Introductions and Small Talk
Jane: Hi, Helen! How’s it going?
Helen: Fine, thanks — and you?
Jane: Just fine. Where are you off to?
Helen: To the library. I’ve got a history exam next week and need to start studying. Ugh.
Jane: Oh, no. Well, I’ll see you later then. Good luck!
Helen: Thanks. See you later.
- “Hi” is an informal way of saying “hello.” Notice that the “i” sound in “hi” is extended, to show that Jane is very pleased to see Helen.
- “How’s it going?” is an informal way of saying “How are you?”
- “Fine, thanks — and you?” Notice the rising intonation on “and you?” This shows that Helen is interested in what Jane has to say.
- “Where are you off to?” is an informal way of saying “Where are you going?” Notice the falling intonation since this is an information question, not a “yes/no” question.
- “To the library.” Notice that Helen does not say “I’m going” here because that information was already established in the question “Where are you off to?”
- “Oh, no” is a way of saying “I sympathize with you” or “I understand you are not happy.”
- “See you later” is an informal way of saying “goodbye.”