Saturday, 31 March 2012

Shopping For Stationary


This post deals with shopping in general, and more specifically with shopping for stationary.


Imagine you are shopping for stationary. After exchanging customary greetings, the shop assistant decides to say to you something like: "can I help you/ how can I help you/ what can I do for you?"

In Spanish, the other person could choose to be less formal and say:
¿Qué deseas?

Alternatively, he/ she could choose to be more formal and say:
¿Que desea (usted)?


The question in Spanish is an invitation for you to say what you want/ what you are after. Answering that question should be quite straightforward and depends mainly on what you are looking for.

Maybe you are looking for:
  • Material to write on;
  • Writing implements;
  • Office utensils;
  • Office consumables;

Here are some examples of how you could say what you want/ are looking for:
  • Quería un cuaderno de papel rayado (I would like a lined writing pad);
  • Quería un lápiz (I would like a pencil);
  • Quería una caja de lápices de colores (I would like a box of coloured pencils);
  • Quería un bolígrafo (I would like a ballpoint pen);
  • Quería un tubo de pegamento (I would like a tube of glue);
  • Quería un rollo de cinta adhesiva (I would like a roll of sticky tape);
  • Quería una grapadora (I would like a stapler);
  • Quería una caja de grapas (I would like a box of staples);
  • Quería una caja de 'clips' (I would like a box of paperclips);
  • Quería una carpeta (I would like a folder/ file);
  • Quería una papelera (I would like a waste-paper basket);

Now you should practice answering the question:
¿Qué desea (usted)?

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