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When I was ten, my grandfather (had \ was having ) his 60th birthday party. ?

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closed as off-topic by ColleenV May 21 at 19:59

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    Welcome to the English Language SE sites, leen. This is probably better asked on ELL, our sister site. I'd stick with 'It was I was ten that my grandfather had his 60th birthday party.' or perhaps 'I was ten. My grandfather was having his 60th birthday party, and I had brought him a new garden spade. But my naughty sister had hidden it under a shrub.' – Edwin Ashworth May 21 at 9:03
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    They are both grammatical, but they mean different things. If you are going to talk about something that happened at the party, use the progressive; if you're just adding information about the times, use the past. – John Lawler May 21 at 14:37
  • Sorry, 'It was when I was ten that my grandfather had his 60th birthday party.' – Edwin Ashworth May 21 at 17:13