Insert the right tenses: simple past, past continuous, past perfect
Then suddenly there was a blackout. I(to check) if there was something wrong with the lamp I (to use) but that was not the problem. It was not a stormy night, nobody was using the electric oven or the washing machine or the hairdrier or the dishwasher. No, the whole house was still and silent.
Not being able to find a rational answer, and still sitting in the complete darkness, I (to start) feeling a bit scared. Maybe I was under the influence of the thriller, but wasn’t that a low grating at the door? Was somebody tampering with it?
I(to listen) with intense concentration. No, there was no noise, it was only my imagination. So, what was the blackout due to, then?
Groping in the dark, I (to find) a candle. After lighting it, I decided to call the electricity company. It was past midnight by now, but they were very kind: they said they _(to arrive) in an hour’s time. I(to wait)for them sitting on the sofa, unable to read any longer.
The company (to request) my cell phone number, because the bell wouldn’t be working, and it was with a start that I woke up when the cell phone rang. I (to fall) asleep . I had perhaps been sleeping only a few minutes because I felt confused and dizzy. It_(to take) me some time to remember the situation I was in. The phone kept ringing. I didn't want to wake up my family so I had to stop it as soon as possible. But where (to put) it? I got up in a frenzy and I stumbled against the small tool I keep next to the sofa. It was a terrible pain. I limped to the door, opened it and let the electrician in. I _(to nurse) my feet when he came back. The light (to precede) his return and the house was again illuminated by the light of the lamp.
He explained that the culprit was an ant, or maybe more than one. They _(to enter) the electricity meter and left formic acid on the chip. That (to cause) the blackout.
When I got up the next morning my foot still hurt. My wife saw me limping and said ironically: “Have you challenged a monster in your dream?”
“Well, not a monster,” I answered , “only an ant.”
1 The protagonist was reading an interesting book in the middle of the night.
2 He didn’t go to bed because he didn’t feel sleepy.
3 A flash of lightening provoked a black out.
4 The protagonist was terribly scared.
5 He decided to go to bed.
6 The electricity company told him it was too late to phone them.
7 The protagonist fell asleep while waiting for the technician.
8 He didn’t answer the cell phone immediately .
9 While reaching for the phone, he hurt his foot.
10 When he felt the pain, he shouted.
11 The electrical fault was due to insects.
12 The pain in his foot disappeared during the night.
B Answer the following questions (homework)
1 What happened to the protagonist one night?
2 How did he feel while reading?
3 Did he miss his sleeping family?
4 What noise did he hear?
5 Was it real or imaginary?
6 How did he illuminate the room?
7 What did the electricity company tell him?
8 What did the protagonist do while waiting for them?
9 What time do you think it was when the protagonist finally went to bed?
10 Did he wake his wife up?
11 What kind of sleeper is his wife?
12 What kind of story is this?