Lesson 23 Section 1
Could I have my bill, please?
Yes, sir. One moment, please. (She brings the bill and the customer looks at it carefully.)
Could you kindly explain this to me? What is item 6?
Perhaps I could go through it for you. The first item is the cover charge. Number 2 is the beer. Then yourstarter, your main course and the vegetables. The main course was 4.50 not 3.50, so item 6 is the difference.
Oh, I see. But how was I expected to know that?
Yes, sir. They are a bit hard to follow sometimes. Number 8 is your dessert and number 9 the cigarettes. Oh, and number 7 is your second beer.
And what about the service, is that included?
Yes, that's marked down here, 10 per cent service.
Good. Thank you. Now, can you take my credit card?
I'm afraid we don't accept credit cards.
Oh dear. What about a cheque with a banker's card?
Yes, sir. That will be all right.
Can you bring me the bill, please?
Certainly, sir. (He brings the bill.)
I think there has been a mistake.
I'm sorry, sir. What seems to be the trouble?
I think you have charged me twice for the same thing. Look, the figure of 5.50 appears here and then againhere.
I'll just go and check it for you, sir. (He returns a few minutes later.)
Yes sir, you are quite right. The cashier made a mistake. I think you will find it correct now.
We do apologize about this, sir.
That's all right. No harm done. Now, can I pay by traveler's cheques?
Certainly, sir. We'll give you the change in local currency if that's all right.
You needn't worry about that. There won't be much change out of twenty-five dollars.
Thank you, sir. That's most kind of you.
C.Corney Restaurant Jokes.
Waiter, there's a fly in my soup.
Shh, don't do too loud. Everyone will want one.
Waiter, there's a fly in my soup.
There is a spider on the bread. It'll catch it.
What's this fly doing in my soup?
I think it's doing the backstroke, sir.
There is a dead fly swimming in my soup!
That's impossible. A dead fly can't swim.
There is a dead fly in my soup.
Yes, sir. It's the hot liquid that kills them.
Waiter, there is a fly in my soup.
Yes, sir. We give extra meat rations on Fridays.
Waiter, there is a fly in my soup.
Don't worry, sir. There is no extra charge.
A.On a London Bus.
A strange thing happened to Henri yesterday. He was on a bus and wanted to get off. So he stood up and rang the bell. To make sure the driver heard him he rang it twice, but the bus didn't stop, and the conductorcame and shouted at him.
The conductor was so annoyed, and spoke so fast, that Henri didn't understand a word. The bus stopped at the next bus stop and Henri got off. As he got off he heard someone say, "I think he's a foreigner."
When Henri got home, he told his landlady about the incident.
"How many times did you ring the bell?" she asked.
"Twice," said Henri.
"Well, that's the signal for the driver to go on," his landlady explained. "Only the conductor is allowed to ring the bell twice. That's why he got so annoyed."
Henri nodded. "I see," he said.
B.At the Travel Agency. (A and B are a married couple. C is a travel agent.)
Can I help you?
Yes, we're thinking of going on holiday somewhere, but we're not sure where.
I see. What sort of holiday did you have in mind?
Lots of sunbathing.（at the same time) Lots of walking.
Mm. (looking puzzled) So you'd like somewhere warm?
Not too warm. Yes, as sunny as possible.
And are you interested in the night-life at all?
Yes. It'd be nice if there were some good discos and clubs we could go to.
Oh, no! Surely that's what we're trying to get away from!
What do you mean? We never go out at all, so how could we get away from it?
Well, what's the point of going somewhere where there are lots of people just like here?
(interrupting) Could I just ask what sort of price you want to pay?
As cheap as possible.
What do you mean? We want a top hotel.
But we can't afford it.
Of course, we can. We've been saving up all year. (Their voices rise as they argue. The travel agent looksbemused.)
Just a minute, please. I think I can make a suggestion. Why don't you try the South of France? Then one ofyou can go to the beach and the other can walk in the mountains.
That sounds like a good idea. And there are some good hotels there.
No—there are too many English people there!
Well, then at least we'd have someone to talk to.
But, there's no point in going abroad to meet English people there!
(interrupting again) Excuse me.
Well, my wife and I have the same trouble as you. I like hot, lively places and she prefers a bit of peaceand quiet and we always disagree about how much to spend. We usually split up and go to different places, but this year I've got a better idea.
Well, I could go on holiday with you (indicates one of them) and you could go with my wife.
That's an interesting idea.
I'm not so sure ...
Look, why don't you come round now and meet my wife and we can see what we can arrange ...
C.At the Customs.
The scene is at an airport. A man and a woman carrying several cases approach a customs officer (C.O.).
(whispering) Don't worry. Everything will be all right.
I hope you know what you're doing! (They put their bags down in front of the customs officer.)
Good morning, sir, madam. Just returning from a holiday, are you?
And how long have you been abroad?
Yes, not very long. Not long enough to buy anything anyway. (laughing)
I see. Have you got anything to declare?
I'm sorry, I don't really know what you mean.
Come on, sir. I'm sure you know what I mean. Have you got anything to declare?
Well ... yes. I would like to declare that I love my wife.
Oh, Harry. You've never said that before.
Well, it's true! It's just that I've never been able to tell you before.
And I love you too!
(clearing throat) I'm sorry to interrupt, but I must ask you whether you have any goods to declare.
Ah, well I do have a record-player, a fridge and something for my wife's birthday that I'd rather not tellyou about.
Harry! And I thought you'd forgotten again!
Of course not, dear!
(annoyed) What I want to know, sir, is whether you have any goods in that bag that I should know about.
Well, let's have a look. (opens bag) We've got some bars of soap, a tube of toothpaste, clothes, a jar of cream ...
(angry) I only want to know if you have anything liable for tax, like cigarettes, perfumes or bottles of anything.
Well, we do have a bottle of shampoo.
Okay. I've had enough. You can go.
You mean that's it?
Please go away!
Come on, Harry. He just told us we could go.(Takes hold of the suitcase and the contents spill out.)
Just a minute. May I see that jewellery, please?
Oh, my God! You great clumsy idiot!
I'm sorry. I didn't mean to.
You never do anything right. I don't know why I married you in the first place!
But Harry! You just said you loved me.
Not any more.
And now what have you got to declare, sir?
Sam Lewis was a customs officer. He used to work in a small border town. It wasn't a busy town and there wasn't much work. The road was usually very quiet and there weren't many travelers. It wasn't a very interesting job, but Sam liked an easy life.
About once a week, he used to meet an old man. His name was Draper. He always used to arrive at the borderearly in the morning in a big truck. The truck was always empty. After a while Sam became suspicious. He often used to search the truck, but he never found anything. One day he asked Draper about his job. Draper laughed and said, "I'm a smuggler."
Last year Sam retired. He spent his savings on an expensive holiday. He flew to Bermuda, and stayed in a luxury hotel. One day, he was sitting by the pool and opposite him he saw Draper drinking champagne. Sam walked over to him.
Do you remember me?
Yes ... of course I do. You're a customs officer.
I used to be, but I'm not any more. I retired last month. I often used to search your truck ...
But you never found anything.
No, I didn't. Can I ask you something?
Of course, you can.
Were you a smuggler?
Of course I was.
But ... the truck was always empty. What were you smuggling?
The first thing they do is to put out an APB and this goes to all the police stations in the country. Nextwe contact the hospitals. Often the person we are looking for has been in an accident. Then we might try parents, friends or relatives they might be with.
We try to follow their movements and to find the last person they saw or were with. Then we try the media.We put photographs in local or national papers—especially papers they might read. There are other things we can do: put posters in places they might be, go on television.
Here in America there is a magazine in which there are photographs of missing children. This is often the last hope. Of course, with nearly two million missing children every year, we can't do all these things for everyone. We haven't got the time, the money or the staff.
Section 3 Dictation.
Are you a morning person or an evening person?
That's the question.
When do you work best?
For me the answer is easy.
I work best in the morning.
All my creative work is done before lunchtime.
I get up at about eight, and then have breakfast.
I listen to the radio a bit, and read the papers.
And I start.
Usually I work from nine or nine thirty until twelve but after that I'm useless.
On a good day I write fifteen hundred words or more, sometimes two thousand words, in the morning.
Then after lunch I go for a walk, or read.
In the evening I like to relax, go to the pub or go out and meet people.
If you're a writer you need self-discipline.
But if you're tired, it shows: the mind and body must be fresh.