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Distant water will not quench a fire nearby – Chinese expression 远水救不了近火

Posted by Grace Feng on August 9, 2013

 Distant water will not quench a fire nearby - Chinese expression 远水救不了近火Some Chinese expressions are very easy to remember just by it’s literal meaning. For example, 远水救不了近火 literally means “water from far away could not put out a close-by fire. “

You can’t use water from far away to put out fire close-by, can you? No. Therefore this idiom is used to describe the solutions or ways that are far away, no matter how good they are, they can’t help with the urgent situation happening right now.

This expression is widely used in both written and spoken Chinese. As a matter of fact, there are lots of situations that you could use it in. I’ll give you two examples here:

[example 1]

wǒmen xiànzài jíxū yī liàng chēbǎ zhè jiàn wùpǐn sòngzǒu, wǒmen nàxiē yǒu chē de péngyou dōu zhù dé tài yuǎn, yuǎnshuǐjiùbuliǎojìnhuǒ ā!

我们现在急需一辆车把这件物品送走,我们那些有车的朋友都住得太远,远水救不了近火啊!

We desperately need a car to send this item away. Those friends who have vehicles all live far away, xxxx!

 

[example 2]

” wǒ xiànzài hǎo xiǎng chī jiāxiāng de xiǎochī!”

“我现在好想吃家乡的小吃!”

” wǒmen zhè mǎn jiē dōu shì mài xiǎochī de.”

“我们这满街都是卖小吃的.”

” kěshì wǒmen gé dé nàme yuǎn, yuǎnshuǐjiùbuliǎojìnhuǒ ā。”

“可是我们隔得那么远,远水救不了近火啊。”

 

“I miss my home town food so much. “

“We have them sold on the street everywhere.”

“But we’re so far away, water from far away could not put out a close-by fire.”

 

Now could you make a sentence with this expression too?

 

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Category: Chinese vocabulary

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