London Eye 2016 - Medium - Lesson 1
- Would you mind if I join you?
- No, not at all.
- Thank you.
- I'm awfully sorry, but you’ve put your chair on my coat.
- Oh no! I'm so sorry! Oh... I really apologise!
- It’s okay. It's my fault, actually. It was a stupid idea to hang it on the back of my chair.
- They really should have coat hangers...
- Oh yeah, shouldn't they?.. However, the artist is excellent! He did a crying angel on my left buttock last year. Would you like to look?
- Oh, I'm fine, thank you. That's really not necessary. But thanks anyway.
Heidi Withers is 28 years old and she works as a personal assistant in a company in London. She is engaged to be married to her boyfriend, Freddie Bourne. Recently, Heidi and Freddie went to visit Freddie’s father and stepmother, who live in Devon in the south-west of England. However, Freddie’s stepmother, Caroline Bourne, thought that Heidi was rude and bad-mannered.
After the end of the visit, Caroline thought that it was important to tell Heidi about her bad manners. She said to herself, “If I don’t tell her, she will never know.” So she sent Heidi an e-mail: “It is high time someone explained to you about good manners,” she started, “because it is obvious that you don’t have any”.
She went on to talk about some of the terrible things that Heidi had done:
Heidi stayed in bed too long.
Heidi complained about the food.
At meals (за столом), Heidi started eating before other people.
Heidi made jokes about Freddie’s family.
Heidi did not send Caroline a card to thank her for her hospitality (гостеприимство).
Caroline also had things to say about Heidi’s plans for her wedding. Heidi and Freddie want to get married in a castle. Caroline does not think that this is a good idea. She wrote, “No one gets married in a castle unless they own it (если только им не владеешь). It is brash (вызывающий), celebrity style behaviour.” Caroline thinks that, because Heidi’s parents do not have a lot of money, it would be better for Heidi and Freddie to have a smaller, less expensive wedding.
What would you do if your future mother-in-law sent you an e-mail like this? Perhaps you would burst into tears. Perhaps you would send a reply to say how sorry you were about your behaviour and how very much you wanted to have a good relationship with your husband’s family. Heidi did not do this. Instead, she sent copies of the e-mail to her friends. And her friends sent the e-mail to their friends. And a few days later, the story was on lots of websites and in the newspapers, and we were all talking about it. Heidi’s father told the newspapers that Caroline was arrogant. And Heidi’s friends, and all sorts of other people (самые разные люди), told the newspapers what they thought. Only Freddie, Heidi’s boyfriend, was quiet.
What do you think? Who has the worse manners – Heidi or Caroline? And will Caroline be invited to the wedding, and will there be a fight if she goes? It’s all very exciting! Goodbye.