Category Archives: descriptions

Today’s Italian lesson : Lots of problems with prepositions!

Prepositions – those little words like di, per, a, in and da that join stuff in the sentence together, and you think might not matter that much : well actually it turns out that they really do matter quite a lot, and that there is no short cut to learning them. Which brings me to a new word (parola nuova) that I learnt in today’s lesson – una scorciatoia, meaning short cut!

Non c’è una scorciatoia. (There isn’t a shortcut). You pretty much just need to learn them by heart (a memoria!).

Here is the exercise, it’s simple, just fill in the blanks!!!

  1. Vado ….. scuola.
  2. Vado…… cinema.
  3. Vado …… pizzeria.
  4. Vado…..farmacia.
  5. Vado ….. dottore.
  6. Vado …..ospedale.
  7. vado …..mensa (canteen).
  8. Vado …. mio zio.
  9. Vado …. stazione.
  10. Vado ….supermercato.
  11. Vado ….giardini.
  12. Vado ….farmacista.
  13. vado ….bar.
  14. Vado …. banca.
  15. Vado….centro.
  16. Vado …. lui.
  17. Vado …. partita.
  18. Vado …. stadio.
  19. Vado ….. piscina.
  20. Vado ….. dentista.
  21. Vado …. pronto soccorso. ( A&E)
  22. Vado …. posta.
  23. Vado …. segreteria. (office)
  24. Vado …. Beppe.

Thinking that I had done quite well with my homework,  I merrily told my teacher all of my answers, and came bumping back down to earth when only 10 out of 24 were correct!!!

Here are the answers:

  1. Vado a scuola.
  2. Vado al cinema.
  3. Vado in pizzeria.
  4. Vado in farmacia.
  5. Vado dal dottore.
  6. Vado all’ospedale.
  7. Vado in mensa.
  8. Vado da mio zio.
  9. Vado in stazione.
  10. Vado al supermercato.
  11. Vado nei giardini.
  12. Vado dal / dalla farmacista (depending on gender of pharmacist)
  13. Vado al bar.
  14. Vado in banca.
  15. Vado in centro.
  16. Vado da lui. (to his house)
  17. Vado alla partita.
  18. Vado allo stadio.
  19. Vado in piscina.
  20. Vado dal / dalla dentista.
  21. Vado al pronto soccorso.
  22. Vado in posta.
  23. Vado in segreteria.
  24. Vado da Beppe (to Beppe’s house).

The rule for all the ones where in is used, such as “Vado in piscina” is that there is no article needed. Most of the ones I got wrong were for the same reason, this reason being that I inserted an article when it wasn’t needed and chose the wrong preposition as a result, for example saying “Vado alla piscina” which is wrong.

Here is one more nice preposition example to finish with : If you want to say, for example, the kitchen floor is dirty with tomato sauce, it would be “sporco di “…. as in “Il pavimento della cucina è sporco di sugo di pomodoro.”

I miei pantaloni sono sporchi di caffè : My trousers are dirty with coffee.

As with all things in language learning, repetition is the key to getting the hang of these troublesome prepositions. Keep saying it and listening to it until it sounds right…..

Hope this helps some other learners out there!



Talking about films in Italian

A couple of weeks ago I went to the cinema with my husband to see Blade Runner 2049. I had never seen the original Blade Runner which came out in 1982 and starred Harrison Ford, so I did not know what to expect. I am also rather terrible at following film plots and especially at describing films to other people, even in English. So when the subject of films arose in my recent Italian lesson, our conversation was quite confusing and amusing! (My teacher had not seen it either, nor had she seen the original!)

Premise of the film :In a nutshell, humans have created androids known as “replicants” to do all the hard work on earth and in the extra-terrestrial colonies. However when the replicants are life-expired, out of date models or if they escape to try and do their own thing, they have to be hunted down and eliminated by a fellow replicant known as a “Blade Runner”. The Blade Runner is not a popular person.

Di cosa parla? what’s it about? (You can also ask Su cos’è ?)

è un film di fantascienza. ( A science fiction film). è ambientato nel 2049 in una Los Angeles distopica. Mancano le piante e gli alberi. Era molto scuro. (It’s set in LA in a dystopian future where there are no trees / plants and it is all very dark.)

Il primo film è ispirato di questo libro “Do androids dream of Electric sheep?” da Philip K Dick. In Italiano “Il cacciatore di androidi”.

Ti è piaciuto questo film? ( Did you like this film?)

Secondo me, questo film è troppo lungo. Dura due ore e mezza. (I thought it  was rather long at 2.5 hours!!!)

Non mi è piaciuta la colonna sonora ( I didn’t like the sound track) Era troppo forte  (it was too loud). Mi ha dato un mal di testa!!

è un film piuttosto scuro e  c’erano scene di violenza . (it’s rather a dark film, and there were some violent scenes).

At this point my Italian failed me for the rest of my review, especially describing the scene where Ryan Gosling who plays the Blade Runner in this film, catches a replicant, kills him and cuts out his eye!  By this point I feel fairly sure that I have well and truly put my teacher off the idea of ever watching this film!

Me : Mio marito voleva vedere questo film. Preferisco le commedie. ( my husband wanted to see this film. I prefer commedies)

Giulia (insegnante) : Anche mio marito vuole vedere questo film, ma non ho voglia. Ho un raffredore. è una buona scusa. ( My husband wants to see it too, but i’m not so keen. I’ve got a bit of a cold so it’s a good excuse!).

Avete visto questo film? Cosa ne pensate? Have you seen this film? what did you think of it?!!