Shopping Tidbits

If you’re like me, then a good deal of your Chinese interaction takes place in shopping situations. Here’s some stuff I use all the time (and didn’t find in any of the books):

I’m using that ná all the time now because that’s the most common verb I’ve heard when I “tōutīng 偷听” (“eavesdrop”, lit. “steal + listen”) on real live Chinese people buying stuff. The subject “I” is just assumed. In that last one, “Yǒu méi yǒu 有没有[something] mài ,” I have no idea what’s going on with the grammar there. I’m sure there are other ways of saying the same thing. I usually just stick with a plain old “Yǒu méi yǒu 有没有 [something]” and it’s assumed that I want to buy it. But, I’ve actually had to tag that “mài ” on there before, for example when I wanted to buy bike oil instead of just having the guy lube up the chain. If anyone has useful shopping vocab that is out of the normal phrasebook scope, please leave it in a comment below (I guess it’s on the side in this current layout).

Comments

  1. Albert’s suggestion about “Na” is particularly helpful. I have been hearing that extensively for a few years, and I never really understood its use before.

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