This episode's vocabulary
- Hamlet (noun) - a small village, usually without a church.
- To nestle (verb) - to be in, or put something in, a protected position, with bigger things around it.
- Valley (noun) - an area of low land between hills or mountains, often with a river running through it.
- Rural (adj.) - in, of, or like the countryside.
- Farmland (noun) - land that is used for or is suitable for farming.
- Picturesque (adj.) - (especially of a place) attractive in appearance, especially in an old-fashioned way.
- Potholing (noun) - a sport that involves walking and climbing in underground caves.
- To miss out (phrasal verb) - to fail to use an opportunity to enjoy or get an advantage from something.
- Scenery (noun) - the general appearance of the natural environment, especially when it is beautiful.
- Spectacular (adj.) - very exciting to look at.
Questions and Answers
M: Rory, Roro, ready Rory, yellow Rory, are you ready?
M: Lolo, lolo. Okay, could you start speaking now, please?
R: Well, I haven't been back for a while now. But I used to love visiting this, it's like a little hamlet called Horton in Ribblesdale. It's a tiny place in the north of England. In East Yorkshire to be exact. Oh, sorry. No, not in East Yorkshire, in West Yorkshire, now that I think about it. It's nestled in a valley and at the foot of two mountains. Not many people live there. But the people who do live there are wonderful. It's like how you would imagine rural England to be, like so this sort of rural ideal outside of the cities. There's lots of farmland and an old church and it's even got a graveyard, believe it or not. And the river that runs through the middle of this village or hamlet with numerous bridges built across it. And they're for different kinds. There's a road bridge, there's a footbridge, so it's accessible for everybody. I used to go there quite often in my childhood to visit our family, friends, but I haven't been there in almost a decade now. I often wonder how much it's changed. It's quite popular with tourists. Since it's a very picturesque place. You can go potholing, which is like a sport where you crawl through very tight and narrow caves. Or if you're a bit more claustrophobic, then you can go on one of the nature walks around area or hike to the top of the mountains that, well, is between. If nature isn't really your thing, then there's a railway station at the highest hill in town, where you can catch a train to, well, the nearest cities and go shopping. The service is quite frequent. So you wouldn't miss out on any aspect of civilization despite being in the countryside initially. I'm absolutely in love with the place. The scenery is spectacular, and the people are really welcoming. And the whole thing is just unforgettable. So if you ever get the chance to go, I'd highly recommend it.
M: What about your friends? Do they like this place?
R: The ones that have been, really liked it. Yeah.
M: Thank you, Rory, for your answer!
M: Oh, such a nice topic, a place in the countryside you visited. So the countryside is like away from the city, away from the town, somewhere in the country where the green hills and sheep are roaming around. Meee...
R: It's important to point out that it's a place you visited. So if you think about the grammar, it's got to be about the past. Used to.
R: Haven't been.
M: Yeah. Went or I went there and I had never been there before. So you should use the past tenses, Past Continuous, Past Perfect. Yeah. Past Simple. Used to. Yep, all these tenses. A good point. So if you're not a countryside kind of person, I'm sure once in your life you visited someplace in the countryside. So make sure that now you will think about the place that you want to talk about. So Rory used a lot of descriptive language here to describe this place. So he started with I haven't been back for a while, back like in the countryside. Yeah?
M: I used to love visiting this place. So used to. Again like but not anymore. And then he told us about the place called Horton in Ribblesdale.
R: Horton in Ribblesdale. Maybe just Horton.
M: Horton, okay, right. Horton. And then the description. We do need the description. So it's a tiny place. Tiny meaning very small.
R: It's a hamlet. Hamlets are very small. Smaller than a village.
M: Like Hamlet in Shakespeare Hamlet?
R: Well, yes, but it means a small town. Or sorry, a very small village like really small, like maybe a 100 people.
M: So Hamlet is a noun or it's the name of the village?
R: It's a noun. It's the type of village that it is.
M: Oh, this is so confusing.
R: No, it's not.
M: Yeah, but it's confusing. Like, what did you do yesterday? Oh, I read Hamlet, I visited a hamlet. Jesus...
R: No, the context. Use the context, woman.
M: Okay. All right. And then you said, nestled in a valley. Oh, beautiful.
R: Yes. But that just means it's like, it's natural. It's small thing between two big things.
R: And the two big things are mountains. And the bottom of the mountain is called the foot or the feet.
M: Yeah. At the foot of the mountains.
R: Or admittedly, you could say it's either at the feet of two mountains or at the foot of two mountains.
M: Because it's the countryside. You said, there's lots of farmland, an old church, or graveyard. Graveyard where dead people are buried. Bridges. So again, dear listener, whatever you have there, you can describe it. But usually in the countryside, we have fields, farmland, rivers, streams, so maybe a McDonald's.
R: No, not McDonald's.
M: Netflix, Wi Fi everywhere.
R: There used to be no internet there until like 10 years ago.
M: No, but actually, yeah, there could be a McDonald's in the countryside.
R: There could be but there's no one where we're talking about. Focus on, focus on the answer.
M: Right, focus, focus. Yes. Rory, you went on telling us I used to go there quite often in my childhood.
M: Not anymore. Right?
R: Well, I said, but I haven't been there in almost a decade now.
M: Yeah, that's a nice one. So we are using past and present perfect. That's a nice mix. That's a nice recipe for success. Like, oh, yes, I'm going to tell you about this place. I haven't been there for almost a decade, like for more than 10 years. But the last time I went there, blah, blah, blah. And then you go it's quite popular with tourists because or since it's a very picturesque place. Picturesque, that's an one.
R:Yes. Picturesque. It's nice. It's pretty.
M: It's nice, lovely, lovely. And then you said something strange. You can go potholing.
M: What is that? I'm googling now. Potholing. Ah, caving.
R: Well, it's like very tiny caves.
M: Oh, I thought you call it spelunking.
R: You can, but it's also called potholing.
M: Oh, if you've watched the Batman, they use this word spelunking in Batman in one of the Batman movies. So now you have to watch all Batman movies.
R: I think it's called spelunking in the United States.
M: Oh, really? Spelunking. Okay. Spelunking is like caving where crazy people go and they crawl in the caves. And if you Google potholing, you will see the crazy pictures with mad people inside the tiny caves, Jesus. Oh, yeah. And then I remember this movie when he got stuck. And he had to chop his freaking arm off, Jesus. What a nice picturesque place! You can go potholing there, and..
R: And you can die.
M: And you can die. That's my favorites place Okay, what other verbs did you use to describe the activities?
R: Well, I went into more detail about the potholing, which is like a sport, where you crawl through very tight and narrow caves, so crawl through. But if you're more claustrophobic, then you go on one of the nature walks, go on a nature walk, or hike to the top of the mountain, biking, mountaineering.
M: Yeah, this is all specific vocabulary, because we're talking about the countryside. So nature walks, hike, go hiking. Go potholing, you talk about it everyday. It's like when they ask you, oh, what do you like do in your free time? Oh, I enjoy potholing and then you look at your partner like this. Like, come on. Like potholing. What? You haven't heard of potholing? Everybody's talking about potholing, you should google it.
R: If potholing isn't your thing, then you could go shopping and you need to take the train or catch a train.
M: Shopping? Wait, go shopping in the countrysite?
R: I'm moving the topic forward because you're obsessed with potholing.
M: Catch a train to the nearest civilization. And you've used another phrasal verb, miss out. How did you use it?
R: You wouldn't miss out.
M: Wouldn't miss out on any aspect of civilization. Yeah. And then Rory finished it off with I'm absolutely in love with this place. Oh, cute.
R: Spectacular scenery, welcoming people, unforgettable experience.
M: Exactly. So spectacular scenery is a must word to use about countryside, about, I don't know, something in nature you're talking about. So the scenery is spectacular. And you should mean it. You know, it's a beautiful scenery, scenery like nature. So, if you want to say the nature is beautiful, you say the scenery is spectacular. I am absolutely in love with this place, you know, you should come to the examiner, you should just go there with me after the exam.
R: Thank you for listening!
M: Thank you very much! And we'll hear you in the next episode! Bye!
R: Well, you'll hear us! Bye!
Make sure to subscribe to our social media to see some of the “behind the scenes” stuff:
Our Instagram: bit.ly/instagramswi
Our Telegram: bit.ly/telegramswi