastl ine from that period.
Originally, the routes of the trams ron over several bridges, for
instance at Conal Rood. Nowadays, all the canals and rivers
hove been reclaimed.
Taking a tram ride around Hong Kong is one of the best
things to do, as you con experience real local life for a few
minutes, or for hours on end if you like, for the neat sum of only
HK$2 per ride. The drawback is the summer heat, which you will
hove to bear in the lock of air-conditioning. But the scenery and
the uniqueness of the experience more than make up for this.
We call the tram "ding ding," which is the sound it makes.
The best time of day for a tram ride is at night, when the wind
con cool you off and the city lights con be enjoyed at a leisurely
5. A: Leuhng sfu je, neih dim faan gung go?
(Ms. Leung, how do you get to work?)
B: Ng6h jyuh h6i Jim sa jeui . Ng6h h6i Taai Gu Sihng
faangung . Daap deihtit h6u fong bihn, bun go jung
jauh faan dou gung si. Neih ne?
(I live in Tsim Sha Tsui. I work at Taikoo Shing . Tak
ing the MTR is very convenient. It only takes me half an
hour to get to work. How about you?)
A: Ng6h daap dihn che faan gung. Yauh Waan J6i ji
Jung Waahn ll haih sahp fan jung, che fai h6u pehng
go!
(I take the tram to work. It only takes me 1 0 minutes to
get from Wanchai to Central, and it's very cheap!)
59
"
No Sweilf Ciinfonese
C. One-liners
1. Miuh gaai hoi bin douh a?
(Where is Temple Street?)
2. Daap dik sf h6u di.
(It' s better to take a taxi.)
3. Yauh Miuh gaai ji Neuih Yen Gaai yiu gei yuhn a?
(How far is it from Temple Street to Lady's market?)
4. Neuih yen gaai fuh gahn yauh m6uh book fo gung si
a?
(Are there any department stores near Lady' s market?)
5. Sfu sam pah sou.
(Beware of pickpockets.)
6. Mh goi, gei chin a?
(Thank you. How much is it?)
7. Mh sci jaau.
(Keep the change.)
8. Ng6h deih heui bin douh a?
(Where shall we go?)
9. Heui jau ba Ia.
(Lets go to the pub.)
10. Mh g6i daai Ng6h heui g6 douh Ia.
(Take me that way. please.)
11 . Jyun j6 yihn hauh jihk heui.
(Turn left and then go straight ahead.)
12. Gwo j6 Miuh gaai tihng.
(Stop after Temple Street.)
60
CJ.,ap-ter 5
13. Neuih yon giiai chlhn mihn tlhng.
literally, "lady's Market in front of stop."
(Stop in front of Lady's market.)
14. Dang wei chlhn mihn tlhng
(Stop before the traffic light.)
15. Gaai hau tlhng.
(Stop at the intersection.)
16. Chlhn mihn yauh lohk.
literally, "/ have to get off iust ahead. "
(Stop just ahead.)
MINIBUSES
Transporta-tion
There are twa types af minibuses in Hang Kong . Both are
painted yellow and have about 16 seats. You may have to
look carefully to spat the English language destination name.
The most common type has a red roof and follows a fixed
route, but stops wherever you want to get off. In order Ia let
the driver know you need Ia get aff, just yell "(place] + y6uh
lohk," e.g. "Gaai hau yauh lohk" (Stop at the intersection)
or "Bean mah si n yauh lohk" (Stop at the pedestrian
crossing) . The driver will indicate he has heard by raising his
hand. In order to get on a passing minibus, wave it down like
you would a taxi.
The second type usually has a green roof. These follow
a fi xed route but stop only at designated minibus stops, just
like a large bus.
61
No Swe<Jt C<Jntonese
D. Grammatical Notes
1. "Take":
When talking about transportation, the word "take" has two
equivalents in Cantonese:
a . "Daap" means "take" in the sense of "using a form of
transportation:"
e.g. Daap che (take a taxi, take a form of transporta-
tion rather than walk)
b. "Daai" means "take" in the sense of "bringing you to a
place."
e .g. Daai [ng6h) heui gei chiwhng.
(take [me) to the airport .)
2 . Ylhn hauh:
a . The phrase "ylhn hauh" links actions or sequences in
time:
e.g. Heui Mah Sa ylhn hauh heui gei cheuhng.
(Go to Marks & Spencer and then go to the airport.)
b. When you want to link objects, use "tuhng" instead:
e .g. Ng6h yiu go fe tuhng do si.
(I want coffee and toast.)
3. Faan vs . Heui :
a. The word "faan" means go in English, but it only applies
to go to work (faan gung) , go to school (faan hohk)
and go home (faan uk kei) .
b. Otherwise we use the verb "heui," for example, in the
phrase heui gei cheuhng (go to the airport).
Heui + noun
e.g. Alice ja che heui gei cheuhng
(Alice is driving (to go) to the airport.)
62
Chap-ter 5 Transporta-tion
Heui + verb + noun
e.g. John heui ch6ai doan che.
(John is going biking.)
Heui +verb
e.g. Lahm t6ai heui Neuih yon goai.
(Mrs. Lam is going to Lady's market.)
4 . Question words:
Question words in English, such as "what," "which" and "how"
correspond in Cantonese to Mot, Bin and Gei . They can be
followed by classifiers to form the other question words, e.g.
"who" and "when," as well as some other ones that only exist
in Cantonese.
a . Mot means "what, " which is a question word usually
followed by "yeh" and a noun.
e.g. Neih giu mot yeh meng a?
(What is your name?)
b. Bin can be followed by various words.
(i) Bin go means "which person/object," i.e.
"who" or "which."
e.g. A: Keuih haih bin go a?
(Who is he/she?)
B: Keuih haih Tom.
(He is Tom.)
However, the polite way to say which person is
"bin wOi ."
e.g. A: Bin-w6i haih Chahn sfu je a?
(Who is Miss Chan?)
B: Ni w6i haih Chahn sfu je.
{This is Miss Chan)
63
No 5we<Jt C<Jnfonese
(ii) Bin douh means "where." Since "douh" is the pro
noun of a place, bin douh literally means "which
place."
e.g. Neih hoi bin douh a?
(Where are you?)
(iii) Bin + Classifier means "which one," but you
need to add the proper classifier for the particular
object. As there are so many classifiers for different
objects, "go" is recommended as the general
classifier for the convenience of non-mother
tongue Cantonese speakers.
But if you want to speak like a local, just
follow these examples:
e.g. "goon" is the classifier for buildings
Bin goon jau dim?
(Which hotel?)
e.g "go" is the classifier for cars
Bin go che a ?
(Which car?)
The full list of classifiers can be found in Chapter 2.2.
c. Gei means "how" and can be used as follows :
64
(i) Gei do means "how much" or "how many."
e.g. Gei do wei a?
(How many persons?)
(ii) Gei noih means "how long."
e.g. Gei noih dou Heung Gong a?
(How long does it take to get to Hong Kong?)
(iii) Gei sih means "when."
e.g. Neih gei sih dou Heung Gong a?
(When will you arrive in Hong Kong?)
Ct,apter 5 Transporta-tion
5. Hoi :
" Hoi" means " at" or "in" and marks location. We usually put it
before the noun.
e.g. Ng6h hoi Gou Gong t it louh jouh yeh.
(pronoun)(at) (place) (action)
(I work at KCRC- Kowloon Canton Railway Corporation.)
e.g. Ng6h hoi ok kei .
(I am at home.)
65
J,
6 Around the home
A. Lingo
Laahp soap d6i

rubbish bag
Dihn sih
m
TV
Hook teng

living room
Foehn teng

dining room
Seuih f6ng

bedroom
F6ng

room
Syuf6ng

study
Chung leuhng f6ng

bathroom
Chi s6
IIJJifi
toilet
Deih louh
tt!!JI
basement
Che fohng

garage
Fa yun
ltiJ
garden
Keh lou
!11111
balcony
S6 sih
tt
key
Kap chohn gei
Mtlllll
vacuum cleaner
Sai yi gei
>S\:nlll
washing machine
Chohng
lffi
bed
Furniture Cil'fWA) ga sB
Cheung lim
iiB/11
curtain
Dihn w6
.65
telephone
Muhn

door
So fa
lmfft
sofa
Chah gei

coffee table
Syo go
.M
bookcase
Deih jin
tt!!ft
carpet
Dang
m
lamp
67
No Swe;Jt C;Jntonese
.. ...... _.._
,
68
RESIDENTIAL AREAS IN HONG KONG
Hong Kong is one of the most expensive places in the world to
live as the very limited amount of usable land tends to cause
property to be very highly priced. To balance that, food, trans-
port and clothing are relatively cheap if you know where to go.
Indeed, a high lox threshold and a low tax rote ore among the
most attractive reasons for overseas entrepreneurs to set up
business in Hong Kong.
Because of the lock of space, most Hong Kongers live in
high-rises, in apartments that range, from a western perspective,
between very cramped, to compact, depending on the budget.
More affluent people prefer living in duplex or triplex apartments
or even in houses with gardens, but that is extremely costly here.
Some people prefer to live in villages surrounded by the lush
subtropical environment found on the Outlying Islands. Apart-
ments and small houses there ore often on offer at on afford-
able rote.
Popular residential areas for expatriates ore:
Green rural environment
Lontou Island (particularly Discovery Boy), Lemmo Island, Soi
Kung, Cheung Chou Island.
High-rise apartments with well-equipped facilities and at a con-
venient distance from Central and other commercial districts
Happy Volley, Mid-levels, Causeway Boy, Wonchoi
Near the beach with luxurv facilities
Repulse Boy, Shouson Hill, Stanley, Toi Tom
CJ,apter J, Around -t:Ae home
In the bathroom <)11);?.8) Chung leuhng f6ng
0
Soi tauh seui
59CBft7J\
shampoo
Hoi mihn
miMi!
sponge
Seui luhng tauh
7J\Iileft
top
Pou pou
>m>m
foam
Soi sou puhn
)9[3!111
washbasin
Sou gon
3!rn
handkerchief
Mouh gon
:ern
towel
Ngah gou

toothpaste
Ngah choot

toothbrush
Yuhk gong

both
So
Jmf
comb
Fu

trousers
Deih ho
ttl!""F
floor
Geng

mirror
Class i fiers used arou nd t he home:
Yot bo je on umbrella
Yot boou yin a packet of
cigarettes
Yot deui maht a pair of socks
Yot deui haoih a pair of shoes
Yot jek CD a CD
Yot bun syu a book
Yot joan dong a lamp
Yot go ngohn boau a purse
Yot go yin fui gong an ashtray
Yot go chah wu a teapot
69
No Swe<Jt C<Jntonese
"
B. Chit Chat
1. A: Neih goon uk youh gei do goon fong a?
(How many rooms are there in your house?)
B: Ng6h goon uk youh sei goon f6ng.
(I have four rooms in my house.)
2. A: Neih goon uk youh m6uh che fohng a?
(Does your house have a garage?)
B: You h.
(Yes.)
3 . A: Ng6h go geng hoi bin douh a?
(Where is my mirror?)
B: Hoi t6i seuhng mihn.
(On the table.)
4 . A: Ng6h tiuh fu hoi bin douh a?
(Where are my trousers?)
B: Hoi deih ho.
(On the floor.)
A: Ng6h deui maht hoi bin douh a?
(Where are my socks?)
B: Juhng lohng g6n.
(They are still drying on the line.)
A: Ng6h ge baahk sik seut scam ne?
(What about my white shirt?)
B: Hoi sci yi p6u.
(It's at the drycleaner' s.)
70
5.
CJ.,apter f, Around t:Ae Aome
WASHING ON THE STREET
Although drying machines are very popular in western countries,
Hong Kong people normally put the washing on the line. Most
apartments come with a clothes-drying window or corner out
of which you can hang clothes on long rods or lines. On a dry
day, if you look up from any street, expect to see a multitude of
bright clothes colouring the skyline. If it' s windy, watch outl
For those with a fear of leaning out of the window so
floors above the street, washing and dry cleaning places can
be found all over Hong Kong.
A: Ng6h deui haoih hoi bin douh a?
(Where ore my shoes?)
B: Hoi yuhk gwong gook leih.
(Beside the both.)
71
"
No Swe<Jf C<Jnfonese
C. One-liners
1.
Ng6h deih uk kei m6uh dihn.
(We have no electricity at home.)
2. Ng6h deih m6uh yiht seui.
(We have no hot water.)
3. Ng6h deih ge dihn sih waaih j6.
(Our TV is out of order.)
4. Ng6h deih ge lip waaih j6.
(Our lift/elevator is out of order.)
5. F6 juk a!
(Fire!)
6. Bo gfng.
(Call the police.)
7. 06 bei waih sou gung yahn.
(Call the repairman.)
8. Deih h6 h6u wu jou.
(The floor is dirty.)
9. Mh goi , bong ng6h d6u laahp soap.
(Please throw away the rubbish for me.)
10. Tim, h6 mh h6 yi bong ng6h kap chahn a?
(Tim, can you help me vacuum the floor?)
11 . Cheuih pin.
(Help yourselves.)
12. Mh s6i hack hei .
(Please don't hesitate. Literally: Don't have guest airs.)
72
CAapterb Around -tJ.,e J.,of'VIe
D. Grammatical Notes
1. Prepositions of place :
In English, we say, "The toothbrush is on the table."
In Cantonese, we say, "The toothbrush is table on. "
That is, we always put the preposition of place (e.g. "on")
after the noun.
e.g. Ngoh ch6at h6i bin douh a?
(Where is the toothbrush?)
Ngoh ch6at h6i chOng leuhng f6ng neuih mihn.
(The toothbrush)(is)(bathroom) (inside)
The toothbrush is in the bathroom.
The formula :
Thing (noun) + verb + place + preposition of
place
e .g X h6i t6i seuhng mihn
(table)
seuih f6ng
(bedroom)
chohng tuhng syu g6
(bed and bookcase)
(on)
hah mihn
(under)
chihn mihn
(in front of)
hauh mihn
(behind)
gaak leih
(beside)
neuih mihn
(inside)
jung goon
(between/in the
middle of)
73
7
Finding your way
A. Lingo
Dire!:;tions :
0
Gaak leih
HliE
beside
J6 mihn
O:ifii
left
Yauh mihn
Eifii
right
Chihn mihn

in front of
Deui mihn
f:tifii
across the road
Hauh mihn
Uiifii
behind/in the back
Jung goan rpfm middle
Jyun gok

corner
Goai h6u
mo
end of the street
Dong
m
east
Naahm

south
Sai
il!i
west
Bak jt north

P6u:
Mahngeuih p6u

stationery shop
Wuhngeuih p6u

toys hop
Tohnggw6 dim
llmli5
candy shop
Sihjong dim

boutique
Choihfung dim

tailor shop
CD p6u
CD II
CO/record shop
Mihnboaup6u
JI'Bllfi
bakery
Dihn hei p6u

electrical appliances
Fact yihng uk

hair salon
Ga fe sat

coffee shop
Syu bou toan

newsstand
75
No Swe<Jf C<Jnfonese
Q
~ ~ .. ...........
76
GETTING AWAY
There are many opportunities to "get away" in Hong Kong. Here
is a couple:
Tai Mo Shan - literally "Big Hat Mountain," it dominates the
skyline of the New Territories near Tsuen Won. A hike up to its
peak, Hong Kong ' s highest ot 957m, con be rounded off with a
dip in refreshing waterfall pools. It is well known for its frequent
mist and even the occasional frost in winter. The summit itself is
inaccessible. Wild animals inhabit the subtropical forests there.
Hikers can also picnic on the grassy area, which features a Iorge
rock. A great place for a panoramic view of Hong Kong , it is
also enjoyable at night, where stargazers con find an open sky
and lovers can chat quietly away.
Getting there:
Take the MTR to Tsuen Won and leave the station by exit A. Tum
left and toke the steps up to the bus stop. The 51 leaves only
once every 25 minutes, so if you have just missed one, you may
wish to toke a taxi for the 20-minute journey up Route Twisk
("Tsuen Wan Into Shek Kong"). Get off at the head of the pass,
just after the barbecue site on your left.
Toi Long Wan - "Big Wave Boy" is located at the furthest
edge of Sci Kung Country Pork and is rightly celebrated for its
magnificent scenery and fine beaches. It is remote and quiet.
The water by the white sand beaches is clean enough for swim-
ming and surfing, but watch out for the rip tide! This is a good
place for a long weekend, for a barbecue, or for a stroll around
with your loved one. You can also discover the villages, ruins of
old churches and traditional houses nearby. There are several
simple cafes where you may stop for a cold drink, and rooms in
the villages can be rented for the weekend.
Getting there:
Take the MTR to Diamond Hill , then take the bus 92 to Soi Kung
and catch a green taxi, which will cost you $80-$100 to Soi Wan
Road. Then, walk along the coast through Soi Won Village to Tai
Long Won.
Chapter 7 r::indin4 your way
ShoJ;!S (continued):
Yauh guk i8Fcj post office
Yeuhk fohng
~
pharmacist
Hei yun
llilfl
cinema
Chaan teng

restaurant
Ngahn hohng
iefi
bank
Kahm hong
llfi
piano store
Touh jyu jaahm
m>tnc
lottery station
Bo si jaahm
e:!l'IC
bus station
Book fo gOng si
siliflQl
department store
JyO yuhk p6u
~ ~ ~
butcher
In Hong Kong, shops selling one particular product tend to be
located along the some street or area:
1 . Sheung Won I Des Voeux Rood West
Bird's nest, shark's fin, dried seafood, luxury beauty and health
products, antiques (at the "Cot Street Bazaar")
2. Mongkok ("authentically Hong Kong district
where you con get the best value for your dollar)
COs, records, VCDs, DVDs, electronic goods, casual clothes
3 . Flower market at Prince Edward
A wide variety of exotic flowers
4 . Pacific Place, Landmark
Luxury items and big clothing labels
5 . Tsim Sho Tsui, Stanley Market, Temple Street ,
Lady' s market
Souvenirs and cheap casual clothes.
6 . Sham Shui Po , Won Choi
Computer games and software
7 . Happy Volley
Designer furniture, custom-made shoes
8. Queen' s Rood Eost/Wonchoi
Furniture and curtains
9 . Tsim Sho Tsui East
Furs from Russia and Central Asia, traditional Indian and Poki-
0
No Swe;Jt C;Jntonese
0
B. Chit Chat
1. A: Ngoh seung moaih go scam mahn jih. Heui bin
douh a?
(I want to buy a sandwich. Where should I go?)
B: Mihn beau pou hoi deui mihn.
(A bakery is across the road.)
2 . A: Bin douh youh jyO yuhk maaih a?
(where) (have)(pork) (to seii)(Question word)?
(Where can I buy pork?)
II
B: Hoi j6 mihn.
(On the left.)
3 . A: Mh goi UA hei yun hoi bin douh a?
(Excuse me. Can you please tell me where the UA
cinema is?)
B: UA hei yun hoi yauh guk hauh mihn.
(The UA cinema is behind the post office.)
4 . A: Mh goi Wuih Fung ngahn hohng hoi bin douh
a?
(Can you please tell me where the HSBC (Hong
Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation) is)?
B: Hoi go fe sat tuhng syo bou taan jung goon.
(The HSBC is located between the coffee shop and
newsstand.)
5 . A: Mh goi/Cheng mahn, Chin Seui Waan hoi
bin douh a?
,,
(Excuse me, where is Repulse Bay?)
I
B: Chi n Seui Wean hoi naahm mihn.
il
(Repulse Bay is on the southern side of the island.)
78
Ct,apter 7 r::indirv:. your way
6 . A: Daaih Yuh Soan hoi bindouh a?
(Where is Lantau Island?)
B: Daaih Yuh Soan hoi Heung Gong D6u sai mihn.
(Lantau Island is located to the west of Hong Kong
Island .)
C. One-liners
1. Ng6h deih heui bin douh a?
(Where should we go?)
~ T I P A full list of use-..,
ful destinations and
districts around
Hong Kong con be
found in Appendix II
"" ~
2. Syo bou taan hoi ga fe sat hauh mihn.
{The newsstand is behind the coffee shop.)
3. Tauh jyu jaahm hoi j6 mihn.
(The lottery station is on the left.)
4. Yeuhk fohng hoi gaai hou.
{The pharmacist is at the end of the street.)
5. Ba si jaahm hoi chihn mihn.
(The bus stop is over there/up ahead.)
6. Yuhn rhh yuhn a?
{Is it far?)
79
No Swe<Jf C<Jnfonese
7. Mh haih h6u yuhn.
{It's not very far.)
8. Gei yuhn go!
{It's pretty far!)
9. Neih h6 yi haahng heui g6 douh.
(You can walk there.)
10. Neih yiu daap deih tit.
ja
(You have to
drive
yih sahp boat houh ba si.
che.
take the MTR.
take bus number 28.
[a car] .)
D. Grammatical Notes
1. "Yiu" :
The verb "yiu" means "have to," "must," or "need to" in English.
It is used in the same word order as well.
The formula:
80
Noun/pronoun + "yiu" + verb
e.g. Neih yiu heui Tuhng Loh Wean
(You need to go to Causeway Bay.)
e.g. Robert tuhng Charlie yiu heui chaai gwun.
(Robert and Charlie have to go to the police
station.)
CAapter 7 r::indiru::, your way
2 . Asking about where to shop for something specific:
To ask where you can do something like buy cheap clothes or
fi nd COs, you have to use a specific sentence structure.
The formula :
Question word + "yauh" + item + verb + "a"?
e.g. Bin douh y6uh jyu yuhk maaih a?
(where)(have) (pork) (to sell)(final particle)?
(Where can I buy pork?)
81
8 Bargaining:
At the Market and Shopping
A. Lingo
Specifiers:
Nidi

these
Go di

those
Ni jek
liFt II
this kind
Go jek
01111
that kind
Fruits (g:,m) saanggw6:
Sih do be lei

strawberry
Soi gwo ilia watermelon
Pihng gwo
am
apple
Cheong
m
orange
Muhk gwo
mm
papaya
Maht gwo
m
honeydew melon
laih ji

lychee
Boloh
Siii
pineapple
lihng mung

lemon
Taih ji
t!::f
grapes
83
84
No Swe<1f Ciinfonese
Vegetables clliffM) so choi & others
Soong choi g:m lettuce
Yeh choi
IIIIBM
cabbage
Chung
1!
spring onion
Sai laahn fa

broccoli
Yeh choi fa

cauliflower
Lob baahk

carrot
Yeuhng chOng
>liE
onion
Cheng jlu

bell pepper
Faan ke
iilii
tomato
Dung gO

mushroom
Meat and seafood yuhk neuih kap

Ngauh yuhk beef
Jyo yuhk

pork
Yeuhng yuhk

lamb
Gai yuhk

chicken
Yu

fish
Ha
Ji
shrimp
daaijf

scallop
beau yuh

abalone
haai

crab
hfn
II
clam
luhng ha
Glli
lobster
hoi sam
>m#
sea cucumber
yauh yu

squid
mahk yuh

cuttlefish
yuh chi

shark's fin
CJ.,apter8
and
Electronics dibn ji cb6an bo n-
0
Sou mob seung gei
Mli!UOMI
digital camera
Sou mob sibp lubk
MlltiB
(digital) video
gei
Ill
camera
Sou taib dibn loub
IIi
laptop
dibn l6ub
IIIII
computer
Sou taib dibn w6

mobile phone
Go yabn dibn ji sou

PDA
jeung

Yam beung
i.
bi -fi system
Kwong yam bei

speakers
Cosmetics (ftlfftfia) fa jong ba n-
Seubn gou
m
lipstick
Ng6abn jit moub

mascara
yibk
Yin ji
llilti
blush
Goo fan

powder
Ngaabn sin bat
IISIHI
eyeliner
Sci mibn gou
wrm
face wash
Song fo seui
:;1(.7..1<
toner
Yeubn mibn seung jlljjMiil moisturizer
85
No 5we;Jt C;Jntonese
"
Cl ot hing cH!il8) fuhk jon g:
Seut scam

shirt
Seuhng scam
blouse
T-Seut
T1Jfil
T-shirt
Lehng toai
9Qilt\
tie
Bun jiht kwahn
=t=tim
skirt
Kwahn
m
dress
Fu

trousers
Ngauh j6i fu
!+g.
jeans
Dyun fu

shorts
Hung waih
!Jillll
bra
Noih fu

panties
Mo yin tung

boxer shorts
Peih haaih

leather shoes
Gou joang haaih
m; .:Wiil!
high-heels
Leuhng haaih

slip-ons/summer
shoes
To hoai
fffiti
flip-flops
Classifiers:
Bohng ij
pound
Do
n
dozen
Gihn

a shirt/blouse/T-
shirt
Tluh

a tie/skirt/dress/
trousers/jeans/
shorts/panties
Go
11
a bra
Deui

pair
86
CAap-ter 8 e.ar4ainirv:. and shoppirv:,
Relevant adjectives:
Tihm
!t
sweet
Dojap

juicy
H6u sihk
t11tl
delicious
Leng
II
good quality
San sin
iii
fresh
Gwai

expensive
Pehng

cheap
J,.
......

BEST BARGAINS IN HONG KONG
In many snaps, assistants are willing Ia offer discounts if you
ask, especially if you are buying several items at once. The
exceptions are large chain stores and department stores, where
the prices are fixed unless you are the holder of a privilege
card.
The best bargains (and places to practice bargaining in
Cantonese!) can be found at:
Temple Street - T-shirts, jeans, jade, COs, clothes, knickknacks
or even antiques at a very good price.
Lady' s Market - A good range of products for women such as
clothes, bags, cosmetics, accessories, all at competitive prices.
Imitation goods are sold here.
Stanley Market Souvenirs, shirts, arts and crafts, jewelery,
paintings, carpets and clothes.
Causeway Bay - Side streets are lined with small boutiques
selling unique fashions. The "Island Beverley" opposite the
SOGO department store houses hundreds of boutiques on
its 5 floors.
Wanchai 298 Hennessy Road A mega complex of computer
retail outlets, this is THE place to get hardware and software
deals.
If you are purchasing cameras or video equipment, it is recom-
mended that you only go to shops that display the price tags
in their windows.
._ ..... _____
87
"
No Sweilt Ciintonese
B. Chit Chat
1. Robby is shopping at the fruit stall
R: Robby H: Hawker (seller)
R: Ni di chaang dim maaih a?
(What's the price of those oranges?)
H: Sahp man ngh go.
{Ten dollars for five.)
R: Go di ne? Go di dim maaih a?
(How about those? How much are those?)
H: Go di sohp man saom go, youh tihm youh do jap.
(Those ore ten dollars for three. They ore sweet and
juicy)
R: Hoi bin douh laih go?
(Where ore they from?)
H: Go di hoi Meihgwok laih go.
{Those ore from America .)
R: Neih tuhng ngoh goon di leng ge Ia.
(Could you pick the good ones for me please?)
H: Mouh mahn taih. Neih maoih gei do a?
(No problem. How many ore you buying?)
R: Leuhng da , rhh goi. Pehng di dak rhh dak a?
{Two dozen, please. Con you make it cheaper?)
H: Hou Ia, ngoh goi neih chat sohp man Ia .
{OK, I' ll make it $70.)
R: Gam, hou Ia. Ni douh chat sohp man.
(Well, OK then, here's $70.)
88
Cl-.ap-ter8
H: Do jeh.
(Thank you.)
R: H6u saang yi.
(Good business to you.)
2 . Shopping at Sa Sa
l Sa Sa is a famous cosmetic outlet in Hong Kong. There you can f
get famous labels at reasonable prices. Stores are located
.....
A: Shopping Assistant S: Sara
A: Neih seung m6aih mat yeh a?
(What would you like to buy?)
S: Ng6h seung m6oih fa jong bon.
(I want to buy cosmetics.)
A: F6n dihng seuhn gou a?
(Powder or lipstick?)
S: Seuhn gou mh goi.
(lipstick, please.)
A: Mat yeh sik a?
(What colour would you like?)
S: Huhng sik. Gei chin a?
(Red. How much is it?)
A: Gong baih yet back ngh sahp man.
(HK $150.)
89
No 5we<Jt C<Jnfonese
S: Cheng mohn chim kaot dak rhh dak a?
(May I pay by credit cord?)
A: Oak. Do jeh, yet book ngh sohp man.
(Yes. $150, please.)
S: H6u, ni jeung hoih ng6h ge seun yuhng kaot.
(OK. Here's my credit cord.)
A: Mh goi hoi ni douh chim meng. Do jeh.
(Please sign here. Thank you.)
S: Mh sai .
(Don't mention it.)
3 . Shopping at Stanley Market
.ru
._.
Stanley market is one of the places where it is common practice
to bargain with the shopkeepers. They may have signs saying
"no bargaining", but that is a ploy a imed at the tourists, so try
anyway. You can get there by taking the MTR to Central and
then the bus No. 6, 6A or 260 from Exchange Square bus
terminus .
. _ ...... _____ . . . . . . . ~ ..
Robert is getting a tie for his cousin.
S: Shop Assistant R: Robert
S: Neih seung maoih mat yeh a?
(What would you like to buy?)
R: Yauh m6uhtaoi a?
(Do you sell ties?)
90
CJ.,ap-ter 8
S: Youh, chimg mohn yiu mot yeh sik a?
(Yes, we do, what colour do you like?)
R: Youh m6uh naohm sik a?
(Do you hove a blue one?)
S: Youh, neih dong dong Ia.
(Yes, please wait a moment.)
R: Nigo gei leng. Gei do chin a?
(This is quite pretty. How much is it?)
S: Yat book man.
{$100.)
R: Youh m6uh jit a?
(Do you hove a discount?)
S: Youh gou jit. Gou sohp man h6u rna?
(There's a discount of 10 %. Is $90 OK?)
R: Tooi gwoi Ia. Boot jit Ia.
(That' s still too expensive. Make it 20% off.)
S: Boot ngh jit. H6u rhh h6u a?
(15% off, toke it or leave it.)
R: H6u. Ni douh yot book man .
(OK. Here' s $1 00.)
S: Do jeh, joou sohp ngh man bei neih.
{Thank you. Here' s $15 in change bock.)
R: Mh goi.
{Thank you.)
91
0
No Sweilf Cilnfonese
C. One-liners
1. Pehng di dak mh dak a?
(Con you make it cheaper, please?)
2. Y6uh m6uh jit a?
(Do you hove discount?)
3. Mh h6u ak ng6h. Ng6h slk gong Gw6ngdung w6.
(Don't fool me. I con speak Cantonese.)
4. Boot jit Ia.
(20% off please.)
English. When you say "Boot jit," you mean that you want to
pay BO% of the whole price, in other words, get a 20% discount.
This is the opposite of what you say in English, so be careful!
... ~
5. Tooi gwoi Ia, pehng dl dak rhh dak a?
{That' s too expensive, con you make it cheaper?)
6. Mh h6u ak ng6h.
(Don't fool me.)
92
CJ..,apter8 /3ar<E.ainif14 and sJ,oppif14
BUYING GROCERIES
There were many street markets selling raw foodstuffs in Hong
Kong years ago. However, the so-called "wet market" was trans-
planted in recent years to multi-story indoor market complexes
for hygienic and commercial reasons. Some of these "dry mar-
kets" are located in North Point, Wanchai and Centrai/Sheung
Wan.
Today, you will still see same street markets where you
can buy fresh meat, seafood and vegetables. However, a new
alternative to both "wet" and "dry" markets has appeared: the
western-style "Superstore," whose opening hours are longer and
which remains open in all weather conditions (catering to the
needs of office workers) . Shopping for the entire household is
convenient, the environment is clean, but the price is higher. In
addition, you cannot bargain at a Superstore, whereas the street
market wi ll offer you discounts if the stall owner knows you or if
you try to haggle with him or her.
93
t ) .., C. 1 S 1 to tl j
9 Time, Date, and Day of the
Week
A. Lingo
~ (llij!m) sib gaan
Dim
!ii
o'clock
Fan jung
flil
minutes
Bun
$
half-hour
Gwat
~
quarter-hour
Seuhng jau
1::.
morning
Hah jau
~
afternoon
JOngngh
qJ4=
noon
Lihng sahn
>ill
midnight
Yeh moahn
~ ~
evening
Bun yeh
~
middle of the night
Yih ga
I I ~
now
How to tell the time
In Cantonese, there are a number of ways in which to say
what time it is.
1. General 1 :04 Yet dim lihng sei fan
Literally: One o'clock (zero) four minutes.
2. Sharp 1 :00
literally: One o'clock.
3. Half-past 1 :30
literally: One o'clock half.
Yet dim
Yet dim bun
95
No 5weilf Cilnfonese
4. To tell the time when the number of minutes post the hour
is a multiple of five (i.e. the minute hand points to a number
from 1 to 11 ), there is a convenient shortcut :
a) Leuhng dim yat 2:05 or Leuhng dim lihng ngh fan
Literally: Two o'clock one (since the minute hand is pointing at
"ron the clock face)
b) Leuhng dim sa om 2: 15 or Leuhng dim sahp ngh fan
Literally: Two o'clock three (since the minute hand is pointing
at "3 " on the clock face)
c) Scam dim g6u 3:45 or Scam dim sei sohp ngh
fan
literally: Three o 'clock nine (since the minute hand is point
ing at "9" on the clock face)
*Please note that the number " Leuhng" is used to count " dim"
(o'clock), but not for " Fan" (minutes) when reading a clock.
96
CJ..,ap-ter 9
1ime, Da-te and Day ol -the Week
Weekdays sing keih
weekday sing keih
English
yat

Monday
2 yih

Tuesday
3 sa am

Wednesday
4 sei

Thursday
5 ngh

Friday
6 luhk

Saturday
7 yaht

Sunday
Yaht means "sun" in English
Day
Night
Week
Before
la st
Last
Chihn yaht Kohm yaht
ft!JB 188
Chihn Kahm
moahn moahn
ft!J.

Chihn go Seuhng go
sing keih sing keih
I fl.

ml
month Chihn go Seuhng go
yuht yuht
ft!J11F.I J::11F.I
Year Chihn nfn Seuhng nin

Thi s Next After Next
ligsaht
Hauh yaht
fiB
Gam nng
Hauh
moahn maahn moahn

Gam go Hah go
sing keih sing keih
;fill
Gam go Hoh go
yuht yuht
fl F.l ""F 11 F.l
Gam nin Hoh nin Houh nin


97
0
0
No Swe<Jt C<Jntonese
months ( F.J ) yu ht:
Yet yuht -F.J January
Yih yuht
=F.J
February
Scam yuht
..=.F.J
March
Sei yuht
ll!IF.J
April
Ngh yuht
nF.J
May
Luhk yuht 7\F.J June
Chat yuht
t::F.J
July
Boat yuht
f\F.J
August
Gau yuht
11F.J
September
Sahp yuht
+F.J
October
Sahp yet yuht
+-F.J
November
Sahp yih yuht
+=F.J
December
Dates houh:
sahp houh

the tenth
scam yuht gau

the 9th of March
houh
You wi ll have noticed that in Cantonese, the days of the week
are simply call ed "day one" to "day six," with "day seven" being
the anoma ly. Likewise, the months are referred to by the num-
bers one to twelve, but this time the number precedes the word
for month, yuht.
Years ( i:f:J nin/ nihn:
The order in which we say the year and date together is differ-
ent from how we say it in English.
In British Engli sh, the sequence is date-month-year
e.g. the 2nd of march , 1968
However, in Cantonese , the sequence goes the other way
aro und : year-month-date
98
e.g. yat gau luhk baat nihn saam yuht yih houh
Literally: 1968, 1harch 2nd
Chapter 9 Time, Da-te and Daj ol -the Week
B. Chit Chat
1. What ' s on TV?
A: Gam m6ahn g6u dim bun y6uh mat yeh jit muhk t6i a?
(Which programme is on at 9:30 tonight?)
B: Gam m6ahn g6u dim bun y6uh hei t6i .
{There is a movie on tonight at 9:30.)
2. Free time
A: Neih ylh go jouh g6n mat yeh a?
(What are you doing right now?)
B: Ng6h ylh go hoi Seuhng Hoi Taan m6aih g6n yeh.
{I am shopping at Shanghai Tang at the moment.)
A: Gam, neih gei slh dak haahn a?
(Well, when are you going to have free time?)
B: Ng6h tlng yaht dak haahn.
{Tomorrow I' m free.)
Shanghai Tang is a boutique famous for selling traditiona l Chi -
nese outfit s for both riten and worhen. The owner David Tan
is a we ll-known Hong Kong socialite and entrepreneur. His staff
wi ll measure you for a c ustorit suit or cheon&saril, but ritake
sure that your pockets are deep enough. They also have a less
costly ready to wear se lection and a lso Chinese riteriwrabilia.
You wi ll find hi s shops at the Pedder building in Central and in
the departure area of Chek Lap Kok Airport.
-------..
99
No 5we<Jt C<Jn t onese
3 . Meetings
A: Neih gei sih hoi wui a?
(When is your meeting?)
B: Sing keih yih scam dim.
(3:00pm on Tuesday.)
A: Sahp yuht sahp houh, haih mh haih a?
(October 1 0?)
B: Mh haih a . Haih sahp yat houh.
(No, October 11 .)
4 . Too busy to talk.
A: Neih hou, White sin saang. Neih dak mh dak haahn
king hah a?
(Hello Mr. White? Do you have a moment to talk?)
B: Mh h6u yi si , Yeuhng siu je, ng6h yih go mh dak haahn.
Ng6h hoi gan wui .
(I am sorry, Ms. Yeung. I am not free at the moment. I
am in a meeting.)
A: Gam, ng6h ting yaht do bei neih Ia.
(Then I'll call back tomorrow.)
B: Dng jiu ng6h wuih heui Gw6ng Jau.
(Tomorrow morning I'm going to Guangzhou.)
A: Neih gei sih faan a?
(When will you be back?)
B: Ng6h wuih hoi chat yuht yih sahp scam houh sing keih
luhk yeh maahn chat dim bun faan.
(I'll be back on the evening of Saturday, 23 July at 7:30.)
A: Gam, ng6h deih chih di gong Ia . Baai baai .
(Then we' ll talk later. Goodbye.)
100
CJ.,ap-ter 9 Time, Da-te and Day o.t t:J.,e Week
5. The date
A: Neih gei sih leih Heung Gong ga?
(When did you come to Hong Kong?)
B: Ng6h yet g6u luhk boat nihn, yih yuht sahp houh leih
Heung Gong ge.
(I came to HK on the 1Oth of February 1968.)
A: 56 yi neih di Gw6ngdung w6 gong dak gam h6u.
(That's why you speak such good Cantonese!)
C. One-liners
1. Heung Gong yih go gei dim a?
(What time is it in Hong Kong at the moment?)
2. Ou Hook Laahn gei dim a?
(What time is it in Auckland?)
3. Ng6h deih wuih chih bun go jung.
(We will be delayed by half an hour.)
4 . Heung Gong yih go haih yeh m6ahn g6u dim.
(Hong Kong time is now 9:00 at night.)
5. Fei gei gei sih douh Meihgwok a?
(When will the flight arrive in the United States?)
6. Yiu leuhng go jung scam fan jung.
(It takes 2 hours and 3 minutes.)
7. Ou Hook Laahn bei Heung Gong faai sei go jung.
(Auckland is four hours ahead of Hong Kong.)
8. Ng6h sing keih yih scam dim hoi wui.
(I have a meeting on Tuesday at 3pm.)
101
No Swe<Jf C<Jnfonese
9. Chahn sin saang wuih hoi yih lihng lihng scam nihn
sahp yih yuht sahp chat houh heui Leuhn Deun.
(Mr. Chan will be in London for a meeting on 17th
December 2003.)
D. Grammatical Notes
1. Sentence structures:
There are several different sentence structures you will use in
order to talk about time. Here are a few simple formulae to
follow:
a) Asking the time
Yih go gei dim a?
(now) (what time)(finol particles)
What time is it now?
b) Planning ahead for time
Subject + Time + Verb
e.g. Ng6h
(I)
I have a
e.g. Ng6h
(!)
I have a
sing keih yat hoi wui.
(Monday) (have a meeting)
meeting on Monday.
sahp houh hoi wui .
(lOth) (have a meeting)
meeting on the 1Oth.
b) Planning ahead for place and time
Subject + Time ( + preposition + place) + Verb
e.g. Ng6h deih yat dim hoi Heung Gong gong lohk.
(we) (7 o 'clock) (in/ at) (Hong Kong) (to land)
We will be landing in Hong Kong at 1 o'clock.
102
Ct,ap-ter 9 Ttme, Da-te and Day o.P -tAe Week
c) What is happening at x o'clock?
Time of Day + Time + Verb + Question word + Noun
+ verb + particle
e.g. Gam maahn gau dim yauh mat yehjit muhk tai a?
(Tonight)(9 o 'clock)(have)(what)(programme)(to watch)(parficle}
Which programs are on TV at nine o'clock
tonight?
d) Time difference
Place A + bei + Place B + Faai + Time element
e.g. Ou Hook laahn bei Heung Gong faai sei go jung.
(Auck/and)(than} (Hong Kong} (faster} (4 hours}
Auckland is ahead of Hong Kong by four hours.
e) Dates and Time
Year + Month + Date (+ Time of Day + Time)
e.g. Yet gau gau chat nihn luhk yuht scam sahp houh hah
jau yet dim.
(1997)(June)(30th} (middle of the night} (lo'clock}
At 1 p.m. on the 30th June, 1997.
103
10 Going on a business trip
Port 1: Booking o flight and checking in
A.l Lingo
Gwok taai hohng

Cathay Pacific
hung
Airways
Seung mouh w6i

business class
Dehng [J
book/reserve
Gei piu
Ill !I
plane ticket
Yuht
F.J
month
Houh
li!
number
Boon gei
11!111
flight
P6 tung w6i
Simfll
economy class
Dim
!ii
how about
Gam
oa
well
Jeui
II
the most
Faai

fast
W6i
m
seat
Dong gei
Blll
check in
S6ujuhk
.
procedure
Geidfm

what time
Daaih yeuk

about/approxi-
/
mately
Chl h
ll
delayed
Gei noih

how long (how
much time)
Jaahp h6u
r..L'JD
gate
Ding Ging
mffi
Tokyo
Kok yihng

reconfirm
105
No Swe<Jt C<Jnfonese
Dang gei sou juhk

check in
Seung yiu would like to
Geipui
Ill!!
ticket
Wuh jiu

passport
Hahng leih

baggage
Baai

put
Seuhng mihn
J::im
on
Kap yi n keui

smoking area
Fei kap yin keui

non-smoking area
Jau long wei

aisle seat
Cheung hou wei
imom
window seat
Jung goon wei
tPimfn
middle seat
Mh goi saai

thanks very much
Saai

very much
Jun sih

on time
Daaih yeuk

about
Yatgojung
-Mil
one hour
Neui touh yuh faai
4ft
happy journey
Gei cheuhng seui
llltiim
airport tax
Dang gei
Bill
check in
Dang gei muhn
BIIIM
boarding gate
Gei sih

when
Juk
m
wish
Dang gei jing
Blllm
boarding pass
Hahng leih paai

baggage tag
106
CAapte r /0 t:=,oin4 on a Business -trip
B. 1 Chit Chat
Christina is at the airport counter.
C: Christina S: Customer Service
1 . C: Neih h6u, haih mh haih Gwok Taai hohng hung
a?
(Hello, is this Cathay Pacific Airways?)
S: Haih. Neih di Gw6ngdung wa h6u h6u wo.
(Yes. Your Cantonese is very good.)
C: Do jeh.
(Thank you.)
S: Ng6h yauh mat yeh h6 yi bong neih a ?
(How may I help you?)
C: Ng6h seung dehng gei piu.
(I ' d like to book a ticket .)
S: Cheng dang dang .... Neih seung heui bin douh a?
(Please wait a moment .... Where would you like to
go?)
C: Ng6h seung dehng yet jeung gau yuht sahp houh
heui Dung Ging ge gei piu.
(I ' d like to reserve ~ for Tokyo on Septem-
ber 1Oth.)
S: Gei dim a? 1
(What time?)
C: Jiu j6u gau dim bun.
(9:30am.)
S: Cheng dang dang ....
(Please wait a moment . ... )
107
No Swe<Jf C<Jnfonese
C: Mh goi yeuh m6uh seung mouh wei o?
(Do you have Business class?)
S: Yeuh seung mouh wei . Neih seung ch6h bin douh a?
(Business class is available. Where would you like to
sit?)
C: Ng6h seung ch6h cheung heu wei.
(I'd like a window seat.)
2 . C: Neih h6u, ng6h seung dehng gei piu heui Scam
Foahn Sih .
3 .
108
(Hello. I' d like to book a ticket to San Francisco.)
S: H6u a. Neih seung gei sih fei a?
(OK. When would you like to fly?)
C: Yeuh m6uh geu yuht geu houh a?
(Do you have seats on September 9th?)
S: Yeuh.
(Yes, we do.)
C: Ng6h seung kok yihng ng6h ge gei wei .
(I'd like to reconfirm my flight .)
S: H6u. Cheng mahn neih ge boon gei houh meh
haih gei do houh a?
(OK. May I have your flight number please?)
C:
Boon gei haih CX __ .
(The flight number is CX __ .)
S: Neih giu mot yeh meng a?
(What is your name?)
C: Ng6h sing Gillies. Ng6h giu Christina.
(My surname is Gillies. My name is Christina.)
Chap-ter 10 C:.oin"" on a f!.usiness -trip
4 . C: Gwok Taoi Hohng Hong ge "counter" hoi bin
douh a?
(Where is the Cathay Pacific Airways counter?)
S: Hoi chihn mihn.
(Straight ahead.)
5 . C: Daaih yeuk chih gei noih a?
(How long will it be delayed?)
S: Daaih yeuk Leuhng go jOng.
(Around 2 hours.)
6 . C: Gei dim dou DOng Ging a?
(What time will we arrive in Tokyo?)
S: Gou dim.
(9 o'clock.)
C.l One-liners
1. Mh goi, ng6h seung yiu neih ge gei piu tuhng wuh jiu.
(May I have your ticket and passport please?)
2. Hoi ni douh.
(Here you are.)
I
3. Mh goi jeung neih di hahng leih boai hoi seuhng
mihn.
(Please put your baggage .1m here.)
4. Cheng mahn yiu kap yin keui dihng fei kap yin keui a?
(Would you prefer smoking or non-smoking?)
5. Fei kap yin keui, mh goi.
(Non-smoking area, please.)
109
No 5weqt Cqntonese
6. Cheung hau wei dihng jung goon WOI a?
(Window seat or middle seat?)
7. Ni go hoih neih ge dong gei jing, gei piu tuhng
hahng leih paoi .
(Here's the boarding pass, your ticket and your
baggage claim togs.)
8. Fei gei jun sih rna?
{Is the flight on time?)
9. Juk neih neui touh yuh fooi.
(Enjoy your journey.)
=
HONG KONG, WORLD CITY
The people of Hong Kong hove relatives living all over the world.
Huge numbers of Chinese fled the Mainland during the lost
century. They continued this migration on from Hong Kong,
setting up Iorge enclaves in many of the world' s major cities.
Partly because of the family connection and portly because it's
fun, Hong Kong people therefore like to travel widely. You may
find your Cantonese useful in places as for aport as New York,
London and Sydney, so keep on practicing!
A note on tickets:
The word dehng means "to reserve." The words for "booking
tickets" ore dehng piu, which con be applied to booking train
and air tickets. A monthly ticket is the yuht piu. Fei is another
word for tickets; it is used for ferry tickets (syuhn fei) and movie
tickets (hei fei) .
'-' - - - r . . ~ - . . . - . ~
110
Chapter/0 C:.oin.:. on a Business -trip
Part 2: After the Trip and Checking Out at
the Hotel
A.2 Lingo
Gei dim
HID
what time
Seung
1m
want
nng jiu
lliJ
tomorrow morning
Dehng

reserve
Dik si

taxi
Che jaahm
mnc
station
Syut gwaih

refrigerator
Leuih mihn
ililii
inside
Gun
Ill
can (classifier of soft
drinks)
Jyuh
fl
live
M6ahn

night
H6u chi
tt11eA
seems like
Gai cho sou
MBE
calculate wrongly
T6i t6i

have a look
Nidouh
Dftli
here
G6 douh
llflli
there
F6ng
fj
room
W6n
m
look for
Bun

move
Dik si jaahm

taxi stand
Che
m
transportation
Gihn

piece (classifier for
luggage)
Sou teui che

baggage carts
111
0
No Swe;;t C;;ntonese
B.2 Chit Chat
Ann is checking out of her hotel.
A: Ann S: staff
1. A: Mh goi, ngoh seung tlng jlu w dik si, dak mh
dak a?
(I'd like to reserve a taxi for tomorrow morning. Is
that OK?)
S: Dak.
(OK.)
2 . A: Heui gei tit jaahm yiu gei chin a?
(How much is the fare to the airport station?)
S: Daaih yeuk chat sahp man.
(Around $70.)
3 . A: Ng6h yam j6 syut gwaih leuih mihn yat gun be
i.Q.\!, haih mh haih a?
(I drank a (can of) beer from the refrigerator,
didn' t I?)
S: Haih a.
(Yes.)
4 . A: H6u chi gai cho sou wo.
(There seems to be a mistake in the bill.)
S: Dang ng6h tai tai .
(Let me have a look.)
5. A: Ng6h chlm kaat dak mh dak a?
(Is it OK if I pay by credit card?)
S: Dak.
(OK.)
112
CJ.,ap-ter/0 C:.oin4 on a Business -trip
C. 2 One-l iners
1. Ng6h y6uh scam gihn hahng leih.
{I have 3 pieces of baggage.)
2. Mh goi bun di hahng leih heui dik si jaahm.
(Please take the baggage to the taxi stand .)
3. Mh goi, ngoh seung wan yahn bun hahng leih.
(Excuse me, I' m looking for a person to move my
baggage.)
4. Cheng dang dang.
(Please wait a moment.)
5 . Gei tit jaahm hoi bin douh a?
(Where is Airport Station?)

CHEK LAP KOK
Hong Kong International Airport, which opened in July 1998,
was named World ' s Best Airport for the year 2002. It is located
on Chek Lap Kok, an island off the north coast of Lantau. Little \
is left of the original island, as most of it was bulldozed into the
sea; like many other parts of modern Hong Kong, it is built on
reclaimed land. Chek Lap Kok Airport is one of the world's bus-
iest international airports, and is an excellent gateway to Hong
Kong. It does not , however, offer passengers and bystanders
the thrill of the old approach to its predecessor, Kai Tak airport
( 1925-1998). At ground level, shoppers in Sham Shui Po, would
hear a roar and look up to see the sky filled by a Boeing 747.
From inside the aircraft it would seem to passengers that they
were flying between the high rise buildings. Finally the aircraft
rilade a sharp turn just before touching down on a narrow strip
of land that projected out into the harbour.
The Airport Express carries passengers from the Airport
to Hong Kong Station (Central) in just 23 minutes. For the jour-
ney out of Hong Kong, the in town check-in counter service at
Hong Kong Station enables you to drop your luggage off in the
center of the city and continue efficiently on to the airport with
your hands free .

113
11 First visit to Hong Kong
A. LinQ.Q
Mh goi

Excuse me, please
0
Bong

help
Jung woahn
I:PJI
Central
Jim sa jeui

Tsim Sha Tsui
J6u dim

hotel
Heui
5
go
Bun deih
ztitt!!
local
Cheuhng touh

IDO
Hoi
tlf
ot/in
J6 bin
ttil
left side
Yauh bin
Ell
right side
Ni bin
11/tll
this way
Go bin ll@ljl that way
Bin douh

where
Jung goon w6i
r:prmm
middle seat
Seuhng mihn
...tiii
upstairs
Hah mihn
"Fiii
downstairs
Yet chi
-m
one time
Deih touh
ttl.llll
map
Yauh guk
tfifcj
post office
Suhng gwong

SOGO (a Japa-
nese Department
store)
Oik sf

taxi
Be sf
e:!
bus
115
I
'0
I
No Swe;;t C;;ntonese
Maaih
ll
sell
Dihn w6

telephone
Seung yiu

want to have
B6ai
mt
put
Dang gei jing
HIIIM
boarding pass
Man
mx
dollar
Dang gei
Hill
check-in
Dang gei muhn
HIIIM
boarding gate
Ng6u
"'
vomit
Bo jf
.55
newspaper
Gei cheuhng seui
llltiim
airport tax
WHAT IS SOGO?
There ore several Iorge Japanese deportment stores in Hong
Kong. Among them, SOGO is the biggest and the most well
known. Its entrance is also a meeting point for locals, due to its
convenient location just outside the Causeway Boy MTR station.
Many Hong Kong people, especially those of the younger
generations, like Japanese fashions, movies, music and food.
That's one of the reasons why there ore so many Japanese res-
taurants and stores in Hong Kong. They ore concentrated in
Causeway Boy and also Toikoo Shing because many Japanese
expatriates live nearby on Broemor Hill, a residential area just
above North Point.
"" --..
116
CAapt-er II t::irs-t visi-t -to -1-10114 ko114
You may find this Cantonese useful in places like hotels in
Hong Kong even if the hotel staff can speak English.
However, they really appreciate your efforts! I So keep on
practicing and build up a friendly relationship with the
locals.
To name a few,
Four Seasons Hotel
Hong Kong
Conrad Hotel
Disney' s Hollywood
Hotel
Emperor (Happy
Valley) Hotel
Excelsior Hotel
Peninsula Hotel
Grand Hyatt Hotel
The Landmark
Mandarin Oriental
Holiday Inn Golden
Mile
Heung Gong Sei Gwai J6u Dim
Gong Laih J6u Dim
Dihk Sih Neih hou loih wu J6u
Dim
Ylng Wohng jeun ging J6u Dim
Ylh Dung J6u Dim
Bun Dou J6u Dim
Gwen Yuht Heung Gong J6u
Dim
Jih Deih Mahn Wah Dung
Fong J6u Dim
Gam Wihk Go Yaht J6u Dim
117
No Swe;;t C;;ntonese
Hong Kong
Disneyland Hotel
Hong Kong Gold
Coast Hotel
Hotel Nikko Hong
Kong
Island Shangri-La
Hong Kong
JW Marriott Hotel
Langham Hotel Hong
Kong
Le Meridien Cyberport
Marco Polo HK
Marco Polo Prince
Miramar Hotel
New World Renais-
sance Hotel
Panda Hotel
Park Lane Hong Kong
Regal Airport Hotel
YMCA International
House
118
Heung Gong Dihk Sih Neih
J6u Dim
Wohng Gam Hoi Ngohn J6u
Dim
Yaht Hohng Jau Dim
Gong Dou Heung Gaak Leih
Laai
Maahn Houh J6u Dim
Lohng Tihng J6u Dim
Sou M6h Gong Ngaaih Meih
J6u Dim
M6h Ho Buht Loh J6u Dim
M6h Ho Buht Loh Taai Jf J6u
Dim
Meih Laih Wah J6u Dim
San Sai Gaai Maahn Leih J6u
Dim
Yuht Loih J6u Dim
Pak Lihng J6u Dim
Fu Houh Gei Cheuhng J6u
Dim
Ching Nihn Wui Gwok Jai Ban
Gun
Chapter!/ 0rs-t visi-t -to -l-Ion<:. kont:.
Di sney land & vocabul ary
HK Disneyland is o adventure foirgound in Hong Kong
and is one of the top tourists spots.
It is located on North Lontou Island between the Airport
and TsingMo Bridge.
Before 2005, it was only of interest to civil engineers. Now,
it is o " must go" or" must do" foro family lovers out. Let's
learn some phrases and hove fun there. But, remember
your credit cord limit and don't over spend!!
Disneyland
The Lion king
Adventurelond
Broadway
Buzz Lightyeor
Castle
Cinderella
Daisy duck
Dol motion
Disney 's Hollywood Hotel
Disneyland Resort
Disneyland Resort Paris
(France)
Disneyland's wedding
Pavilion
Donald duck
Dumbo
Fairy tole wedding
Fontosylond
Fast pass
Ferris wheel
Dihk Sih Neih
si jf wohng
tom hfm soi gooi
book l6uh wuih
ba si gwong lihn
sihng b6u
fui gu leuhng
doih si
boon dfm g6u
Dihk Sih Neih hou loih wu
j6u dim
Dihk Sih Neih Lohk Yuhn
Foot Gwok Dihk Sih Neih
Lohk Yuhn
Dihk Sih Neih ha fan laih
gun
tohng l6uh ng6op
sfu fei jeuhng
tuhng w6 fan l6ih
woohn seung soi gooi
fooi jing
mo tin lyuhn
119
No Swe;Jf C<Jnfonese
Fireworks display
Goofy
HK Disneyland Hotel
Hong Kong Disneyland
Inspiration Lake
Recreation Centre
Lion king
Main street, USA
maze
Mickey mouse
Minnie mouse
MTR Disneyland resort
train
Mulon
Parade
Parade of Dreams
Peter Pan
Prince charming (lit: white-
horse-prince)
Pumpkin cor
Scooby Doo
Sleeping beauty
Snow white (lit: white-
snow-princess)
Space mountain
the 7 dwarf
the float
120
fong yin fa
gou fei
Heung Gong Dihk Sih
Neih jau dim
Heung Gong Dihk Sih
Neih Lohk Yuhn
dihk yon wuh
san ba
Meih Gwok sfu jon dooih
gaoi
maih gung
maih keih louh syu
maih neih louh syu
deih tit Dihk Sih Neih liht
che
muhk laohn
cheuhn yauh
muhng ji cheuhn yauh
sfu fei hohp
boohk mah wohng jf
naohm gwa che
bouh louhtouh
seuih gung jyu
boohk syut gung jyu
fei yuht tooi hung soon
syut gu chat yau
fa che
Chapter //
Tokyo Disneyland Resort
(Japan)
Tomorrowland
Walt Disney World
Winne the pooh
J:irst: visit: t:o -1-/ontE> konq
Yaht Bun Dung Ging Dihk
Sih Neih Lohk Yuhn
mihng yaht sai gaai
Wah Dahk Dihk Sih Neih
sai gaai
siu huhng woih neih
121
N o Swe<J f C<Jnfonese
B. Chit Chat
Maurice is still finding his way around Hong Kong .
M: Maurice S: Shop assistant
1.
2 .
S:
M:
S:
M:
Mh goi, ng6h h6 yi bong neih rna?
(Excuse me, may I help you?)
Mh goi youh m6uh bo si heui Jim So Jeui a?
(Excuse me, is there a bus going to Tsim Sha Tsui?)
Youh, hoi chihn mihn.
(Yes there is. It's over there.)
Hoi bin douh youh Heung Gong deih touh maaih
a?
(Where can I buy a map of Hong Kong?)
S: Hoi "WH Smith" syu dim.
(At the WH Smith Bookshop.)
3 . M: Hoi gei cheuhng youh m6uh yauh guk go?
(Is there a post office at the airport?)
S: Youh.
(Yes.)
122
CAapter /1 t::irs-t visi-t -to -Hon,;. kon,;.
Jay is in Hong Kong visiting Ann .
J: Jay A: Ann
4 . J: Heung Gong yauh mot yeh tai a?
(What's there to see in Hong Kong?)
A: Heui Son Deng Ia. Fung ging hou leng.
(Go to the Peak. The scenery is very beautiful.)
5. J: Heui bin douh moaih yeh jeui hou a?
(Where' s the best shopping?)
A: Jim So Jeui jeui hou.
(Tsim Sha Tsui is the best.)
6 . J: Bin douh youh hoi toan a?
(Where is the beach?)
A: Naahm Aa Dou tuhng Yuh Ging Wean.
(Lemma Island and Discovery Bay.)
7 . J: Cheng mahn Laahn Gwai Fong hoi bin douh a?
(May I ask where Lon Kwai Fong is?)
A: Laahn Gwai Fong hoi Jung Waahn.
(Lon Kwai Fong is in Central.)
123
No Swe<Jt C<J n ton ese
....
WHAT IS THERE TO DO IN HONg KONg?
There are many things to do during a visit to the territory.
Some of these include:
I . Stan ley markeJ: a great place with beaches, pubs, restau-
rants and shops , which ni ake it one of the favorit e spots to
live and go sightseeing. Take a 6,6A or 260 bus from Ex-
change Square. The journey of about 40 minutes takes in
many good views of Hong Kong Island.
2. Temple StreeJ: a street market with different stall s sel ling
clothes, antiques and odds and ends. You can have you r
fortune told by one of the many fortune-tellers lined up on
one end of the street. Nea rby are many open cafes se rving
local dishes like clay pot rice and snake soup. Temple St reet
is 5 minutes walk from Jordan mTR station. It comes ali ve in
the evenings when you rftay even see Chinese opera.
3. ~ spectacular views of Hong Kong, by day and night.
A one hour walk around the Peak, on Harlech and Lugard
roads on a nice evening at sunset is an experience one should
not miss. Take the unbelievably steep and old (circa 1880)
Peak tram as this is the most exciting and enjoyable way to
the top. At the upper terminus a new mall combines a wide
variety of shopping and dining options for visitors. Al so lo-
cated there is madame Tussaud's, which di splays over one
hundred hand-sculpted wax statues of celebrities and politi-
cal leaders in Hong Kong and mainland China, such as
michelle Yeow, Andy Lau and Jiang Zemin. There ' s even a
scaled-down version of " Ripley's Believe it or Not" at the Peak
Tower. Buses run from both the Central Star Ferry ru1d Admi-
ralty mTR to the base of the Peak Tram.
4 . Lan Kwai Fong and Wanchai: are the places for a night out
on the town. There is a wide spectrum of restaurants, bars
and ni ghtclubs with music and jazz bands to choose fron1.
5. Ocean Park: adventure fairground with excell ent aquariums
and shows for a family day out. The park is now home to
Hong Kong's resident panda.
6. Cheung Chau: has a host of seafood restaurants, a fishing
fleet and several old temples. There are holiday homes for
rent. The beaches are also popular for windsurfing and
swirilrhing.
7. Happy Valley: if you are over 18, a horseracing tour at Hong
Kong Jockey Club both in ShaTin and Happy Valley, (Happy
-
124

CAapter/1 t:irst visi-t -to -Hont;, kont;,
Valley is more historic and accessible) is highly recommended.
Races are held Wednesday evenings (Happy Valley) or Sat-
urday afternoons (Shatin) between September and mid-June.
Racing is one of the ritost popular fornis of sport entertain-
ment in Hong Kong and one of the few legal forms of
gambling.
8. Lantau Island: is home to the giant Buddha, a huge bronze
statue sitting up the hill from the Po Lin monastery. Plans are
in place to bui ld an aer ial tramway from Tung Chung.
9. Lariuila Island: enj oy a boat ride from the Pier in Ce ntral to
Lamma Island and round off with dinner at one of the sea-
food restaurants by the seaside. You can pick what you want
to eat direct ly from the fish tanks standing outside the
restaurants .
I 0. Disney Theme Park: on Lantau Island between the Airport
and the Tsing rna bridge. Until it opens in 2005/6 it will only
be of interest to civil engineers. After that it wi ll become a
"must do" item for the kids. You have been warned!
Official re so urces for visitors
The Hong Kong Touri st Board provides official quality services
for tourist s and the general public. Flyers, brochures and city
maps can be found in their offices by the Star Ferry Piers in Cen-
tral and Tsim Sha Tsui and, of course, at the airport. As you walk
around Hong Kong, you'll see its emblem (the red junk wi th
white background) in some shops' windows. This means that
the shops have been approved by the Tourist Board and their
quality is assured.
125
No Swe<Jf C<Jnfonese
C. One-liners
Doop dlk sf heui Jung Waohn yiu gei chin a?
(How much is the taxi fore to Central?)
2. Dfm heui Suhng Gwong a?
(How con I get to SOGO deportment store?)
3. Hoi bin douh do bun deih/cheuhng touh dihn wo
a?
(Where con I make a locoi/IDD call?)
4. Gei cheuhng seui gei chin a?
(How much is the airport tax?)
5. Mh goi youh m6uh Ylngmahn bo jf a?
(Do you hove any English newspapers?
English newspapers available in Hong Kong
There are a number of English language publications in Hong
Kong:
1. South China Morning Post: a very long-standing English
language newspaper from Hong Kong. Includes local and
foreign news with entertainment and features.
2. The Asian Wall Street Journal: English newspaper mainly
about finance and economy, popular with bankers and
financiers.
3. The Standard: English newspaper about local and
overseas affairs with features.
In addition, several free magazines circulate around bars,
restaurants and other venues:
1 . HK Magazine - information and entertainment about HK.
2 . BC Mqggzine - about catering, bars and restaurants in
Hong Kong
3 . Rugby Talk - Rugby in Hong Kong
Other newspapers, journals and magazines from the rest of
Asia and around the world are available at large newsagents
and often at the Star Ferry Piers.
~ . . . . _ _ ~ ~
126
CJ.,apter/1 r::trs-t visi-t -to -Horv:. korv:.
D. Grammatical Notes
1. Asking for items or for help:
"Mh goi" or "Cheng mahn" are common phrases used when
asking for an object or for help.
a) Mh goi + verb + noun + "a" + ?
e.g. Mh go1, y6uh m6uh dang gei jing a?
(Piease)(have)(have naf}(baarding pass)(Quesfion word)?
May I have your boarding pass, please?
e.g. Mh goi, bong ng6h jiht dik sf a?
(Please) (help me) (catch) (taxi) (final particle)
Could you please help me catch a taxi?
b) The word "Mh goi" also means "excuse me" and can be
placed at the beginning or the end of the sentences as
follows:
(i) Mh goi, y6uh m6uh go fe a?
(ii) Y6uh m6uh go fe, mh goi.
(Excuse me, do you have coffee?)
c) Cheng mahn + verb + noun + final particle + ?
"Cheng mahn" means " May I ask" in English and is
used when asking for an object or for help. It is similar to
"Mh goi" when it is placed at the beginning of the
sentence. However, "Cheng mahn" is more formal than
"Mh goi."
e.g. Cheng mahn gei cheuhng seui gei chin a?
(May I ask)( airport fax) (how much money) (final particle)
May I ask how much the airport tax costs?
127
12 Interests and Hobbies
A. Lingo
Types of Sports dii1J) Wahnduhng:
Verb

Do Bo

playing ball games
Do M6hng kauh

playing tennis
Do Bik kauh

playing squash
Do Bing bam bo lJ playing table tennis
Do Go yi fu kauh playing golf
Tek Jok kauh

playing football
Yauh Seui
nH7..1<
swimming
Chihm Seui
1'17..1<
diving
Waaht Seui
i!7..1<
water-skiing
Lauh Bing )i)J.k ice-skating
Haahng Soan
fiW
hiking
Po au Bouh

jogging
Soan Bouh

strolling
Others :
Toi Dihn sih

watching TV
Toi Hei
Oi/fi
watching movies
Toi Syo
Di.
reading books
Teng Yom ngohk

listening to music
Teng Sou yam gei

listening to the radio
129
No Swe4t C4nfonese
Verb Object
Cheung Go
Cheung "K"
Taahn Kahm
Heui Leuih hahng
Haahng Gaai
Teng Lauh hahng
kok
Teng Yiuh gwun
Adverbs :
Yet chaih
Bat yuh
ngohk



nffifj
fjfti
II >lit fj !HI
II
singing
singing karaoke
playing the piano
go travelling
window-shopping
listening to pop
music
listening to rock
music
together
let's
..
SPORTS AND RECREATION
In Hong Kong, there are many places that offer well-equipped sports
facilities for a low fee:
1. SCAA: South China Athletic Association. Located in Happy Valley,
this club looks a little old but is endowed with every facility possible;
including a huge bowling hall .
2. LCSD: Leisure and Cultural Services Department. This govern-
ment agency runs Games Halls that provide facilities for swimming,
squash, badminton, tennis, running track, etc. for a minimal fee.
Halls are found throughout the region. A large, modern Squash
Hall is located on the edge of Hong Kong Park next to Central.

130
CJ...apter /2. In-terests and -Hot!>l!>ies
B. Chit Chat
1 .
2 .
3 .
A:
B:
A:
B:
A:
B:
A:
Neih jung mh jung yi t6i hei a?
(Do you like to watch movies?)
Ng6h h6u jung yi tai hei .
(I like watching movies very much.)
Neih jung mh jung yi cheung goa?
(Do you like to sing?)
Ng6h h6u jung yi cheung go.
(I like singing very much.)
Neih dok hoahn jung yi jouh mot yeh a?
(What do you like to do in your spare time?)
Ng6h jung yi youh seui tuhng tai syu. Neih ne?
(I like swimming and reading. And you?)
Ng6h jung yi heui leuih hohng tuhng haahng
soan. Neih gaau ng6h youh seui dok mh dok a?
(I like travelling and hiking. Can you teach me
how to swim?)
B: Oak, ng6h ting yaht dok hoahn.
(OK! I am free tomorrow.)
A: H6u a.
(Great.)
131
No Swe<Jf C<Jnfonese
4. A: Neih jung mh jung yi cheung go a?
(Do you like singing?)
B: Ng6h mh jung yi cheung go, ng6h jung yi do
bik kouh.
{I don't like singing, but I like playing squash.)
A: Ng6h dou haih. Neih gei sih dak hoahn a? Bat yuh
ng6h deih yat choih woan Ia?
(Me too. When do you have time? Let's play
together .)
B: H6u. Sing keih sei h6u mh h6u a?
(Great, how about Thursday?)
A: H6u a.
(Great.)
C. One-liners
Ng6h youh h6u do si hou.
{I have many hobbies.)
2. Ng6h jung yi do bik kouh tuhng teng yam ngohk.
{I like playing squash and listening to music.)
3. Ng6h ting yoht dak hoahn.
{I am free tomorrow.)
4. Ng6h h6u jung yi cheung go.
{I like singing very much.)
5. Ng6h gaau neih youh seui.
{I'll teach you how to swim.)
6. Ng6h mh jung yi teng yiuh gwun ngohk.
{I don't like listening to rock music.)
132
CAapter /2 In-teres-ts and -HoBBies
D. Grammatical Notes
1. Likes and dislikes:
When talking about your hobbies in Cantonese, you will need
to use the same sentence structure that you use in English:
Pronoun+ Adverb + Auxiliary verb+ Verb-Object
a) Ng6h gei jung yi cheung go.
(I) (quite) (like) (singing)
b) Ng6h h6u 1ung yi cheung go.
(I) (very much) (like) (singing)
c) Ng6h rhh jung yi cheung go.
(I) (don' t) (like) (singing)
2 . " Let's .. . " / Bat yuh .. . Ia :
To put forward a friendly suggestion, use " Bat yuh ... Ia" in
the following formula:
Bot yuh + subject (pronoun/noun) + verb + Ia
e.g. Bat yuh ng6h deih heui cheung go Ia?
(Let) (us) (go) (singi ng) (final particle)
(Let's go singing.)
" La" indicates the invitation or suggestion for d o i n ; ~ a certain
thing. e'
I -":-a
FILmS
Hong Kong 's large c inemas are divided into bi lingual (UA) and
Ch inese . The bilingual cinemas show Hollywood films, the top
films from other countries, and larger local productions with En-
gl ish subtit les. Hong Kong is t he movie-making centre of Asia.
There are two fi lrh studios t hat concentrate on nia rt ial arts and
Jove stories. Jackie Chan is the owner of one of them.
For t he lndie fil m fan , Hong Ko ng has three ci nemas to
offer: the Broadway Cinematheque in Yau rna Tei , the Hong Kong
Fil ni Archive in Sai Wan Ho, and the Cine-Art in Wan Chai Nort h.
For two weeks in April Hong Kong hosts a large International
Fi lm Festival.
.......... .._ ____ ,.._ ~ ...
133
;)
13 Weather
A. Lingo
Hei wan
ml>A
temperature
Douh
If!
degree
Sap douh
)Iff! humidity
Baak fohn ji
i31BiZ
percent
(+number)
nn hei

weather
Yiht
1m
hot
H6u tin

good weather
Yam tin

overcast
Nyuhn
Ill
warm
Leuhng
)fit cool
Dung
)JR cold
Gon

dry
Sap jft
wet
Yuh
mii
rain
Syut

snow
Mouh
II
fog
Yeuhng gwong

sunshine
Neuih bouh

thunderstorm
Bouh yuh
Rmii
rainstorm
Jaauh yuh
l!mii
showers
Fung
1m!
wind
Toih fung
llllml
typhoon
H6 lohng

probably
135
No 5we;;t C;;ntonese
Dim
!0
how
Ji
~
to, till
Sim dihn
0011
lightning
Seui joi
7 J < ~
flood
Ging gou
.5
warning
Bo gou
il5
report
Adverbs:
H6u h6u
ttfttf
very
Gei
~
quite
Mah rna dei
MiliittH
so so
l . Terllperature
In Hong Kong we use oc ond not F.
Yih sahp douh
=+li
2. Humidit y:
Hutftidity is rileasured in percentage.
Sap douh ~ : i
Baak fahn jB chat sahp BfiliZ.t:+
20 c
humidit y
70%
Baak fahn j8 is the denori1inator, and literally means "out of
136
I 00 parts." Note that we actua ll y say the numerator after the
denorilinator when talking about fractions.
Baak fahn jB gau sahp yi h Bfili2.11 + = 92%
Sei fahn jB sliam ll!lfi};Z.:=
CAapter/3 weather
B. Chit Chat
1.
2 .
A: Airport staff P: Passenger
P:
A:
P:
A:
Gam yaht Ou hook laohn hei wan gei do douh a?
(What's the temperature today in Auckland?)
26 douh.
(26 degrees.)
Heung Gong tin hei dim a?
(How' s the weather in Hong Kong?)
Hou tin.
(The weather is good.)
3 . Amy is reading the newspaper with Peter.
P: Peter A: Amy
P: Amy, Heung Gong gam yoht hei wan gei do douh a?
(Amy, what's the temperature in Hong Kong
today?)
A: Heung Gong gam yoht hei wan hoih 18 douh.
(Todoy's temperature in Hong Kong is 18 C.)
P: Dung Ging (Tokyo) ne?
(How about Tokyo?)
5 A: Dung Ging hoih 19 ji 25 douh.
(Tokyo is 19-25 oq
P: nng yoht Heung Gong ge tin hei wuih dim a?
(What will the weather in Hong Kong be like
tomorrow?)
A: Ho lahng wuih hou tin, y6uh sih y6uh joouh yuh.
(It will probably be sunny with occasional showers.)
137
N o 5we<Jt C<Jntonese
4 . During a rainstorm
...
RAINSTORM WARNINGS
Because of the danger of landslides during and after heavy rain,
the government has a warning system to inform the public about
the seriousness of a storm and to advise appropriate action.
There ore three stages:
wohng slk bouh yuh (Amber) : Kindergartens will be closed,
and parents requested to pick up their children.
huhng slk bouh yuh (Red) : Some roads may be flooded and
landslides are imminent.
hook slk bouh yuh (Block) : Danger is foreseeable . Most com-
mercial buildings and government offices will be closed, and
everyone apart from daily- or hourly rated workers may enjoy
the day off.
The Hang Kong Observatory broadcasts the warnings on both
TV (look for the icon on the top of the screen!) and radio.
-------11!.
A mother tells her son that, due to the rainstorm,
school is cancelled today.
B:
138
Yih go youh wohng slk (amber) bouh yuh. Neih gam
yaht mh sci faan hohk Ia .
(The Amber Rainstorm warning has just been hoisted.
You don' t have to go to school today.)
Hou a . Ngoh gam yaht ho yi hoi ok kei tai dihn sih Ia .
(Great! I can watch TV at home today.)
CAap-ter 13
5. During a typhoon
I
TYPHOON WARNINGS
Typhoons are tropical storms that can be devastating. They origi-
nate in the South China Sea and move north towards the
Phillippines, Hong Kong, Guangdong and Taiwan at slightly dif-
ferent times of the year. For Hong Kong, the period between May
and November is typhoon season.
As with the rainstorm warning system, radio and televi-
sion will broadcast the typhoon warnings to the public:
When the Yat houh fong kauh (Typhoon no. 1) is hoisted, the
typhoon is centered within 800 kilometers of Hong Kong. You
should take the possibility of o typhoon into consideration when
planning your days ahead.
When the Saam houh fong kauh (Typhoon no. 3) is hoisted,
the wind is blowing at 41-62 km/ h. You should secure all loose
objects and temporary structures such as scaffolding. All kinder-
gartens will be closed.
When the Boat houh fong kauh (Typhoon no. 8) is hoisted,
the strong winds have officially been classified as a gale or storm.
All schools and commercial offices will be closed. You should put
masking tape on windows in order to prevent flying glass.
With the hoisting of the Gau houh fong kauh (Typhoon no. 9)
or Sahp houh fong kauh (Typhoon no . 1 0), the storm has
become a hurricane. You should stay indoors away from doors
or windows to avoid flying debris.
When there' s a typhoon, you will see supermarkets like Park' N'
Shop and Wellcome packed with people buying groceries in a
frenzy. Weather conditions above a "Saam hauh fong kauh"
(Typhoon Signal 3) can rapidly deteriorate and be potentially
destructive.
.. John is telling Lauren to go home.
J: Lauren, yih go do Boat houh fung kouh Ia, neih faai
di faan ok kei Ia.
{lauren, the typhoon no.8 has been hoisted. You'd better
go
L: Hou a. Neih yih go hoi bin douh a?
(OK. Where are you now?)
J: Ng6h hoi gOng si. Ngoh yih go faan uk kei Ia.
{I am at the office. I am going home now.)
139
No 5we;;f C;;nfonese
C. One-liners
nng yaht Foot gwok wuih lohk syut.
(There will be snow in France tomorrow.)
2. Gam yaht h6u nyuhn.
(It is warm today.)
3. nng yaht Heung Gong wuih do fung .
(There will be a typhoon in Hong Kong tomorrow.)
4. nng yaht Maahn Guk h6u riht.
(It will be hot in Bangkok tomorrow.)
5. Gam yaht Sing Go Bo mh h6u tin.
(Singapore' s weather is not good today.)
140
CJ.,ap-ter/3
D. Grammatical notes
1. There are four ways to describe weather:
(i) Time element + adverb + adj
e.g. Gam yaht h6u
(Today} (very}
It's very warm/wet today.
nyuhn/sap.
(worm/ wet}
(ii) Time element + Verb-Object construction
e.g. Kahm yaht sfm dihn.
(yesterday} (lightning}
There was lightning yesterday.
A verb-object construction is a combination of a verb and an
object that can be used as both a single verb and a noun (similar
to the use of the" -ing" construction as a noun, e.g. "the traveling").
Some other examples are:
Noun Verb-object construction
haahng leuih (thundering) Leuih bouh (thunder)
Toih fung (typhoon) d6 fung (having a typhoon)
Syut (snow) lohk syut (snowing)
(iii) Time element + y6uh/m6uh + Object
e.g. Ting yaht y6uh syut.
(Tomorrow} (has} (snow}
There will be snow tomorrow.
e.g. Sing keih yaht m6uh yeuhng gwong .
(Sunday} (has no} (sunshine}
There will be no sunshine on Sunday.
141
No Swe<Jf C<Jnfonese
(iv)
Time element + probability + youh/m6uh + Object
e.g. Tlng yaht h6 lahng yauh Boat houh fung kauh.
(Tomorrow) (probably) (have) (Typhoon signal no. 8)
There will probably be a Typhoon signal no. 8
tomorrow.
2. Talking about the future with and without "Wuih" :
a) "Wuih" means "will [probably]" and expresses future
probability. When talking about the weather, it is common to
use "wuih" because weather reports are never 1 00% reliable!
The structure is:
Time element + wuih + adjective
e.g. Hah go sing keih wuih h6u dung .
(next week) (will) (very cold)
It will [probably] be very cold next week.
It can also be used before a verb to express future intention.
142
Subject + wuih + verb + object
e.g. Ng6h wuih
(I will/intend
m6aih
to buy
luhk chah.
green tea.)
Chap-ter/3
b) When the word "wuih" is omitted, the sentence expresses the
definite future. This is especially the case when the time ele-
ment is mentioned.
Time element + verb + object
e.g. Ting yaht y6uh ~
(Tomorrow) (has) ~ n o w )
There will [definitely] be snow tomorrow.
Time element + Subject + verb + object
e.g. Yeuhng sin saang ting yaht aan jau hoi wui.
(Yeung) (Mr.) (tomorrow offernoon)(hove meeting)
Mr. Yeung will [definitely] be in a meeting
tomorrow afternoon.
143
14 In the Kitchen
A. lingo
Chyuh sl
mmi
chef
"
Choih liu
Jmit:l
ingredients
Yip liu
llit:l
marinade
Faatgwok choi
>nlllm
French-style dish
Junggwok choi
q:JIIIM
Chinese-style dish
Yahtbun choi
sznm
Japanese-style
dish
Yandouh choi
ED J i M
Indian-style dish
Tauh pun
fill
entree
Jyu choi
~ m
main dish
Leang pun
~
cold dish
nhm ban
m ~
dessert
Hoi waih choi
f!Jl!JJM
appetizer
S!H!SQnings:
Ylhm
g
salt
Tohng

sugar
Jeung yauh ll)fb soya sauce
nuh meih liu
iJJDmit:l
spices
Chou
M
vinegar
Ga lei fan
lllllllim
curry powder
Wuh jlu fan
DH&Iim
pepper
Syun - garlic
iiiiii
Choi yauh
M)fb cooking oil
M6ih j6u
rn>l!i
rice wine
Yuhk gwai
~ I I i
coriander
Gai fan
jljffl
chicken stock
Geung

ginger
145
No Swe<Jt C<Jntonese
0
Cooking
F6
*
fire
Moh
1ft
grate
Chit seui
tDti$
mince
Chit lap
tDim
dice
Mok peih
!i!J 11{
peel
G6au
M
beat
Sai
BRi
sift
Gw61euih
mli
puree
Yuhng
,.
melt
Guhk
m
bake
Haau
~
roast
Jyu
~
boil
Ch6au
~
fry
Jing
1A
steam
Maahn f6 jyu
* ~
simmer
Bo gwan ~ a
bring to the boil
146
CJ.,apter I+ In -tk ki-tcJ.,en
Kitcbeo uteosils
0
Pun
13
tray
Chaan geuih

cutlery
Boon
II&
(cutting) board
Bou
ffi
cloth
Gang

spoon
Dang

chair
Faai ji chopsticks
Mouh gan

towel
ah chim

toothpick
Wun
fii!
bowl
Hok

ladle
Bui

cup
Cha

fork
Dou
7J
knife
Dip
liJll
plate
Chaan gan
rn
napkin
Biii jin

coaster
Syut gwaih

refrigerator
Guhk louh
m
oven
Gw6 jap gei
m>tJm
mixer
Cheuhng beng

saucepan
wohk
Pihng d6i wohk
pan
Bo
j2
pot/container
B6 sin ji

plastic wrap
147
0
N o Swe;J t C;Jn tonese
B. Chit Chat
1 . A: Di Di, mh goi hoi louh.
(Di Di, please turn on the oven.)
D: H6u a. Gei do douh a?
(OK. To which temperature?)
A: Yet book boat sahp douh.
(180 degrees.)
2. A: Sin, ga yauh, yihn hauh d6u di tiuh meih liu lohk
heui.
148
(First, add oil, then pour in the seasonings.)
D: H6u a . Yihn hauh le?
(OK. And then?)
CAapter/4 In -tf.,e ki-td,en
3 . A: Neih jung yi jyu Jung-gwok choi dihng Faatgwok
choia?
(Do you prefer to cook Chinese or French dishes?)
D: Ng6h jung yi jyu Junggwok choi dQ.di.
(I prefer to cook Chinese dishes rru:u:e.)
A: Dim g6ai a?
(Why?)
D: Yon waih ng6h mh sik jyu Faatgwok choi .
(Because I can't cook French dishes.)
A: Mh g6n yiu. Ng6h Q.O.O.U neih jyu Ia.
(That's no problem. Let m ~ you how to cook.)
D: H6u a. Gei sih a?
(OK. When?)
A: nng m6ahn Ia.
(Tomorrow night.)
C. One-liners
1. Mh goi hoi louh.
(Please turn on the oven.)
2. Mh goi soan louh.
(Please turn off the oven.)
3. Ng6h mh sik yuhng faai jf.
(I can't use chopsticks.)
4. Mh goi yuhng dung seui/yiht seui.
(Please use cold water/ hot water.)
149
No 5we<Jt C<Jntonese
5. Mh goi d6u di tiuh meih lohk heui .
(Please pour in the seasonings.)
6. Mh goi go yauh.
(Please add oil.)
7. Mh h6u yuhng laaih leuih.
(Don' t use dairy products.)
8. Mh h6u yuhng dean.
D o n ~ t use eggs.)
9. Cheng seung choi.
(Please serve the food.)
10. Ng6h deui ___ mahn gam.
(I'm allergic to ___ . )
D. Grammatical Notes
1. Final part i cle " le" :
The final particle "le" means "how about" in English.
e.g. Yi hn hauh le?
(And then?)
150
CJ.,apter I+ In -t:J.,e ki-tcJ.,en

A CHINESE RECIPE
This is one of my favorite local recipes. Try to figure out how to
make ill The English translation is in Appendix IV.
Drunken Chicken (Jeui goi)
In my humble opinion, "Jeui gai" is the most unique and
delicious dish in Chinese gourmet. Found in many famous
restaurants in both Hong Kong and overseas, it uses a simple
recipe that can be followed easily by amateur cooks. Use this
dish to impress your Chinese guests! You' ll probably have as
much fun with it as I did when I tried to make muffins and
sushi .
Ingredients (Choih liu) :
2 1/2 bohng Gai
1 gang Ylhm
2/ 3 gang Gai fan
1 1/ 3 boi Maih jau
leuhng gang Choi yciuh
gei pin (a few pieces of) Geung
2 1/ 2 gang T ohng
1 go chit seui Syun tciuh
siu siu Yuhk gwai
1/4 gang Wuh jiu fan
Steps:
1. Sin sci (wash) jek giii, ~ baai hai .bQ leuih mihn.
2. Go 2/ 3 gang giiijQn, 1/3 boi ~ tuhng Wlj. Seui yiu
k2i..gy,-Q (cover) jek gai, ylhn hauh hoi daaih f6 b6 gwan.
3. Maahn f6 jyu 20 fan jung.
4. Baai gai hai dip seuhng mihn.
5. Ylhn hauh d6u di lluh meih liu lohk heui gai seuhng mihn:
I2hng, 1 boi ~ . rlbm, wuh iiu f6n tuhng choi y6uh
6. Yuhng b6 sin ji beau jek gai, ribn..IJIDih baai hai syut gwaih
yip yet maahn.
7. Daih yih yoht (next day), jeung jek gai dJii.Wn, ylhn hauh
dung sihk.
So how well did you do? If you ' re not sure, the English
translation is in Appendix IV.
~ ............. r,.._-..,, ..
151
15 Chinese Dim Sum and
Local Cafes
Pari 1: Dim Sum
A. l Lingo
A Sel ect i on of Dim Sum Cffiile) Dim Sam:
Ha gaau

shrimp dumpling
Siu maai
m
steam pork ball
Cha slu sou

BBQ pork puff pastry
Cheun gyun
eft
Cantonese spring roll
Cha slu beau

steamed BBQ pork bun
Lihn yuhng beau
IlifftJ
lotus seed paste with
egg-yolk bun
Fuhng jaau
lllffi
chicken feet
Gai jaat
Jill
chicken bundle
Choigaau

vegetable dumpling
Cheung fan
OIIB
rice roll
Jaai cheung
;:wg
vegetarian rice roll
Ha cheung
fiftl
shrimp rice roll
Ngouh yuhk

beef ball
Youh choi
>mm
vegetable
Wuh g6k

fried taro dumpling
Gun tong g6au steamed dumpling
stuffed with mince pork
and chicken soup
Ma laai gou

steamed sponge cake
Hoh yihp faahn

steamed fried rice in
lotus leaf wrapping
153
Qi
No Swe<Jt C<Jntonese
154
Dim Sum is the English spelling of Dim Sam. However, the pro-
nunciation "Sum" has been used so much that it has become
the common way to say ond write it.
Ofm Sam literally means "a little bit of heart" and it refers
to food that comes in small portions in a variety of shapes, col-
ors and combinations of tastes. The Cantonese are proud of
this unique cuisine, and dim sum to the Cantonese is as impor-
tant as wine is to the French.
Dim sum, especially the steamed varieties, are normally
served in the "bamboo steamer" - called a "luhng" (cage) in
Cantonese- and the rest are served on plates, or "dihp."
The dim sum lunch, "yam chah," is a popular activity, par-
ticularly on Sundays, as that is the traditional day on which the
family eats out. "Yam chah" literally means "tea break," and
refers to the simultaneous activities of eating dim sum and drink-
ing gallons of tea during the event.
In older restaurants the dim sum is wheeled out in stacks
to each table by the "trolley girl," or "a je" in Cantonese. "A je''
actually means
11
COmpetent woman/' and is considered a term
of respect. It can also be slang for tea lady at the office. To order
a portion of dim sum that is passing by on a trolley, just wave to
the trolley girl and say, "a je, mh goi" and the dish you wantl
~
Cl-.ap-ter/5 CMnese Dim Sum and Local Cales
Chin ese Desser ts
<!faa) Tihm ban:
Huhng douh sa

sweet red bean
paste soup
Doohn toot
mnt
custard tort
Jo wahn tan

deep tried
dumpling with
sweet & sour
sauce
Ji mah gyun

sweet block
sesame roll
Douh fuh fa
EiHt
tofu sweet dessert
Mong gw6 bou din
cJIHfi 'iiil
mongo pudding
Hohng yahn chah

cream of almond
Hoohptouh louh
3$1UI
cream of walnut
Soong gw6 pun fresh fruit plotter
Types of Chinese tea Junggwok chah:
Heung pfn
P6u lei
Wu lung
Tit gun yam
Leuhng chah
jasmine tea
pu ' er
oolong tea
iron buddha
Chinese herbal
tea
155
Q
No Swe<Jt C<Jntonese
B.l Chit Chat
Mandy is taking James out for lunch .
M: Mandy J: James
1 . M: James, neih seung yam mat yeh chah a?
(James, what kind of tea do you like to drink?)
J: Heung pfn, h6u rhh h6u a?
{Is jasmine tea fine?)
M: H6u. Neih seung sihk mot yeh a?
(Good. What do you like to eat?)
J: Ng6h seung yiu ho gaau, gai jaat tuhng jaai dim
sam.
{I would like to have shrimp dumplings, chicken
bundle and vegetarian dim sum.)
2. Ordering food from the trolley.
J: James A: A je (Trolley girl)
J: A je, rhh goi leuhng go mong gw6 bou din.
(Miss, two mango puddings, please.)
A: H6u a. Neih di Gw6ngdung wa h6u h6u a.)
(OK. Your Cantonese is very good.)
J: Do jeh saai.
{Thank you very much.)
3. At the end of the lunch ...
156
M: James, yiu rhh yiu tlhm ban a?
(James, do you want desert?)
J: Do jeh Ia, ng6h beau Ia.
{Thank you very much. I am full already.)
Ct,ap-ter 15 CMnese Dim SUM and Local Cales
M: Gam, ng6h deih mooih doon Ia.
(Well, let's pay the bill.)
J: Do jeh sooi . Di yeh h6u h6u sihk a.
(Thank you very much. The food was very
delicious.)
(You ore welcome.) t.
4
M: Mhsai. ~
........ 0 ...... ~ ~
TIPS FOR DINING
Chinese table etiquette may be different from what you ore used
to. Taking note of the following tips will be useful to getting along
with friends and business associates alike:
1. Guests wait for the host to start before helping themselves.
In the family environment, we normally wait for our par-
ents to start before we proceed.
2. Do not toke the lost piece of food from the dish. Otherwise,
the host may think he or she has nat been hospitable
enough by cooking enough to fill your stomach.
3. We normally sit at a round table that allows the diners to
eat facing each other without differentiation of status.
4. If you wont to refill the teapot at a Dim Sum restaurant,
just leave the lid balanced on the rim of the teapot. The
waitress will fill it up with hot water again.
5. If someone at your table pours you tea, you should lightly
top the table with one or more fingers to show your
appreciation.
6. If someone invites you out to dinner, it normally means he
or she would like to pay for the dinner. Don' t insi st on
shoring the bill.
7. It is customary for the Chinese to leave tips in cosh in
Chinese restaurants.
8. In Chinese culture, dishes are delivered to the middle of
the table and they ore not supposed to be passed around.
We simply pick the food we wont with our chopsticks.
9. When your chopsticks touch a piece of food , you should
eat it to be polite.
1 0. Use both hands. The left hand holds the bowl while the
right hand holds the chopsticks.
_________ ,.. ___ ...
157
0
No Swe<1f Ciin f onese
Part 2: In a Local Cafe
A.2 Lingo
Alcohol ( )@) Jau:
Bejou IJ!j@ beer
Go sih book
ate
Carlsberg
Sang lihk g:1J San Miguel
Baahkjou S)@ white wine
Heung ban

champagne
Huhng jou
fi)@
red wine
Non-Alcoholic drinks F#i jau neuih
Tea Chith:
Junggwok chah

Chinese tea
Huhng chah

black tea
Luhk chah

green tea
Ning chah

lemon tea
Noaih chah

milk tea
Heung pin
mf1
jasmine tea
Yahtbun chah

Japanese tea
Yandouh chah

Indian tea
Juice <m)t) gw6 ilip:
Bolohjap jifijt pineapple juice
Choang jap
IKf)t
orange juice
Faan ke jap
Moo>t
tomato juice
Faan sehk lou jap
fi6Mi)t
guava juice
Pihng gw6 jap
m>t
apple juice
158
Charter /5 Chinese DiM SUM and Local Ca.tes
STREET FOOD
Outdoor cafes, "daai h paai h dong" and st reet stall s
can be found everywhere in Hong Kong, from the back all eys of
mongkok to Central. Often they are the only places you ' ll find
serving genuine local food at extrerilely cheap prices, so it's use-
fu l to have a few phrases handy for the next time you fancy hav-
ing a bowl of beef brisket noodles on the street.
Other local cafes, the " chah chaan t#ng" are
also popular in Hong Kong. These cafes are norma ll y packed
with office workers and students during lunchtirite. They serve
local food at a low price. Some are also known to open all night,
and after a long night of partying many local youngsters can be
seen chatting away over a steaming plate of fried rice, at 4 or 5 in
the morning.
Ot hers:
Seui
7.1\
water
Yiht seui

hot water
Dung seui
)17.1\
cold water
Ga fe

coffee
H6 lohk

Coca-cola
Back si h
s
Pepsi
Chat hei

7-up
Syut bik

Sprite
N6aih
ttl3
milk
159
No Swe<1t C<intonese
0
Snacks c/J\m) Si u sihk:
Gai yihk

chicken wings
Scam mahn jih

.=. )c
sandwich
Dean jih
mA
)c
egg sandwich
Tan nah yu jih
eGit>g
tuna sandwich
Gong sl scam

club sandwich
mahn jih
A
)c
Teui dean jih
lllm>g
egg and ham
sandwich
Sai do sf

French toast
Ngauh yuhk mihn

beef noodles
Ngauh leahm

beef brisket
mihn noodles
Wahn tan mihn

wanton noodles
Jyu pe foohn
Rt/\ni
pork chop rice
Hoi naahm gai

Hainan chicken
foehn rice
Gon cheou ngauh

dry-fried rice
h6
noodles with beef
Go lei gai foohn
IUD Dian&
curry chicken rice
Sing jau cheou

Singaporean fried
mei rice noodles
160
CJ.,ap-ter/5 CMnese Dim SUM and Local Ca.Pes
B.2 Chit Chat
Jay is trying to practice Cantonese at the local cafe .
A: Waitress J: Jay
1 . A: Neih h6u, cheng mahn yiu mot yeh a?
(Hello, what would you like to order?)
J: Yauh mot yeh be jau a?
(What kind of beer do you have?)
A: Ng6h deih yauh Go sih back tuhng Ching d6u.
(We have Carlsberg and Tsing Tao.)
J: Mh goi, ng6h seung yiu Ching d6u.
(I would like to have Tsing Tao please.)
2. A: Cheng mahn sihk mot yeh a?
(What would you like to eat?)
J: Mh goi, yet gihn sci do si.
(One French toast please.)
A: Cheng mahn yam mot yeh a?
(What would you like to drink?)
J: Mh goi, yet bui dung nfng chah .
(One cold lemon tea please.)
After the meal ...
J: Maaih dean, mh goi.
(Bill, please.)
A: Do jeh scam sahp men.
(It's $30.)
161
0
No Swe<Jf C<Jnfonese
C. One-liners
1. Ng6h seung dehng t6i.
(I would like to make a reservation .)
2. Leuhng wai, mh goi .
(Two persons, please.)
3. Ng6h seung yiu cheung hau wai .
(I would like to hove a table by the window.)
4. Ng6h seung yiu ka wai .
(I would like to hove a booth seat.)
5. Chaon paoi, mh goi.
(Menu, please.)
6. Ng6h seung sihk tlhm ban.
(I would like to eat some dessert.)
7. Ng6h seung sihk gai joot.
(I would like to eat chicken bundle.)
8. DT yeh h6u sihk.
(The food is delicious.)
9. Mh goi mooih dean.
(Check please.)
10. Cheng dang dang.
(Please wait a moment.)
11. Ng6h sihk jaoi ge.
(I om a vegetarian.)
12. Ng6h seung dehng jaoi dim sam.
(I wont to reserve a vegetarian dim sum.)
162
CJ.,ap-ter 15 CJ.,inese Dim SL.Wl and Local Ca.tes
13. Ng6h jung yi dim sam.
(I like dim sum.)
14. Mh goi bei yot bui seui ngoh.
(Would you please give me a gloss of water?)
15. Mh sai jaou.
(Keep the change.)
D. Grammatical
1. "Tuhng" :
"Tuhng" means "and" and is also placed between two nouns.
e.g. Ngoh deih yauh ho gaou tuhng siu maoi.
We hove shrimp dumpling and steamed pork.
e .g Wu lung choh tuhng seui . r
Oolong teo and water.
TIP: "Yihn houh" also
means "and," but links a
sequence of events or ac-
tions (see Chapter 5.0 .2).
e.g. Heui yam choh yihn houh heui gei cheuhng.
Go to hove dim sum and then go to the airport .
163
No 5weilf Ciinfonese
2. Yiu .. . dihng .. . ?:
"Yiu" means "want" and "Oihng" means "or," but they are
only used in the form of a question.
Subject+"yiu"+object 1 +"dihng"+object 2+"a"+?
e.g. Ne i h ri.l.l. chah dihng
(you) (.wantl(tea) (!2)
Would you prefer tea or water?
3 . " Oehng" :
"Oehng" means "reserve."
e.g. Neih y6uh m6uh dehng t6i a?
(Have you reserved a table?)
4 . "Jung yi":
seu1 a?
(wafer)(final particle)
"Jung yi" means "to like." The structure is exactly the same as in
English:
5 . "01":
Pronoun + jOng yi + noun
e.g. Ng6h
(I
jung yi
like
cha slu sou.
BBQ pork puff pastry.)
" 01" is a measuring word marking the plural form or
noncountable things.
e.g. Mh goi bei dl yiht seui ng6h deih.
(Please give us some hot water.)
164
Chap-ter 15 CAinese Dim SU/'Vl and Local Ca.tes
6 . "Seung":
"Seung" means "want to." The sentence structure is exactly the
same as in English.
For a positive statement:
Ng6h seung sihk gai yihk.
(I want to eat chicken wings.)
For a negative statement:
Ng6h rhh seung sihk gai yihk.
(I don't want to eat chicken wings.)
And in the question form:
Neih seung rhh seung sihk gai yihk a?
(Do you want to eat chicken wings?)
165
Appe"dices
N o 5we<Jf C<Jn t onese
Appendix 1: Geographical Terms
Hong Kong pl ace names
Heung gong dou Hong Kong I sl and :
Seuhng waahn
1::1
Sheung Wan
Mahn mouh mfu

Man Mo Temple
Hoh leih wuht

Hollywood Road
douh
Malo goai lfildlfij Cat Street Bazaar
(Lascar Road)
Bun soan keui
$Lll!A
Mid-levels
Soan deng
LUM
The Peak
Gauh soan deng
l!LUM;J
Old Peak Road
douh
JOng waahn
cpl Central
Laahn gwai fong
illilfiil.i
Lon Kwai Fong
Gam jOng

Admiralty
Heung gong gOng

Hong Kong Park
yun
Taai gu gwong
:t'\o/1111
Pacific Place
cheuhng
Woan jai
111B
Wanchai
Tuhng loh woan

Causeway Bay
Paau mah dei

Happy Valley
nn hauh mfu

Tin Hau Temple
Jok yuh chong

Quarry Bay
Daai h lohng woan
7'\5&111
Tai Long Wan
Sehk ou
o>lfl
Shek 0
Daaih taahm
7'\)1
Tai Tam
168
Appendi>< I qecx:,rapJ,ical Ter711?s
Chek chyuh
nnn
Stanley
Chin seui wean
>17.k)11
Repulse Bay
Hoi yeuhng gung
jfaj$fllll Ocean Park
yun
Heung gong jai

Aberdeen
Leih dou
...
Outlying Islands
Daaih yuh soan

Lantau Island
Gei cheuhng
11111
Airport
Daaih faht

Big Buddha
Bolihn jf
a
Polin Monastery
Cheuhng jau
HH
Cheung Chou
Jeung bo jai

Cheung Po Tsai
duhng Cave
Naahm aa dou

Lamma Island
Gau luhng
fUJI
Kowloon
Jim sa jeui

Tsim Sha Tsui
Hoi gong sihng jfB)ftfli Harbour City
Jim dung

Tsim Sha Tsui East
Chuhng hfhng

Chungking
daaih hah
Mansions
Leih duen douh

Nathan Road
Go lihn wei louh
1JD illtt'i
Granville Road
douh
ll
Miuh gaai
llfti
Temple Street
Neuih yan gaai
ttAfti
Lady's Market
Gam yuh gaai

Goldfish Market
Heung gong mahn gj)ft)(ft Hong Kong
fa jung sam

Cultural Center
169
No 5we<Jt C<Jnfonese
Lihk si bok moht

History Museum
gun
IS
Taai hung gun

Space Museum
G6u luhng gOng

Kowloon Pork
yun
G6u luhng sihng

Kowloon Walled
jooih gOng yun
fill
City Pork
Leih yuh muhn

Lei Vue Mun
San gooi
ifW
New Territories
Dooih bo
1'\tm
Toi Po
Chyuhn wean

Tsuen Won
Fan lehng

Fonling
Sa tihn

Shotin
Che gOng miu
@fliiO
Che Kung Temple
Sai gung
il9a
Sci Kung
Hong wuh youh

Morino Cove
tehng wui

Ching seui wean
)Ji7..l<i11
Clear Water Boy
170
Appendix I C:.ecx.rapt,ical Ter1'Yls
When foreign words enter the Chinese language, they ore as-
signed characters that ore phonetically similar to their originals.
The most obvious example of this is found in the names of cities
and countries. Here' s a selection plus some Chinese and Japa-
nese place names, arranged alphabetically according to their
Cantonese pronunciation.
6h fuh hohn
HID11H
Afghanistan
6h m6uh sl dahk

Amsterdam
dean
f!}
6h laai baaklyuhn
HIDmfe
United Arab
hahp yauh jeung

Emirates
gwok
aai kahp

Egypt
ba gei sl t6an
E!!l!Mftt
Pakistan
ba lahm
E!!Jml
Bahrain
ba laih

Paris
ba leih dou

Bali
ba sci f:!!il Brazil
bak glng
jtffi
Beijing
ban sihng
fltlii
Penang
bo laahn

Poland
bo sih deun

Boston
bou leih sl bun
mmwrzn
Brisbane
daaih boon

Osaka
dean mahk
f!lW
Denmark
dak gwok

germany
do leuhn do

Toronto
a:

171
A
B
D
N o Swei/ t Ciintonese
douh baai
ttn
Dubai
dong ging
mffi
Tokyo
F
fact gwok
>ne
France
faat laahn hack

Frankfurt
fok
faht loh leih daaht
fftllmii
Florida
jau
+H
fan laahn

Finland
fei leuht ban
nf!s
Phil ippines
fok gong

Fukuoka
G go jau
1JD+H
California
g6an poh jaaih

Cambodia
go nah daaih

Canada
gat luhng bo
a !111m
Kuala Lumpur
go leuhn bei ah

Colombia
go leuhn bou
IHtffi
Colombo
gong jau
II+H
guangz hou
H hei lihp
ffiltl
greece
heung gong
m>fi
Hong Kong
hoh loan
fifiilli
Holland
hoh noih
jg} 1'9 Hanoi
hoi yon si

Cairns
hon sihng
iltm
Seoul
J jaat fong

Sapporo
ji go go
z1JDS
Chicago
ji leih

Chile
L leih maht po

Liverpool
leih pok yfh
Ft>811
Nepal
leuhn deun

London
loh mah

Rome
loh wai
flllltt'i
Norway
172
Appendix I
C:.ecx.rapf.,ical Tef""MS
lohk chaam gei

Los Angeles
maahn chit si dahk

Manchester
M
maahn guk

Bangkok
maahng m6aih

Bombay
maaih 6h meih

rhiarfu
mah loih sai a

malaysia
mah neih laai
F.lfiieJll
manila
m6h yih doih fu

maldives
mahk sai go
11illf
mexico
mahk yih bun
llllztt
melbourne
meih gwok

U.S.A
mihng gu uk

Nagoya
mouh leih kauh si

mauritius
muhng dahk leih

montreal
yih
muhng gu
Bo
mongolia
naahm fei

South Africa N
naahm hohn

South Korea
n6u yeuk

New York
n6uh sci laahn

New Zealand
oih yih laahn
fill ill
Ireland
0
ou deih leih

Austria
ou hook laahn
ti!l:Rili
Auckland
oujau
>liHHi
Australia
ou mun

macau
pack si
lfEIMij Perth
p
pouh touh ah

Portugal
scam foehn sih
=Mffi
San Francisco
s
sci on
il'B
Xi ' an
sam jan
jfR !Ill
Shenzhen
seuih din

Sweden
173
N o 5we<!f C<infonese
seuih sih
JMI
Switzerland
sheuhng hoi
J::>fa
Sh a ng hai
si leih laohn ka

Sri Lanka
sing go bo

S in ga po re
sou laih soi

Zuri ch
suk mouh
m
Ce bu
syut leih

Sydney
T tooi gwok

Thai la nd
toih waon iS )II
Ta ipei
t6u yfh keih
:EUt
Turkey
w wai leih si

Ve nice
wai yfh si

Wa l es
waih yah loohp

Vien na
wan go wah
>aini
Vanco uver
wuh ji mihng sfh

Ho Chi minh City
y
yoht bun
BZII
J a p a n
yon douh

India
yon neih
ED IE
In dones ia
yeh go dooht
QB1JDW
J akarta
yeuhk hohn noih

J o ha nn es bu rg
si b6u

yi dooih leih
Mt\H:U
Italy
ying gwok
iijjjj
U. K.
yi si t6on b6u

I stan bu I
yuht naohm

Vietnam
174
Appendix II: Idioms and Slang
Expressions
A. ldioms
I .
Duhk maahn gyun syu, bat yuh haang maahn leih louh.
Trave l is the best education.
Literally: Rather than study ten thousand books, why not
travel ten thousand miles instead.
2. ifiHI
Saan gou wohng da ih yuhn.
Whi le the cat is away, th e mt ce will p lay.
Literally: The mountain is tall and the Emperor is far away.
3.
H6u seui do gwo chah.
He/ she t a l ks too mu c h.
Literally: He/ she has more sali va than tea.
4.
Lohk gau si.
It 's rainin g cats a nd dogs.
Literally: Falling dog poo.
5.
rh ouh chyiin mouh laahn.
Eve ryt hin g is O.K.
Literally: There 's no hole, nothing is broken.
175
No Swe<Jf C<Jnfonese
6.
Goi tuhng ngaap gong.
Communic a ti o n ba rri e r.
Literally: L1ke a chicken is talking with a duck
7.
06 yuhn jooi mh yiu woh seung.
To t a ke so meo ne fo r g r an te d.
Literally: To expel the monk after the chanting is over.
8 -lltll!m iiii tim
Yot geuk doohp leuhng syuhn.
A person who i s unfa i t hf ul , dati ng two peo pl e at a
t i me.
Literally: One foot stepping on two boats.
9.
Vat jti k gou da yat syuhn yahn.
Pa in t eve r ybody with th e same bru s h.
Literally: To kill all with a single blow.

Ng6ai j6i do g6i.
(thi s is untranslatabl e!)
Literally: A short !fuy has a resouceful mind.
II.
Yih gwo je f6 .
Easy job, a piece of cake.
Literally: Easier than lighting a fire.
12.
Yauh laaht ya uh h laaht.
T here are bot h pros a nd co ns.
Literally: There 's both spicy and non-spicy.
176
Appendi>< II
13. oo7it
maa ih mihn gwong .
A hypoc rit e .
Literally: Buy ing face shine.
14. fijftig:1ft{i!jfX
Idioms and S lane, e><Pressions
Yauh yeh saang m6uh Ia gaau.
To have pa r e nt s but t o l ac k good pa r e nt a l g uid ance.
Literally: There 's a father to sire the child but no mother to
teach it.
1s.
Jan j yu dou m6 uh gam j an.
Thi s is ge nuin e.
Literally: Not even a peMl is more genuine than that.
16.
Jih gei ji jih gei sih.
One kn ow's what o ne's d o in g .
17.
Tip cho muhn sa hn .
Peopl e can 't get a l ong, f i ght in g l ike cats and dogs.
Literally: The Door-god's wrongly pasted on the door.


177
No Swe<Jt C<Jntonese
B. Slang Expressions
Every:day: Life:
cheuih pin
6)1@
help yourselves
chemg yuhng ying

please say that in
man gong
5I
English
chOng leuhng )!ll)ffi take a shower
chOng seui
)!ll7.k
pour water
daap t6i
mta
to share a table ie,
especially in the
Chinese restaurant
ding ding
JJ
tram - because of
the sound
faai di

hurry up
go fe moi
DlllMHtm
parking warden
(literally: coffee
lady)
goon dihp

undercover
gai peih

goosebumps
hook oih
llifi
dumbfounded
h6u sihk
lttf!i
yummy
h6u yeh
lttt
good stuff
j6u bing

no ice (e.g. when
ordering a soft
drink)
j6u b6

miss out on a
good deal, let go
of a good thing
j6u cheng

no spring onions,
e.g. on the top of
the congee
178
Appendix II Idioms and S!anr,. expressiof15
jou gai

miss out on o
greatly valued
thing/a good deal
jou youh
no oil (when
ordering veg-
etables in a
Chinese
restaurant)
jiu gou moahn ngh

working 9:00am
to 5:00pm
jyu pohng gou

bad mates lead
youh you astray
maahn moan
ill ill
take your time
moh foahn

troublesome/
dodgy
rhh soi haahk hei

don't mention it
ngaai gaau OX;( at loggerheads
neih sin

after you
soan ji
B:f
small change
sap sap seui

frivol things/
meagre money
sou seng
L&ll
shut up
yahp ng6h sou
J\flE
my treat
youh m6uh goau
filHIH
what a ridiculous
cho thing
179
No Swe<Jt C<Jntonese
Entertainment :
sou yuh chaai jih

char ades
duhng dok siu

stand-up comedy
gong siu

j oking
luhk hoohp ch6i

lottery
yauh g6n seui
neii7.k
"dry swi mming" -
i.e. Pl aying
mahj ong beca use
the gestures are
li ke those of
swimmi ng
Ever)<'dOJ<' J2eOJ2Ie :
bei pei sfu yahn

creep
chou h6u

smelly breath
chou wuh

smelly armpit
che peih tfu

pimp
cheun jyo
IIR
stupid like a pig
fa pihng

fake, superficial
foot haouh

a flirt
fong pei

fort
go hohn
iM*
stingy
haahm sap

horny/sleazy
loan hoi
Mfm
Go away! (lit. :
crawl away!)
m6h lou ijll naughty kid (lit.:
monkey)
mouh lahng
1M BE
impotent
oih biu si mahn,

decent looking but
loih leuih "open"
)(.1'9.
actually promiscu-
OPEN
ous
180
Appendix II
IdioMs and Slane, e'J(f'ressions
paaih gwat
t:lHU.
skinny person (lit. :
spore-ribs)
seui peih

sloppy
sik lohng

rapist
soh gwa
11/a
silly in on odor-
able way (lit.: silly
melon)
Romance:
chlhng fu
Ill OM
mistress
gai dou

brothel
leng douh bei
IUUfil
absolutely
gorgeous, stun-
ning
mihn huhng

to blush (literally:
a person ' s face
becomes red)
soot sihk

attractive looki ng
persons (male or
fema le)
seuhn

pure
sing muhk neui
IU3tt
smart lady
sing gam
lltml
sexy
tlhm
m
sweet
tuhng geui
15.Jfei
living together but
not married
waih yat
Ill-
unique
yahn yfu
Attn
transvestite
181
No Swe:;t C:;ntonese
Appendix Ill: Glossary
English Cantonese Chinese Chagter
A
20 minutes yih sahp fan
=+Bil
5
jung
7-up chat hei
t::R
15
a beard wuh sou

4
abalone baau yuh
lilflt
8
accountant wuih gai si
aB-tBili
afternoon hah jau

10
at/in hoi
111
11
aisle seat jou long WO

10
Airport express Gei cheuhng faai
MtJU1aJ
5
sin
airport tax gei cheuhng
Mt;im
10,11
seui
apple juice plhng gwo jap

15
apple plhng gwo
m
8
appetizer hoi waih choi

14
about/approxi daaih yeuk

10
mately
after/passing by gwo jo

5
aisle seat jou long WO

10
aisle/middle seat jung goon woi
I:Pimm
10, 11
B bus basi
!!!
5, 11
bus station basi jaahm
!!!no
7
beer bejou Ill >I
15
bra hung waih !JijiJ 15
182
Appendix Ill qfossary
bed chohng
lffi
6
bell pepper cheng jiu
Jill
8
bring to a boil bo gw6n
ji
14
big build/well built daaih jek

4
bald gwong tauh

4
business class gung mouh

10
w6i
baggage hahng leih

10
baggage tag hahng leih p6ai

10
behind/ at the hauh mihn

7
back
black tea huhng chah
nM
15
broad shoulders waahng
,.
4
butcher jyu yuhk p6u

7
balcony keh 16u
161111
6
basement deihlouh

6
boxer shorts ma yin tung

8
bath yuhk gong

6
bake guhk
rl
14
BBQ pork Puff cha siu sou
:SZ*IB
15
Pastry
bookcase syu g6

6
blush yin ji
Ill iii
8
before/In front of/ chlhn mihn
i!iim
5,7
just ahead
bakery shop mihn baau p6u
.'81.
7
bathroom chung leuhng j{J])ffi/J 6
bank ngahn hohng
iHfi
7
beat g6au
tl
14
bedroom seuihf6ng
1115 6
beef brisket ngauh l6ahm

15
183
No Swe;Jt C;Jntonese
beef, beef ball ngouh yuhk

8,15
(dim sum)
beef noodles ngouh yuhk

15
mihn
boutique sih jong dim

7
behind/ hauhmihn

7
at the back
baggage carts sou teui che

10
blouse seuhng scam

8
broccoli sci laahn fa
imillft:
8
beside gaakloih
6iiM
7
book/ reserve dehng

10
board ban
Jr
14
boarding gate dang gei muhn

10,11
boarding pass dang gei jing
IIlii IDE
10,11
bowl wun
fiJi!
14
boyfriend noahm pohng

3
yauh
butcher jyuyyhk p6u

7
chopsticks faai ji

14
c
cold water dung seui
)jftJ.J< 15
cold dung
)jft
13
cup boi

14
coaster boi jin

14
cloth
bou
ffl
14
cutlery chaan geuih

14
CD/ record shop CD p6u
COM
7
coffee table choh gei

6
car/transport che
m
5,10
Cantonese spring cheun gyun
fit!
15
184
Appendix: Ill
q fossary
captain gei jeung

3
cooking oil choi youh
M)fb 14
check in dang gei
BM
10
check in dang gei s6u
BM3=JI
10
procedure juhk
check-in counter dang gei t6i

11
central jOng woahn
QJJI 11
chemist yeuhkfohng

7
chinese-style dish jOng-gwok chah
Q:lliiiM
14
chef chyuh si
mrm
14
computer dihn 16uh
11111
8
Cathay Pacific Gwok taai hohng

10
hOng
cream of walnut haahptouh louh
81NUI
15
cream of almond hahng yohn choh

15
crab h6ai
If
8
chicken feet fuhng j6au
111m
15
convenient fong bihn
7]1! 5
curtain cheung lim
iarJI
6
coffee ga fe

15
coffee shop ga fe sat

7
curry powder ga lei f6n
IWIIIIIB
14
classifier for gihn

10
luggage (piece)
curry chicken rice ga lei gai faahn
IWIIIIJ!IM
15
Carlsberg Go sih book
llfe
15
Chinese tea jung gwok choh
Q:lliiiM
14,15
corner jyun gok

7
cinema heiyun
ltilfl
7
club sandwich gung si soam

15
mohn jih
)t"A
>c
185
No Swe.:;t C.:;ntonese
cold dish Ioong pun

14
cool leuhng
13
curly lyOn

4
Chinese herbal leuhng chah
15
champagne heung ban
mm
15
comb so
1m
6
carrot loh baahk

8
curly lyOn

4
chicken stock gai fan
J!IIB
14
chicken bundle gai jaat
J!l!l
15
chicken wings gai yihk

15
chicken gaiyuhk

7
calculate wrongly gai cho sou

10
can (classifier of gun

10
soft drinks)
carpet deih jin
mft
6
cheap pehng
!
8
custard tart daahn toot
mM
15
clam hin

8
Coca-cola h61ohk

15
candy shop tohng gw6 dim
iMmft5
7
cabbage yeh choi
m
8
cauliflower yeh choi fa

8
coriander yuhk gwai
.3S: Jfi
14
colleague tuhng sih
fc].
3
degree douh
1ft
13
department store book fo gOng si
si!iiflQI
7
D
digital camera sou m6h seung
Mlllm
8
gei
Ill
door muhn

6
downstairs hah mihn
"Filii
11
186
Appendix Ill
C.!ossary
dining room faahn teng

6
dining table chah gei

6
dice chit lap
tJUO
14
delicious h6u sihk
ttffl
8
delayed chih
ll
10
dry gon
iZ
13
dry-fried rice gon ch6au ngauh 14
noodles with beef h6
diving chihm seui
1R7.J<
12
dollar man

11
deep fried ja wahn tan

15
dumpling
dozen da
n
8
doctor yi sang
.g:
3
dessert tihm ban
!tra
14
dress kwahn
m
8
dress shop sihjong dim

7
dull sky yam tin

13
eye ng6ahn
OS
4
east dung
m
7 E
entree tauh pun
HRIB
14
engineer gungchihngs

3
electrical appli- dihnheip6u

7
ance store
expensive gwai

8
end of the street gaai h6u
tfJD
7
eyeliner ng6ahn sin
DSfl
8
beat
egg and ham teui daan jih
DI<>B
15
Excuse me, please mh goi

11
economy class p6 tOng w6i
simm
10
187
N o Swe4 t C<!ntonese
egg sandwich d6an jih If.\
)c
15
fat feih
He!
4
fork cha
5Z
14
F French style dish Faatgwok choi

14
flip-flops to hoai
lffiti
8
fog mouh

13
foam pou pou
rei rei
6
friend pahng y6uh

3
face wash s6i mihn gou

8
fresh fruit platter saang gw6 puhn

15
fish yu
M
8
fire f6
*
14
flight boon gei
Jfilll
10
flight attendant hungje

3
fried taro wuh g6k fij 15
floor deih h6
mr:-
6
flood seui joi

13
ferry syuhn
M
5
French toast sci do si

15
fresh san sin
iffll
8
fast faai
*;4
10
fry ch6au

14
go straight jihk heui
m=a
5
goodbye joi gin
fiH1!
3
G good morning j6u sahn

3
good night j6u tau
!11!!4
3
good sky h6u tin

13
guava juice faan sehk lou

15
jap
ginger geung

14
good afternoon ngh on
q:a 3
188
Appendix: Ill
c=.tossary
garage che fohng
m5 6
glasses ngaahn gimg
OHM
8
grate moh
R
14
girlfriend neuih pohng

3
yauh
go heui
n
5,11
go travelling heui leuih
nmfi
12
hohng
garlic syun

14
grapes taih ji

8
good quality I eng
II
8
garden fa yun
?till
6
gate jaahp hau
IJJD
10
good weather h6u tin
tttn
13
green tea luhk choh

15
how far geiyuhn

5
how long (how gei noih

10
much time)
honeymelon maht gwa
mm
8
hiking hoahng scan
fjW
12
H
Hainan chicken hoi noahm ga

15
half bun
$ 9
how dim
IS
5,1 0,1
hotel j6u dim
)i!jfE
11
here ni-douh
ott fa
5,10
hair salon foot yihng uk

7
have a look tai tai
liM OM
10
hair touh foot

4
hot yiht
1m
13
high-heels gou joang hoaih

8
here ni douh
ott fa
5,10
189
No Swe<Jf C<Jnfonese
hi-fi system yam heung
till
8
humidity sap douh

13
handkerchief sou gaan
3=rtJ
6
hot water yiht seui
im7..K
15
half an hour bun go jung
=Filii
5
hello neih h6u
fffittf
3
how are you neih h6u ma
fffittflll
3
honeydew melon mahtgwa
mm
8
happy journey neui touh yuh

10
faai
intersection, the gaai hau
mo
5,7
end of the road
IDO cheuhng touh
Bml
11
inside leuih mihn

10
iron buddha tit gun yam
1111Hi
15
in front of chihnmihn
fiDim
7
ingredients choih liu

14
ice-skating lauh bing )i)h;
12
jogging paau bouh

12
Japanese tea Yaht bun chah

15
Japanese style Yaht bun choi
BZliM
14
dish
juicy dojap

8
jeans ngauh jai fu
t+GM
8
juice gw6 jap
m>t
15
jasmine tea heung pfn
mf1
15
journalist gei je

3
K
kids sfu pahng yauh

3
knife
dou
7J
14
Kowloon Canton Gau Gong tit
1111111
5
key so sih
Pfilt
6
190
Appendix Ill
t:E,tossary
lawyer leuhtsi
f!Bili
3
L
left side j6 bin
liil
11
lemon tea ning chah
liM
15
left j6 mihn
liim
7
lottery station tauh jyu jaahm
m>tno
7
Indian tea Yon douh chah
EDiflM
15
Indian style dish Yon douh choi
EDifllit
14
listening to pop temg lauh hahng
li)liffi!HI
12
music kok
listening to the tmg sou yam
Ill& tiM
12
radio gei
lady's market neuih yon goai
tlAtti
5
living room hook teng

6
long hair cheuhng tauh
sHftfi
4
look for wan
m
10
laptop sau taih dihn
!111111
8
l6uh
last night kahm maahn

ladle hok

14
let's bat yuh

12
leather shoes peih haaih

8
lychee laih ji

8
last night
lipstick syuhn gou
m
8
lightning sim dihn
0011
13
lettuce soang choi

8
lamb yeuhng yuhk

8
lemon lihng mung
,..
8
lotus seed paste lihn yuhng
11fili!
15
listening to rock teng yiuh gwun

12
lamp dang
m
6
191
No Swe<Jt C<Jntonese
local bun deih
znm
11
lobster luhng ha
Iiiii
8
M mince chit seui

14
map deih touh
m111
11
managing ging leih

3
director
marketing sfhcheuhng-
ilHJUI/11
3
teuigw6ng
midnight bun yeh
=Fii
9
middle seat jung gaan wai
lfllmtn
10,11
MTR deihtit
mm
5
mirror geng

6
mobile phone sau toih dihn

8
wa
morning seuhng jau
1::1!1
9
Mr., husband sin saang

3
Mrs., wife taai taai
"Jf\"Jf\
3
Miss, lady sfu je
JJ\tm
3
minibus sfu ba

5
move
bun
I!!
10
mixer gw6 jap gei
m>tMl
14
mango pudding m6ng gw6 bou
c:mffiiij]
15
din
mascara
ngaahn jit

8
melt
yuhng
Iii
14
marinade yip lfu

14
moisturizer
yeuhn mihn
)fiHfiiill
8
seung
month yuht
F.J
10
minutes fan jung
flil
9
mushroom dung gu

8
192
Appendix Ill

milk n6aih
1113
15
middle jung goan
tPfm
7
main dish
jyu choi
m
14
milk tea n6aih chah

15
moustache sou

4
non-smoking fei kap yin

10
N
area keui
noon
jOngngh
q:tq:
9
now
yfn go
9
no problem m6uh mahn taih
ftfm&
3
now out of 1 00 baakfahnji(no.)
i3Bi2.
13
north bak
jt 7
newsagent
syo bou toan
.fill
7
newspaper bo jf

11
nose beih

4
number houh

10
night m6ahn

10
nevermind
rhh g6n yiu

3
napkin choan gon
llrt:J
14 0
o'clock dfm
!ii
9
opposite/across deui mihn

7
on time
jun sih

10
octopus mahk yuh
!Wit
8
onion
yeuhng chOng
)$il 8
on, upstairs seuhng mihn
J::ilii
10,11
old (age) 16uh

4
orange
chaang
m
8
orange juice 1 chaang jop
MISt
15
aolong tea wO lung

15
overcast
yam tin

13
onetime
yet chi
-m
11
193
No Swe<Jt C<Jntonese
one hour yet go jOng
-
5,10
on, upstairs seuhng mihn
J::ilii
10,11
oven guhklouh
IIHI
14
overthere chihn mihn
i!rilii
5
p
pan pihng dai wohk
!Flail
14
photographer sip ying sf

3
police ging chaat

3
purchasing ch6i kau ging

3
manager leih
pilot gei si
IIIBili
3
puree gw61euih

14
put baai

10, 11
percent book fohn ji
i3ffliZ
13
Pepsi book sih
811
15
pot/container bo

14
pedestrian cross- boon mah sin

5
pineapple boloh
fill
8
procedure sou juhk

10
pineapple juice bolohjap
Sill5t
15
plastic wrap b6 sin ji
fJilDJH
14
pound bohng
fJl
8
pharmacist yeuhkfohng
liB
7
post office yauh guk
181m
7, 11
passport wuh jiu
.fti;i
10
pepper wuh jiu fan
i!inliiB
14
PDA go yahn dihn jf

8
sou jeung

powder gon fan

8
piece (classifier gihn

10
playing squash do bik kauh
nmli
12
playing table do bing bam 12
194
Appendi>< Ill
C::,tossary
tennis kauh
playing ball
do bo r.Jjgi
12
games
playing golf do go yi fu kauh

12
Ji
peel mok peih
IJJg(
14
playing tennis do m6hng kauh
r.JI!Ji
12
probably h61ahng
13
pretty lady/ leng (neui)(joi)
IJI(tt/
4
handsome guy g)
4
Peak tram laahm che
m
5
pork chop rice
jyu po faahn

15
pork jyu yuhk

8
piano shop kahm h6ng
JJfi
7
pub jou ba
5
plane fei gei
HIM
5
plate
dip

14
panties noih fu
1'9.
8
plane ticket gei piu
Mit
10
piano shop kahm hong
JJfi
7
playing the piano taohn kahm
!DJJ
12
playing football tek juk kauh
lml:EJi
12
papaya muhk gwa
mta
8
quite1
gei
g
13
Q
quarter-hour gwat

9
reading books toi syu
11.
12
R
regent hotel laih jing
IIIII
11
reconfirm
kok yihng
film
10
red teo huhng chah

15
railway louh

rubbish bog laohp soap d6i

6
195
No Swe<Jt C<Jntonese
restaurant
chaon teng

7
rain
yuh
iffij
13
roost
haou
m
14
right side
youh bin
Ell
11
right
youh mihn
Eiiii
7
report
bo gou
fiH3
13
rubbish bog
loohp soap d6i

6
refrigerator
syut gwoih

10,14
room
f6ng
&
10
rice wine
maih jau
mii
14
rice roll
cheung fan
ftlifB
15
rainstorm
bouh yuh .iffij
13
s slip-ens/summer
leuhng haoih );?. ft 8
shoes
stationery shop
mahn geuih )(ftlfi 7
p6u
simmer
moohn f6 jyu
*
14
sun
yeuhng gw6ng 8171[ 13
steam
jing
1A
14
sponge
hoi mihn )f!J 6
soles
haohng gaai fifij 3
sauce
tiuh meih liu
fi!Dmit4
14
seat
wei
m
10
sofa
sofa

13
sell
mooih

11
sorry
rhh h6u yi si

3
so so
mah ma dei

13
singing/karaoke
cheung g6/K
IIBim/K
12
spring onion
chung
il
8
smoking area
kap yin keui

10
speakers
kwong yam hei lift 8
196
Appendix Ill
C:,tossary
seasonings tiuh meih liu
flomfJ
14
sugar tohng
M
14
sorry deui rhh jyuh

3
sweet red bean huhng dauh sa
flH)!Jl
15
paste soup
shrimp ha
fi
8
shrimp rice roll ha cheung
fiiJI
15
shrimp dumpling ha g6au

15
steamed fried rice hoh yihp foehn
fctiMtl
15
sea cucumber hoi sam
naa
8
salt yihm

14
shark's fin yuh chi

8
seems like h6u chi

10
soy sauce jeung yauh
II )Ill
14
swimming yauh seui
>l7.k 12
spoon gang

14
study syu f6ng
.8
6
shorts dyun fu

8
short hair dyun tauh foot

4
squid yauh yu

8
sunshine yeuhng gw6ng

13
skirt bun jiht kwahn
=t=am
8
steamed BBQ cha siu beau
5Z*I!il
15
station che jaahm
mno
10
scallop daai ji
m::1
8
saucepan cheuhng beng
li!P.ill
14
showers
jaauh yuh
l!iffii
13
shampoo sai tauh seui
WtHfi7.k
6
small figure sai lap
MUll
4
steamed sponge malaai g6u

15
cake
197
No Swe<Jt C<Jntonese
sandwich scam mahn jih
-){A
=. )c
15
strolling soan bouh

12
sift sci
iii
14
SOGO depart- suhng gwong
iHit
11
snow syut

13
Sprite syut bik

15
San Miguel sang lihk

15
shirt seut scam

8
strawberry sih do be lei

8
steam pork ball siu m6ai
rill
15
snack siu sihk
JJ\11
15
stop after gwo j6
ifltt
5
short ng6i

4
south naahm

7
sweet tihm
m
8
stop tihng
fiJ
5
straight jihk
m
4
T
transportation che
m
10
tomorrow night ting maahn

9
tailor shop choihfung dim
iHI/iS
7
teacher 16uh si

3
temperature hei wan
lUll
13
the most jeui
fi
10
turn right jyun j6
.E
5
typhoon toih fung
lf!lml
13
ticket gei piu
IIIII
10
to ji

13
tokyo dung ging
mm
10
TV dihn sih
m
6
thanks (for gift, dojeh

3
payment)
198
Appendix Ill
C:.!ossary
telephone dihn sih

6,11
taxi dik sf

5, 10,
taxi stand dik sf jaahm

10
toothbrush ngah ch6at

6
toothpaste ngah gou

6
to ride a bike ch6ai dean che
i111Mii
5
toilet chi s6
IRiJfjfj 6
traffic light dang w6i
mm
5
tofu sweet dessert dauh fuh fa

15
towel mouh goon
=Ert:J
6,14
this way ni bin

11
thanks (help, mhgoi

3
service)
thunderstorm neuih bouh

13
toy shop wuhn geuih p6u
7
together yat chaih
-til
12
tuna sandwich tan nah yu jih
aeflt>B
15
thin
sou
fl
4
thanks very much mh goi saai
10
Temple Street miuh gaai
llii
5
toy shop wuhn geuih p6u

7
together yat chaih
-til 12
tomorrow morn- ting jiu
m
10
tuna sandwich tan nah yu jih
aeflt>B
15
these nidi

8
this kind ni jek

8
typhoon toih fung
I! lim
13
turn left jyun j6
llle
5
tummy t6uh n6ahm
ftl:Di
4
T-shirt T-Seut
rrn
8
trousers fu

6,8
199
No Swe<!f C<!nfonese
to steam
jlng
1i
14
toothpicks ah chim

14
that way
g6 bin
Dill
11
those g6 dl
1111119
8
there g6 douh
DIIJt
5,10
that kind
g6jek
IIIII
8
to walk haahng louh
5
tie lehng taai

8
to drive ja che
mm
5
tomato faan ke
ilffi
8
tomato juice faan ke jap
lloo>t
15
tailor choih fung dim

7
tall gou

4
tap seui luhng tauh

6
thanks (for gift, dojeh

3
payment)
tailor
choih fung dim

7
tram dihn che

5
tray
pun
Ill
4
v
toner song fo seui
J(fi7.K 8
vegetarian rice roll jaai cheung
ilnl
15
vice president fu jung choih

3
vacuum cleaner
kap chahn gei ll}lgl!l
6
vomit
ng6u
18
11
very good h6u h6u
ttfttf
13
very much saai II
10
vegetable dumpling choi go au

15
vinegar chou
M
14
w
vegetable yauh choi
>HIM
15
watching TV t6i dihn sih
11111m
12
200
Appendix Ill C::,tossary
watching movies tai hei
llilfi
12
weather tin hei

13
warm nyuhn
II
13
west sai
im
14
want to have seung yiu

11
what time geidfm

10
watermelon sai gwa
imffi\
8
washbasin sci sou puhn
m:3=1B
6
washing machine sci yi gei
m:n111
6
wet sap )I
13
water-skiing waaht seui
ii7.J<
12
water seui
7.J<
15
would like to have seung yiu

10,11
warning gfng gou
.iS
13
wish jok

10
window-shoppinghaahng gaai
fiffj 12
when gei sih

10
for luggage)
welcome fun yi hng
.II!
3
wind fung
II
13
well gam
oa
10
white wine baahkjau
15
where bin douh
llftl
11
window seat cheung h6u wei
iiBDm
10
wear daoi
m
4
young houh saong 4
y
yesterday kahmyoht
Jj8 9
201
No Swe;Jt C4ntonese
202
Appendix IV: A Chinese Recipe
This is the English translation of the recipe featured at the end
of Chapter 14 {pg. 147).
Drunken Chicken
Ingredients:
2 1/2 lbs fresh chicken
1 teaspoon salt
2/3 tablespoon chicken stock
1 1/3 cups rice wine
2 tablespoons olive oil
a few slices of ginger
1 /2 teaspoon sugar
1 clove minced garlic
a bit of coriander
1 I 4 teaspoons pepper
Steps:
1. Wash the chicken and place it in a deep container (e.g. a
pot) .
2. Cover the chicken with 2/3 tablepoon chicken stock, 1/3
cup of rice wine and water to bring out the taste. Use
enough water to ensure that the liquid covers the chicken.
Bring to a boil.
3. Reduce the heat and tightly cover and simmer for 20
minutes.
4. Drain the chicken and place on a plate.
5. Pour the marinating ingredients -sugar, 1 cup wine, salt,
pepper and olive oil - over the chicken.
6. Cover the chicken with plastic wrap and marinate in the
fridge overnight.
7. Next day, slice the chicken and serve cold.
203
Acknowledgements
This book could not have been written without the support of my
past and present students, including those who work for Pepsi
Co, Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong, Santa Fe, The MIGroup,
Bank of America, Fuji Xerox Jardine Schindler, South China Morn-
ing Post, 97Group, Reuters, Watson Wayatt, Pricewaterhouse
Coopers, Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu (Trowbridge Consulting),
Sumitomo Bank, New World First Bus, China Star Entertainment
and many others. My heartfelt thanks for their enthusiasm and
eagerness to learn my language.
Special thanks to Peter Boczar for coming up with the title
of my first book "No Sweat Cantonese" which is not just a terrific
name, but also a great platform for launching a whole series of
books.
I wish to express my deep appreciation to my beloved and
supportive friends (Graham & Pat Baragwanath, Julian Russell,
Mark Weir, David Hendry, Piers Alexander, Brian Smith, Bettina
Dumler, Lisa Chu, Renate Beil, Peter Siddall, Karen Chan, Karen
Cheung, Irene Chiu, Ada Kwan and many others) for their friend-
ship and support.
Finally, I would like to thank Mr. Mike Morrow, Managing
Director of Asia 2000 Ltd. for his initial suggestion to me to pub-
lish this book, my editor, Julia Ng for her efforts, Sunshine for art
work, Metternich Wong Studio and Nik Fung for voice over.
Amy Leung Man Wai
Hong Kong 2007
About the Author
Amy Leung has on extensive background in teaching groups of
people from many different countries. She was brought up in
Hong Kong and completed her education in Australasia before
graduating from the University of Auckland, New Zealand in 1994.
She mode her first foray into the world of education when she
started teaching Mandarin to local children (in Woiheke Island)
in Auckland in 1993. In the years since her return to Hong Kong,
she has been teaching Cantonese to a brood range of students,
from senior personnel of multinational organizations to individu-
als wonting to gain on insight, into the local culture. Amy is the
author of No Sweat Canto-Love. Amy also writes for
IMPRINT2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, Rugby Sevens World Cup pro-
gram 2005, does voice-overs and modeling on a port-time basis.
Amy is a member of the Women in publishing in Hong Kong and
gave lectures to expatriate groups on areas of Chinese culture.
Her enthusiasm for her subject has been reflected in recent ar-
ticles in the English-language newspapers in Hong Kong & TVB
Pearl Report.
Cantonese is the first language of the vast majority of the
people of Hong Kong, Iorge ports of southern Chino and is used
in many Chinese communities worldwide, Amy believes that it is
still a valuable tool even after the Hondover of Hong Kong bock
to Chino in 1997. Her mission is to help people to learn
Cantonese in on effective and enjoyable way.
Amy con be contacted via:
Website www.omyleunglonguoge.com
Email omy@omyleunglanguoge com
Commentary
No Sweat Cantonese is a fun and easy way to learning how to
speak what is truly a diffcult langiage to learn. However, it is not
just a book for learning the Cantonese language but also a way
to learning the Hong Kong Cantonese culture. For instance, the
book provides the reader with useful places to go for shopping,
sightseeing, the beaches etc ... This book provides learning the
language, culture, idiomatic and slang expressions. And there-
fore a comprehensive book. It is unique in the sense that it is
very entertaining with cartoon drawing and pop-up culture boxes
with information about Hong Kong.
I found it very amusing that Amy has incorporated some very
useful yet humorous and practical slang expressions. Which not
only bring smile to your lips, but also; ensure that you can "get
about" easily in Hong Kong and get your job done! It will work
for you whether you need to use it in the office or with business
colleagues. Or whether you just intend to roam the markets,
streets, villages and shopping malls in Hong Kong or for that
matter any place, where people speak the language.
So stay motivated and don't give up to the challenge. Your
attempt are sure to cause you laughter and fun filled education.
You will get it right- No Sweat At All!
Ramagopal Roo
Managing Director
Fuji Xerox, Hong Kong Office
"If you want to learn to speak Cantonese like a native, this is the book for you."
-ROB AGNEW, Finance and Administration Manager, Greater Chino, Reuters
No Swea-t Caf'\i:Of'\ese
A FUN GUIDE TO SPEAKING CORRECTLY
What her students say:
... a no nonsense system for putting
practical , useful stuff within your
grasp quickly .. . It gives you the
need-to-know bits and pieces
essential to understanding and
being understood.
- Peter Boczor, Advertisting
Director, leo Burnett ltd.
Hong Kong Cantonese is a lively
spoken language, and this book
gives the beginner a sense of this
while also addressing the
fundamentals of tone and
grammar.
- John R. Fadely, American &
International lawyer, Debevoise &
Plimpton
an invaluable and practical
guide. It includes many of the
idioms and expressions that Hong
Kongers use everyday. They will be
amazed and amused when you use
them, too!
- Richard Joggord, Senior
Executive, Bonk of America, N.A.
"It will not only bring a smile to your
lips, but also ensure you con get
about easily in Hong Kong and get
your job done!"
- Ramagopol Roo, Managing
Director, Fuji Xerox (Hong Kong)
Limited
The long-awaited textbook from one
of the most popular and successful
teachers of Cantonese! Amy Leung
teaches Cantonese to managers of
multinational corporations in Hong
Kong in a fun new way. Na Sweat
Cantonese distils her approach,
ful fill i ng the demand for an
up-to - date textbook focusing on the
pract i ca l needs of expatri ates in ..
Hong Kong and elsewhere i n the
Cantonese- speaking world. Like
never before, Cantonese - "that
i mpossible language! " - is now easy
and enjoyable to
Each chapter provides:
*Lingo and One-Liners: a list of
useful words and phrases that
center on a topic or si tuation
frequently arising in everyday life
*Chit Chat: guided conversations
that help place what you have
learned into a living context
*Grammatical notes: succi nct
explanations of grammar and
sentence patterns
Pop-up boxes: fun and useful
information on the rituals of work,
love and play, inviting you to fully
immerse yourself in local culture


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