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放生故事:四十六的下场

2006-08-22 09:35

  46's END

  四十六的下场

  We have seen that some Chinese have numbers for names. Some of these are nicknames, but some are their real names. Earlier, we read about the stubborn hog butcher, Hsuan 4. Probably he was the fourth son in his family.

  我们曾经看到过一些中国人用数字做名字。其中有的名字是绰号,但是也有一些是真的名字。此前我们读过关于那个固执的杀猪人宣四的故事。也许他是家里第四个儿子。

  Now we are going to tell you about a gardener called Qiao 46. What!? Theforty-sixth son? Maybe. Or maybe his father just liked numbers.

  现在我们要告诉你关于园丁乔四十六的事情。什么?第四十六个儿子?也许,不过也许只是因为他的父亲喜欢数字而已。

  Be that as it may, 46 was a very careful, very skilled gardener. He wasn't very highly educated, but he had a lot of experience gardening. Everybody praised his skill, but he had a problem. He wasn't very kind. Of course no gardener can help killing some insects now and then, but 46 seemed to enjoy doing in bugs, whether or not they were threatening his plants.

  不管怎样,四十六是一个细心的、手艺高明的园丁。他没有受过很好的教育,但是他有很多园艺的经验。每个人都夸赞他的手艺,不过他有一个毛病。他不太善良。当然,园丁都难以避免杀死一些昆虫,但是四十六好像特别喜欢弄死小虫子,不论它们是否对他的花草构成威胁。

  Once when he was working on his flowers, he saw an ant hole. It looked pretty deep. It was crawling with ants, running back and forth on their ant-errands.

  有一天,当他正在修剪花木时,他看到了一个蚂蚁洞。那个洞看上去很深。洞口爬满了蚂蚁,它们来来回回地忙碌着。

  "Just the right moment!" said 46. He had a big pot of water boiling in the kitchen. He had been going to make tea, but he thought this was better. He rushed into the kitchen and got a bucket and poured all the boiling water down the hole. Almost all the ants were scalded to death. 46 thought that was great fun!

  "来得正好!"四十六说道。他在厨房里正烧着一锅开水。本来他是要沏茶用的,但是他想用在蚂蚁上更好。他跑进了厨房,拎了一桶开水出来,然后把滚开的水都倒进了蚂蚁洞。几乎所有的蚂蚁都被烫死了。四十六感到开心极了。

  All that running back and forth with the boiling water was hot work, especially on such a fine summer's day. 46 took off his shirt and went back to work,humming a happy tune.

  在用开水烫死蚂蚁之后,就是忙碌的工作,这活干起来让人感到很热,特别是在这样一个晴朗的夏日。四十六脱下了衬衫,又回去干活了,嘴里哼着快乐的小调。

  What a fine day! The weather was perfect, and he had just finished off a whole nest of ants. His garden was doing well, so he would have lots of vegetables and flowers to sell in the market. He had saved up enough money by now to get married, and it was about time, too! He was over 30 already, and most of his buddies had troops of kids.

  多好的一天啊!天气是这样好,而他又刚刚弄死一整窝蚂蚁。他把花园侍弄得很好,这样他就可以有很多蔬菜和鲜花去市场卖。为了结婚他已经攒了足够多的钱,现在正是时候。他已经30多岁了,而他的很多朋友都已经儿女成群了。

  "Miss Zhang 2 is the gal for me. She's got a charming face, and the sweetest, softest pair of little white hands I ever did see. If I marry her, we can have a bunch of kids. Wouldn't that be wonderful?

  "张二小姐就是个理想人选。她长着迷人的脸蛋儿,她的白白的小手是我所见过的最可爱、最柔软的。如果我能娶了她,我们可以生一大群孩子。那可真是太好了。

  "Her dad's a great friend of Pa's. I have enough money now to support a family, so I'll ask Pa to have a matchmaker arrange things."

  "她的父亲是爹爹的好朋友,我现在的钱已经足够养家了,所以我要让爹爹找个媒人去提亲。"

  The more 46 thought about it, the happier he was. Everything was perfect ——the only flaw on this perfect day was that he had an itchy little red dot on his shoulder. He scratched it, but it got itchier.

  四十六越想越高兴。一切都是那样完美——今天唯一的美中不足就是他的肩膀上有一个发痒的小红点。他用手去挠,但是那里变得更痒了。

  He kept working, but it still got itchier, and it seemed to be spreading. In a while, he had little red dots all over his upper body, and they itched so much he had to put down his tools and concentrate on his scratching.

  他继续工作着,却感到更痒,而且这种感觉似乎正在扩散。不一会儿,他的上身全都是小红点了,那些小红点让他瘙痒难耐,他不得不放下手里的家什,专心地挠痒。

  The more he scratched, the itchier he got, and the more red dots he had. He rubbed his back against a tree while he scratched his chest and arms with his hands, and his legs with his feet.

  可是他越挠就觉得越痒,而且身上的小红点也越多。他用手挠着前胸和胳膊,用脚挠着两腿,还靠在树上蹭着后背。

  They itched so much he scratched open his skin, and from every dot, out crawled an ant!

  身上越来越痒,皮都挠破了,每一处破的地方都爬出一只蚂蚁!

  By the time this happened, 46 was half insane from the itching, and he died in torment a few days later.

  到了这个时候,四十六已经被瘙痒弄得神志不清了,几天以后他在极度痛苦中死去了。

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