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Hi,

I am writing about going on holiday and couldn't work out whether to use the conditional or subjunctive in this phrase:

I want to say "I expected that the trip would be exciting". Should I say:

Je m'attendais à ce que le séjour soit passionnant. (subjunctive)

OR

Je m'attendais à ce que le séjour serait passionnant. (conditional)

I know that s'attendre à ce que... takes the subjunctive but I was wondering whether this still applied in this example.

Many thanks

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Hello,

yes definitely the subjunctive, it applies just the same, 

Mind you you could also use the "passé antérieur"

Je m'attendais à ce que le séjour eut été passionnant

Thank you very much, I find it very hard getting my head around using the subjunctive present even when you wouldn't in English!

Remember that the label "present" subjunctive is just a label. In reality, the thing that it is a label for does not always denote "present". So... the label "present subjunctive" is a bad, misleading label. But it is just the label that's wrong-- it's stuck partly because going back a few decades, that label did more accurately reflect its use in classical French. But it is just a traditional label at the end of the day, and we could always use something else.

For example, imagine calling it "subjunctive form A". Or maybe the "tenseless subjunctive". Then, the "problem" that you're envisaging essentially disappears, doesn't it?

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