Speakin' Japanese: Sumida River walk

Speakin' Japanese: Sumida River walk

by Takahiro Takiguchi
Stripes Japan

Around the Sumida River is a treasure trove of exotic Japanese cultural traditions. After visiting the popular Senso-ji temple, you can drop by a couple of museums to see Ukiyo-e and Japanese calligraphies. Don’t forget to take a photo of yourself on one of the river’s bridges with a Tokyo Skytree backdrop. There are also various shops housed in traditional buildings that offer many colorful souvenirs and delicacies.  

Enjoy your stroll along the Sumida River by using the following Japanese words and phrases.

“Ryogoku Bashi ni ikitai desu.”
= I want to go to Ryogoku Bridge.
(“bashi” = bridge, “ikitai” = want to go)

“Senso-ji wa doko desu ka?
 = Where is Senso-ji Temple?
(“.. wa doko desuka?” = where is ..?)

“Tokyo Skytree ga mie masu.” = I can see Tokyo Skytree.
(“..ga mie masu” = can see..)

“Shashin wo totte kudasai.” = Please take a photo of me.
(“shashin” = photo, “totte” = take, “kudasai” = please)

“Omikuji no hikikata wo oshiete kudasai.” = Please show me how to draw omikuji.
(“omikuji” = fortune slip, “hikikata” = how to draw, “oshiete” = tell/show me)

“Kokugikan de sumo wo mitai desu.” = I want to see sumo at Kokugikan.
(“de” = at, “Kokugikan” = sumo hall, “..wo mitai” = want to see..)

“Kabuki wa osuki desuka?” = Do you like kabuki?
(“..wa osuki” = do you like..)

“Kono kimono wa kirei desu ne?” = This kimono is beautiful, isn’t it?
(“..wa kirei desu” = ..is beautiful, “ne?” = isn’t it?)

“Kore wa ikura desuka?” = How much is this?
(“kore” = this, “..wa ikura” = how much is ..?)

“Motto ookii-no wa arimasen ka?” = Don’t you have a larger size?
(“motto” = more, “ookii-no” = large one, “arimasen ka” = don’t you have?)

“Osusume wa nan desu ka?” = What is your recommendation?
(“osusume” = recommendation, “nan desu” = what is..)

“Kaado wa tsukae masu ka?” = Can I use my credit card?
(“kaado” = credit card, “tsukae masu” = can use)

“Kore wo itadaki masu.” = I will have this.
(“itadaki masu” = will have)

 * Pronunciation key: “A” is short (like “ah”); “E” is short (like “get”); “I” is short (like “it”); “O” is long (like “old”); “U” is long (like “tube”); and “AI” is a long “I” (like “hike”). Most words are pronounced with equal emphasis on each syllable, but “OU” is a long “O” with emphasis on that syllable.

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