1、Do you often have dreams at night?
When I am under great pressure, I tend to have a lot of dreams. But normally I don’t dream too much.
2、Have you had a bad dream before?
Yeah. I once had a dream that my Dad passed away. I cried and cried and then I woke up.
3、What was the strangest dream you have had?
Once I dreamt that I became the queen of a country. That’s weird. Maybe I have watched too many movies.
4、What do you usually dream about?
If I’m going to have a test or I am under great pressure, I usually dream about bad things happening to me. If I’m happy, well, I usually dream about good things.
5、Why are dreams so important?
I think dreams are important because they can reflect our mood. Sometimes they can warn us something. If you have too many bad dreams continuously, maybe it means you need to relax.
Describe a café you like to visit.
You should say:
where it is;
how often you go there;
what you usually do there;
and explain why you like this place.
I often visit a café in our school named “Happy Time Café”. It is only a few minutes away from my dormitory. I nearly go there every week or every time I need to surf on Internet. The Internet connection is not so good in my dormitory and every now and then I need to do some search online to finish my report, or book tickets online, or send emails, so the café becomes a good place to go. Sometimes I will go with my friends to have a chat with them. We can also play table games there. We especially like card games.
As to the reason I like the café, well, it provides great convenience to me. And the food in the café is also excellent. Besides all kinds of coffee, it also offers a wide range of food like pizza, steak, donuts and some other snacks. And since it mainly faces to students, the price is good, too. It is often 30% cheaper than other café in the downtown. So it enables us students to spend more time there. And it also offers a great place for us to bond with each other. Nowadays we are all busy with our own business, so it’s really nice to have a chat with my friends now and then.
①What are some reasons why people eat out?
I think there are many different reasons for people to eat out. To people who are busy at work, they usually eat out to save some time. You know, they don’t have much time cooking. Their work pace is tense. And to families, they usually eat out to celebrate some important events, like the birthday or a big promotion of the family member. It is also a good way to bond with each other. Also many other people eat out because they just love trying different food. They would search online about the newly opened restaurants and go there to have a taste. I have several friends who belong to this type.
②Does it give people more status to eat in a restaurant rather than eat at home?
I think it depends on which kind of restaurant that they go. If the restaurants they go are all Michelin-starred restaurants or first-class restaurants, maybe it shows they are very rich or enjoy a high status. But if the restaurants people go are nothing but common restaurants, I don’t think it means anything. Maybe some people don’t care much about what they eat, but still they are rich or successful. Besides, nowadays more and more people pay greater attention to their life quality, they would like to buy fresh food materials and cook at home. So the connection between the activity of eating out and a high social status is actually very weak.
③Do people now go to restaurants more than before? (Why?/Why not?)
I think it depends. People who live in the city are mostly having an intense working pace. They seldom have time to cook. Even if they are home early, sometimes they are too tired to cook, so more and more people are eating at restaurants. They can afford eating out since their living conditions are getting better. But to people who live in the rural areas, they don’t go to restaurants more often than before. They are more accustomed to eating at home. It is cheaper. Thus the restaurants located in cities are much more than those located in the rural areas.
④What's the difference between eating at home and eating in a restaurant?
I think there are many differences between eating at home and eating in a restaurant. Firstly in a restaurant, you don’t have to wash dishes while at home you have to. I hate washing dishes. They are too greasy. After having dinner or lunch, I would rather lay down on the couch than wash dishes. Secondly in the restaurant I have more choices of dishes. I can try many different specialties while at home I have to eat what my mom prepares. There are not so many choices. And one more difference is that I don’t have to pay when I eat at home.
⑤Is there any difference between home-cooked food and food in restaurants?
There are many differences between home-cooked food and food in restaurants. Restaurants usually put much more oil in dishes. The oil makes the dish look nice but it is not that healthy. Besides, they tend to use more flavors to improve the taste, especially when they cook some spicy cuisines. However, when we cook at home, we tend to be more cautious when we put oil or other flavors. Another difference is that many dishes in restaurants are prepared beforehand. When the customers order the food, they would warm the dishes and then carry them to the table. They won’t taste as good as the food just cooked. At home we normally won’t cook beforehand.
⑥Which food do you think is healthier, restaurant food or home-cooked food?
Well, it depends. Generally speaking, I think home-cooked food is healthier. You know, we can put less oil and flavors. We can control the calories we take in. Besides, we can cook mixed foods according to their different nutritional values. To me, I prefer to have more vegetables rather than meat. But to some people who just recover from illness, maybe they need to have more meat to build up energy. Few restaurants can completely customize each customer’s dishes. But of course, people nowadays have more choices than before. There are many newly opened restaurants that work hard to improve customers’ level of experience. For example in some buffet restaurants customers could pick what they like by themselves and they have a lot of healthy choices.
Describe an interesting house or apartment that you visited.
You should say:
where it was;
whose home it was;
what it looked like;
and explain why you think it was interesting.
I visited a pretty interesting house last summer. It is called Chengqilou. It is located in Fujian Province. It is an earthen round building and it covers a large area. It has two main gates and two side gates. The wall is very thick and stable. The tour guide there told me that it was built in 1709 and now it is listed as a world heritage. All together it has four stories and each story has 72 rooms. The ground floor rooms are kitchens. The second floor is used to store grains. The third and forth floor rooms are living rooms and bedrooms. People who live in the earthen building are usually sharing the same surname. They choose to live together so that they can take good care of the clan and protect themselves from intruders.
I first saw the earthen building in a television program. Several celebrities took their sons and daughters there and spent a few nights. I was deeply attracted by this particular building. I found it pretty interesting. The building fully uses the scarce flat in mountainous areas. And different from common buildings which face to the same direction to the outside, the rooms in the earthen building all face to the interior and thus make up a large round building. No wonder it has attracted so many tourists.
①How is modern home design (both inside& outside appearance) in your country different to that of the past?
I think I’ll start by talking about the difference in inside appearance. People nowadays are offered with more choices when they decorate their homes. I can see the difference from my own experiences. My first home had nearly no particular decorations. My parents just painted the wall white so it looked clean. They bought some pieces of Chinese-style wooden furniture, which was pretty common to see in the market. But now there are more choices for us. We can choose furniture of different colors and materials. As to the difference in outside appearance, well, in the past, the buildings were not as tall as the buildings we have now. In the past I thought six-floor building was tall enough. But now we have 28-floor building.
②In your country, what type of home do most people live in?
Well, in the rural areas, because of the high price of houses, builders tend to construct as many houses as possible in the limited space. So most people in the rural areas live in high-rise buildings. Especially in metropolis like Beijing and Shanghai, it is pretty common to see buildings of 30 stories. In each story, there are at least two apartments. In some buildings, the apartment number could reach 10 to 20. But in the countryside, most people live in low-rise independent apartments. These apartments are generally very large. They have more rooms. They are more cozy to live I think.
③Do people prefer to live in modern homes or the older-style homes (e.g., from 50 years ago)?
It depends, I think. Many people prefer to live in modern homes because the modern homes are usually better designed. The quality of modern homes is also better. They have better sound insulation effect. You won’t hear the sound of a toilet flushing or TV in the next room, which is quite annoying. But some people prefer the older-style homes because they usually have a nice location near the downtown area, especially in metropolis like Beijing. Thus people can spend less time on their way to office. Besides, the surrounding commercial areas near the old houses are also very prosperous. It’s convenient in terms of shopping.
④How are modern homes different to older homes?
I think modern homes are better designed than older homes. There are less wasted areas in modern homes. You can take full use of each square. What’s more, you can pick the decorations you like and make your home cozy and beautiful. Older homes, however, usually look antique and have a poor sound insulation. You can even hear the sound of toilet flushing or TV from your neighborhood, which is quite annoying. But old homes sometimes tend to be more environment-friendly. They won’t have the horrible odor of new decoration materials. So they are good for health.
⑤What do you imagine people's houses will be like in the future?
Well, I think in the future people’s houses may not be constructed by people but by a 3D house printer. The construction could be more efficient and more cost-saving. Many jobs might be left to intelligent house systems. The systems will automatically monitor the electrical equipment to clean the house, inform us when there is something to replace in the house. And considered the bad weather and serious haze we have time to time in Beijing, I hope the future houses become better at filtering out dust. We can always have fresh air at home.
⑥Why do people sometimes move to live in a different home?
I think there are different reasons for people to move to a different home. The first one that came to my mind is that they wish to live more cozy so they may change to a bigger house, especially to a big household. Many young couple could only afford a small house when they get married. But when they have babies, they tend to move into a bigger house. Many other people move to a different home because they wish to live near their work place. In Beijing many people spend up to an hour to reach their office, so it makes sense if they want to make a change. And some people move to a different home to live near their parents. As their parents are aging, they need to be taken care of.
Describe a popular place where people go swimming.
You should say:
where it is;
what it looks like;
what kinds of people usually go there;
and explain why people like to go there.
There is a swimming center in our school and it is quite popular among students and teachers. It is located near the stadium and it’s only a few minutes away from my dormitory. The swimming center is quite large. There are two pools. One is deep and is prepared for those who are very good at swimming and the other one is relative shallow and it is for children and newcomers. Apart from the pools, there are also changing rooms and a small shop. Most people swim there are students and teachers of the school. Many white-collars who work nearby also like to come here.
The reason why it is so popular is because it is cheap. It only takes one 5 yuan an hour to swim here. In other swimming centers, it usually takes 15 to 20 yuan an hour. Besides, it is quite clean here. Water here is of high quality. Sanitation workers will clean here several times a day. Sometimes at weekends there are some activities held here like swimming competition. They also help to attract a lot of people. So to us it is not only a place to relax ourselves but also a place to make friends.
①Is it important to swim?
I think it depends. To me, it is important to swim. It is kind of an essential skill like driving. When I go to the beach, I would like to have a swim in the sea. It is such a fun to me. Besides, it is good for health. After doing so, I would feel that I was revitalized from the bottom to the top as well as the lose of weight. And I have to say it really helps to refresh my mind from the boring daily routine. But to many other people, it is not that important to swim. They have their own ways to take exercise like jogging, doing yoga, or playing tennis. To many people, they fear water. They just feel uneasy when they go near water. So I think they’d better not try swimming.
②Should children learn how to swim?
I think it depends. Some children just like to play in water. So to keep them safe, it is better to let them learn how to swim, just in case that they would run into danger when they are having fun near the sea or the pool. Besides, it is a good way to build up body and increase lung capacity. They will also feel more fulfilling and confident when they acquire the capability. But some children are timid and they may show inclination to swim. I think it is better for parents not to force them to learn. Sometimes the swimming center does not reach the sanitation standard, so children are likely to get ill. So it depends.
③Who can teach children swimming well?
I think many people can teach children swimming well. First their parents could take the job. No one is more familiar with the children than parents. So with their parents around, children won’t feel fear. Besides, no one can take care of the children better than parents. So children will be safer with them. Coaches who work in the swimming center can also teach children well. They are more professional and experienced. They know how to handle different problems. Lastly I think the playmates of children could also act the role of coaches, as long as it’s safe. Children can get along quite well with each other. They would be more interested in learning swimming when they have a companion.
④Why can swimming help people become healthier?
Swimming can actually help all kinds of people to be healthier. For people who are overweight, swimming could help them to burn calories. I have a friend who lost 20 pounds after half year of swimming. She went swimming every other day and she would spend half an hour every time she went to the swimming center. For people who are thin and small, swimming could also help them to build up their body and become more energetic. It takes effort to swim so it is a good way to exercise. To children, swimming can help them to increase their lung capacity, which is also beneficial for their growth.
⑤Should a city have a lot of sports facilities?
To some degree, it is better for a city to have a lot of sports facilities, so people can do exercise and become healthier. But I don’t think that is the only thing that matters. Because if the sports facilities are not evenly distributed, for example, 90% in one small area and the rest 10% dispersed in other areas, maybe people still cannot enjoy the convenience. And if the sports facilities are put far away from the residence areas, they will also help little. And to some people, the number of sports facilities is not that important than the quality and variety.