LPLE #4: Enjoying the Weekend

Andrew talks about hiking and enjoying the natural beauty of Washington State. Jesse talks about his hobby of salsa dancing, and how it helps him exercise.


Intro [Jesse]: Hi everyone. My name is Jesse Robbins, and welcome to LPLE from Dialogue FM. We're the podcast that lets you practice listening in English. We speak English slowly and clearly so that you can follow along and understand native English speakers more easily. I'm excited to help you improve your English listening skills, as well as help you learn new vocabulary, grammar, and idioms commonly heard and conversation among native English speakers. If you want to practice listening in English, then we invite you to join our conversation.

Jesse: Andrew!

Andrew: Jesse!

Jesse: Tell me, what do you like to do on the weekend?

Andrew: On the weekend, most of the time I am trying to catch up on exercise because I work at an office and sit or stand at a desk most of the day. So, on the weekend, usually I'm trying to find a way to go outside and hike in the mountains or go for a run depending on who is available to join me in these activities.

Jesse: Nice! Living in Seattle, there's many places to go hiking nearby.

Andrew: Yes! We're very close to a lot of mountains, and for running there are beaches and a lot of pretty scenery to look at when you're outside.

Jesse: Tell me, why do you like hiking?

Andrew: I like hiking because it is close and also because it is good exercise with new things to look at each time you go out. So, for example, if I were to go on a run near my house, I would have to run by the same things everyday and it gets boring. When I go out hiking I can go in a different direction each day. I will drive to a different mountain, and I can climb to the top and see different views, and also there are different trails with different conditions. So, some are rocky, some are dusty, sometimes there is snow, and that makes each hike new and fresh.

Jesse: When you go hiking, do you like to take a lot of pictures?

Andrew: Yes, usually-... Well, on the pretty days I like to take pictures. At the top, if it is sunny and bright and you can see clearly for a long way, the pictures look amazing and you can see not just the mountains nearby but sometimes very far away. Even if the hike is a long way away from the city, like 30 or 60 minutes drive away, sometimes you can still see from the top of the mountain the skyscrapers in the city of Seattle, or our famous mountain, Mount Rainier, nearby all the way away down to the south and east.

Jesse: When you go hiking, how long do you usually hike and what do you usually bring with you?

Andrew: That's a good question. The hikes are sometimes nearby and they take only 30 to 45 minutes to drive to. But, sometimes when I go with more enthusiastic friends we might go somewhere further away that might take two or three hours to get to by car. Once we're there, usually we are hiking for about four or five miles up and then four or five miles back, and that takes about two or three hours to go up, and then it is usually a little bit faster to go downhill back to the car. So, these are long trips; they take most of a day to complete, between the driving and the hiking. That means that you need to bring food and prepare to be out all day. So, we dress in layers to stay warm while we're cool and to take some of them off when we are working hard and get hot and sweaty. And, we also take water and snacks like granola bars or chips. We will also bring a meal sometimes for the top, a sandwich or something like that, for lunch, and we usually bring extra just in case something might happen, or if we meet someone else who does not have enough food along the way.

Jesse: Who do you usually go hiking with? How many friends and how often?

Andrew: It depends on the season. In the summer, it is warmer so we can get to more places that are not covered with snow and ice and are dangerous to drive to. And, in the winter, sometimes with extra preparation--bringing things like snow shoes or spikes to put on your shoes so we don't slip--we can go out into snow hikes. During the summer, we usually try to hike once every one or two weeks, usually on the weekend. And, in the winter, it is probably closer to once each month.

Jesse: Nice. When are you going to go hiking again this year?

Andrew: Right now, I am training for some runs, so I am running more than I am hiking. But, once the weather warms up again, it is January now, so maybe April or May I will probably start hiking again more regularly.

Jesse: Excellent. During the weekend, my favorite hobby is salsa dancing. I've been salsa dancing for about 10 years now. And, it's a very invigorating activity. Invigorating means I use lots of energy, I use a lot of body energy, I'm moving around a lot.

Andre: And, how does it make you feel?

Jesse: It feels like--... Probably it feels the same way you feel when you're jogging. You're breathing heavily, you're sweating, your heart is beating very fast--your heart is racing. But, it's also very fun for me. So, it's a similar activity in that I can move my body around a lot, but it's also very fun because I get to listen to very, very fun and exciting music, and I can be creative, matching my body movement and dance steps to the music, and also I get to make new friends and meet old friends. In Seattle, we have a salsa dancing community. That means that whenever there's a salsa event during the week, there is a good chance that I will meet the same people again and again and again. And, because I get to meet them multiple times, I learn their name, I learn more about them, and then we become friends. So, now it feels like I'm not dancing with strangers all the time, but I'm dancing with people who I feel very comfortable with. It's a very fun activity.

Outro [Jesse]: Thank you for listening to this episode of LPLE, Let's Practice Listening in English, from Dialog.FM. Subscribe to LPLE on iTunes to hear the latest episodes, or listen to past episodes on our website, Dialog.FM. That's d-i-a-l-o-g-dot-f-m. If you have questions or comments about English, or if you would like for us to use a word, grammar, or idiom in our conversation so you can learn how to use it correctly, we would love to hear from you on Twitter at @dialogdotfm or Facebook at