japanese dialogues

Learn Japanese through Dialogues: Meetings and Greetings

DIALOGUE ONE: Meeting for the First Time

In this article, we will examine a dialogue between two people who are meeting for the first time. Listen to the dialogue while going through the text, spend some time going through the grammar notes, and then listen to it once more--this time, hopefully, with greater comprehension.

If you like this lesson, check out our Learn Japanese through Dialogues series of eBooks + MP3s. This particular dialogue is from the book "Meetings and Greetings". See the bottom for a special discount to get 7 of these eBooks instantly, each with eight or more dialogues, for a deeply discounted price.

Let's begin today's lesson...

Dialogue One: in Japanese Meeting for the First Time

hajimemashite. Maiku to moushimasu.
How do you do? I am Mike.

Hajimemashite is the most common greeting when meeting people for the first time.; "to moushimasu" is a polite (humble) way to introduce one's name.

hajimemashite. Yumi desu.
Nice to meet you. I'm Yumi.

Another way to say your name is simply "(name) desu." You may notice your name doesn't fit well into Japanese. For example, "Smith" becomes "sumisu" because the sounds in Japanese don’t allow for the "sm" combination and the "th" sound isn't found in Japanese. Ask a Japanese friend or a Japanese forum online how your name would be written in the Japanese sound system.

douzo yoroshiku onegaishimasu.
Pleased to meet you.

"Douzo yoroshiku onegaishimasu" is commonly used after "hajimemashite." It means something like, "please treat me well."

doko kara kimashita ka?
Where are you from?

doko = where; kara = from; doko kara = from where -- kimashita is one of the few irregular verbs in Japanese. kuru (plain form) = kimasu (masu form) both mean "to come," but the masu form is more polite.

amerika desu.
America. (U.S.)

In Japanese, you can often drop information that was previously introduced or is expected. So instead of saying, "I am from America" or "it is America," you can simply say, "is America."

amerika no doko desu ka?
Where in America?

In a simple way, you can think of "no" as an apostrophe S: amerika no doko = America's where = Where in America?

furorida shuu desu.

shuu means "state" and is used with the fifty US states. Japan has prefectures known as ken.

furorida wa atsui deshou?
Florida is hot, isn't it?

deshou implies the speaker is expecting an affirmative answer. It is a very useful sentence tag for when you aren't sure of your statement or don't want to hurt the sensibilities of the listener.

hai, atsui desu. yumi-san no shusshin wa doko desu ka?
Yes, it is hot. Where are you from?

shusshin = place of one's origin (usually hometown as in this example). The " ha" here is the topic particle and is pronounced "wa." This is one of the very, very few irregularities in  Japanese pronunciation.

toukyou desu.

Literally, "Tokyo is" (It is Tokyo). As mentioned earlier, if information is obvious or has been previously introduced, it is very often dropped.

boku wa toukyou ga suki desu.
I like Tokyo.

~ga suki = (I) like ~

sou desu ka, a, watashi wa sorosoro shigoto ni ikanakucha. sore ja mata.
Really? Oh! I have to go to work soon. See you later.

"sou desu ka" here means "Is that so?" but it is a very versatile phrase with many meanings depending on context and how it is said.

hai, sayounara.
Yes, goodbye.

sayounara isn't used as much as you may think. It is often used when saying goodbye to someone for a long period of time.

Learn the vocabulary:

Listen to the dialogue again. This time with repetition.

Japanese dialogues

Did you enjoy this lesson? This is the first dialogue from the Greetings and Meetings eBook. Get that eBook plus Beginning Conversations, at the Restaurant, and Asking Directions. Click Here

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