Scenario: I, Paul, arrive at my office in the morning, only to find I have been given an assignment I will definitely have to work overtime to finish today (that's the deadline) without an assistant. And being a low-level employee, I will not be assigned an assistant.
So I say, "If I ___ a helping hand, I wouldn't have to work overtime today."
- were to have
My questions are:
- Which will a native speaker say?
- I know that "were to have" has a "future" meaning. Do I lose that meaning if "had" is used instead?
- Three months later, my friend Tom talked about this in a reported speech. (Assume that "had" is used.)
(1) Paul said that if he had had a helping hand, he wouldn't have had to work overtime that day.
(2) Paul said that if he had a helping hand, he wouldn't have to work overtime that day.
Which one is correct?