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Takarakuji-o kattara, yontō-ga atatta-n-da (I bought a lottery ticket — and I won fourth prize)

Situation 1: Mr. Mita talks to his colleague Mr. Sere about a lottery.

三田: 宝くじを買ったら、4等が当たったんだ。

セレ: へえ、よかったね!それで、いくらもらえるの?

Mita: Takarakuji-o kattara, yontō-ga atatta-n-da.

Sere: Hee, yokatta-ne! Sore-de, ikura moraeru-no?

Mita: I bought a lottery ticket — and I won fourth prize.

Sere: Oh, that’s great! So, how much will you get?

Today we will introduce the proper use of “X (verb in ta form) ら、Y (= phrase).” “Xら、Y” is used to describe two facts in succession that have already happened. This pattern is used when the speaker found Y accidentally after he/she did X. Y is a fact that was newly found, and would not have been the speaker’s intentional action. Example: ホテルの窓(まど)を開(あ) けたら、きれいな海(うみ)が見(み)えました。 (When I opened the window in the hotel, I saw the beautiful ocean.); 買い物(かいもの)に行(い)ったら、偶然(ぐうぜん)先生(せんせい)に会(あ)ってしまった。 (When out shopping, I happened to bump into my teacher.). Y is usually an expression that shows a situation, and the pattern of “verb in te-form + いた” or “noun + だった” is often used. Examples: 家(うち)に帰(かえ)ったら、玄関(げんかん)の前(まえ)に 大(おお)きな車(くるま)が止(と)まっていた。 (When I went home, there was a big car parked in front of the entrance.); 図書館 (としょかん)に行(い)ったら、休(やす)みだった。 (When I went to the library, it was closed.). To emphasize whether the speaker expected the eventual result, phrases like 意外(いがい)と and 案外(あんがい) (both “unexpectedly”) or やはり and 思(おも)った通 (とお)り (both “as I expected”) are often used. Examples: ウィンドサーフィンは難(むずか)しいと思(おも)っていたけど、やってみたら意外(いがい)と簡単(かんたん)だったよ。 (I thought that wind surfing would be difficult, but I found it unexpectedly easy when I gave it a try.); 展覧会(てんらんかい)はすごく混(こ)むと聞(き)いていたけど、行(い)ってみたら、やはりずいぶん待(ま)たされた。 (I heard that the exhibition was really crowded, and as expected, I was made to wait a long time.).

Situation 2: Ms. Tamachi gave some medicine to Ms. Gray, who had a headache. After a while, Ms. Tamachi asks how she is.

グレイ: この薬を飲んだら、だいぶよくなった。ありがとう。

田町: そう、よかった。でも、きょうは早く帰ったほうが いいんじゃない?

Gray: Kono kusuri-o nondara, daibu yokunatta. Arigatō.

Tamachi: Sō, yokatta. Demo, kyō-wa hayaku kaetta hō-ga ii-n-ja-nai?

Gray: My headache has almost gone since taking that medicine. Thanks.

Tamachi: Oh, that’s good. But still, it’d be best if you go home early today.

“X (verb in ta-form)ら、Y (= phrase)” is also used when the situation Y occurred as a result of X. Example: パソコンを再起動 (さいきどう)したら、問題(もんだい)が解決(かいけつ)した。 (After I restarted the PC, the problem was solved.)

Bonus Dialogue: Continued from Situation 1.

三田: 4等(よんとう)で5万円(ごまんえん)もらえるんだ。

セレ: へえ、いいなあ。今度(こんど)ごちそうしてよ。

三田: もちろんだよ。…その日(ひ)、テレビを見(み)ていたら、占(うらな)いで宝(たから)くじを買(か)うと ラッキーだと言(い)っていたんだ。それで買って みたんだよ。

セレ: へえ、占いもたまには当(あ)たるんだね。

三田: うん。でも、宝くじはもう買(か)わないことにするよ。

セレ: どうして?

三田: 先月(せんげつ)、英語(えいご)の試験(しけん)を受(う)けたら、いいスコアがとれなかったんだ。それから、この前(まえ)、彼女(かのじょ)に結婚 (けっこん)を申(もう)しこんだら、断(ことわ)られちゃったし。これ以上(いじょう)、宝くじで幸運(こううん)を使(つか)いたくないんだ。

セレ: ふうん。それは運(うん)ではないかもしれないけれど…。

Mita: I’ll get ¥50,000 for fourth prize.

Sere: Oh, that’s good. You’ll have to treat me to something one of these days.

Mita: Of course. When I was watching TV that day, the fortune teller said that buying a lottery ticket would be lucky. So, I bought one.

Sere: Really? So the fortune tellers occasionally turn out to be right?

Mita: Yeah. But I decided not to do the lottery any more.

Sere: Why?

Mita: I had an English exam last month, and I didn’t manage to get a good score. And, I asked my girlfriend to marry me, but she turned me down. I don’t want to use up my luck on the lottery anymore.

Sere: Hmm. I don’t think those things have much to do with luck.

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