Hi Chris (and Paul). Again apology being late to this discussion.
Paul asked if avant de could be used instead of avant que in the example "Before I go to Paula's, I have to get some flowers.".
It does not seem that avant de can be used here and retain the same meaning of the sentence.
It seems that 'avant que ...ne' expresses an action that is predicated on something else having to happen...which is why it needs the subjunctive. Even in the less convincing examples (this sentence and the homework sentence).
Avant de says 'before doing this I did that" both actions already happened or "before doing this I will do that" simply stating chronological order of two actions to be done. Key is there is no uncertainty so the indicative mood stands.
Inserting avant de only implies I have to buy flowers/then go to Paula..but avant que means 'if i am going to go to Paula I have to get her flowers).
Am I wrong?
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