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Adventures in Grandma’s Village [Copy link] 中文

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Post time 2006-1-28 15:59:26 |Display all floors
Living in a small town, I was annoyed by peddlers’ shouting as well as  butchers’and groceries’ smells. Therefore, ever since my childhood,  fresh and peaceful atmosphere in countryside was my dream. That was why I was longing for visiting  grandma’s village and considered it as my paradise. As soon as I got the visiting forecast, I immediately counted down the coming days with my fingers. The excitement really was no less than village children to down town for movie  or sightseeing.

My grandma was my mam’s stepmother. She got two daughters again for my grandpa after her remarriage. Perhaps, it's the tough nature for stepparents to satisfy their adopted young ones or due to her occasional negligence to settle a conflict; we strongly felt the estrangement between my mother and my grandma, even though, nothing happened to them before. Therefore, when we talking about her, we never forgot to add some modifications, such as “step-grandma”, “the second grandma”, “latter grandma” etc..

“Oh, my daring! my heart! my honey! It is so nice to see you here!” grandma was excited by our visit and always rushed at the dinning hall to meet me with her fingers combing her messy and gray hair. To such laud and fervent welcome, I shouldn’t have any suspicion, however, I was so deeply affeced by the story of “wolf grandma”, that I never came out from its shadow, and always considered her any action as on purpose.
“Grandma,” I faltered to her with an obvious reluctance. Then, passed her my gift bucket and run away from her house, just like a gust of wind, to find my cousins.
My cousins were very happy for our reunion at all time. The most ceremonious reception was to share a countryside practice, ride on cultivating buffalos.

“Wenzili, Wenzili, we are coming!” a cheerful hail together with a herd of massive and muddy buffalos toward to me, where my friends were brandishing reins and galloping on. Some excited fellows even lashed up the beasts’ tails loudly. The immediate reaction was the buffalos’ madly running, which caused me a great scaring. They scattered to surround me and took no care to my panic. By sudden rein-tightening, the buffalos were askew heads and howling to me for my unexpected coming. I was very frightened and almost cried out. On the contrary to my cowardice, my friends agilely grounding from the backs and emulatively passed their reins to me, just as swift as a herd of groundhogs. They eagerly want me to ride on their “sedans” and scooting around. Facing on the dirty and unattainable beasts, I had no idea, but manage to hide my scaring.

One of my friends promptly showed me the way. Firstly, he gently said something to the beast. The buffalo was $$ely lowlihead with sound breathing and dull eyesight to its little master in front. As soon as its head was low enough, the cowboy, with a pair of bare feet, prompt stepped on its calvaria between two horns. To my surprise, just like an excavator, the beast slowly rose its head up. When it reached to a proper height, the little boy bestrode on its neck and rapidly climbed to the back, then, revolved his body with hands’ support. Just like a acrobat, he had steadily riding on the buffalo already. With his triumphant whistle and proud rein-waving, he joltily ran away, then came back again, then firmly passed the rein to me. In this way, I wanted  but had no reason to refuse his kindness. However, I had an emulative nature from my childhood and always unwillingly to drop behind someone else. I had to boost my courage and held the rein bravely. The cowboy shouted to the buffalo to avoid its wildness to a stranger. Sure enough, the horns were also approaching to me. Staring these sharp horns, I immediately associated with the scene of Spanish bullfighting. The bull horns fiercely charged to matador’s private parts and made his blood spout to the red rug. His screaming was still resounding around my ears. I could not help to shivering. Finally, under several hands’ support, I’d managed to ride on buffalo’s back. With a slight lapping on its bottom by a little boy, the beast started to walk. Since no pedal on my feet, nor saddle to support my seat, only a ridgy back bone against my vertebra and periodically generating pain to me. For several times, I was almost fallen by its alternant movement of bony rids. With my friends’ powerful support, I finally completed a hard trek and arrived at the another side of a small rice field…….

It was late autumn after a harvest, when the field lay waste. Only remaining rice stubbles were curling up with cold wind. “ Let’s jump to a fire” someone suggested. “Ok!” the others answered at the same time. They all rolled down simultaneously from their buffalos’ backs and were walloping around……

The remaining rice stubbles were very dry and easy to pull out since the roots had rotted already. Just a moment, a pile of stubbles were as lofty as a hill. Then, against the wind direction, they lined to block the wind and fired a match skillfully. Immediately after its igniting, a cloud of smoke raised to the sky and uncountable flames came out from the stubble pile with constant sounds just like bursting fire-cracks.

After an enthusiastic hailing, one of the oldest boys suddenly shouted out and was swift charging to the fire. As soon as he reached to the needfire, he jumped out with his leg’s open, just like a brave monkey. He got success and proudly returned back with a complete black face and a pair of white eyes blinking. His heroic mettle frightened me a lot but largely encouraged the other cowboys. Without any mobilization, they all rushed at the fire with loud crying. Occasionally, might someone jump with an improper posture or less strength, he fallen to the fire and got his clothes on fire. With a fanny looking, he immediately rolled over the ground to put the fire out, then tried it again in others fleer……  (To be continued)

Extracted from< A Dedicating Dream> written by Wenzili with all rights reserved

[ Last edited by wenzili at 2006-2-23 07:35 PM ]

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Post time 2006-1-28 16:01:23 |Display all floors
(continued)
The most amused thing was such acting up wildly, but the most embarrassing event was the reception dining. All my relatives were very poor. Whole year round, they could not afford to spend money on meat, except in some festivals. However, since a coddle guest’s coming, my grandma, aunts all spared no afford to buy a cube of pork to host me. It must be a long time for them not to taste meat. Therefore, only fat could satisfy their craving for meat. They firmly believed that fat must be good to everyone. Consequently, hosting me with fat meat became a common practice during my staying in grandma’s village.

I was a spoiled boy at home. I hated fat very much. Even a small piece of fat attached to lean meat would make me sick for a long time. Therefore, for sequent days, my relatives’ fat banquets made me suffering a lot. Up till now, I still clearly remember the scene hosted by my youngest aunty……

This aunty was the youngest daughter of my grandma. She was married by a young man in same village, and then became a widow at age of 28. As per Chinese virtue, she vowed never marry again. She endured all hardship to bring 1 son and 2 daughters up and miraculously sent them to schools. From my childhood, I never saw a single piece of her utensil new or in good condition. In her raggy cupboard all bowls and dishes were broken or with gaps on the edges. She never had any lighting from evening to midnight.

She was a devotional Christian. Every evening, she led her son and daughters to pray first, then moved her filature wheel to courtyard. Lit by moonlight and resonated by insects’ singing, she spun and spun until mid night. They used to have 2 meals a day. One cooked rice and one porridge. One year around, there were only self-support vegetables available on her table. It’s really seldom for them to have meat. Perhaps, she felt very pitiful for unable hosting her nephew by a delicious meal before; she sold out her spindles and bought a cube of fat pork. After an elaborate preparation, she was very delighted and kept saying:” Thank to my God, I got it now!”……

It was about 8 p.m., when my cousin awaked me to have a dinner. Without lighting, the dining hall was complete dark. I couldn’t find my way, only heard a warmly welcome came from everywhere. My cousin guided me to my seat. It was a new moon night, no moonlight available to my poor auntie’s family, just a bit flame reflection came from hearth, which cast red rays on our faces from time to time. Even with a strong smell of burnt straw though, the reception tea was specially boiled for me. The tea stuff was as coarse as to prick my tongue for its home made nature. However, it was a really luxury matter.

After a while, the dinner was ready. My aunty asked her daughter to borrow a candle from her uncle in next door. The brightness was befallen to dining hall. A cheerful heralding together with cousins gambol turned the atmosphere hot. No sooner, they all tearful and quieted for not getting used to the strong light. With ajar eyes, they had to turn their faces away from the glitter candle.

A main dish of steamed meat with pumpkin and rice flour was presented. An attractive smell with slowly upward vapor caused one more hail. “calm down, calm down, my dear.” My aunty told to my cousins seriously, “ Never forget it is for your younger brother, he is our guest.” She emphasized again with a kind smiling. In the mean time, she quickly picked up the fat meat to me one after another. To avoid my rejection,       she even deliberately put them deep into my bowl and covered by rice. For her such abrupt action, I had no way to defend myself but could not help to tear. “Aunty, I don't like the meat……” I whispered to her. “ No,  dear. It is impossible, no one dislike meat. It's your courtesy, I suppose.” Aunty firmly denied my explanation and attributed it to my mam’s discipline. She picked up the meat again as admiring her sister’s good breeding. I had no way to persuade her, but to beg her permission sincerely for sharing the fats with my longing cousins. She reluctantly agreed, but with the limitation of one piece only for each.

Obviously, the reminding fats in my bowl got no way to treat with. I had no idea and didn’t want to divulge my scandal of dislike fat. At that time, it was really a rebel against orthodoxy. I was so worry about the fats in bowl, that I started looking around to find my way. Suddenly, a staring dog beside the table enlightened me. I collected all fats together and deliberately put them next to the large gap of my bowl, as pretending to eat as waiting for my auntie’s further action. Sure enough, she came back and picked it up to me again. I feigned to avoid it and quickly withdrew my bowl. In the mean time, those fats, with the centrifugal effect, rapidly flew away from the gap. They all were received by the greedy dog, who drooling there for a long time.
“ Oh, no, no! ”found this fact, my aunty felt distressed. “My God! Do forgive my sin!”, she put down the chopsticks and immediately run after the piggish dog. All my cousins joined this interception automatically. As running, they never imaged this hoax was plotted and conducted by myself. At that time, I was in a complicated feeling, not only with a relaxation free from those fats, but also a regret for causing so much pain to my poor auntie’s family. I sat there stilly with a blank mind and endless remorse.

Several decades passed, my aunty had already passed away, but her painful cry and my cousins’ whoop    are still lingering around me and cast a shadow to my childhood’s recalling.
   
Extracted from< A Dedicating Dream> written by Wenzili with all rights reserved

[ Last edited by wenzili at 2006-2-1 08:03 AM ]

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Post time 2006-1-30 23:12:41 |Display all floors
正在学着英译汉
等我把这个故事翻译好了,贴出来给大家看一下,看是否翻译得正确?

感觉翻译得好辛苦,不知道为什么
Make friend with MSN: atu1981222@hotmail.com

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Post time 2006-2-3 15:15:17 |Display all floors
Dear Atu1981222,
Attached above a Chinese version for your reference. Of course, there much be huge discrepency between yours and mine. If yes, it must be my fault due to my poor translation from Chinese to English, but not yours. Thank you for your involvement and input!

到外婆家做客

    回忆儿时的快事,莫过于上外婆家做客。久居小城镇,倦于肉铺菜摊的怪味;腻透了街头巷尾的吆喝,在幼小的心灵中自然便朦胧地向往着乡村的清新和宁静,去外婆家就成了一种难于言喻的享受。早几天从大人口中得到信息,便要扳着手指头,进行倒计数。其兴奋劲头,真不下于乡下孩子盼望进城看大戏,或上街去逛花市灯会。

    外婆是母亲的继母。再嫁后为外公又育下两个女儿。大约是为人后母艰难,或某时处理家庭关系欠妥的缘故,尽管母亲和外婆从未红过脸,但其间总可以觉察到明显的生份,就连我们小孩也能体会出来。于是当我们谈及外婆时,背后总爱加上些修饰词:‘后外婆',‘继母外婆',‘后娘外婆’等等。

    每次在外婆面前出现,她总是用手指梳理着花白的头发,风风火火地从厨房里赶来,冲到厅堂迎接我们, “哎呀呀,我的心肝宝贝,来了就好!来了就好!”其嗓门之大,称呼之热烈,实在是不应让人有任何疑心的。但或许受‘狼外婆',‘狠后母'等故事的感染太深的缘故,我们始终不曾摆脱这些传说的阴影。
    “外婆 ”, 我言不由衷地从嗓门中挤出这个字眼,便急急地放下礼品篮,风一般地跑出屋外,寻找年龄相仿的玩伴去了。照例是表兄弟姐妹们。久别重逢,自然有一番城里人不曾有的亲热表示,其中最隆重的当是让出自己的坐骑,让我们这些城里人开开骑牛的'土'荤。

    体形高大,一身泥污的水牛,缓缓载来了我的乡下伙伴们。人们远远地呼喊着我的小名,性急的扬起牛绳,在牛尾上方,狠狠地抽下一道响鞭,水牛便发疯似地朝我跑来。他们也不顾我的惊慌,来到我左右,一勒缰绳,那水牛便歪仰着项脖,瞪着一对大眼,在我身边长嚎一声,吓得我直想哭叫起来。小伙伴们象土拨鼠一样,一个个身前身后地从牛背上滚落下来,争着把牛绳递来,示意爬上牛背去兜风。可我望着泥泞而高不可攀的牛背,一时惶恐得不知如何是好。他们又争相向我示范。只见他们朝牛轻轻地一喝,那牲畜便喘着气温驯地低下头将犄角递来。一边用滞呆的目光睨视着正前方的主人,只等他们用光脚板踏在两只牛角中间,那牛头便自动地昂了起来。像是乘升降机,到达一定高度后;小伙伴就飞快地沿着牛脖爬上牛背,再来一个双腿交叉转体,便稳当当地骑在牛背上了。手中的缰绳一扬,沿着田梗,一颠一颠地跑开了。
    等他们再度回来时,便再也没有我回避的余地了。我自小生来好强,不愿在别人面前落伍。只好硬着头皮,壮着胆,接过牛绳。伙伴们代我向牛发出了厉声吆喝,以免有些调皮的牛欺生。牛角果真递过来了。看着两只犀利的尖角。不由得想起电影中西班牙斗牛士的情景,凶狠的公牛往往用自己的利角,朝他们的身下一挽,斗牛士撕心裂肺的惨叫仿佛音犹在耳,我不由得全身哆嗦,在数人的掺扶下,颤巍巍地爬上了牛背,居然也转了身。朋友朝牛屁股上轻轻拍了一掌,那牲畜便左颠右簸地行走起来。我身上没有任何依靠,脚下也无足蹬,只有屁股下那高高隆起的牛背脊,顶得我的尾椎骨隐隐生痛。两腿间交替波动的牛肋膀也几次险些把我从牛背上颠落下来。在朋友们的搀扶下,洋相百出,但总算跋涉到田野中间……

    通常是收获后的季节。田地里一片荒芜,只有一簇簇稻茬在秋风里瑟缩着。“咱们来跳火”,同伴中有人提议。“好”。身前身后立即有不少人同声附和着。话音未落。又一个个象土鼠般地从牛背上滚落下来,在稻田里四下乱窜。
    收割后的稻茬,上部干燥,地下的根茎早已腐烂,十分好拔。不一会儿,田中间便堆出一座小山般的稻茬。只见他们用身体围成一道人墙,背着风,划着火柴,朝草一点,噼呖啪啦地,田中立即升起了一道烟柱和无数火苗。

    一阵狂热的欢呼声过后,人群中年令最大的孩子便呼喊着,朝火堆冲去,临近火边猛地叉开双腿,跃过火堆。其壮烈情景直让我心里发怵。等他以胜利者的豪迈气派掉转头返回人群时,已变得满脸乌黑,只剩两只眼白在翻动。大孩子的英雄气概激励了其他放牛娃。不用任何动员,便一个个争先恐后地呼喊着冲向火堆。偶有姿势不当,脚力不济或其它闪失的,落在火堆正中,弄得一身起火。他们也会熟练地就地一滚,把身上的火熄灭。然后在一片讪笑中狼狈地跑开。积蓄了力气后,再做第二次尝试……

    在外婆家最开心的是这类调皮撒野,但最窘的是做客吃饭。乡亲们大都很穷。一年到头,非时非节,绝对舍不得花钱上街买肉。但是,由于我这个宝贝外甥来做客,外婆,舅母,姨娘少不了都要咬咬牙,破费一番,让人上街或赶墟捎上斤把肉。久未见荤,自然只有肥肉才足以解馋。所以,一连几天,家家都以肥肉为主韵。我自小在家,被父母娇宠坏了。尽管家贫,但对肥肉却退避三舍。连精肉边上的肥肉星子也会让我倒胃三天。所以,乡下的肥肉宴,直教我胆战心惊!记得有次在姨娘家做客的情景,至今历历如昨……

    二姨娘是外婆最小的女儿。下嫁同村的一个异姓村民。她二十八岁丧夫,矢志不二嫁。含辛茹苦的拉扯大三个儿女,居然给个个都送了几年书。从我懂事去她家之日起,从不见她家晚上点过油灯。领着儿女早早做过祷告后,便把纺车搬到庭院,和着虫鸣,就着月光,呜呜地纺纱不止。平素她家只吃早晚两顿,一稀一干。一年四季,除却自做的瓜干盐菜,绝少见荤。大概见我来了多次,总是以瓜菜款待,老觉得委曲了我这城里的外甥。多年来,一直为欠我一顿猪肉招待而内疚不已。这次,正巧她纺的纱锭出手,又恰逢有人上街。她高兴得直谢我主。叮咛三,拜托四,让人捎回一斤肥肉。又四下协调,请求其他亲戚放人,务必给她一个机会……
    一直到晚上八时许,大表兄才把饥肠碌碌的我从半睡眠状态中拉去他家。由他扶住双臂,摸索着在桌边就坐。那天正好是朔月,双手不见掌。只有从灶门里窜出的火苗,时明时暗地在我们脸上闪烁。茶是现烧的,只有一碗,还带着呛人的焦稻草味。茶叶是自产自制的,也粗得直扎舌尖。但这在她家已经是奢侈品了。

    又过了许久,饭菜都快齐备了。姨娘这才打发她的大女儿上隔壁大伯家借来一盏油灯。把油瓶倒了个底朝天,方才倒了小半盏油。油灯点着了,屋子里顿时充满了光明。表兄妹们欢呼雀跃起来。但由于不习惯夜间的强光,而不得不侧过脸,眯缝着眼,斜视闪烁、跳跃着的灯焰。
    不久南瓜蒸米粉肉也端上来了,还冉冉地冒着热气。自然,又惹来一阵欢呼。姨妈赶紧指着这大半碗佳肴,明确向儿女们交待:“这是请弟弟的。大家千万不要含糊”。边说,边用手中的筷子飞快地朝我碗中夹入一块又一块肥肉。还直往饭里埋。我猝不及防,急得直想流泪。但任凭我如何解释,姨妈哪里会听?只当我讲客气,一边不住地表扬姐姐的好教养,一边又往我碗里夹。最后,经我好说歹说,才允许我从碗里向旁边的表兄妹们各夹出一块肥肉。眼见碗中余下的几块是万万无法打发的,我万般无奈,又不好意思讲出自己从不吃肥肉的习惯。因为,这在乡村,无疑是离经叛道的丑闻。我望着碗中的肥肉无计可施,暗自着急。突然受桌边一只狗的启发,计上心来,我佯装准备食用,把一块块肥肉从饭里清理出来,放在碗的缺口处。正巧姨娘忙完厨房的事务,又凑上来,往我碗中夹肉。我假装躲避,猛地抽回饭碗,几块肥肉顿时沿切线方向飞出。说时迟,那时快,张着大口在一旁伺候的狗,一口把肉全接住了。姨娘见状,心疼得直喊“我主赦罪!”慌忙放下筷子,朝饿犬追去。几个表兄妹也不约而同地前后堵截。那狗在慌忙逃窜中大约还不明究竟。其他人在痛心疾首的追击中,做梦也不曾料到是我存心导演的恶作剧。我内心十分矛盾,既有如释重负般的舒心,也有犯有过失的孩子共有的悔疚。我只觉得脑子里一片空白,呆坐在油灯下,耳边只传来姨娘和表兄妹们的长吁短叹和急促的喘息声。几十年过去了,这声音一直在耳边萦绕。给我对童年乡村生活的美好回忆投下了一片淡淡的阴影……

[ Last edited by wenzili at 2006-2-6 09:19 AM ]

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