New words and expressions

flat hunter                someone looking for a flat (two or three
                           rooms on the same floor)
there's no privacy         you cannot be alone
hostel                     a building in which young people (usually
                           students) can live cheaply

I have to be in            I must be back in the hostel
self-contained             with its own bath room and lavatory
lounge                     sitting room, living room
the day off                the day free, i.e. you do not have to go
                           to work
accommodation              houses, flats, rooms: somewhere to live
ring up                    telephone
keep your fingers crossed  a superstition; this is meant to
                           bring good luck
eager                      keen, enthusiastic
you don't really mind      it's not important to you
dozens                     many, a lot (twelve to a dozen)
let                        offer for rent (you often see signs
                           saying FLAT TO LET)
set off                    start a journey
let him know               tell him later
reasonable                 sensible, moderate
a pretty good idea         quite a good idea, a fairly good idea
agency                     here means a firm that collects details
                           of flats and passes them on to the flat
                           hunters for a commission, usually the
                           equivalent of a week's rent
fee                        payment
rent                       payment for use of a building usually
                           paid by the week or the month
motorway                   high-speed road with limited access
road drills                machines for breaking up the road surface
bulldozers                 vehicles that move earth in large
Author: Alan Townend