Listen to Podcast | Teochew: How Do You Say “Hello, Long Time No See”

New Words  
English – Mandarin – Formal Romanization – Ours
Really / Very – 真 – zing – jing 
Long time – 久 – gu – gu 
Long time no see – 真久无看着 – zing gu bho toin dioh – jing gu bor toi dior 
Recently – 几时 – gua si – gua si 
How have you been recently? – 你即(这)几时在生(怎么样)? – le ziêg gua si zai sên? – ler zih gua si zai seh

Podcast Transcript | Teochew: How Do You Say “Hello, Long Time No See”

Hello everyone, long time no see! Hope you had a good break. Are you ready for your next Teochew lesson? My name is Eugene and once again, welcome to How Do You Say on In today’s podcast, we will be covering the exact phrase at the start: “Hello, Long Time No See!” 

As we have learnt previously, “hello” is “你好”, so what about “long time no see”? 

In Teochew, we express it by “真久无看着”. 

The first word “真”, refers to “really” while the second word, “久” refers to “long time”. When combined together, it literally means “really long time”.  

The next word “无” is a common term in Teochew that is used to negate an action. In our case here, “无” is applied to the action of “看”, which means “to see” in English. As such “无看” means “not seeing”.  

The last word is a particle in Teochew to complete the sentence.  

By saying 你好 prior to the whole phrase of 真久无看着, you address the person you are speaking to. Alternatively, you can also say 真久无看着你.  

Now, give it a try. Pause the audio to practice on your own. 

Great. Ready for part 2? 

After saying “long time no see”, we can continue to ask the person how he/she has been doing recently. This is expressed by “你即几时在生?”  

Over here, “即几时” means “recently” while “在生” means “how”. As such, “你即几时在生?” is literally translated into “You recently how?”. The term “在生” is a Teochew expression and similar to 㩼谢, this term can be used to identify Teochew speakers. 

So there we have it, “你好, 真久无看着,你即几时在生?”   

Let me repeat, “你好, 真久无看着,你即几时在生?”   

Hope everyone has been doing well and thank you for listening in to How Do You Say on My name is Eugene and wish you a Happy New Year! 

Our Philosophy for Learning Teochew in Singapore

While we include formal romanization for Teochew words, we are advocates of easy learning. Hence we encourage you to form your own phonics so that you make an association with these Teochew words quickly. To illustrate, the formal romanization of “Teochew” is “diê ziu”. However, in our “Can You Teach Me” podcast transcript, you’ll find that we use “teo chew”, which we think relates to us better. That said, you may use other romanization (e.g “dio chew”, “dio jiu”, etc), as long as it helps you to make sense of what you hear.