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Hi,
Please correct this simple writing.

I went to my uncle's house yesterday. There, I saw my aunt, who looked like she came back from shopping -- by looking at the shopping bags strewn about near the door when I entered his house. "They are into tidiness," I thought; that was understanble since they both worked. Upon entering it, I also saw my grandmother's cup on the livingroom table and I gathered she must be either here or went by. My mind began to wonder, "Where would she be if she is here?" Anyway, I thought I was not going to go any where with that thought so I decided to turn on the television. My uncle had what looked to be a brand-new Samsung television and the picture quality was superb -- the pictures looked so real that it was like I was seeing the real stuff. In the middle of it, I heard the bedroom door opened and saw my grandmother. Instantly she yelled, "XXX, what are you doing watching that soap. You shouldn't watch that; you should be with your cousion helping him do his homework. Go to his room. He is waiting for you." For a moment, a thought came on in my mind that that sounded just like my mother. I thought I was free from all my mother's nagging when I came here and then, realized I met my "another" mother.

Hi, could I be able to put quotation marks around a word like "another" which we normaly use an article with and use/place an article before it??
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Hi,

I went to my uncle's house yesterday. There, I saw my aunt, who looked like she had just come back from shopping, judging by the shopping bags strewn about near the door when I entered the house. "They are into tidiness," I thought. That was understandable since they both worked. Upon entering the house, I also saw my grandmother's cup on the living-room table and I gathered she must be either here or had just gone by. My mind began to wonder, "Where would she be if she were here?" Anyway, I thought I was not going to go anywhere with that thought so I decided to turn on the television. My uncle had what looked to be a brand-new Samsung television and the picture quality was superb. The pictures looked so real that it was like I was seeing the real stuff. In the middle of it, I heard the bedroom door open and saw my grandmother. Instantly she yelled, "***, what are you doing watching that soap? You shouldn't watch that, you should be with your cousin, helping him do his homework. Go to his room. He's waiting for you." For a moment, a thought came to my mind that that sounded just like my mother. I thought I was free from all my mother's nagging when I came here and then realized I had met my "other" mother.

Best wishes, Clive
Thank you. Why did you make the corrections lke you did??

I gathered she must be either here or had just gone by. My mind began to wonder, "Where would she be if she were here?"

Pasting the above sentences again:

I gathered she 1) must be either here (can I use "must have been" to denote a past action? what is the difference??) or had just gone by. My mind began to wonder, "Where would she be if she were here?" (why have to be a second (unreal conditional? Can I just use it like reported speech after the word 'wonder'? eg, I said 'Where would she be if she is here?'")

Thank you.
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Sorry to ask you this but could you tell me why you used the past perfect tenses?

Upon entering the house, I also saw my grandmother's cup on the living-room table and I gathered she must be either here or had just gone by.

For a moment, a thought came to my mind that that sounded just like my mother. I thought I was free from all my mother's nagging when I came here and then realized I had met my "other" mother
.

Pasting it again:
Upon entering the house, I also saw my grandmother's cup on the living-room table and I gathered she must be either here or had just gone by. -- I feel 'had gone by' puts this event more in the past of the main tense and is good, but just 'went by' could be OK if you don't want to put that event before the main event.
For a moment, a thought came to my mind that that sounded just like my mother. I thought I was free from all my mother's nagging when I came here and then realized I had met my "other" mother
. -- again, the same argument, this use of a past perfect tense puts the event before the main tense but coulduse 'met' if you don't want to show the differentiation.
HI again,

Thank you. Why did you make the corrections lke you did??

I gathered she must be either here or had just gone by. My mind began to wonder, "Where would she be if she were here?"

Pasting the above sentences again:

I gathered she 1) must be either here(can I use "must have been" to denote a past action? what is the difference??)
She must be here at that point in time, ie the time 'I gathered'
She must have been here suggests before that point in time, ie at a time before the time that 'I gathered'.

or had just gone by. My mind began to wonder, "Where would she be if she were here?" (why have to be a second (unreal conditional? Can I just use it like reported speech after the word 'wonder'? eg, I said 'Where would she be if she is here?'") 'Were' suggests unreal/hypothetical, ie perhaps she has gone (or 'went by', as you said in your original version)


Best wishes, Clive.
Hi,
Sorry to ask you this but could you tell me why you used the past perfect tenses?Generally speaking, to make the sequence of events clear.

Upon entering the house, I also saw my grandmother's cup on the living-room table and I gathered she must be either here or had just gone by.

For a moment, a thought came to my mind that that sounded just like my mother. I thought I was free from all my mother's nagging when I came here and then realized I had met my "other" mother
.

Pasting it again:
Upon entering the house, I also saw my grandmother's cup on the living-room table and I gathered she must be either here or had just gone by. -- I feel 'had gone by' puts this event more in the past of the main tense and is good, but just 'went by' could be OK if you don't want to put that event before the main event.I don't understand what the sequence of events would then be. She 'went by' before I 'saw and gathered', didn't she?

Let's split this into two parts.
I gathered she must be here.
I gathered she went by.
I wou;dn't say this is wrong, but it doesn't sound right. The reader has to think for a minute to figure out the sequence of events. The version with Past Perfect makes the sequence of events very clear.

For a moment, a thought came to my mind that that sounded just like my mother. I thought I was free from all my mother's nagging when I came here and then realized I had met my "other" mother
. -- again, the same argument, this use of a past perfect tense puts the event before the main tense but coulduse 'met' if you don't want to show the differentiation. You mean that you 'met' before you 'realized', don't you? So make the sequence clear.

Best wishes, Clive
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Thank you. again. You were more than kind to have answered my questions. Since the need to know is strong, I want to ask you one more question.
This sentence:
I gathered she must be either here ...

I think you would agree that 'gathered' is almost synonomous with the word 'thought'; and based on that, I want to pose this queston:
Why the word (modal??) 'must' is not changed when used with the word 'thought' (or is it?)?

I thought/gathered she must be either here ...

Changing into present:
I thought/gather she must be either here ...
Hi,
I want to ask you one more question.
This sentence:
I gathered she must be either here ...

I think you would agree that 'gathered' is almost synonomous with the word 'thought' yes and based on that, I want to pose this queston:
Why the word (modal??) 'must' is not changed when used with the word 'thought' (or is it?)?

I thought/gathered she must be either here ... Let me quote from the very useful Michael Swan's Practical English Usage, 2nd. edition,(section 350 on Must, concluding that something is certain).
'Must' can be used after a past reporting verb as if it were a past tense.
eg I felt there must be something wrong.

Changing into present:
I thought/gather she must be either here ...

Best wishes, Clive