Weather
What’s the weather usually like in your hometown? What’s your favourite kind of weather? Do you like the weather in your hometown? Do you like hot or dry weather? What do you do in hot weather? Do you prefer hot or cold weather? Do you prefer wet or dry weather?
Vocabulary
  • Changeable (adj.) - often changing.
  • Scattered (adj.) - covering a wide area.
  • Compromise (noun) - an agreement in an argument in which the people involved reduce their demands or change their opinion in order to agree.
  • Extreme (adj.) - very large in amount or degree.
  • Mild (adj.) - not violent, severe, or extreme.
  • Aircon (noun) - the system used for keeping the air in a building or vehicle cool.
  • A happy medium (noun) - a state or way of doing something that avoids being extreme, often combining the best of two opposite states or ways of doing something.
  • Warm (someone/something) up (phrasal verb) - to become warmer or to make someone or something warmer.
  • Preference (noun) - the fact that you like something or someone more than another thing or person.
  • To put up with something/someone (phrasal verb) - to accept or continue to accept an unpleasant situation or experience, or someone who behaves unpleasantly.
  • To wither (verb) - to slowly disappear, lose importance, or become weaker.
Questions and answers
M: What's the weather usually like in your hometown?

R: Well, it's always been changeable there. We're next to the sea. So that can bring in some strong winds. And that's despite the shelter provided by the hills behind it.

M: What's your favourite kind of weather?

R: Well, I've always liked sunny weather with scattered clouds for occasional shade. I think that's a nice compromise. Not that we experience much of this in Scotland, of course.

M: Do you like the weather in your hometown?

R: Well, usually, although there have been times when I wished it had more, I don't know, Mediterranean climate. Although come to think of it, if global warming continues, then we're probably in for exactly that.

M: Do you like hot or dry weather?

R: Well, I've never been a fan of the extreme heat like on the African savannah, for example, though, I don't feel it much. I always think something milder is better.

M: What do you do in hot weather?

R: Well, I think it depends on what I have planned for the day. So if I've been working, then probably it's a good idea just to go home and relax. Although, if there's aircon at the gym, then it's probably the best place to head, to be honest with you. So it depends a lot on the context.

M: Do you prefer hot or cold weather?

R: Well, like I said, I've always preferred a happy medium. But if I had to choose then I'd probably say I prefer it to be too cold because well, at least you can warm yourself up.

M: Do you prefer wet or dry weather?

R: Well, since I've moved back to Scotland, it's less about what my preferences are and more about what I have to put up with. Although I definitely prefer it when the rain is off. That's for sure.

M: Hey, thank you, Rory, for your weather answers!

R: Hopefully they haven't withered away anyone's patience!
Discussion
M: So when we talk about the weather, it's the weather. Can it be plural? Rory, can I say "the weathers"? "There are weathers".

R: No, there's only one weather.

M: Yep. And the question is like, what's the weather like in your hometown? It's not like, do you like the weather? No, it's what's it like? What's the weather like is like what kind of weather do you have in your hometown, right? A bit hot. Okay. And you said changeable, so changeable - it often like changes?

R: Yeah, so if something's changeable, then it just means that it's, well, it changes fairly regularly. But then that's a part of living next to the sea, isn't it? You can get winds that clear the sky and it's very sunny, or they can bring in a lot of clouds and it becomes very dark and rainy quite quickly. So it's changeable.

M: Then you can talk about strong winds. So like really strong winds, or you can say it's windy, it's cloudy. Right? Or you can say we have heat waves, heat waves when it becomes really hot. Yeah, usually in summer, often in Europe, it becomes like +40 degrees. Really hot. So we have heat waves. Here, Rory, you said that. I've always liked sunny weather. So sun. Yeah, it's sunny, sunny weather. What are scattered clouds? Scattered?

R: They're just, the clouds are not together. They're apart. So you can see the sky through them, which is good if there's sun behind them, and it's quite a warm day. The opposite to that is overcast. In the same way you have strong winds and the opposite to that is light winds.

M: Yeah, if for example, you don't have sunny days, and the clouds use it's cloudy. You can say the sky is overcast, right? So it's cloudy, or the sky is overcast. And occasional shade. So if I'm like not in the sun, but I'm in the shade.

R: Well, not in the direct sunlight. Yeah.

M: Occasional. Occasional like sometimes, right? So I prefer occasional shade. Not to be in the sun all the time. Climate change. You can talk about climate change. And Rory, what did you say about climate change?

R: Well, if climate change keeps going, then we are in for more of that or that's exactly what we're in for. So if you're in for something, it just means it's going to happen in the future.
M: And also you can say that we have a Mediterranean climate, or what other climates can we have? Like extreme climate?

R: I have no idea. Like the Mediterranean climate, Arctic climate.

M: Hmm. Yeah.

R: I know which one I would prefer.

M: The examiner might ask you questions, do you prefer dry weather, do you prefer wet weather? So you can say, I've never been a fan of dry weather. So to be a fan of something, or I've never been a fan of extreme heat. So when it's like boiling hot, right? Boiling - like really hot. So I'm not a fan of extreme heat or heat waves. Yeah? Or I hate it when it's boiling hot. What does it mean, if I say the word mild, or it's milder in my hometown, then in yours?

R: Mild is like saying soft. Well, milder would be softer than what's been mentioned before. So if something milder than extreme heat would just be something that's not extreme. That's calm, that's enjoyable.

M: Yeah. And also you can say I prefer mild climate. So mild weather is when it's not too hot, not too cold. So you can say I prefer mild weather. Mild weather, right?

R: Mild weather, mild temperatures. You could also say moderate.

M: Moderate temperatures, so not hot, not cold. An aircon.

R: That's just short for air conditioning.

M: Yeah, when it's too hot. We go to some shopping centers where we have air conditioning or an air con.

R: Or you just buy aircon.

M: Yeah, too expensive. Just go to the gym.

R: Is it expensive to buy air conditioning?
M: Yeah, but it's like maybe when they fix it, you know, when they install air conditioning in your house. There's all these wires and you know, different people in your room doing stuff, breaking the window and putting it, you know...

R: I remember when we had my goodbye party in Moscow, and it was like it was crazy temperatures it was like 36 or 38 degrees. And we were walking around the shopping center and we walked past all these air conditioners and I was thinking maybe I could just buy an air conditioner for the party. It's only 10,000 rubles or something like that and I had to be stopped just because it seemed like such a good idea at the time.

M: Rory has chosen, no, Rory chose to have his birthday party on the hottest day ever.

R: My going away party was on the hottest day of the year. Yes.

M: Oh, you're going away party. Yeah.

R: Not my birthday party. No. You would mix those up because one of them you attended and one of them you didn't attend, not that I've been keeping track of your attendance at these events or anything like that.

M: Because you have so many parties, birthday parties, going away parties, then you go but you don't go, you stay and we have another goodbye party.

R: I stayed because the Russian government decided that it wanted me to stay. It's not my choice.

M: It's not just the Russian government. It's just we decided that you should stay but you left.

R: All Russians decided this.

M: This episode is about the weather. Yes. Okay? Yeah. And what's a happy medium?

R: A happy medium is just like talking about something that's, well, moderate or mild. I was running out of ways to describe mild weather.

M: So a happy medium is again, not cold, not hot, not dry, not wet. It's something like in between.
R: It's just in the middle. It's like, I think everybody's like this, it's like, oh, yeah, it would be great if it was sunny, but not all the time. So like a happy medium will be okay.

M: And then the structure, the second conditional and Rory's technique. But if I had to choose between cold or hot, I'd prefer the weather to be cold. You can warm yourself up. So to warm up is a phrasal verb, right?

R: Yes.

M: So you can at least warm yourself up, you know, like in a cozy hoodie, with bears and sun, you know? Yeah? So you can warm yourself up. If you really dislike, for example, cold weather or if you really can't stand, if you like, wet weather, for example, you can say I can't put up with. I can't put up with wet weather. I hate, I can't stand it. Put up with is another phrasal verb.

R: It is, but I've already shelled for advertising already. So I'll just say it's a nice phrasal verb meaning you have to tolerate something.

M: We say the rain is off.

R: Yes, the rain is off or the rain is on. It's off, it's not raining, if it's on, it is raining.

M: So if I could choose the weather, it's much better when the rain is off. So it doesn't rain, right?

R: Yes.

M: When you talk about the rain, it's important to say it rains, it sometimes rains, it never rains, or it's rainy. Right? So I can't put up with rain, for example. When we want to say that it's really hot, what do we say?

R: We can say it's boiling, or it's roasting.

M: It's a roasting. Ooh, like you roast meat.

R: Yeah, well, you need heat to roast it, so...

M: Rory, could you please comment on super grammar? On gorgeous Rory grammar.
R: Yes. We already commented on the conditional structure, which contained "I've" for the perfect aspect. But this whole entire episode has been filled with examples of the perfect aspect. Right from the very first question when I said it's always been changeable. So for as long as I can remember looking back on it, that's been happening. And I've always liked sunny weather. So again, looking back on my experience, this has always been true about me. And then what else did I have? I've never been a fan of extreme heat. So again, looking back through time, this has never been something that I enjoyed. And then there's a slightly different one. If I've been working, then I'll probably just relax. So I've been working. So from this period in the past, up until when I changed my mind, then we can use this aspect as well. So make sure that you have the perfect aspect at some point in your answers to show that you can use grammar flexibly.

M: Rory did jam all these Perfect tenses in his answers. But you don't do this. All right? Maybe two or three examples of Present Perfect Continuous tenses would be enough. So just we are giving you examples and you choose the nice ones for your answer. So two, three examples would be fine.

R: Shall we try and transfer these structures to different questions?

M: Right, Rory, let's talk about Godzilla. Have you ever seen any Godzilla films?

R: I've seen the most recent ones. I haven't seen the older ones, because I don't like them that much. I'm not into older films.

M: Rory, what about stars? Would you like to buy a star?

R: I've never really thought about it before. But probably if I had the chance and the money.

M: Rory, do you like my hoodie from Kamchatka?

R: I've always admired your fashion choices.

M: Thank you! What about the nails, Rory? Do you like the color?

R: Emm, I can't think of... No, no, hold on. Oh, well. No, wait, hold on. I've been going to manicures recently. And she's taught me a lot about this. So I feel more informed to comment about your nail color now, and I really like it.

M: So you see, yeah, depending on the question you can use or not use Present Perfect. But again, not in every answer. 1, 2, 3 examples of Present Perfect, Present Perfect Continuous would be fine.

R: Maximum 3. I'm just trying to help you out here by providing a rich environment of Perfect tenses and aspects. Well, Perfect aspect.

M: Thank you very much for listening! We hope that the weather is sunny, and nice, and if it's rainy, well, okay. Please write in the comments, what's your favorite weather? What do you do in hot weather? Which weather do you prefer? Wet, dry, cold, hot? Right? And just like, just like us. All right?

R: And make your answer super perfect with a perfect aspect. Bye!

M: Bye!
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