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I came across this from a speech transcript:


When we were on the boat, we were hoping to see some dolphins. We were unlucky on the two days we went, but we did get to see some eagles flying close to land.


Question:

If here "the two days" is seen as a longer period of time than a particular day, shouldn't "in/over/during/etc" have been used?

Or is "the two days" two particular days in the speaker's mind? In that sense, has the defining clause "we went" got something to do with it?

  • I think the sentence you quoted is grammatically incorrect. The whole last part "but we were unlucky on the two days we went." seems a little off. And yes, During should have been used. – Bella Swan Mar 29 at 5:43
  • I guess you are right. I didn't quote the whole thing. I will do it now. – tiaotiao Mar 29 at 15:33
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When we were on the boat, we were hoping to see some dolphins. We were unlucky on the two days we went, but we did get to see some eagles flying close to land.

This sentence sounds fine to me. I do not think it should be "over the two days" or "during the two days", because that expression would suggest that the event spanned both days. Do you think the writer was out at sea on a boat for 48 hours constantly? It doesn't read that way. It says that they "went" on two days, which suggests that they took two trips out on the boat, one on each day. If you take a trip that lasts for two days, you only "go" once. It is quite correct then to say that they were unlucky "on the two days", because they had the same experience on each of those days.

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