Free Honeymoon

couple on beachCan you imagine being given a free honeymoon? Well, that’s just what the Malaysian government are offering couples in a bid to decrease the divorce rate. I saw this article about it on the BBC News website yesterday and started imagining where I would go on a second honeymoon.

In the first paragraph, the author mentions that these honeymoons will be offered to couples ‘on the brink’ of divorce. I explained ‘on the brink‘ in more detail in this post, but in this situation, it means couples who are very likely to divorce.

The next interesting expression is slightly later in the article where it is mentioned that the scheme is aimed at building ‘family ties‘. ‘Family ties‘ means the relationship between family members.

Further on in the article, the expression ‘in-laws‘ is mentioned. Your ‘in-laws‘ are your wife or husband’s parents. We can also use ‘in-law‘ after a word to indicate that a person is related to your husband or wife. For example, my brother in-law is my wife’s brother.

A few weeks ago, we saw here that machines can ‘break down‘. Marriages can, too. We also often use the phrasal verb ‘fall apart‘  to talk about when a relationship starts to become difficult and unsustainable.

The last interesting expression in this article ‘pilot project‘. We use the word ‘pilot‘ in this sense to talk about something being done for the first time as a test or trial. Another example of this would be when a TV company makes a ‘pilot episode‘ of a TV show to test whether viewers will like it or not.

Where would you like to go on a free honeymoon?

Today’s image is by Fran Flores.

Power cut stops Eurostar

train tracksI love travelling by train. It’s so civilised and you get so see so much more interesting scenery than you would do by plane. I have been on the Eurostar from London to Paris once before and it was such a nice experience, so much less stressful than flying.

This article on the BBC News website caught my eye over the weekend. At first, I thought the train might have stopped in the tunnel but luckily it had not entered the tunnel when the power went off.

There were some interesting words and phrases in the article, too. The first one is in the title:

Eurostar refunds after breakdowns

The phrasal verb ‘to break down‘ means for a machine to stop working and in this case, a ‘breakdown‘ is the situation in which that machine has stopped working.

The next interesting word is in the first paragraph where it is mentioned that there was a ‘power cut‘. A ‘power cut‘ is when the electrical supply to a place is stopped for some reason. We can also ‘cut’ as a collocation with ‘power’ and say ‘to cut the power‘ meaning to stop it.

The next interesting expression is where the author mentions the ‘Paris-bound‘ train. We can use ‘-bound‘ as a suffix to talk about where a train is going. Often, platforms at subway stations are marked as ‘northbound‘ and ‘southbound‘ so you know which direction the trains will be travelling in.

There’s another interesting phrasal verb slightly later on in the article:

By the time the rail replacement buses pulled into Brussels Midi station, at 0330 BST, a sea of weary and disgruntled passengers were met by relatives.

In this situation ‘pull in‘ means arrive and by a ‘sea of passengers‘, the author means a very large group.

What’s your favourite way to travel?
Today’s photo is by David Mackenzie.