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Lesson Transcript

Gina: Hello everyone and welcome to RussianPod101.com. This is the Upper Beginner Series, Season 1, Lesson 19 - Don’t Count on the Russian Weather. I’m Gina.
Svetlana: And I’m Svetlana.
Gina: In this lesson, you’re going to learn impersonal sentences in Russian, and we’ll also listen to Elena and her husband planning a weekend trip to the countryside.
Svetlana: The conversation is between Elena and her husband, and it takes place in the their home.
Gina: The speakers are a married couple, so they’ll be using informal Russian.
Elena: Всё готово к хорошим выходным. Хоть бы погода не подвела.
Husband: Обещали солнце. Но в это время года, погода очень переменчивая. С утра наверняка будет прохладно, а к обеду распогодится.
Elena: Надеюсь. Я купила футбольный мяч. Поиграем в футбол?
Husband: Отлично. Можно устроить настоящий матч.
Elena: Мда... только бы стёкла на нашей даче остались целы.
Elena: Vsyo gotovo k khoroshim vykhodnym. Khot' by pogoda ne podvela.
Husband: Obeshchali solntse. No v eto vremya goda, pogoda ochen' peremenchivaya. S utra navernyaka budet prokhladno, a k obedu raspogoditsya.
Elena: Nadeyus'. Ya kupila futbol'nyy myach. Poigrayem v futbol?
Husband: Otlichno. Mozhno ustroit' nastoyashchiy match.
Elena: Mda... tol'ko by stokla na nashey dache ostalis' tsely.
Elena: Seems like everything is ready for a good weekend, if only the weather is fine.
Husband: They promised sunny weather but the weather is very fickle this time of the year. It will be chilly in the morning, but become warmer in the afternoon.
Elena: I hope so, I bought a ball. Should we play soccer?
Husband: Great. We can have a mini competition.
Elena: Yeah, as long as the windows in our dacha are safe.
Gina: Those two are really excited about the weekend. The only obstacle they might face is the weather. We’ve talked about the unstable Russian weather several times in this series. Is it really that much of a problem?
Svetlana: Well... yeah, it is, especially when planning activities outdoors. Weather in Russia is extremely unpredictable, so people rarely rely on weather forecasts.
Gina: I’ve heard that Russians believe they possess the ability to predict the weather using certain techniques. Is that true?
Svetlana: Oh yeah, we do. But they’re about as accurate as the weather forecasts.
Gina: Haha… Well, it’s interesting to know about the weather-related beliefs that exist in Russia. Do you remember any of them at all?
Svetlana: Let me think...oh yeah... One is that if a dog is rolling in the snow, that means there’ll be a snow storm soon. Another one is that if earthworms are coming out of the soil, it’ll rain.
Gina: I see. Interesting.
Gina: Let's take a look at the vocabulary for this lesson. The first word we shall see is...
Svetlana: подводить [natural native speed]
Gina: to let down
Svetlana: подводить [slowly - broken down by syllable] подводить [natural native speed]
Gina: Next
Svetlana: обещать [natural native speed]
Gina: to promise
Svetlana: обещать [slowly - broken down by syllable] обещать [natural native speed]
Gina: Next
Svetlana: солнце [natural native speed]
Gina: sun
Svetlana: солнце [slowly - broken down by syllable] солнце [natural native speed]
Gina: Next
Svetlana: переменчивый [natural native speed]
Gina: fickle, changeable
Svetlana: переменчивый [slowly - broken down by syllable] переменчивый [natural native speed]
Gina: Next
Svetlana: наверняка [natural native speed]
Gina: most likely
Svetlana: наверняка [slowly - broken down by syllable] наверняка [natural native speed]
Gina: Next
Svetlana: прохладныйx [natural native speed]
Gina: most likely
Svetlana: прохладныйx [slowly - broken down by syllable] прохладныйx [natural native speed]
Gina: Next
Svetlana: распогодиться [natural native speed]
Gina: to clear up, to become warm (about weather)
Svetlana: распогодиться [slowly - broken down by syllable] распогодиться [natural native speed]
Gina: Next
Svetlana: устраивать [natural native speed]
Gina: to organize, to arrange
Svetlana: устраивать [slowly - broken down by syllable] устраивать [natural native speed]
Gina: Next
Svetlana: стекло [natural native speed]
Gina: glass, window
Svetlana: стекло [slowly - broken down by syllable] стекло [natural native speed]
Gina: And last...
Svetlana: целый [natural native speed]
Gina: whole, safe, unbroken
Svetlana: целый [slowly - broken down by syllable] целый [natural native speed]
Gina: Let's have a closer look at the usage for some of the words and phrases from this lesson.
Svetlana: The first keyword is the verb подводить
Gina: “to let down”. It’s an imperfective verb that has 2 different meanings. When used in this sense however, the verb does not require any additional words to explain the reason or specify how you have let down somebody. For example,
Svetlana: Прошу не подведи
Gina: “Please don’t let me down.”
The other meaning is “to summarize”.
Svetlana: Yes, and it’s usually used in the expression подводить итог “to summarize” or “to conclude”. For example, Комиссия подвела иготи выборов.
Gina: “A committee summarized the results of the election.” Now let’s move to the next key word.
Svetlana: Okay, the next one is an adjective, переменчивый
Gina: “changeable”, “fickle”, or “unstable”. In this lesson we were talking about the weather but this adjective can also be used when talking about character and behavior as well as mood and desires.
Svetlana: Yes. For example,
Она совешенна непредсказуема в своих переменчивых желаниях
Gina: “She’s absolutely unpredictable with her constantly changing desires.”
Okay. What is the last key word for this lesson?
Svetlana: It’s the verb распогодиться.
Gina: “to clear up”. This is used when talking about the weather.
Svetlana: This verb was derived from the noun погода which means “weather”. The prefix рас- adds to the level of quality. Let me give you some examples with this prefix. красавец - раскрасавец
Gina: “handsome”-“very handsome”
Svetlana: весёлый - развесёлый
Gina: “cheerful”-“super fun” I see how it works. “Super fun” is definitely better than just “cheerful”. But it sounds a bit weird to “add the level of quality” in terms of weather”.
Svetlana: True. But it’s easier to remember, don’t you think? So when we’re talking about better weather we would say распогодилось, or “cleared up”. An example would be Наконец-то рапогодилось после дождливых дней.
Gina: “Finally, it has cleared up after those rainy days.”
Okay, now let’s move on to the grammar.
Gina: In this lesson, you’re going to learn about impersonal sentences in Russian. We had an impersonal sentence in our dialogue. Svetlana, can you remind us of this sentence?
Svetlana: Sure. С утра наверняка будет прохладно, а к обеду распогодится.
Gina: “It’ll be chilly in the morning, but then become warmer in the afternoon.” Impersonal sentences are used a lot in Russian. The main feature of these sentences is that they don't name the subject that performs an action, they always refer to a process or condition that doesn’t have a specific performer. For example,
Svetlana: Похолодало
Gina: “It got cold.”
Svetlana: Вечереет.
Gina: “It’s getting dark.” The English equivalent of a Russian impersonal sentence would be sentences that start with “it is…” However, unlike in English, Russian sentences don’t necessarily require verbs and subjects and so on. They can be a single noun, verb, or adverb.
Svetlana: Right. Here is an example of an impersonal sentence made of only one noun. Зима.
Gina: “It’s winter.”
Svetlana: An impersonal sentence made of a single verb. Распогодилось.
Gina: “It cleared up.”
Svetlana: And lastly, an impersonal sentence made of an adverb. Морозно.
Gina: “It’s freezing.” So impersonal sentences don’t specify who is carrying out the action, but they still can refer to somebody or something. In this case the subject will be in the dative case. For example,
Svetlana: Ему холодно.
Gina: “He is cold.” or literally, “To him it is cold.”
Also, these sentences are used not only to express weather conditions but also personal and emotional thoughts and the state of things as well. For example,
Svetlana: Скучновато.
Gina: “It’s boring.”
Okay. For more examples and explanations refer to the lesson notes.


Gina: That’s it for this lesson, everyone! See you next time.
Svetlana: Пока пока.