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    Wang Shao-wei and three of her college classmates are traveling on their own
along the West Coast of the United States. They plan to arrive in Los Angeles,
where they will rent a car and drive to Seattle, Washington, making a detour
along the way to Yellowstone National Park. To prepare for their trip, they’ve
spent a lot of time studying English. Let’s follow along and listen to some of the
English conversations they have while traveling.
1.After arriving in L.A., Shao-wei and her friends stop at the car rental counter
at the airpost.
Rental clerk:Hi. Can I help you?
Shao-wei:Yes, we’d like to rent a car to drive to Seattle.
Rental clerk:O.K. Would you like a compact or a standard-size car?
Shao-wei:I think a compact will be too small. There are four of us traveling
            together, and we all have luggage.
Rental clerk:And how many days will you need the car for?
Shao-wei:We’d like torent it for about two and a half weeks.
Rental clerk:O.K. Now there’s a charge per day, as well as a mileage charge. You
             can see the details on this paper here. And we require that you
             show us two credit cards.
Shao-wei:Do we need to buy insurance, too ?
Rental clerk:The rental fee automatically includes insurance, but you can
           purchase extra coverage as well, if you’d like.
Shao-wei:O.K. let me take a look at this information and discuss it with my
frident. I’ll be back in a few minutes.
Rental clerk:No problem. I’ll be here. By the way, here’s the address of our
              office in Settle, where you can leave the car when you’ve finished
              with it.

2.The travelers drive to motel in suburban L.A., and Shao-wei’s fried Wan-ting
goes inside to see if there are any rooms available.
Wan-ting:Hello. We need two double rooms. Do you have any vacancies?
Motel clerk:Yes, we do. How long will you be staying?
Wan-ting:Just two nights. What’s the room rate?
Motel clerk:Forty-five a night for a double.
Wan-ting:O.K. I’ll be putting it on my Visa card.
Motel clerk:All right. You’ll have to fill this out. Please remember to write down
           the license plate number of your car.
Wan-ting:By the way, do you have a safety deposit box?
Motel clerk:We certainly do. Do you want to put something in it now?
Wan-ting:No, but in the morning we will, before we go out.
Motel clerk:O.K. Sign your name on the line, and here are your keys. Your
            rooms are in the building just behind this one. Checkout time is 11
Wan-ting:Thank you.
Motel clerk:You’re welcome. Have a nice stay.

3.As they are leaving L.A., one of the travelers, Jing-shwen, stops off at a bank to
get some extra cash.
Jing-shwen:Excuse me, I’d like to get an advance on my Visa card.
Bank clerk:O.K. How much would you like?
Jing-shwen:Five hundred dollars. Here’s my card.
Bank clerk:And how would you like that? Is five one hundred bills O.K.?
Jing-shwen:I’d like two hundred of it in smaller bill, if you don’t mind.
Bank clerk:All right. How about tens and twenties?
Jing-shwen:That’d be fine.
Bank clerk:Just sign right here, on this line. …And here’s your money:
           10,20,30,40,50,60,70,80,90,100;20,40,60,80,100; and 1-2-3
           hundred-that makes five hundred.
Jing-shwen:Thank you.

4.When the travelers arrive at Yellowstone National Park, they stop first at the
park’s information center.
Receptionist:Hi! Welcome to Yellowstone. How can I help you?
Shao-wei:We’d like to pick up some brochures about the park, and also a map.
Receptionist:The brochures are all over on that stand, and here’s a map for you.
Shao-wei:Would you mind showing us where we are on the map?
Receptionist:You’re right here. Let me mark it for you. And the entrance to the
              park is here.
Shao-wei:Could you show us how to get to “Old Faithful”?
Receptionist:Sure. Just follow this road here, and you’ll see signs marking the
Shao-wei:Thanks a lot.
Receptionist:You’re welcome. Have a good time.

5.While shopping, one of the travelers, Ya-ching, bought a toy clown for her niece.
But the next day, she notices that it is broken, so she decides to go back to the
department store where she got it.
Ya-ching: Hi, I was wondering if I could exchange this. I just bought it yesterday,
and it’s already broken.
Clerk: Do you have your receipt?
Ya-ching: Here it is.
Clerk: O.K., wait a moment, please…I’m sorry, I’m afraid we don’t have any
more of these. Would you like to exchange it for something else?
Ya-ching: I’m sorry, but I don’t see anything else I like. Is it possible I could just
have my money refunded?
Clerk: Sure. Let me fill out a slip for you, and you can take it to the refund
counter on the 10th floor.
Ya-ching: Thanks. I appreciate your help.
Clerk: No problem.

6. Before leaving the United States, the travelers decide to mail some of their
purchases back home rather than carry them on the plane. They stop at a post
office in Seattle.
Wan-ting: I’d like to send these two packages to Taipei, Taiwan.
Postal clerk: O.K., here’s a customs declaration form for you to fill out. …Do you
want them to go by air or surface?
Wan-ting: Well, how long will it take to send them by surface mail?
Postal clerk: It’s hard to say. It may take up to six weeks, or even more, but it’s
much cheaper.
Wan-ting: I guess that’s all right. How much will it be?
Postal clerk: Let’s see. It comes to a total of 42 dollars and 25 cents.
Wan-ting: O.K., her are three twenties.
Postal clerk: All right, and here’s your change: seventeen seventy-five.
Wan-ting: Thank you.

7. It’s been a fun, but tiring trip, and now the travelers are getting ready to head
back home. They’ve just arrived at the airport and are at the airline check-in
Ya-ching: We’re on the 3:30 flight to Taipei. Is this the right place to check in?
Airline clerk: Yes, it is. Can you show me your tickets, please?
Ya-ching: Right here. And here are our passports.
Airline clerk: Would you like an aisle or a window seat?
Ya-ching: Window seat, please. And we have these four bags of luggage.
Airline clerk: O.K. Here are your boarding passes. You board at Gate 10.
Ya-ching: Will the flight be leaving on time?
Airline clerk: It looks like it’s running about half an hour late. But you can
board at any time.
Ya-ching: Thank you.
Airline clerk: Have a nice flight. …Next please.