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    #1

    while I was waiting

    Which are correct:

    1) I got to know that lady when I waited in front of my daughter's school to pick her up.

    2) I got to know that lady while I waited in front of my daughter's school to pick her up.

    3) I got to know that lady when I was waiting in front of my daughter's school to pick her up.

    4) I got to know that lady while I was waiting in front of my daughter's school to pick her up.

    Which of them imply:
    a) that I got to know that lady on one occasion when I was waiting to pick my daughter up
    and which imply:
    b) that it took more than one occasion to get to know the lady in question. I went there to pick my daughter up regularly and I got to know that lady.

    Gratefully,
    Navi.

  1. Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: while I was waiting

    With no other information, all four would mean that you got to know her on one occasion. If you added something like "every day," then all four would mean that you got to know her over the course of many meetings.

    "While" is better than "when," but both make sense.

    In this situation, we would usually say "woman" rather than "lady," which is old-fashioned and can have odd connotations.

    Who "her" refers to is slightly unclear. Picking up your daughter has a very different meaning than picking up a woman. We know that you probably mean you were picking up your daughter, but the sentence can be understood either way. So it would be better to say "while I waited to pick up my daughter at school."
    Last edited by Charlie Bernstein; 14-Jun-2016 at 12:10.
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

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    #3

    Re: while I was waiting

    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie Bernstein View Post
    So it would be better to say "while I waited to pick up my daughter at school."
    The detail in front kind of got lost in that form.
    Not a teacher.

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