Last week we learned the greeting basics. If you've missed the card you can see it here. Today, we're going to continue with advance greetings. You can use these phrases to start a conversation.
When you haven't seen a friend for a long time the most common way to say "hello" and express your joy is:
[ insert name ] 好久不見了! Hǎo-jiǔ bù-jiàn le! 好久 (Hǎo-jiǔ) simply means long time and 不見 (bù-jiàn) means can't see. When you put the words together it becomes 'long time no see'. Notice, I also added 了 (le) to the end of the sentence. It's a friendly remark. If you only say 好久不見 (Hǎo-jiǔ bù-jiàn) it sounds kind of cold.
This is related to the phrase above. Normally when you tell express to someone you haven't seen them in a long time, they will answer "是的! (Shì de)" and repeat your statement. Then, the next thing you should ask them is how are they are doing.
There are two ways to approach this:
(Nǐ zuì-jìn hǎo ma)
(Nǐ zuì-jìn zěn-me yàng)
Notice how both sentences start with 你最近 (nǐ zuì-jìn). The two words after "ni" is simply another way of saying lately. The ending of the two sentence determines vibe. The first phrase is more polite and usually used with parents, co-workers, or an acquaintance. The second phrase more casual and is used with someone you're close with (e.g your sisters and your long time friend).
Finally, this phrase is very similar to the previous one. You can use this as a greeting to ask someone how are they coping from an unfortunate event. It's quite simple, you won't ask someone are you okay if something didn't happen to them.
Here's an interesting note: 還好 (Hái hǎo) means okay. So, if someone ask you "How you've been?" or "Are you ok" and you are fine. You can say, 我還好 (wǒ hái hǎo) - I'm okay.
Here is a song by SHE to help you practice some of the phrases you just learned! Can you recognize any other words from the song? Challenge: Try watching one episode of Taiwanese drama today and see how many times the phrases are used.