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To Roosevelt Island! (Language level B2-C1)

Settembre 2015
Roosevelt Island è una piccola isola tra Manhattan e Queens. Vale la pena andarci per prendere questa simpatica funivia, da cui si vede tutta New York. Il resto ce lo spiega Ernest, il manovratore!

di Laura Giromini | vivereny.it

File audio:

Ernest Suarez
Ernest Suarez

Roosevelt Island (which was previously known as Blackwell’s Island and Welfare Island) is a small island on the East River, between Manhattan and Queens. It is home to a large hospital but, apart from that, it is mainly a residential area. You can get there on the famous New York subway, but a more original – and fun – form of transport is the Roosevelt Island Tramway. This began service in 1976 and it was meant to be temporary, until the opening of the subway station in 1989. But by then New Yorkers were so fond of the tramway that it stayed open. Today it is used by residents who commute to Manhattan, but also by tourists who are looking for something a little different.
If you take the tramway to Roosevelt Island, you have to get off at your destination: for security reasons, you can’t stay on board and come straight back. For this reason,  you have to buy two tickets. The journey from Second Avenue, between 59th and 60th Street, takes just four-and-a-half minutes. The tramway runs alongside the Queensboro Bridge. If it looks familiar, then this is because it appears in the 2002 movie Spider-Man. At one stage the bad guy, the Green Goblin, throws Mary Jane Watson off the Queensboro Bridge and breaks the tramway’s wires.  Spider-Man has to choose between saving Mary Jane and the passengers. Fortunately, the super hero manages to do both, and so you can still ride the tramway today! 




Speaker: Chuck Rolando (Standard American accent)

We meet a New Yorker who introduces himself:

Ernest Suarez (Hispanic accent)

My name is Ernest Suarez. I work for the tram, for about a year so far. It’s a(n) interesting job, going back and forth to Manhattan and Roosevelt Island. The trip takes about four-and-a-half minutes, we’re about 250 feet high, it’s a nice view of Manhattan, of the skyline: you can see the UN, the World Trade Center, you can see the Empire State Building, and you can see all the people in Manhattan.


So who takes the tram?

Ernest Suarez

About 9 o’clock we have the people going from Roosevelt Island to work on the tram, and they usually come back about five o’clock from Manhattan to Roosevelt Island. We have the tourists about 11 o’clock to maybe 4, so the tram is always crowded with people, really hot; body heat! And, coming back, the tourists always act as if they could stay on, but they have to get off ‘cause they’ll just ride back and forth all day with me. And I could give them the key and let them drive it for me! But it’s interesting, the tourists, they’re not too sure how to use their metro machines, so we have to help them; they just don’t know how to use certain things.


And Ernest Suarez has had some pretty interesting passengers!

Ernest Suarez

Some person got married on the tram: they stood on, they got married, and they started singing in the tram. That was really awesome, you know, the people singing, and it made my ride really interesting.


But that’s not the best bit!

Ernest Suarez

The fun part is when the people are scared: it’s hilarious! I mean, I could tell now by looking at person if they’re scared: they don’t look out the window, they stare at the floor, they hold on the pole too tight, but the most hilarious (part) is when the boyfriend is scared and the girlfriend isn’t. That is hilarious, it must be seen, you know!

Se vuoi sapere di più su Laura, visita il suo blog: www.vivereny.it

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I work for the tram, for about a year so far.  Questo è un errore. Ernest Suarez avrebbe dovuto usare il present perfect continuous: I have been working on the tram for about a year so far. Ernest Suarez, che è un ispanico nato a cresciuto a New York, fa alcuni errori grammaticali.

They’ll just ride back and forth all day with me 
Suarez intende dire ‘se fosse per loro (i turisti), andrebbero avanti e indietro con me tutto il giorno’. Quindi avrebbe dovuto usare il condizionale: they’d (they would) just ride back and forth all day.

They stood on. Qui Suarez intendeva dire ‘sono saliti’ e avrebbe dovuto dire they got on.