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B13. The old lady and her dogCartoon illustration

past simple irregular verbs

Mrs Gibson was 82 years old. Her son owned an airline company. One day, she went to the airport to take a plane from Australia to the USA. With her she had a flight bag and a pet basket with her little pet dog called 'Spotty' inside. The flight that day was very crowded. Mrs Gibson sat down on a window seat and put her dog basket down on the seat next to her.
    A flight attendant said to her, 'I'm very sorry, madam, but this flight is fully booked. I'm afraid I have to take your dog and put it at the back of the plane for the journey.'
    The old lady didn't argue and gave the basket to the flight attendant.

After an hour in the air, the flight attendant checked on the little dog. She was horrified to see that the dog was dead at the bottom of the basket. She told the pilot and the pilot told the airport in New York. The company director was furious, because Mrs Gibson was the airline owner's mother. In the end, they decided to buy a different dog to replace the dead one. The flight attendant took a photo of the dog with her phone and sent it to New York to show them what it looked like. When the plane landed, Mrs Gibson got off the plane and the flight attendant brought her the basket with a new dog in it.

Mrs Gibson looked very quickly into the basket and immediately said, 'That's not my dog. Where's my dog? What did you do with little Spotty?'
    The flight attendant told Mrs Gibson, 'Yes, of course it's your dog. It has the same spots, the same size - it's the same dog.'
    'No,' said Mrs Gibson, ' I know it isn't.'
    'But how do you know? You didn't look at it for very long.'
    'I know,' said Mrs Gibson, ' Because my dog was dead when I put him in the basket.'

Grammar: irregular past simple verb forms

Many verbs in English have irregular past simple forms and do not end in -ed. For example:
think - thought:    When I was a child I thought the moon was bigger than the sun.
leave  - left:       You left your jacket at my house yesterday.
meet  - met:      My husband and I met when we were at college.

Write the past simple form of these verbs.

1. go _______        2. have _______        3. sit _______        4. put _______     

say _______        6. tell _______        7. take _______        8. get _______

bring _______        10. do _______        11. give _______        12. send

Choose a verb from the previous exercise to complete these sentences. Change the form of the verb to past simple.

1.    I _________ something to drink with me because I don't want to get thirsty.
2.    When they got to the top of the mountain, they ________ a short rest.
3.    I ________ off the bus and walked to the office.
4.    His grades weren't very good but he worked hard and he ________ his best
5.    The woman at the information desk ________ us where to go.
6.    I ________ you an email yesterday but maybe it went into your junk mail box.
7.    Sonia's parents ________ her a pet dog for her birthday.
8.    Kate ________ her coat and hat on and left the building.
9.    I ________ down in the large armchair and started to read the newspaper.
10.  We ________ shopping in the new shopping mall last Saturday.
11.  We started laughing because Jamal ________ something funny.
12.  Marcus ________ his wallet out of his pocket and counted his money again.

Vocabulary exercises

Match the broken sentences.

1.  My cousin works for a large American airline...
2.  I dropped my drink but the flight...
3.  You can transport your dog but only with a strong pet...
4.  Would you like a window...    
5.  There is going to be a meeting of all the company...    

A.    ...basket with lots of room for the animal to move.
B. or do you prefer one in the aisle?
C.    ...directors next week.
D. in the sales department.
E.    ...attendant brought me another one.

Choose the correct word or phrase to complete the sentences.

6. I wanted to fly to Paris but the plane was ____________.
A. complete booked     B. fully booked     C. full book     D. completely taken

7. My flight bag was lost but the company ____________ it for me.
A. reported          B. replied          C. refilled          D. replaces

8. Do you know what time the plane ____________?
A. lands         B. grounds          C. comes down          D. gets off

9. Our taxi to the airport was late but ____________ we caught our flight in plenty of time.
A. to the end          B. for the end          C. at the ending          D. in the end

10. All our luggage went to the wrong airport and we were ____________ with the airline company.
A. crowded          B. furious          C. immediate          D. replaces

11. I'm afraid you can only take one small ____________ on board the plane with you, sir.
A. handy baggage          B. flying luggage          C. flight bag          D. plane case

12. I was ____________ to see that the flight was five hours late.
A. horrified          B. crowded          C. booked          D. landed