In this episode Reza and Craig are joined by special guests Melissa from the USA and Becky from the UK.
Melissa is a full time student who lives in New York City, but who is studying at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst.
She is studying for a semester in Belfast and has come to Spain to get some sun.
Becky is from Cornwall in the south west of the UK. She lives in a very rural area famous for its cream teas and agriculture.
Melissa has travelled a bit in Europe and is visiting Spain for the first time.
Becky is visiting Reza. She’s been to Spain before.
Melissa prefers The Spanish pronunciation in Spain and Craig likes the Latin American accent.
to come across someone = to meet someone by chance
Melissa thinks that Guinness is very filling. She took a class at the Guinness factory in Ireland and now she is qualified to pour (servir) Guinness.
Clotted cream is very common in Cornwall (as well as Devon) – (to clot = coágular)
Melissa studies at a very big North American university. Students drink alcohol and party from Thursday to Sunday.
If you’re a girl, it’s very easy to get invited to ‘frat’ parties (fraternity parties – fiestas de fraturnidad)
The legal drinking age in New York is 21, so Melissa is not legally old enough to drink alcohol there. However, she can drink alcohol legally in Europe.
Becky has been to America four times. She has been to New Orleans and has driven around the deep South of the US.
She has also been to San Francisco and drove down to Mexico. She has been to Alaska, too.
Becky used to teach dance and she is interested in Jazz music which is one reason she wanted to go to New Orleans.
She studied slave narratives at university. She has also been to New York.
Melissa thinks that many people don’t like New York. They go to Times Square and other tourist destinations which sometimes leaves a bad impression.
Melissa suggests that, apart from Times Square, tourists should visit Rockefeller Center (‘The Rock’) and go to the top to see the view.
She says it’s better than the view from the Empire State bulding, and it’s cheaper!
She also recommends Chelsea Market in Lower Manhattan and the Highline. There’s great food and live music there.
The East Village is nice, especially Washington Square Park where NYU (New York University) is. Also, South Street Seaport where you can get the Ferry to The
Statue of Liberty. You can walk across the Brooklyn Bridge and also take the Circle train subway to Brooklyn.
She recommends going between the holidays periods to avoid the crowds and the tourists.
Becky says that Cornwall has the longest coastline in the UK, 360 miles! There are some fantastic beaches in Cornwall. Some are sandy and some are rocky. Don’t go in the winter because the
weather is bad, and she says not to go in the middle of the summer because it’s full of tourists and very crowded. She suggests May, June, the beginning of July and September.
Cornwall has a history of smuggling (contrabando) and he coast is rugged (escabroso).
Cornwall has moors (moor = páramo, brezal).
Cornwall is famous for pirates, The Hound of the Baskervilles (Sherlock Holmes), King Arthur (El Rey Arturo) and some Daphne Du Maurier novels.
Famous moors include Dartmoor and Bodmin Moor. If you are ‘a bit Bodmin’ it means you’re a bit crazy because there is a mental hospital there. There is also a famous prison in Dartmoor.
Becky has seen some famous sights in Valencia, but she hasn’t had a paella yet. Reza and Craig are going to take Becky and Melissa to have some paella.
If Reza goes to New York, he wants to taste Pastrami on rye. Melissa recommends the New York street hotdogs and pizza for one dollar.
QUICKFIRE HOTSEAT QUESTIONS
What makes you happy?
Reza: Food – talking about it and eating it!
Melissa: Food and travelling
Becky: Friends (and food), travel and jazz.
What annoys you?
Reza: Too much paperwork
Melissa: Writing papers
Becky: People who complain about having to work 15 hours a week (ie, Reza!)
What one thing, if you were to tell someone about yourself, would they find difficult to believe?
Reza: He hasn’t seen any Starwars films.
Melissa: She’s doing a dual degree in Science and drama.
Becky: She’s a qualified ballet dancer and teacher.
Which famous person, dead or alive, would you like to have dinner with?
Reza: George Orwell
Melissa: Audrey Hepburn
Becky: Dylan Thomas
Craig: (Mahatma) Gandhi (and Mickey Mouse, of course!)
What makes Craig unhappy?
– Death, pain, the futility of life, world hunger, people dying for no reason, corrupt politicians…
In an ideal world, what would your life be like?
Reza: He would do less work. He would travel more and spend time helping people. (Becky does charity work in a soup kitchen in Cornwall. She helps the homeless)
Melissa: She would also travel more and spend more time outdoors, trekking and sleeping outside.
Becky: She would have enough money not to have to work. She would do more volunteering and would have no health problems.
If you could change something about your character, what would you change?
Reza: He would be more punctual. To be less frank (franco, sincero), less blunt (directo, descortés).
Melissa: To take more risks. She overthinks things. She thinks too much about things and stays in her comfort zone.
Becky: More confident. She worries about how well she does things.
Craig: Get outside his comfort zone and go outside his routines.
What do you see yourself doing in five years time?
Melissa: finishing grad (graduation) school, maybe getting her first job. Melissa is studyiing animal management. She wants to run and
manage her own horse riding school. When she does, Craig wants to go and visit and ride horses.
Becky: She has no idea. She’s excited about her future. She may even go to live in Spain as a teacher. she likes the quality of life in Spain.
Becky knows how to make potato bread (Reza’s mum taught her). And his dad taught her how to make Indian fried rice.
Craig sometimes buys fig rolls for Reza. Melissa hasn’t tasted them yet.
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The music in this podcast is by Pitx. The track is called See You Later – licensed by creative commons under a by-nc license at ccmixter.org.
Hi! Although I can´t understand anything your guests are saying here, I enjoy myself listening this podcast. It´s an extraordinary listening exercise.
Very happy for listening about George Orwell, the writer I admire a lot. In the Spanish Civil War, he came to my village (Monzón) to have his injuries cured in the hospital, an ancient building of the 13th century. I am very proud for that.
Thanks for your comments and feedback Marian. Perhaps if the listening was too difficult we should only do the usual podcast with Reza and myself.
Oh no, no! It´s very good for me to try to do the effort of understanding. I thank your feedback too what is for me really good.
You are very polite. Thanks.
spanish listening exercises gcse
I cߋuldn’t resist cοmmenting. Perfectl written!
Thanks for your feedback Deborah. Much appreciated!