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Conversation 4: Anna goes shopping for food

Anna has invited her new Korean friends for dinner, so she will cook some good food for them this evening. She is now talking to a shop assistant at the supermarket about buying some meat and vegetables.

점원: 어서 오세요. 뭘 드릴까요?

안나: 닭고기 있어요?

점원: 네, 있어요.

안나: 돼지고기도 있어요?

점원: 아니요, 없어요. 하지만 소고기는 있어요.

안나: 그럼, 닭고기하고 소고기 주세요.

점원: 소고기는 미국 거 드릴까요?

안나: 아니에요. 저 (pointing to another package of beef) 한국 소고기 주세요.

점원: 또 뭐 드릴까요?

안나: 감자하고 양파도 좀 주세요. 제 친구 중 한 사람이 채식주의자예요.

점원: 예, 알겠습니다. 여기 있어요.

안나: 전부 얼마예요?

점원: 만 원이에요.

Assistant: Hello. How may I help you?

Anna: Do you have chicken?

Assitant: Yes, we do.

Anna: Do you also have pork?

Assistant: No, we don’t. But we do have beef.

Anna: In that case, please let me have some chicken and beef.

Assistant: Shall I give you American beef?

Anna: No, thank you. (pointing to another package of beef) Give me that Korean beef, please.

Assistant: May I get you anything else?

Anna: I’d like some potatoes and onions. One of my friends is a vegetarian.

Assistant: I see. Here you are.

Anna: How much is it all together?

Assistant: It’s W10,000.

Vocabulary and notes

점원 shop assistant (from Sino-Korean 점 ‘shop’ + 원 ‘member’; neither element can stand on its own). Until recently, shop assistants were addressed as 아저씨 (for male ones) and 아줌마 (for female ones). Note that 아주머니 is written Korean; the form used in speech is 아줌마. These words are becoming less common as age becomes a more sensitive issue in Korean society, especially in Seoul, as they imply that the addressee is older than the speaker.

어서 오세요 Please come (in). 어서 has the basic meaning 'quickly', but it may mean 'please' in welcoming situations, for example 어서 드세요 "please enjoy (this food)"오세요 is 오다 ‘come’ + (ㅡ)세요 which makes a polite command. (ㅡ)세요 will be covered later in the course.

뭘 드릴까요? What shall/may I give you? This expression is also used by waiters where “What would you like?” would be used in English. 뭘 is a colloquial contraction of 뭐 ‘what’ and 를 (object particle). Note that 를 may be dropped in colloquial speech. 드릴까요 is 드리다 ‘give (to someone senior)’ + (ㅡ)ㄹ까요 'shall I/we'. Note that 주다 ‘give’ may only be used to someone on the same level as you or beneath. (ㅡ)ㄹ까요 will be covered later in the course.

닭고기 있어요? Do you have chicken? 닭고기 is 닭 (pronounced /닥/ on its own or in compounds) chicken + 고기 ‘meat’. If 닭 occurs before a particle with a vowel, e.g., 가 (이 after a consonant) or 는 (은 after a consonant), you hear the ㄹ: 닭이 and 닭은 are pronounced /달기/ and /달근/. Note how 있다 often gets translated as ‘have’ in English, but the basic meaning is ‘exist’, so, in more formal speech, you will see the subject particle 가 before it, not the object particle 를, i.e., something (subject) exists, not somebody has something (object). The same is true of the verb 없다 which acts as the negative of 있다.

돼지고기 pork. 돼지 is ‘pig’.

소고기 beef. 소 is ‘ox’. Note the contrastive use of 는. On its own 는 is sometimes as strong as ‘as for …’ or ‘as far as … is concerned’ (in contrast to something else).

그럼 in that case, then

하고 Particle meaning ‘and’ or 'with'. Must follow a noun; cannot link two clauses containing verbs. As with other particles, it is written together with the preceding word.

주세요 See  드릴까요? entry above.

미국 거 an American one. 거 is colloquial for 것 ‘one, thing’.

또 뭐 something else. On its own 또 means ‘again’ or ‘moreover’.

감자 potato

양파 onion

좀 a littl’. Short for 조금. 좀, but not 조금, may also mean 'please'.

제 is a contraction of 저 ’ + 이 (subject) or 저 I + 의 's (my).

중 among. Comes after the noun to which is refers: 제 친구 중 among my friends

한 사람 one person. The native Korean numeral 하나 ‘one’ contracts to 한 before a counter such as 사람. Counters will be covered at a later stage in the course.

채식주의자 vegetarian. From Sino-Korean 채 vegetable + 식 eat (neither element can stand on its own) + Sino-Korean -주의자 -ist; pronounced 주이자.

알겠습니다 I see, all right. From 알다 know, understand + 겠 (intention) + 습니다 (Formal style). 겠 has very little force here, but is frequently used in this situation.

여기 있어요 Here it is / Here you are. 여기 is ‘here’.

전부 얼마예요? How much is it altogether? From 전부 everything + 얼마 how much

만 원 10,000 won. Korean has a handy word for ten thousand: 만.