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D1. The cowboy's horseillustration

Past perfect simple

A cowboy rode into a town. He fastened his big fine horse to a post outside a rough bar, kicked open the bar door, walked up to the bar and asked for a beer. When he had finished his drink, he went back outside, only to find that someone had stolen his horse.
    The cowboy went back into the bar, got his gun out and fired three shots into the ceiling.
    ‘Which one of you dirty no-good dogs has stolen my horse?’, he shouted, and then he fired three more shots into the bottles behind the bar.
    ‘OK, then,’ he growled, looking very mean, ‘I’ll tell you what I’m going to do. I’m going to order myself another beer. I’m going to drink my beer and then I’m going to go back outside. If my horse isn’t back where I left him, I’ll have to do what I did when the same thing happened in Texas.’
    The other customers in the bar looked at each other and shivered – they were terrified. When the cowboy had finished his second beer, he went back outside. Sure enough, the thief had brought the horse back and tied it to the post, exactly where the cowboy had left it.
    The cowboy got back on his horse. The barman went up to him and asked in a nervous voice,
    ‘Er, before you go, please tell us, what exactly happened in Texas?’
    ‘I had to walk home,’ said the cowboy.

Grammar: past perect simple

You can use the past perfect simple to talk about an action in the past that happened before another action in the past. (The second action is often in the past simple form.)

By the time I turned on the TV, the movie had just finished.
She let me keep the magazine because she'd already read it.
knew the story because I had seen the film before.

Answer these questions using the past perfect and the phrases in brackets.

Why didn't the cowboy ride away? [steal horse]        
Because someone had stolen his horse.

1.   Why were you so hungry?  [not eat anything all day] 
2.   Why didn't you want to see the film?  [already see it twice]    
3.   Why didn't you call me?  [mobile phone run out credit]
4.   Why didn't you take a map of the city?  [be there before]
5.   Why couldn't you pay your bill?  [my wallet just stolen]
6.   Why couldn't you get into your car?  [lost keys]

Choose the correct form of the verb to complete these sentences.

7.    When I left / had left college l I was upset because someone stole / had stolen my bike.
8.    By the time I turned on / had turned on the TV, the movie finished already /  had already finished.
9.   I didn't realize I made / I'd made a mistake until you showed me.
10.   You didn't need to take the dog out for a walk because I done it already / had already done it.

Vocabulary exercises

Choose a word to complete these sentences.

customers                 door                 post                 beer                 shot

1.   His dog was fastened to a fence _____ in the park.
2.   I kicked open the _____ to the classroom because I was carrying a lot of books.
3.   What was that noise? I thought I heard someone firing a _____.
4.   Simon went up to the bar and ordered a _____.
5.   This bar needs to change its image to attract more _____.

Choose a word with a similar meaning to replace the word or phrase in bold.

terrified              mean              exactly              fasten              nervous

1.   The doorman of the nightclub looked strong, tough and angry.
2.   I hope you aren't feeling anxious about your exam tomorrow.
3.   Tell me precisely what happened.
4.   It would be faster to go by plane but I'm really scared of flying.
5.   Please do up your seat belts.