"Eu não encontrava meus óculos."
Tradução:I could not find my glasses.
Eu não encontrava meus óculos.
Todas essas traduções abaixo têm o mesmo sentido.
I could not find my glasses. = I was not able to find my glasses. = I did not find my glasses.
A tradução do DL que não serve é: "I didn't use to find my glasses."
I understand that the "preterito perfeito" differs in use from the "imperfeito", but since DL's sentence is without context, the simple past (which expresses repetitive action and habits as well has short term/long term actions) is a plausible translation. In answering a question about whether you were successful in finding your glasses, I don't believe anyone would find any significant difference in meaning between "I couldn't find" and "I didn't find" my glasses in English. Does "Warsaw" still apply these days, Will? ;)
Essa é uma tradução padrão:
Para entender a razão para usar "couldn't" aqui, veja meu comentário aqui: