It's from the 17th episode of the 10th season of Friends. Here is the context: Rachel: Hi! So I just dropped Emma off at my mom's.

Ross: Okay.

Joey: Oh, you're not taking her with you tonight?

Rachel: No, we decided that I would go ahead and set up first, and then my mom would bring Emma to Paris on Sunday.

I have checked a few dictionaries, but no defenition provided by them, it seems, doesn't fit.

  • macmillandictionary.com/us/dictionary/british/set-up_1 make something ready for use, but, of course, without context, we cannot know what is being set up. The question is what are they doing "tonight"? Having a party? Playing music? Both those can involve setting up....
    – Lambie
    Jul 15, 2020 at 21:11
  • Thanks! She is going to another country. Does that sill fit? Jul 15, 2020 at 21:24
  • No, it does not.
    – Lambie
    Jul 15, 2020 at 22:09
  • @Lambie - actually, your definition makes perfect sense because she's moving to a new country. The thing she needs to make ready for use is her new home in France. Jul 16, 2020 at 1:08

1 Answer 1


We know two things in this context:

First, Rachel isn't just going to Paris, she is moving to Paris to live there. In the context of moving, setting up (or setting up house) is doing everything you need to establish a new home, both physically and logistically. This is of course even more complex when you move to a new country.

Second, this "setting up" is stuff that she wants to do before her baby daughter is brought to Paris. This means that the tasks that she needs to do in this time period are either specifically to prepare for the baby (setting up the baby's room, buying baby supplies, arranging day care, etc.) or they are things that would be difficult to do if she was distracted by caring for the baby (unpacking, buying furniture, arranging work schedules and commute, etc.).

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