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  1. englishhobby's Avatar
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    #1

    on the other side of the world

    Speaking about her family, a girl says: I have a family on the other side of the world.

    Is it an idiomatic expression used by many or just a phrase this particular girl invented "on the spot"?
    If it's an idiom, can it be used for very long distances and is there a "geographical" criteria as to its use?
    If I were a native speaker of English, I would never shut up. :-)

  2. Matthew Wai's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: on the other side of the world


  3. englishhobby's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: on the other side of the world

    Quote Originally Posted by Matthew Wai View Post
    Still, it's not quite clear to me what it means. Is Australia "the other side of the world" to Britain? Logically, it is... Is Canada "the other side of the world" to Argentina? Are there other meanings beside the "geographical" one?
    If I were a native speaker of English, I would never shut up. :-)

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    #4

    Re: on the other side of the world

    I wouldn't use it for north/south differences. I don't think of Canada and Brazil that way.

    If it is daytime where you are and it is nighttime where they are, then they are on the other side of the world. The US and China/Japan, for example.

  4. englishhobby's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: on the other side of the world

    Can I say about a person "He is the other side of the world to me" or somehow else meaning that he is very different from me and I don't understand him and his attitudes/opinions?
    If I were a native speaker of English, I would never shut up. :-)

  5. Matthew Wai's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: on the other side of the world

    You may refer to 'worlds apart' and 'a world away from' on http://www.ldoceonline.com/dictionary/world_1 Definition#11
    The meaning is similar but not exactly the same.

    Not a teacher.

  6. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: on the other side of the world

    It is not an idiom, but it is idiomatic English. The uses of the words idiom/idiomatic can be very confusing. The first means something that has a meaning different from what the individual words mean. The second just means "naturally formed".

    And I agree with Dave, that we don't normally use this expression for North/South locations. That is probably due to time zones.

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    #8

    Re: on the other side of the world

    Quote Originally Posted by englishhobby View Post
    Can I say about a person "He is the other side of the world to me" or somehow else meaning that he is very different from me and I don't understand him and his attitudes/opinions?
    No, use the phrases that Matthew suggested instead.

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