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Lesson Transcript

Chuck: Chuck here. Upper Beginner season 1, Lesson 24. A German Christmas Feeling. Hello and welcome back to germanpod101.com, the fastest, easiest and most fun way to learn German. I am joined in the studio by
Judith: Hello everyone. Judith here.
Chuck: In this lesson, you learn about Christmas in Germany.
Judith: This conversation takes place on a German street around Christmas time.
Chuck: The conversation is between Joe and Anke.
Judith: The speakers are friends. Therefore they will be speaking informal German.
Chuck: Let’s listen to the conversation.
Joe: Wow, die Straße sieht aber schön aus!
Anke: Ja. Im Winter sieht Unter den Linden immer so aus! An jedem Baum sieht man eine Lichterkette und am Brandenburger Tor steht ein Weihnachtsbaum.
Joe: Toll!
Anke: Aber in Washington gibt es so etwas doch sicher auch, oder nicht?
Joe: Doch schon. Vor dem Weißen Haus steht immer ein Weihnachtsbaum und viele Menschen schmücken ihre Häuser.
Anke: Haha ja, in den USA ist Weihnachtsschmuck an Häusern doch fast ein Sport!
Joe: Haha, ja stimmt. Viele Menschen übertreiben ein bisschen! Aber viele Gärten und Häuser sehen auch sehr schön aus.
Anke: Da hast du recht. Der Weihnachtsbaum am Rockefeller Center in New York sieht auch immer super aus.
Joe: Hmm, wirklich? Aber der ist doch so groß……
Anke: Bist du eigentlich an Weihnachten noch in Berlin oder fliegst du vorher schon zurück in die USA?
Joe: Ich muss leider schon fliegen.
Anke: Aber du kommst doch sicher wieder, oder?
Joe: Ja. Ich muss doch noch Städte wie Heidelberg oder Dresden besichtigen. Hoffentlich habe ich nächstes Mal mehr Zeit.
Anke: Komm doch zu Weihnachten wieder! Deutschland hat tolle Weihnachtsmärkte!
Joe: Das glaube ich, aber im Winter ist es auch sehr kalt. Ich reise gerne, wenn es warm ist, im Sommer oder Herbst.
Anke: Im Frühling ist es oft auch warm genug.
Joe: Dann komme ich vielleicht im Frühling wieder.
Joe: Wow, the street looks beautiful!
Anke: Yes. In winter, "Under the Lindens" street always looks that way. On every tree you can see a chain of lights, and on the Brandenburg Gate there's a Christmas tree.
Joe: Cool!
Anke: But there's certainly something like this in Washington too, though, right?
Joe: Of course. In front of the White House there's always a Christmas tree, and many people decorate their houses.
Anke: Haha, yeah, in the USA the Christmas decorations on houses is almost like a sport!
Joe: Haha, you're right. A lot of people overdo it a bit! But many yards and houses look really beautiful.
Anke: You're right about that. The Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center in New York always looks great.
Joe: Hmm, really? But it's so big, though...
Anke: Will you actually still be in Berlin for Christmas, or are you flying back to the USA before that?
Joe: Unfortunately I have to fly back.
Anke: But you'll certainly come back, though, right?
Joe: Yes. I still have to visit cities like Heidelberg or Dresden. Hopefully I have more time next time.
Anke: Come back for Christmas though! Germany has awesome Christmas markets!
Joe: I believe it, but in winter it's also pretty cold. I like to travel when it's warm, in summer or autumn.
Anke: In spring it's also often warm enough.
Joe: Then perhaps I'll come again in spring.
Judith: Okay let’s talk a bit about Christmas. Christmas in Germany is awesome.
Chuck: It sounds great.
Judith: Germany has lots and lots of Christmas traditions. Most can be noticed already during the time of Advent that is the four weekends before Christmas. Germans will tastefully decorate their houses with lights, twigs, wreaths and candles.
Chuck: And Christmas music will be playing on the radio and the entire house will occasionally be smelling of various German cookie specialties only baked for Christmas time.
Judith: There is also peculiar German cake for Christmas time called Christstollen.
Chuck: You will also see in many houses something called Adventskalender, an advent’s calendar, which has different doors for every day.
Judith: Yeah and some of those contain yummy chocolates. Outside in the city center, there are the Christmas markets catching everyone’s attention. They consist of cute little wooden houses selling handmade textiles, homemade jam or honey and decorations that you can use for your home or for the Christmas tree.
Chuck: Did you know that the Christmas tree is actually originally a German tradition and that’s truly authentic only if you are using candles rather than electric lights. Almost all German homes, they actually have real candles lit up on the tree.
Judith: On the tree itself yeah. That’s where they go.
Chuck: Yeah but people usually have some thing of water somewhere. So if there is any problems then they can douse it down really quickly but they pretty much never hear of a fire problem. Do you?
Judith: No. For Germans, the most important part of Christmas is the evening of the 24th. That is when the Christkind, Baby Jesus, is supposed to bring the presents and they are opened the same night.
Chuck: The 25th is a day to spend with extended family or friends and so is the 26th. In Germany, the 26th December is considered the second day of Christmas and so it’s a holiday too.
Chuck: Let’s take a look at the vocabulary for this lesson. The first word we shall see is
Judith: Winter.
Chuck: Winter.
Judith: Winter. Winter. Der Winter.
Chuck: Next
Judith: Baum.
Chuck: Tree.
Judith: Baum. Baum. Der Baum. Plural is Bäume.
Chuck: Next
Judith: Licht.
Chuck: Light.
Judith: Licht. Licht. Das Licht. Plural is Lichter.
Chuck: Next
Judith: Kette.
Chuck: Chain or necklace.
Judith: Kette. Kette. Die Kette. And the plural is Ketten.
Chuck: Next
Judith: Weihnachten.
Chuck: Christmas.
Judith: Weihnachten. Weihnachten.
Chuck: Next
Judith: Weiß.
Chuck: White.
Judith: Weiß. Weiß.
Chuck: Next
Judith: Schmücken.
Chuck: To decorate.
Judith: Schmücken. Schmücken.
Chuck: Next
Judith: Schmuck.
Chuck: Jewelry.
Judith: Schmuck. Schmuck. Der Schmuck.
Chuck: Next
Judith: Übertreiben.
Chuck: To exaggerate or overreact.
Judith: Übertreiben. Übertreiben.
Chuck: Next
Judith: Vorher.
Chuck: Before
Judith: Vorher. Vorher.
Chuck: Next
Judith: Markt.
Chuck: Market as in financial or local.
Judith: Markt. Markt. Der Markt. And the plural is Märkte.
Chuck: Next
Judith: Sommer.
Chuck: Summer.
Judith: Sommer. Sommer. Der Sommer.
Chuck: Next
Judith: Herbst.
Chuck: Autumn or fall.
Judith: Herbst. Herbst. Der Herbst.
Chuck: Next
Judith: Frühling.
Chuck: Spring as in the spring season.
Judith: Frühling. Frühling. Der Frühling.
Chuck: Next
Judith: Genug.
Chuck: Enough.
Judith: Genug. Genug.
Chuck: Let’s have a closer look at the usage for some of the words and phrases from this lesson.
Judith: The first word we look at is Weihnachts-. Weihnachts- can be used as a prefix for a lot of things relating to Christmas in Germany like Weihnachtsbaum or Weihnachtslichter or anything. Then there is genug. Genug is always put after the adjective that it describes. For example, Es ist warm genug.
Chuck: It’s warm enough.
Judith: Or gut genug.
Chuck: Good enough.

Lesson focus

Chuck: The focus of this lesson is doch.
Judith: The particle doch is generally used to affirm the meaning of a sentence or to turn something into a nicer suggestion. In English, Do sometimes has the same meaning.
Chuck: Could you give us some examples?
Judith: Yeah for example, Ich muss doch noch Städte wie Heidelberg besichtigen.
Chuck: I do have to visit cities like Heidelberg.
Judith: In Washington gibt es so etwas doch sicher auch oder nicht?
Chuck: In Washington, something like that does exist too. Doesn’t it?
Judith: However doch is also used like a polite suggestion. For example in, Komm doch zu Weihnachten wieder.
Chuck: How about coming back for Christmas.


Chuck: Well that just about does it for today.
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Judith: Get these easy instructions at germanpod101.com/german-phrases
Chuck: Okay see you next week.
Judith: Bis nächste Woche.