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    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Arabic
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      • Egypt
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    • Join Date: Dec 2009
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    #1

    down

    Dear all,

    A man enters the embassy and asks an officer there saying:

    WHICH LINE IS FOR VISA APPLICATIONS?

    The officer answered him:

    LAST ONE DOWN.

    What is the meaning of "down" here? I assume the line is "queue"!!

    Thanks a lot.

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
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      • England
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      • England

    • Join Date: Jun 2010
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    #2

    Re: down

    The last queue down the corridor.

    If there was a choice of two directions the officer would point out the right way.

    Rover

    • Member Info
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      • Egypt
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    #3

    Re: down

    I see that the last one must logically be "down the corridor", right?
    I think, according to what you said, he could have said thw queue down the corridor " and we'll get that it's the last one, am I right?

    Thanks,

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • American English
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      • United States
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      • United States

    • Join Date: Apr 2009
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    #4

    Re: down

    Not a teacher.

    There could be several lines, for different things. He is telling you to join the last one.

  1. emsr2d2's Avatar
    • Member Info
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      • British English
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      • UK
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    #5

    Re: down

    There doesn't have to be a corridor involved. He is simply indicating that it is the furthest one away from the speaker.

    He could equally have said "The last one" (while pointing), "the farthest one". If the speaker is standing in the middle and there are queues reaching in both directions, the responder would have to point in the correct direction.

    We tend to use "up" and "down" quite regularly when talking about directions, even when there is no hill/incline involved.

    At a concert, for example, if I were standing about halfway back in the crowd, but a friend of mine was somewhere near the front, if someone else asked me where my friend was, I would probably say "He's down the front somewhere".

    • Member Info
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      • Current Location:
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    • Join Date: Dec 2009
    • Posts: 1,050
    #6

    Thumbs up Re: down

    Thanks a lot my friend :)

    but if that means anything, it means that "down and up" are most of the time useless and SO misleading for the non-native speakers of English, and also for teacher to explain! :P :P

    But really your examples are great and more than enough :)

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