The Past Continuous Tense
The past continuous is used for when in the past you did something over a period of time. For example, this year is 2013, lets say you were from 1999 until 2002 worked at Starbucks:
I worked at Starbucks
But, now, lets say while you were working at starbucks, you met your husband (wife) at that time.
I was working at Starbucks when I met my husband (wife).
See the difference? There was an event that happened while you were doing something. Lets say you changed your mind at university and you went from studying business to English.
I was studying Business, but then I changed to English.
I graduated Kindergarten in 1986. The verb is graduate （卒業）. It happened in 1986 (The time).
When you read, do you sometimes hear the story like this:
We went to the forest, and saw a large cat. The cat drank water. Suddenly the dog howled! Can you see the verbs? All of them are in the past simple tense: Go = went, see = saw, drink = drank, howl (吠える)= howled.
If you were doing two things at the same time, we use the past continuous tense until the last action, which uses a simple past tense. In this case, the last action was landed on the car, by the bird.
I was reading a book when a bird flying past my window and landed on the car outside.
There is a really easy rule to remember when writing in the past continuous: When there were many events and the last event (action) is written in the simple past, the previous events (actions) should all be written in past continuous.
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