어디 가(세요)? as a Greeting

In Australian English we often say ‘Where are you going?’ as a greeting, but it’s not a very serious question and a simple ‘good’ or ‘not bad’ is enough to reply politely, even if you’ve had a really bad day. Similarly, Koreans use 어디 ? (Eodi ga = Are you going somewhere?) as a greeting. You don’t need to give a specific answer and can just say , 어디 ... (Eung, eodi jom… = Yeah, just somewhere...)
Different ways of saying “Are you going somewhere?” in Korean are shown below :

어디 ?
Eodi ga?
어디 가요?
Eodi gayo?
어디 가세요?
Eodi gaseyo?

Note that the intonation pattern changes for 어디 (Eodi = Where) depending on whether you are using it as “where?” or “somewhere” as shown in the diagram below :

When we use 어디 ? (Eodi ga?) as “Where are you going?”, the intonation of the last syllable ‘ (ga)rises slightly and then falls. On the other hand, when we use 어디 ? (Eodi ga) as “Are you going somewhere?”, the intonation of the last syllable ‘ (ga)rises steeply.

If you can’t differentiate between these two questions, the best strategy is to just reply 어디 ... (Eodi jom… = Just somewhere...) because someone who is not very close to you will not ask “Where are you going?” in Korean.

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