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Do these sentences sound natural?

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アイスコーヒー二つお願いします
aisu koohii futatsu onegaishimasu
Two ice coffees please.

わたしたち は りょかん に いきます か
watashitachi wa ryokan ni ikimasu ka
Are we going to the ryokan?

わたしたち は りょかん に いま いきます か
watashitachi wa ryokan ni ima ikimasu ka
Are we going to the ryokan now?
 
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Looks good to me. Good work.

For the third sentences I would move the いま to the front of the sentence, but the meaning remains the same.

いまわたしたちはりょかんにいきますか。

じゃ、また。
 

Toritoribe

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わたしたち は りょかん に いきます か
watashitachi wa ryokan ni ikimasu ka
Are we going to the ryokan?

わたしたち は りょかん に いま いきます か
watashitachi wa ryokan ni ima ikimasu ka
Are we going to the ryokan now?
In what situation are you going to use it?
 
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In what situation are you going to use it?
Well I am not in Japan so this is just for practice, I was talking to myself yesterday and thought I'd try to form those sentences and ask if they sounded natural here on jref. The situation would be if I were in Japan and were with a group and they were planning a stay at a ryokan but it was not confirmed, the 2nd would be if the stay at the ryokan was confirmed and I want to check if we are going to leave immediately.
 

Mike Cash

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There is a difference between "grammatical" and "natural".

Whether a sentence is grammatical or not can be determined in isolation....you only need to consider the sentence itself.

Whether a sentence is natural or not depends on the context in which it is used.

"Please hand me that piano" is grammatical in any situation, but natural in very few.

The phenomenon is perhaps even stronger in Japanese than it is in English. "What's the context?" is something you will hear in response to questions about Japanese learning to the point you'll have it coming out your ears. You can forestall it by always making an effort to include the context.
 
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There is a difference between "grammatical" and "natural".

Whether a sentence is grammatical or not can be determined in isolation....you only need to consider the sentence itself.

Whether a sentence is natural or not depends on the context in which it is used.

"Please hand me that piano" is grammatical in any situation, but natural in very few.

The phenomenon is perhaps even stronger in Japanese than it is in English. "What's the context?" is something you will hear in response to questions about Japanese learning to the point you'll have it coming out your ears. You can forestall it by always making an effort to include the context.
Wise words indeed. Now that you know the context from my reply to Toritoribe do you think the sentences sound natural? As for the coffee sentence context, I plan to use it this December when my dad and I visit Japan, hopefully. I would use it at a Starbucks or other shop where they sell ice coffees.
PS. It will be my first time leaving Australia, thus I have no experience with tourism and I believe learning all I can about Japan before travelling will make for a more enjoyable trip :)
 
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When you plan these things out, also plan out your responses to their questions. For example which coffee, what size, if you want it in a mug or a paper cup, etc.
 
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When you plan these things out, also plan out your responses to their questions. For example which coffee, what size, if you want it in a mug or a paper cup, etc.
Yes I have been thinking about if they asked which ice coffee beacuse they may have multiple kinds. My response would be to point to it and say "kore onegaishimasu" or if they have a number with them I would say the number + onegaishimasu.
Does that sound about right?
 

Mike Cash

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わたしたち は りょかん に いきます か
if I were in Japan and were with a group and they were planning a stay at a ryokan but it was not confirmed
In that case I would expect します instead of いきます. In addition to "do", which you are familiar with, it also has the meaning of "decide (between some options)". So if it weren't confirmed whether you would be at a hotel, ryokan, minshuku, sleeping on a park bench, etc then that it what you would use.

I have never been in a Starbucks in my life but if ordering coffee in one here is anything like the ordeal I have heard it is elsewhere I can't imagine that simply asking for iced coffee would do the trick. Anywhere else in Japan, you're probably golden.
 
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In that case I would expect します instead of いきます. In addition to "do", which you are familiar with, it also has the meaning of "decide (between some options)". So if it weren't confirmed whether you would be at a hotel, ryokan, minshuku, sleeping on a park bench, etc then that it what you would use.

I have never been in a Starbucks in my life but if ordering coffee in one here is anything like the ordeal I have heard it is elsewhere I can't imagine that simply asking for iced coffee would do the trick. Anywhere else in Japan, you're probably golden.
Haha, I have never been in a Starbucks either, I guess I will just avoid them.
 
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Haha, I have never been in a Starbucks either, I guess I will just avoid them.
I have a nice little break between clients on Tuesdays which happens to put me right next to a Starbucks for about 1.5 hours. They have free wifi so I go in and use it to get some paperwork done (it's all electronic now, don't know why I still call it paperwork). I claim the couple bucks for coffee on my taxes.

You'll find that they ask about the size, and some places ask about the cup type. I always use ください for the item and お願いします for things like size which feel more like ideas to me. So, and I have no idea if it's right but it's what came out when I was on the spot: マーグでアイスコーヒーをください。I always forget to mention the size, so when they ask I say ショートお願いします。

Honestly, I think you'll get more bang for your buck working on transportation Japanese. Where is X, which platform for X place, does the next train stop at X, is X over there, I want to see X landmark, can I go there using my JR pass, etc.
 
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I have a nice little break between clients on Tuesdays which happens to put me right next to a Starbucks for about 1.5 hours. They have free wifi so I go in and use it to get some paperwork done (it's all electronic now, don't know why I still call it paperwork). I claim the couple bucks for coffee on my taxes.

You'll find that they ask about the size, and some places ask about the cup type. I always use ください for the item and お願いします for things like size which feel more like ideas to me. So, and I have no idea if it's right but it's what came out when I was on the spot: マーグでアイスコーヒーをください。I always forget to mention the size, so when they ask I say ショートお願いします。

Honestly, I think you'll get more bang for your buck working on transportation Japanese. Where is X, which platform for X place, does the next train stop at X, is X over there, I want to see X landmark, can I go there using my JR pass, etc.
Thanks for this reply because you've actually been to Starbucks, this is quite helpful :)
 

mdchachi

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Well I am not in Japan so this is just for practice, I was talking to myself yesterday and thought I'd try to form those sentences and ask if they sounded natural here on jref.
This is a good strategy by the way (IMO). I've learned a lot of things by talking to myself and then when I discover a gap, I try to fill it.

When you plan these things out, also plan out your responses to their questions. For example which coffee, what size, if you want it in a mug or a paper cup, etc.
This is tricky to do in advance. But I suppose you can try. I think it mostly just comes from experience. The first time I heard お持ち帰りですか I didn't catch it and was confused. But after a couple of times it was no problem. And after the 100th time it was all rote.

Yes I have been thinking about if they asked which ice coffee beacuse they may have multiple kinds. My response would be to point to it and say "kore onegaishimasu" or if they have a number with them I would say the number + onegaishimasu.
Does that sound about right?
That's fine. Or kudasai is better I think. A nice thing about Japan is there are usually photo menus at all these kinds of places. So you can get by with zero Japanese.

Haha, I have never been in a Starbucks either, I guess I will just avoid them.
Or go to Starbucks in Melbourne a couple of times to see what it's all about. Although the menu is mainly packed with sugary, fattening drinks only loosely related to coffee they have do have regular coffee, ice coffee, and tea. (I'm not sure about the Japanese Starbucks menu, I haven't been to one in a decade probably.)
 
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Very interesting.

I always forget about context. The more I learn the more Japanese seems to be influenced by context. Like the politeness level is based on context or how what has be previously said, and so forth. I need to keep this in mind more as I go forward.

Thanks all.
 

Toritoribe

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The situation would be if I were in Japan and were with a group and they were planning a stay at a ryokan but it was not confirmed, the 2nd would be if the stay at the ryokan was confirmed and I want to check if we are going to leave immediately.
I would say 旅館に泊まるんですか。 and 今すぐ旅館に行きますか?, respectively.
 
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That's fine. Or kudasai is better I think. A nice thing about Japan is there are usually photo menus at all these kinds of places. So you can get by with zero Japanese.
I know they have the plastic food also but do they have plastic coffees and such, would be quite pointless actually.
 
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Or go to Starbucks in Melbourne a couple of times to see what it's all about. Although the menu is mainly packed with sugary, fattening drinks only loosely related to coffee they have do have regular coffee, ice coffee, and tea. (I'm not sure about the Japanese Starbucks menu, I haven't been to one in a decade probably.)
I don't really want to travel an hour and a half to get to a starbucks
 

Zuba

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おはようございます。皆さんは元気ですか。

I want to ask a question.

From what I gather "natural Japanese" is something that even advanced learners struggle with. Especially because "natural" and grammatically correct are often not the same. Just like how in English we often speak in ways the split prepositions and such, but it sounds "natural."

My question is should RvBVakamaさん even worry about trying to sound natural? I think it seems better to just be understood even if it sounds "unnatural", but correct, than to try and use grammar that is "natural" but may not be understood.
 
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おはようございます。皆さんは元気ですか。

I want to ask a question.

From what I gather "natural Japanese" is something that even advanced learners struggle with. Especially because "natural" and grammatically correct are often not the same. Just like how in English we often speak in ways the split prepositions and such, but it sounds "natural."

My question is should RvBVakamaさん even worry about trying to sound natural? I think it seems better to just be understood even if it sounds "unnatural", but correct, than to try and use grammar that is "natural" but may not be understood.
Yeah, when I visit I most likely will speak unnaturally because I probably will leave out particles and say things like: fuji-san iku, and based on the context it would be understood that I want transport to mt fuji
 

Zuba

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Thanks for the advice, Mike.

I will work on trying to sound natural more.

Later.
 

Mike Cash

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Thanks for the advice, Mike.

I will work on trying to sound natural more.

Later.
The reason I said "yes" is twofold.

To not worry about sounding natural would be to not try to learn from the natural Japanese one hears or reads from native speakers.

To not worry about trying to sound natural would be to be content with not doing the best you can.

Achieving perfect natural output is pretty much by definition an impossibility. But that doesn't excuse one from trying.
 
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