Speaking (Phone / Journeys)


Idioms & Expressions:

drop me a line (verb; this means to get in touch with someone via written means such as text message or email)

Drop me a line if you happen to move into the city.


hit me up (verb; casual way of saying “contact me” or “get in touch with me”)

Hit me up if you want to hang out later on.


keep me posted (verb; to keep someone updated with new information)

Keep me posted on how the party preparations are going.


go dark (verb; this means that no one is able to contact you)

I’m going dark this weekend, so if you have a question, just wait until Monday.


travel light (verb; this means to travel somewhere and only take a few things with you)

Make sure you travel light – pack everything in your carry-on bag for the plane.


hit the road (verb; this means to begin traveling)

Let’s hit the road and head out of the city for the weekend.


off the beaten track / in the middle of nowhere (expressions that describe a place that is hard to reach)

We found a village in the middle of nowhere! We had to hike in the mountains for two days to find it.


tourist traps (noun; places where vendors charge high prices to sell goods to tourists)

I wouldn’t buy anything near the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, since there are many tourist traps around there.


watch your back (verb; means “be careful”)

Watch your back in this market, because there are many pickpockets around.


booked up (adjective; means a hotel or venue is booked to capacity and there’s no more room)

The hotel is all booked up. We need to find somewhere else to stay.


holiday romance (noun; a short-lived love affair you have with a person you meet on vacation)

Jim found a little holiday romance on his trip to Japan. And he’s still in touch with her.


shoestring budget (noun; refers to traveling while spending very little money – staying in hostels, etc).

We traveled through Cambodia on a shoestring budget.


Part I: Group Discussion

  1. How often do you make telephone calls?

Almost never. I prefer to text or email people instead.

  1. Who spends the most time talking on the telephone?

I think people on business calls spend a lot of time on the phone.

  1. When do you think you will next make a telephone?

Perhaps when I order pizza the next time.

  1. Do you sometimes prefer to send a text message instead of telephoning?

I always prefer to do this. Phone calls take too much time.

Part II: Individual Presentations

Describe a journey that you remember well. You should say:

where you went

how you travelled

why you went on the journey

And explain why you remember this journey well.

A few years ago my friend Steve came to visit me in Vietnam. He’d never left North America, so coming here was an eye-opening experience for him. I took him to Sapa, where he hung out and drank coffee, and he learned how to drive a scooter. I think it was a really special trip because we hadn’t seen each other in a long time (since I live pretty far away) and it was  a great chance for us to catch up and reconnect and make some lasting memories.

Part III: Class Discussion

  1. Why do people need to travel every day?

For work or for school. They are commuters.

  1. What problems can people have when they are on their daily journey to work or school for example? Why is this?

They can get into traffic accidents, or they can be late due to delays and this can affect them at work.

  1. Some people say that daily journeys like these will not be so common in the future. Do you agree or disagree? Why?

I disagree. People will always have to report to an office or to class because schools and businesses like having direct oversight.

  1. What do you think people can learn from travelling to other countries? Why?

This can help you gain perspective and learn from other cultures.

  1. Can travel make a positive difference to the economy of a country? How?

Because tourists bring money, which they use on services and tourism in the local country.

  1. Do you think a society can benefit if its members have experience of travelling to other countries? In what ways?

Yes. This question is pretty much the same as question #4. People from other cultures will benefit greatly if they understand each other.