To start a conversation with a stranger you can:
- Talk about things you can see or hear, like the weather or the place you are in.
- It’s cold tonight.
- It’s pretty foggy
- What a beautiful day.
- There are a lot of people out here tonight.
- Are que pancakes good here?
- Is the coffee good here?
2. Ask general questions.
- Do you come here a lot?
- Are you a new student here?
- Is it your first day of class, too?
- Are you in the line?
- Are you here for the class/seminar/conference/festival?
3. Say your name.
- By the way, I am Ayleen.
- By the way, my name’s Chris.
If someone asks you these questions, you can use “Actually” to answer.
The adverb “actually” has different uses:
- To give new information
A: Do you come here a lot?
B: Yeah, I do, actually.
A: Are you a student in this class?
B: Yeah, I am, actually.
(The new information is “I come here a lot.” Or “I am a student”)
- To give surprising information
Actually, I kind of like cold weather.
(The surprising information is “I like cold weather.” Most people don’t like the cold.)
- To correct things people say or think
A: So, you are Colombian, right?
B: Well, actually, I’m from Perú.
(“Colombian” is not correct. “From Perú” is correct.)
Chris: It’s cold tonight.
Ayleen: Yeah, it really is.
Chris: There are a lot of people here tonight.
Ayleen: I know, it’s very crowded.
Chris: So, do you come here a lot?
Ayleen: No, not really. This is my first day at this gym.
Chris: By the way, my name’s Chris.
Ayleen: Hi Chris, My name’s Ayleen. It’s nice to meet you.
Chris: Nice to meet you, too.
Chris: So, do you come here often?
Ayleen: Yeah, I do, actually
Chris: So, you are American.
Ayleen: Actually, I am from Perú. So, you’re Jamaican.
Chris: Actually, my family’s background is Jamaican but I was born in England.
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