(Part III, please, read first part I and part II before reading this one)
Two past tenses in Spanish: Perfect (Undefined) and Imperfect past.
Another difference is the existence of two past tenses: the perfect and imperfect past tense.
The perfect past tense is quite easy as it just states that some action was finished in the past.
I cooked this morning = Yo cociné esta mañana.
I walked to my office this morning = Yo cominé a mi oficina esta mañana.
The imperfect past tense however could be a little tricky. It usually states that an action was interrupted and therefore was not finished and that the action could be retaken in the future, but not necessarily is going to be retaken.
It also means that two actions were taking place simultaneously in the past.
It could also mean that the action wasn’t finished by the time you were referring to it in relation to other actions.
Yet, sometimes, it doesn’t mean that the action wasn’t finished, it means that the action happens many times and that you are going to perform it again and once you do it again, it will be a past action. This verbal tense is used to speak about things you usually do.
I cooked when you entered home and talked to you.
Yo cocinaba cuando entraste a casa y te hablé.
In this case, the action of cooking was interrupted because the person went to talk to the other person. In English this example would be written using the progressive past “was cooking”, nevertheless, this doesn’t mean that the imperfect past is a progressive tense. In Spanish, the progressive tense is made with the verb “estar” which has a perfect and imperfect conjugation and thus resulting in two progressive pasts.