Lesson 57 Back in the old country 重返故里

來源:大家網 發布日期:2011-05-24 13:26

             Lesson 57
         Back in the old country
               重返故里  
        
           
Listen to the tape then answer the question below.
聽錄音,然后回答以下問題。
Did the narrator find is mother's grave?

    I stopped to let the car cool off and to study the map. I had expected to be near my objective by now, but everything still seemed alien to me. I was only five when my father had taken me abroad, and that we eighteen years ago. When my mother had died after a tragic accident, he did not quickly recover from the shock and loneliness. Everything around him was full of her presence, continually reopening the wound. So he decided to emigrate. In the new country he became absorbed in making a new life for the two of us, so that he gradually ceased to grieve. He did not marry again and I was brought up without a woman's care; but I lacked for nothing, for he was both father and mother to me. He always meant to go back on day, but not to stay. His roots and mine bad become too firmly embedded in the new land. But he wanted to see the old folk again and to visit my mother's grave. He became mortally ill a few months before we had planned to go and, when he knew that he was dying, he made me promise to go on my own.
    I hired a car the day after landing and bought a comprehensive book of maps, which I found most helpful on the cross-country journey, but which I did not think I should need on the last stage. It was not that I actually remembered anything at all. But my father had described over and over again what we should see at every milestone, after leaving the nearest town, so that I was positive I should recognize it as familiar territory. Well, I had been wrong, for I was now lost.
    I looked at the map and then at the millimeter. I had come ten miles since leaving the town, and at this point, according to my father, I should be looking at farms and cottages in a valley, with the spire of the church of our village showing in the far distance. I could see no valley, no farms, no cottages and no church spire -- only a lake. I decided that I must have taken a wrong turning somewhere. So I drove back to the town and began to retrace the route, taking frequent glances at the map. I landed up at the same corner. The curious thing was that the lake was not marked on the map. I left as if I had stumbled into a nightmare country, as you sometimes do in dreams. And, as in a nightmare, there was nobody in sight to help me. Fortunately for me, as I was wondering what to do next, there appeared on the horizon a man on horseback, riding in my direction. I waited till he came near, then I asked him the way to our old village. He said that there was now no village. I thought he must have misunderstood me, so I repeated its name. This time he pointed to the lake. The village no longer existed because it had been submerged, and all the valley too. The lake was not a natural one, but a man-made reservoir.

New words and expressions 生詞和短語

     alien
adj. 異國的,外國的

     emigrate
v.   移居(國外)

     absorb
v.   全神貫注于

     embedded
adj. 扎牢的

     mortally
adv. 致命地

     comprehensive
adj. 廣泛的;豐富的

     milestone
n.   里程碑

     territory
n.   領地;地區

     milometer
n.   計程表

     spire
n.  (教堂的)塔尖

     retrace
v.   返回,重走

     stumble
v.   趔趄地走

     horizon
n.   地平線

     reservoir
n.   水庫

參考譯文

    我停下車,讓汽車發動機冷卻一下,同時查看一下地圖。我本想離目的地已經不遠,但周圍一切對我仍很陌生。我5歲那年,父親就帶我出了國,那是18年前的事了。當時我母親在一次事故中慘死,父親未能很快從悲痛與孤獨中恢復過來。他身邊的一切都是母親的影子不斷勾起他的傷感。于是他決定移居他國。在這個新的國家里,父親專心致志地為我們倆開創一種新的生活,慢慢地不傷心了。父親沒有再娶,因此,我在沒有母親的環境里長大成人。但我卻什么都不缺,他既當父親又當母親。他總想將來回國看看,但卻不愿長期住下去,因為他與我一樣已經把根深深地扎在異國的土地上。 但是,他想看一看家鄉父老鄉親,為我的母親掃墓。就在他計劃回國的前幾個月,他突然身患絕癥。他知道自己已奄奄一息,于是他要我答應一定單獨回故鄉一趟。
    我下飛機后租了一輛車,并買了一本詳盡的地圖冊。在鄉間行車途中,我覺得它非常有用,但快到家了,我倒覺得它沒什么用了。這倒并非是我背熟了地圖,而是父親曾詳細給我講了,在過了離故鄉最近的那個小鎮后,在每一個路標處可見到些什么。因此,我相信這段路對我來說會是很熟悉的。唉,實際我錯了,我現在迷路了。
    我看了看地圖,又查了一下里程表。從小鎮出來,我走了10英里。照父親的說法,我面前應是一個山谷,有農場與村舍,還可遠遠望見老家村子里的教堂的尖頂?涩F在我卻看不出山谷,看不見農舍,也看見教學尖頂,看見只是一片湖泊。我想一定是什么地方拐錯了彎兒。于是我駕車返回小鎮,重新按路線行駛。結果又來到剛才那個拐彎處。奇怪的是那個湖沒有在地圖上標出。我感到自己就像平時作夢那樣迷迷糊糊地闖進了惡夢境地。就像在惡夢里一樣,見不到一個人可以幫助我。不過,我是幸運的,正當我走投無路之時,從天邊出現一個騎馬的人向我騎來。等他走近了,問他去老家的路。他說那村子已經沒有了。我想他一定誤解了我的意思,于是又說一遍村莊的名字。這次他用手指了一下那個湖。村莊已不復存在,因為已經為水所淹,山谷也被水淹沒了。這不是一個天然湖泊,是一座人工修建的水庫。

 
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