Earlier today my friend and I were looking for a restaurant that someone had recommended we go to. We couldn't find it, and so my friend suggested I should check again with the person who recommended the place about where it is located.
In telling me to check with my other friend, the Japanese friend I was with said:
場所を聞いておく。【ばしょを きいて おく】
My very loose translation is "you should ask [them] the place."
This is a classic case of what I encounter a lot which is that I get the meaning enough to know what is being asked and how to respond, but I can't claim to understand completely. I don't exactly know what
おく is doing here.
I know that
おく, usually means "to place", as in to put something in a place and leave it here. However, it also means, "to do in advance".
So I assume it's something like that second meaning being used here, but, if so, do what in advance of what, exactly? Ask my friend in advance of attempting to go to the restaurant a second time? That seems logical, but it also seems like a lot of assumed context and extra information to store in one verb.
What exactly is
おく doing when attached to