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There are many situations I'd like to say the following in Chinese:

  • "That phone call was unexpected"
  • "I did not expect that meeting to be so difficult"

The only approach I know of is:

  • "我没想到那个电话“
  • ”我没想到那个会议会是哪么难“

I know you can also use 突然, but it's not quite parallel. The best way I can think of applying it in this situation is:

  • 那个电话突然来了

Appreciate anyone's thoughts on this!

Thanks

  • I think you have a good colloquial handle of this already – user3306356 Mar 5 '17 at 1:00
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不可预知的情况 not can predict situation = an unexpected situation
出乎意料的形势 unexpected circumstance
不意外 not unexpected
意外 unexpected 竟然 unexpected

’那个打过来的电话是意料之外的。‘ 或者 ‘没想到那个电话会打过来。’
That phone call was unexpected.

会议比我预料中的难很多。 The meeting was much more difficult than I expected.

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  • Thank you also for your response. I had not considered 不可预知 as another approach. Is this a more formal phrasing than "没想到?" – kmix9911 Mar 6 '17 at 0:13
  • Not really suitable in your context. – Pedroski Mar 6 '17 at 1:14

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