491 - ~たら (after)

After you start reading this lesson, you'll realize that you probably should have reviewed our last N4 lesson first: [NDL #484] - JLPT N4: ~たら (if).

Today we're looking at how to make sentences like this in Japanese:

After / Once / When [VERB], [something].

Specifically, we're studying:


JLPT N4: ~たら (after; once)

In the last lesson, we saw that ~たら is useful for making conditional phrases:


もし、ベトナムに行く機会があった、ぜひニャチャンに行ってみてください。
もし、 ベトナム に いく きかい が あったら、 ぜひ ニャチャン に いって みて ください。
If you ever get the chance to go to Vietnam, please be sure to go to Nha Trang.
Literally: “if, + Vietnam + に + go + chance / opportunity + が + if there was, + certainly / without fail + Nha Trang + に + go (and) + see (and) + please.”


With the "after ~たら," though, we are not making suppositions.

Instead, we are talking about what did/does/will happen after something else happens:


高校を卒業した、実家を出ます。
こうこう を そつぎょう したら、 じっか を でます。
Once I graduate high school, I’m going to move out of my family’s house.
Literally: “high school + を + graduation + after doing, + parent’s home / family’s home + を + will go out of.”


As in this example, the second clause is often an action that is under the speaker's control (i.e. a volitional action). However, the second half of the sentence can also be used to give advice, share thoughts and opinions, or even to discussion things out of the speaker's control that are or were happening. (Translation: Put pretty much whatever you want in the second half of the sentence.)


If you paid attention in the last ~たら lesson, constructing these sentences will be very easy.

Easier, in fact, than "if ~たら" because we can only use "after ~たら" with VERBS:


V た + ら

i-adjective かったら

NOUN (or na-adjective) + だったら


As I mentioned in that last lesson, we're essentially just adding ~ら to the end of a plain past tense verb.


Three examples, and you will be free to stop grammar-ing yourself today.

準備が終わった、メールをください。車で迎えに行きます。
じゅんび が おわったら、 メール を ください。 くるま で むかえ に いきます。
Please message [text] me when you’re ready [finished getting ready]. I’ll come pick you up in my car.
Literally: “preparations + が + after finishing, + mail (= [text] message) + を + please. + car + で + go to meet (you).”


洗濯物が乾いた、たたんでタンスにしまってください。
せんたくもの が かわいたら、 たたんで タンス に しまってください。
Once the laundry is dry, please fold it and put it in the dresser.
Literally: “laundry + が + after drying, + fold (and) + dresser + に + put away (and) + please.”


授業が終わった、みんなで遊びに行きます。
じゅぎょう が おわったら、 みんな で あそび に いきます。
We’re all gonna go out after class (finishes).
Literally: “lesson / class + が + after finishing, + everyone + で + go out (= play + に + go).”


That was a quick lesson, yeah? And if you're at N4 level, it shouldn't have been that difficult, either.


If those examples are still making your head spin, you may need to work a bit more on your foundation of Japanese knowledge and N5 grammar.

Anyway, I use this grammar every single day. So I would take my time learning it, along with perhaps making some sentences of your own and trying them out in lessons, language exchanges, daily life, etc.




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