Thanks Berengaria, for posting the link to hear people from various different English speaking countries pronouncing "squirrel." I do hear the differences, but I don't think that they are so very dramatically different. Not only would I easily understand someone from other countries pronouncing "squirrel" in those slightly different ways, but I also think that I myself say "squirrel" in both the one syllable and the two syllable manner. I think I hear people in my part of the US say it both ways, so both ways seem right and very normal to me.
My dog found the link even more interesting. I didn't know that she paid attention to the voices coming out of the computer speakers...but after she heard the word "Squirrel" a few times, she ran to the glass door and started growling. (She has learned the word "squirrel" because we sometimes add a little excitement to her boring day by telling her when a squirrel appears in our backyard. It gets her to take a break from her endless lazy naps to make a brief run into the backyard to chase after the always-too-fast squirrels). Our dog was quite disappointed today to not find any squirrels in the backyard after all those voices from the computer told her that a squirrel was there :-) :-)
Oh, maybe I should clarify that I was clicking on the British speakers' audio clips saying, "Squirrel" and my American dog had no trouble understanding them. So...I think that supports the point that I was making, hahaha
@Jarred Actually, I used synonyms (primarily) in this post, not definitions. Also, I may use "past" as in "going beyond a certain point."
We drove past Texas on our way to Louisiana.
We drove through Texas on our way to Louisiana.
Both of these sentences are saying the same thing -- they are both correct.
Here is a link to dictionary.com where you can see that "past" can also be used as a definition of through:
Additionally, the synonyms that I choose (or that you choose) will most often be based on context. For this reason, I encourage my students to use a thesaurus in addition to the dictionary when trying to understand the meaning of words as they relate to the context of a given sentence/text.
Thanks for commenting!