Chinese Way to Count on Their Fingers


In many countries and languages, it takes two hands with five fingers each to count from 1 to 10.  The Chinese just use one hand, watch and practice your numbers with the little girl below.  Go ahead, stretch your abilities:

If you are new in China with limited language abilities, giving people these fingers will take you a lot farther than the one typically used with the taxi drivers that almost run you down.

Greeting, Seating, and Serving Guests in Mandarin Chinese

Greeting, Seating, and Serving Guests in Mandarin Chinese


Mrs. Di           Nǐ hǎo.                                      (Hello.)

Bartender     Dí Tàitai! Hǎo jiǔ bú jiàn!           (Mrs. Di!  Long time no see!)

Mrs. Di           Zhēnde hǎojiǔ!                          (It really has been a  long time!)

Bartender     Qǐngzuò. Qǐngzuò.                    (Sit down. Sit down.)

  Lái hē yībēi shuǐ.                      (Here, drink a glass of water.)

Mrs. Di            Xièxie. Máfan ní le.                   (Thank you. I’ve troubled you.)

Bartender      Aīyā! Búyòng kèqi.                    (My goodness! No need for humility.)

For a similar lesson and intensive practice click here.