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In today’s lesson, we will go over the term you’re welcome. Now it may seem like a simple phrase but there are various ways to say it depending on the situation and politeness level. So we will take a whole lesson on these phrases as well as customs. The most common way of saying you are welcome is Dō itashimashite. Do-u-i-ta-shi-ma-shi-te. Dō itashimashite. This is a polite form that can be used with friends, colleagues, senior colleagues, supervisors and those significantly older than you and you’d use it in situations where you feel comfortable enough being thanked. In other words, you would use this if you thought your actions deserved an expression of appreciation. If someone thanks you for giving you a gift for example or answering her question, you could say Dō itashimashite because it’s pretty natural for you to be thanked for gestures like that right but if you think your actions didn’t deserve to be mentioned or thanked, you might want to say the phrase that goes something like, don’t mention it. In Japanese, we have casual and formal ways of saying this. In a casual situation, you would use Iie, iie which is literally translated as no, no to mean oh no, it’s no big deal. Sort of like the Spanish phrase De nada or it’s nothing.
For example, if someone thanks you for giving up their seat on the train or picking up something that someone dropped, saying Iie, iie conveys the feeling that you thought it was only natural for you to give up your seat or to pick up the item and you deserve no credit for it but again this would be used in response to casual gestures and situations. Most likely in such situations, they will thank you in a casual form like Dōmo arigatō and in response, you respond casually Iie iie. Now for more formal situations, we use Tondemo nai desu. To-n-de-mo-na-i-de-su. Tondemo nai desu. Now like Iie iie, Tondemo nai desu means what I did is really no big deal but this should be used in situations where the deeds were bit more serious and for situations in which both parties benefitted from.
For example, if you went to a job interview and the interviewer thanks you for coming, you should say Tondemo nai desu to mean oh no! thank you for taking the time out of your busy schedule to interview me. Another example would be if you went to visit someone in the intensive care unit of the hospital, the sick person’s family would probably go to great length to thank you politely. For reference, they would probably say something like Dōmo arigatō gozaimasu and since they are being so polite and the situation is so serious, you should respond with a same degree of politeness and seriousness. In this situation, Tondemo nai desu is the most appropriate response to convey that feeling of, of course, I came. She was such a close friend of mine and now for Sachiko secret, I will introduce the phrase I like to use in conjunction with the phrases we learn today.
After saying don’t mention it, I often add Kochira koso. Ko-chi-ra-ko-so. Kochira koso which literally means me too but in a polite way but it would be translated as No, no I should be thanking you or I enjoyed it too. That way I feel like we can share the appreciation we have for each other and connect on a deeper level and they won’t feel obligated to return the favor. Speaking of obligations, Japan has a strict custom of gift giving. People give each other gifts for every opportunity possible. For example, if you have children, you will get gifts for your kids birthday, enrollment into a new school, graduation, Christmas and new year and strictly speaking, each time you get a gift, you are supposed to give back a gift that’s roughly half the price of the gift you received each and every single time.
It can get really busy sometimes especially if you just got married or you just had children, you will be showered with gifts, great but you will have a huge to do list waiting for you. Okay so to close out today’s lesson, let’s practice what you’ve just learned. I will give you the English equivalent of the phrase and you are responsible for shouting it out loud in Japanese. You got that? I will give you a few seconds before I give you the answer. So good luck Ganbatte kudasai. You are welcome in the most common form. Dō itashimashite. Dō itashimashite. Don’t mention it in the casual form. Iie, iie. Iie, iie. And don’t mention it for more formal situations. Tondemo nai desu. Tondemo nai desu. And from Sachiko secret, me too Kochira koso. Kochira koso. All right, that’s going to do it for today. See you later which in Japanese is Matane.