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  1. #1
    nyota's Avatar
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    Default Shop for groceries

    Sorry I didn't reply earlier but

    a) I went out to shop for groceries.
    b) I went out to get groceries.
    c) I was shopping for groceries.
    d) I was (out) shopping.
    e) ... ?


    How to make it sound natural?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Shop for groceries

    The most natural for me is (d) - I was out shopping.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Shop for groceries

    Thanks 5jj, and if you want to include the information you shopped for food/ groceries?

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Shop for groceries

    Quote Originally Posted by nyota View Post
    Thanks 5jj, and if you want to include the information you shopped for food/ groceries?
    I was out shopping for (some) food/groceries.......That is perfectly acceptable.

    I normally say one of the following:

    I went out for some food/supplies.
    I was out at the supermarket.
    (It is clear that I went for food)
    I went down to the supermarket.
    I went out to get some food in. ('in' = in the house, as part of my supplies)

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Shop for groceries

    I agree with 5jj's post #2. As you began the sentence with an apology, I think that only d works. It implies to me that you were already out shopping when the request for a reply was received. Both a and b seem to say that you went out to shop after receiving the request, thereby minimizing its importance.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Shop for groceries

    Quote Originally Posted by riquecohen View Post
    I agree with 5jj's post #2. As you began the sentence with an apology, I think that only d works. It implies to me that you were already out shopping when the request for a reply was received. Both a and b seem to say that you went out to shop after receiving the request, thereby minimizing its importance.
    Thanks riquecohen, well-spotted! Now I see I'd have to backshift here:
    I'm sorry I didn't reply earlier but I had gone out to get groceries.

    But then I wanted to keep it natural and simple, so going for the other options would probably be the best choice.

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