Lesson 34: A Dialogue between Leyla and Her Dear Grandmother

Lesson 34 features a dialogue in Persian (Farsi) between Leyla and her grandmother.


GREETINGS:

salām
hello
سَلام
chetor-ee
how are you?
چِطوری؟

Note: In Persian, as in many other languages, there is a formal and an informal way of speaking. We will be covering this in more detail in later lessons. For now, however, chetor-ee is the informal way of asking someone how they are, so it should only be used with people that you are familiar with. hālé shomā chetor-é is the formal expression for ‘how are you.’

Spelling note: In written Persian, words are not capitalized. For this reason, we do not capitalize Persian words written in phonetic English in the guides.


ANSWERS:

khoobam
I’m well
خوبَم

Pronunciation tip: kh is one of two unique sounds in the Persian language that is not used in the English language. It should be repeated daily until mastered, as it is essential to successfully speak Persian. Listen to the podcast for more information on how to make the sound.

Persian English
salām hello
chetor-ee how are you?
khoobam I’m well
merci thank you
khayli very
khayli khoobam I’m very well
khoob neestam I’m not well
man me/I
bad neestam I’m not bad
ālee great
chetor-een? how are you? (formal)
hālé shomā chetor-é? how are you? (formal)
hālet chetor-é? how are you? (informal)
khoob-ee? are you well? (informal)
mamnoonam thank you
chetor peesh meeré? how’s it going?
ché khabar? what’s the news? (what’s up?)
testeeeee

Matt: Hello everyone and welcome to Learn Persian with Chai and Conversation.

Leyla: This week, in lesson 34, we continue with more conversations in Dallas. This time, it's a dialogue between my grandmother and I. If you recall in the last dialogue, my mother said that we would be having dinner with my grandmother that night. This conversation picks up during that night at dinner. Let's get right to it.

Leyla, azizam, barat khoreshe ghorme sabzi dorost kardam.

Bah bah bah, meedoneen keh man khoreshe ghorme sabzi khayli doost daram!

Albateh keh meedoonam.

Khayli vakhteh keh ghorme sabzi nakhordam barayeh eenkeh dar Austin restooraneh Irani nadareem.

Aslan nadareen?

Cherah, yekee do-ta dareem, vali faghat kabab daran.

Khob, kabab ham doost daree.

Dorosteh, doost daram, vali ghormeh sabzeeyeh shoma behtare!

Khob, befarma bokhor, sard nasheh.

Bah bah bah, ajab khoreshee!!

Noosheh jan

Khayli khoshmazast!! Va ajab tadeegee!

Khayli ham khoob nashodeh

Cherah maman joon, vaghean aali shodeh!

Azeezam, noosheedanee chee meekhoree?

Ab lotfan.

Befarma. Noosheh jan.

Leyla: This is a bit of a shorter dialogue than the ones we've had before, and the vocabulary should be a bit easier for you to understand. Again, the point of these dialogues is for you to hear the words you learned in previous lessons mixed with a few new words so that you can practice understanding different vocabulary you know in different contexts. Hopefully, this one is a short and simple treat for you. As always, let's go through it a couple lines at a time.

Leyla, azizam, barat khoreshe ghorme sabzi dorost kardam.

Bah bah bah, meedoneen keh man khoreshe ghorme sabzi khayli doost daram!

Leyla: Ok, so let's repeat the first part.

Leyla, azizam, barat khoreshe ghorme sabzi dorost kardam.

Leyla: Ok, so this is a pretty easy sentence, and you probably understand the general idea of what it means. It means 'Leyla, my dear, I've made ghormeh sabzi for you'. Ghormeh sabzi as you remember is a very popular Persian dish. However, you might not have heard the word 'barat' before. It means for. Barat

Matt: Barat

Leyla: So, this is actually the conversational version of for you, to an informal you. In written Persian, this is barayeh to

Matt: Barayeh to

Leyla: So barat is the conversational shortening of this phrase. Barayeh means for, and of course to is the informal you. So combined together, it becomes barat

Matt: Barat

Leyla: So let's go over all the conjugations of this. For me is baram

Matt: Baram

Leyla: For you, informal, again is barat

Matt: Barat

Leyla: For him or her is barash

Matt: Barash

Leyla: For us is baramoon

Matt: Baramoon

Leyla: For you formal is baratoon

Matt: Baratoon

Leyla: And for them is barashoon

Matt: Barashoon

Leyla: So again, going back to the original sentence, it's barat khoreshe ghorme sabzi dorost kardam. Let's repeat that together. Barat khoreshe ghorme sabzi dorost kardam.

Matt: Barat khoresheh ghorme sabzi dorost kardam.

Leyla: So because my grandmother is talking to me, her granddaughter, she is using the informal you to say she made me khoreshe ghorme sabzi. If I was going to say the same thing to her, I would use the formal you and say 'baratoon khoresheh ghorme sabzi dorost kardam.

Matt: Baratoon khoresheh ghorme sabzi dorost kardam.

Leyla: Ok, then I replied:

Bah bah bah, meedoneen keh man khoreshe ghorme sabzi khayli doost daram!

Leyla: So first 'bah bah' is the Persian equivalent of the sound 'mmmm' in English. As in responding to delicious food. I won't make you repeat that Matt. So then I said 'meedooneen keh man khoreshe ghorme sabzi khayli doost daram.' What does meedooneen mean?

Matt: You know

Leyla: Exactly, so this full sentence should be very easy. It's you know that I like khoreshe ghormeh sabzi very much. Let's go ahead and repeat the whole thing. We'll break it into two party. Meedooneen keh man

Matt: Meedooneen keh man

Leyla: Khoreshe ghormeh sabzi khayli doost daram

Matt: Khoreshe ghorme sabzi khayli doost daram

Leyla: Now all together- meedooneen keh man khoresheh ghormeh sabzi khayli doost daram.

Matt: Meedooneen keh man khoresheh ghormeh sabzi khayli doost daram.

Leyla: Ok next two sentences.

Albateh keh meedoonam.

Khayli vakhteh keh ghorme sabzi nakhordam barayeh eenkeh dar Austin restooraneh Irani nadareem.

Leyla: Ok, so first my grandmother replied

Matt: Albateh keh meedoonam.

Leyla: So albateh means 'of course'. Albateh

Matt: Albateh.

Leyla: So she's saying 'of course I know.' Albateh keh meedoonam

Matt: Albateh keh meedoonam.

Leyla: So then I say

Matt: Khayli vakhteh keh ghorme sabzi nakhordam barayeh eenkeh dar Austin restooraneh Irani nadareem.

Leyla: So let's break this down. Khayli vakhteh

Matt: Khayli vakhteh

Leyla: Means it's been a long time. Vakht means time and khayli means a lot. Khayli vakhteh

Matt: Khayli vakhteh

Leyla: Khayli vakhteh keh ghorme sabzi nakhordam.

Matt: Khayli vakhteh keh ghorme sabzi nakhordam.

Leyla: It's a long time that I haven't eaten ghorme sabzi. Barayeh eenkeh dar Austin restooraneh Irani nadareem. Can you tell me what this means?

Matt: It means 'because in Austin, we don't have an Iranian restaurant.'

Leyla: Exactly. So 'khayli vakhteh keh ghorme sabzi nakhordam barayeh eenkeh dar Austin restooraneh Irani nadareem'. So this means I haven't eaten ghormeh sabzi in a long time because in Austin we don't have an Iranian restaurant. I guess I'm giving away more information than I should about my frequency of cooking. Ok, let's move on to the next two sentences-

Aslan nadareen?

Cherah, yekee do-ta dareem, vali faghat kabab daran.

Leyla: The word aslan means 'at all'. So you don't have any at all? Aslan nadareen?

Matt: Aslan nadareen?

Leyla: And then

Matt: Cherah, yekee do-ta dareem, vali faghat kabab daran.

Leyla: So cherah means yes, but it's usually in response to a negative question. So in this example, you're saying 'you don't have any at all? And the answer is 'well yes'. So you'd use cherah. Cherah

Matt: Cherah

Leyla: Then, yekee do ta dareem

Matt: Yekee do ta dareem

Leyla: This means we have one or two. Vali faghat kabab daran

Matt: Vali faghat kabab daran

Leyla: Faghat means only. Faghat

Matt: Faghat

Leyla: So they only have kabob. Vali faghat kabab daran

Matt: Vali faghat kabab daran.

Leyla: Let's pause here and go over these new vocabulary fillers we've learned so far. First was albateh

Matt: Albateh

Leyla: And this means of course. Albateh

Matt: Albateh

Leyla: Then we learned chera

Matt: Chera

Leyla: And this means yes, in response to a negative question. Chera

Matt: Chera

Leyla: And finally we learned faghat

Matt: Faghat

Leyla: Meaning 'only'. Faghat

Matt: Faghat

Leyla: Let's pause at this point to listen to the entire dialogue up to this point

Leyla, azizam, barat khoreshe ghorme sabzi dorost kardam.

Bah bah bah, meedoneen keh man khoreshe ghorme sabzi khayli doost daram!

Albateh keh meedoonam.

Khayli vakhteh keh ghorme sabzi nakhordam barayeh eenkeh dar Austin restooraneh Irani nadareem.

Aslan nadareen?

Cherah, yekee do-ta dareem, vali faghat kabab daran.

Leyla: Ok, moving on to the next two sentences:

Khob, kabab ham doost daree.

Dorosteh, doost daram, vali ghormeh sabzeeyeh shoma behtare!

Leyla: Ok, this should be very simple for you to understand. So first 'khob, kabob ham doost daree'.

Matt: 'khob, kabob ham doost daree'

Leyla: Khob is another conversational filler meaning 'well'. Khob

Matt: Khob

Leyla: Khob kabob ham doost daree

Matt: Khob kabob ham doost daree

Leyla: Meaning

Matt: 'well, you like kabob too

Leyla: Right. And I reply 'dorosteh, doost daram.' Dorosteh means 'it's right' or 'it's true'. So dorosteh, doost daram

Matt: Dorosteh, doost daram

Leyla: Meaning

Matt: It's true, I do like

Leyla: Vali ghormeh sabzeeyeh shoma behtareh

Matt: Vali ghormeh sabzeeyeh shoma behtareh

Leyla: Meaning

Matt: But your ghormeh sabzee is better

Leyla: Exactly, Ok, next two sentences

Khob, befarma bokhor, sard nasheh.

Bah bah bah, ajab khoreshee!!

Leyla: We covered the phrase 'befarma bokhor' way back in unit 2. It means something along the lines of 'please come eat'. Befarma bokhor

Matt: Befarma bokhor.

Leyla: And ta sard nasheh means 'so it doesn't become cold

Matt: Ta Sard nasheh

Leyla: Ta is similar to until. So come eat before it gets cold. 'befarma bokhor ta sard nasheh.

Matt: Befarma bokhor ta sard nasheh.

Leyla: And I said

Matt: ajab khoreshee!!

Leyla: This is an expression which basically means 'what an amazing stew!' Ajab khoreshee

Matt: Ajab khoreshee

Leyla: Ok, next two sentences

Noosheh jan

Khayli khoshmazast!! Va ajab tadeegee!

Leyla: Noosheh jan is another extremely important expression when it comes to eating. It basically means 'bon appetit'. Noosheh jan

Matt: Noosheh jan

Leyla: So my grandmother is basically giving me permission to eat at this point. After I take a bite I say

Matt: Khayli khoshmazast!! Va ajab tadeegee!

Leyla: We've covered khoshmaze before. It means good tasting. Khoshmazeh

Matt: Khoshmazeh

Leyla: And khayli khoshmazast then means it's very delicious! Khayli khosmazast

Matt: Khayli khoshmazast

Leyla: And if you've eaten with Iranians before, you should know what tadeeg is. It literally means the bottom of the pot, and it is the slightly burned and deliciously crispy part of the rice. It's truly an art to get tadeeg right and Iranians take it very seriously. The word ajab means 'what' So what amazing tadeege! Is what that sentence basically means 'ajab tadeegee!'

Matt: Ajab tadeegee!

Leyla: What is not the best translation of that word actually- it doesn't have a direct translation. When used alone, for instance, it could give a sense of surprise or wonder. You have to say it like 'ajab!'

Matt: Ajab!

Leyla: Exactly. Ok, then my grandmother says

Matt: Khayli ham khoob nashodeh

Leyla: Now, this is completely just a form of tarof. As you know, in Iranian culture you are supposed to be humble about everything you do, including when you make food. So my grandmother is saying 'it didn't turn out that well', just as a form of showing that she is humble about her cooking. Khayli ham khoob nashodeh

Matt: Khayli ham khoob nashodeh

Leyla: You should know never to fall for this trick. She doesn't mean it, no matter how much she insists it's not very good, you just assure her it is. I, of course, don't have this problem because my grandmother is a great cook. Either way though, my response would be the same, and that is to assure her the food is amazing. Which is exactly what I do

Matt: Cherah maman joon, vaghean aali shodeh!

Leyla: There's the word cherah again- again, in this context, my grandmother presented me with a negative sentence- it didn't turn out well. And I am giving her a positive 'yes' response in return. So chera maman joon, vaghean aali shodeh

Matt: Chera maman joon, vaghean aali shodeh

Leyla: Vaghean is another one of those words that you'll hear a lot in conversation, and it means 'really'. So it's really delicious 'vaghean aali shoden'

Matt: Vaghean aali shodeh.

Leyla: Let's listen to the end of the conversation

Azeezam, noosheedanee chee meekhoree?

Ab lotfan.

Befarma. Noosheh jan.

Leyla: So, we covered the first sentence in unit 2. Let's listen to it again

Matt: Azeezam, noosheedanee chee meekhoree?

Leyla: So what does this mean?

Matt: It means what would you like to drink

Leyla: Exactly. And she threw an azeezam, or a my dear in there. So azeezam, noosheedanee chee meekhoree

Matt: Azeezam, noosheedanee chee meekhoree

Leyla: Meaning my dear, what would you like to drink.

I reply ab lotfan

Matt: Ab lotfan

Leyla: Water please. And finally, my grandmother replies 'befarma noosheh jan.' Noosheh jan again, and in this context, rather than bon appetite, it means 'please enjoy. So befarma, noosheh jan

Matt: Befarma noosheh jan,

Leyla: Meaning, here you go, please enjoy.

Ok, let's listen to the entire conversation one more time.

Leyla, azizam, barat khoreshe ghorme sabzi dorost kardam.

Bah bah bah, meedoneen keh man khoreshe ghorme sabzi khayli doost daram!

Albateh keh meedoonam.

Khayli vakhteh keh ghorme sabzi nakhordam barayeh eenkeh dar Austin restooraneh Irani nadareem.

Aslan nadareen?

Cherah, yekee do-ta dareem, vali faghat kabab daran.

Khob, kabab ham doost daree.

Dorosteh, doost daram, vali ghormeh sabzeeyeh shoma behtare!

Khob, befarma bokhor, sard nasheh.

Bah bah bah, ajab khoreshee!!

Noosheh jan

Khayli khoshmazast!! Va ajab tadeegee!

Khayli ham khoob nashodeh

Cherah maman joon, vaghean aali shodeh!

Azeezam, noosheedanee chee meekhoree?

Ab lotfan.

Befarma. Noosheh jan.

Leyla: And that brings us to the end of lesson 34.

Matt: As always, thanks so much for joining us.

Leyla: You can find all of our previous bonus materials, as well as all other useful information on our website at www.chaiandconversation.com, with CHAI spelled CHAI.

Matt: And with that, khodahafez from Matt.

Leyla: And beh omeedeh deedar, from Leyla.