"ちかくにこうばんはありますか?"

Translation:Is there a police box nearby?

July 1, 2017

42 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/darthoctopus

近くに交番はありますか

July 15, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Medusa747

Is there a police box nearby? I'd like to report a murder. The suspect was short, green, feathered, and covered in the blood of my family.

August 10, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/_jclipse

I believe police boxes in Japan are often used to ask for directions from police officers. It's not easy or common to ask other people on the street for directions and the police will have a map to give you the best route.

May 18, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/JahredW

Are police boxes still used in Japan or something? Seems like a weird thing for Duo to proportioned teaching.

October 21, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Pedro_42

Apparently so. Wikipedia says that "as of 2007, there were about 6,000 kōban all over Japan". Also, here's a quote from the Japan National Tourism Organization:

"Your best resource for contacting the police, getting directions if you are lost, or for reporting a lost or stolen item, is your nearest “Koban”, or police box. This network of mini police stations is unique to Japan, and they can be found in virtually every neighborhood throughout the country, there are over 1200 Koban in Tokyo alone. While not all Koban are staffed 24 hours a day, most of the police boxes located in heavily populated areas will have an officer on duty."

To illustrate, here's a picture of one:

December 5, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Anne624050

I can second that. When I lost my phone in 2018, I reported it at the next こうばん. And since most Japanese people hand in the things they find (except for umbrellas), I got it back a few days later.

I would even say that 交番はどこですか。is definitely survival Japanese for tourists.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/LoraCoggin

Why don't they hand in umbrellas?

May 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/FloofyBoofy

I guess the Doctor visits Japan a lot.

January 22, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/lerosbif

Yes, Japan has their own time travelling doctor. Doctor Jin.

May 7, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/N1chope

Probably the translation to Police Box remained from the time when they were in use in Britain, but they are not actual police boxes, but rather just small police stations

December 15, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Lloyd76445

I'm looking for a doctor

February 2, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Menelvir

I came here for the Doctor jokes.

January 28, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/GustavoBechi

Me too k

February 13, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/SolarDjango

Can anyone explain why its は and not が marking the police box? At this point it seems a little arbitrary... I'd have gone with が asking this...

July 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/telemetry

This is one of those things where it probably takes a lot of study and immersion in Japanese before you get a natural feel for which is right in a particular situation, and how using one or the other subtly changes the sense of what you're saying

Anyhoo, は is more for establishing the topic or setting a new context. So it's like "police boxes - are there any nearby?". Whereas が is more like talking about a specific thing, where you might use it or the in English. "Is the police box nearby?"

I mean obviously I'm still trying to get the hang of it myself, but it feels more natural to me to use は here

July 31, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/ayszhang

I agree with telemetry, but here is a tip for you. You will almost always find は marking the topic or subject of a negative verb.

November 18, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Lloyd76445

whooosh wooosh

March 6, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/shannon795418

We don't have anything in the US called a police box. In what countries is this term used?

September 29, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/MerleBlue

England

January 2, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Alexandria96310

I put "Is a police box nearby" and it was wrong. Shouldn't that work?

September 20, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Keiraan

What exactly is a police box? I'm unfamiliar with the term.

November 20, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/SanDigital

Do a Google image search for police box in Japan. As others have noted, they're basically little tiny police stations. They're actually very cute

March 29, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/lissettesimone

A small police station. There is one in most neighborhoods.

February 24, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/MikeWillisUK

Out of curiosity, what would be the appropriately polite way to stop a stranger to ask a question like this? Could I just get their attention with a "sumimasen!" and go straight into the question, or would that be considered rude?

December 11, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/LindsayJoh12

I lived in Japan for 2 years. I think that's a very appropriate way. To the point and respectful of their time.

March 11, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/ASleepingRock

すみません、ちょっといいですか? Should be fine for most situations when asking questions to a stranger on the streets.

July 23, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Frankie9001

I typed "Is there a police box near?" and it was counted wrong. Does anyone else think what I typed should be accepted?

February 1, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Nick855263

I put near as well. There is a difference between near and nearby, where near is used for comparison (with far) whike nearby is the grammatically correct to describe distance. Or something like that.

March 3, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/DevonHollo

Why is it "ちかく" and not "ちかい"?

Edit: I figured it out! It's because ちかく is modifying あります, not こうばん, and is thus acting as an adverb, not an adjective.

March 12, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Megumi302854

"Is there a nearby police box?" is not good enough. Huh.

July 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/NatoriErk

I said police office. I think thats a fair translation of kouban.

July 19, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Mary564031

Im not sure I've ever heard a kouban-type place referred to as an office. It's really more of a small station where you can go for help, whereas an office conjures imagery of filing and booking and such, at least IMO

August 5, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Alina963762

"Is there a police box in the vacinity" was flagged...

October 2, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/sotnosen93

"Vacinity" is a typo. It's "vicinity".

February 22, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/TacoMagoo

Man how can ば sound so much like が ?! Sometimes the pronunciation messes with me so bad. I’m like what the heck is a kougan???

October 30, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/deekeii

What the hell is police box?! something like a small police station?

February 14, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Heyber_molano

Please Duolingo, include the kanjis in the sentences.

September 15, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/AulaitQM

Is ちかくにこうばんがありますか really wrong?

February 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/fudanchii

Isn't "is there any police box near here?" supposed to be correct?

July 1, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/EquanimousLingo

Any police box would 交番でも, a police box would be more appropriate.

July 17, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/victoriawl93

"Are there any police boxes near here" would be grammatically correct

July 2, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/MardukSky

近くに交番が はありますか。

July 12, 2017
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