英语原著双语阅读 :《夏洛特的网》第十七章 叔叔

      chapter 17 Uncle

      "And don't get dirty!""Don't get overheated!" said theWhen they pulled into the Fair Grounds, they could hear music and see the Ferris wheel turning in the sky. They could smell the dust of the race track where the sprinkling cart had moistened it; and they could smell hamburgers frying and see balloons aloft. They could hear sheep blatting in their pens. An enormous voice over the loudspeaker said:"Attention, please! Will the owner of a Pontiac car, license number H-2439, please move your car away from the fireworks shed!""Can I have some money?" asked Fern.

      "Can I, too?" asked Avery.

      "I'm going to win a doll by spinning a wheel and it will stop at the right number," said Fern.

      "I'm going to steer a jet plane and make it bump into another one.""Can I have a balloon?" asked Fern.

      "Can I have a frozen custard and a cheeseburger and some raspberry soda pop?" asked Avery.

      "You children be quiet till we get the pig unloaded," said Mrs. Arable.

      "Let's let the children go off by themselves," suggested Mr. Arable. "The Fair only comes once a year." Mr. Arable gave Fern two quarters and tow dimes. He gave Avery five dimes and four nickels. "Now run along1" he said. "And remember, the money has to last all day. Don't spend it all the first few minutes. And be back here at the truck at noontime so we can all have lunch together. And don't eat a lot of stuff that's going to make you sick to your stomachs.""And if you go in those swings," said Mrs. Arable,"you hang on tight! You hang on very tight. Hear me?""And don't get lost!" said Mrs. Zuckerman.ir mother.

      "Watch out for pickpockets!" cautioned their father.

      "And don't cross the race track when the horses are coming!" cried Mrs. Zuckerman.

      The children grabbed each other by the hand and danced off in the direction of the merry-go-round, toward the wonderful music and the wonderful adventure and the wonderful excitement, into the wonderful midway where there would be no parents to guard them and guide them, and where they could be happy and free and do as they pleased. Mrs. arable stood quietly and watched them go. Then she sighed. Then she blew her nose.

      "Do you really think it's all right?" she asked.

      "Well, they've got to grow up some time," said Mr. Arable. "And a fair is a good place to start, I guess."While Wilbur was being unloaded and taken out of his crate and into his new pigpen, crowds gathered to watch. They stared at the sign ZUCKERMAN'S FAMOUS PIG. Wilbur stared back and tried to look extra good. He was pleased with his new home. The pen was grassy, and it was shaded from the sun by a shed roof.

      Charlotte, watching her chance, scrambled out of the crate and climbed a post to the under side of the roof. Nobody noticed her.

      Templeton, not wishing to come out in broad daylight, stayed quietly under the straw at the bottom of the crate. Mr. Zuckerman poured some skim milk into Wilbur's trough, pitched clean straw into his pen, and then he and Mrs. Zuckerman and the Arables walked away toward the cattle barn to look at purebred cows and to see the sights. Mr. Zuckerman particularly wanted to look at tractors. Mrs. Zuckerman wanted to see a deep freeze. Lurvy wandered off by  himself, hoping to meet friends and have some fun on the midway.

      As soon as the people were gone, Charlotte spoke to Wilbur.

      "It's a good thing you can't see what I see," she said.

      "What do you see?" asked Wilbur.

      "There's a pig in the next pen and he's enormous. I'm afraid he's much bigger than you are.""Maybe he's older than I am, and has had more time to grow," suggested Wilbur. Tears began to come to his eyes.

      "I'll drop down and have a closer look," Charlotte said. Then she crawled along a beam till she was directly over the next pen. She let herself down on a dragline until she hung in the air just in front of the big pig's snout.

      "May I have your name?" she asked, politely.

      The pig stared at her. "No name," he said in a big, hearty voice. "Just call me uncle.""Very well, Uncle," replied Charlotte. "What is the date of your birth? Are you a spring pig?""Sure I'm a spring pig," replied Uncle. "What did you think I was, a spring chicken? Haw, haw--that's a good one, eh, Sister?""Mildly funny," said Charlotte. "I've heard funnier ones, though. Glad to have met you, and now I must be going."She ascended slowly and returned to Wilbur's pen.

      "He claims he's a spring pig," reported Charlotte," and perhaps he is. One thing is certain, he has a most unattractive personality. He is too familiar, too noisy, and he cracks weak jokes. Also, he's not anywhere near as clean as you are, nor as pleasant. I took quite a dislike to him in our brief interview. He's going to be a hard pig to beat, though, Wilbur, on account of his size and weight. But with me helping you, it can be done.""When are you going to spin a web?" asked Wilbur.

      "This afternoon, late, if I'm not too tired," said Charlotte. "The least thing tires me these days. I don't seem to have the energy I once had. My age, I guess."Wilbur looked at his friend. She looked rather swollen and she seemed listless.

      "I'm awfully sorry to hear that you're feeling poorly, Charlotte," he said." Perhaps if you spin a web and catch a couple of flies you'll feel better.""Perhaps," she said, wearily. "But I feel like the end of a long day." Clinging upside down to the ceiling, she settled down for a nap, leaving Wilbur very much worried.

      All morning people wandered past Wilbur's pen. Dozens and dozens of strangers stopped to star at him and to admire his silky white coat, his curly tail, his kind and radiant expression. Then they would move on to the next pen where the bigger pig lay. Wilbur heard several people make favorable remarks about uncle's great size. He couldn't help worrying. "And now, with Charlotte not feeling well..." he thought. "Oh, dear!"All morning Templeton slept quietly under the straw. The day grew fiercely hot. At noon the Zuckermans and the Arables returned to the pigpen. Then, a few minutes later, Fern and Avery showed up. Fern had a monkey doll in her arms and was eating Cracker-jack. Avery had a balloon tied to his ear and was chewing a candied apple. The children were hot and dirty.

      "Isn't it hot?" said Mrs. Zuckerman.

      "It's terribly hot," said Mrs. Arable, fanning herself with an advertisement of a deep freeze.

      One by one they climbed into the truck and opened lunch boxes. The sun beat down on everything. Nobody seemed hungry.

      "When are the judges going to decide about Wilbur?" asked Mrs. Zuckerman.

      "Not till tomorrow," said Mr. Zuckerman.

      Lurvy appeared, carrying an Indian blanket that he had won.

      "That's just what we need," said Avery. "A blanket.""Of course it is," replied Lurvy. And he spread the blanket across the sideboards of the truck so that it was like a little tent. The children sat in the shade, under the blanket, and felt better.

      After lunch, they stretched out and fell asleep.

      第十七章 叔叔

      当他们一到展览会场,就听到音乐声,看到在天空中的费里斯大转轮。他们能闻到洒水车喷出的道道水迹里散发出的尘土气息,闻到油煎三明治的香味,看到徐徐升起的大汽球。他们还能听到绵羊们在圈里咩咩地叫。扩音器里有个很大的声音喊道:请注意!请车牌为H-2349号的庞蒂亚克的车主把你的车从放焰火的地方开走!

      “能给我点儿钱吗?”芬问。

      “也能给我点儿吗?”埃弗里问。

      “我要去玩旋转轮,让它停到正确的数码上,好赢回一个小娃娃。”芬说。

      “我要去开喷气式飞机,用它去撞别的飞机。”

      “我可以买个汽球吗?”芬问。

      “我能买一个牛奶果冻,一张干酪肉饼,一瓶蔗莓汽水吗?”埃弗里问。

      “在那头猪被卸下来之前,让你的孩子们都闭嘴!”阿拉贝尔太太说。

      “我说还是让孩子们自己去玩吧,”阿拉贝尔先生建议,“展览会一年可是只有一次。”阿拉贝尔先生给了芬两枚两毛五分的银币,两枚一角的银币①。

      他又给了埃弗里五角银币和四枚五分钱的镍币。“现在玩去吧!”他说,“记住,这些钱是留给你们一整天花的!不要在几分钟内就轻易的花光。下午回到卡车这里来,那时我们要一起吃午饭了。不要吃太多的零食,不然开饭时你们就什么也吃不下了。”

      “如果你们去坐那大转轮,”阿拉贝尔太太说,“一定要抓紧!抓得非常紧。听到了吗?”

      “不要跑丢了!”祖克曼太太说。

      “不要把身上弄脏了!”

      “不要玩得太疯!”他们的妈妈说。

      “留心扒手!”他们的父亲警告。

      “马跑过来时不要横穿赛道!”祖克曼太太叫。

      孩子们手挽手蹦跳着向旋转木马那边跑去,跑向那充满迷人音乐,精彩冒险与神奇刺激的奇妙的游乐场。那里没有父母的阻拦和唠叨,可以尽情地玩个痛快。阿拉贝尔太太默默地看着他们的背影,轻叹了一声。接着,她又吁了一口气。

      “你真的以为他们会没事吗?”她问。

      “哎呀,他们早晚要长大的,”阿拉贝尔先生说,“展览会里是一个很好的锻炼地方,我想。”

      当威伯被抬下车,从板条箱里带到他的新猪圈时,好多人都围过来看。他们看到了“祖克曼家的名猪”那行字。威伯回看着人们,试图让自己显得格外的出众。他对他的新家很满意。那里面有很多草,可以为他遮挡从棚顶上照过来的阳光。

      夏洛找个机会溜出板条箱,爬到棚顶下的一根杆子上。没人注意到她。

      坦普尔曼可不想在白天露面,就悄悄地在箱子里的稻草间躲着。祖克曼先生往威伯的食槽里倒了些脱脂奶,又往里添了些干净的稻草,然后和祖克曼太太,阿拉贝尔夫妇到牲口棚去看纯种奶牛,并四处观光去了。祖克曼先生特别想去看拖拉机。祖克曼太太想去看电冰箱。鲁维闲逛着,希望会遇到朋友,在游乐场里找点儿乐事。

      人们刚一离开,夏洛便对威伯说起来。

      “还好,你没看到我刚才看见的。”她说。

      “你看到什么了?”威伯问。

      “你旁边的猪圈里有一头特别大的猪,恐怕要比你大得多。”

      “可能他的年纪比我大,有更多的时间来往大里长吧。”威伯说着,泪水不禁涌上了眼眶。

      “我要荡过去仔细看一下。”夏洛说。她顺着杆子往那个猪圈爬去。她拖着一条丝线往空中飘去,正好飘到了那头猪的鼻子上方。

      “我可以问你的名字吗?”她礼貌地问。

      那头猪看了看她。“我没名字,”他用很粗的嗓门说,“你就叫我伯伯吧。”

      好的,伯伯,”夏洛回答,“你是何时出生的?你是一头春猪吗?”

      “我就是春猪,”伯伯回答,“你以为我是什么,一只春天生的小鸡吗?呵,呵——这笑话不错吧,呃,小妹妹?”

      “有点儿意思,”夏洛说,“不过我还听过更有意思的笑话。很高兴认识你,现在我要走了。”

      她慢慢地收起丝线,往上退回去,不久就回到了威伯的猪圈。

      “他说他是头春猪,”夏洛说,“可能他真的是。不过,他非常的不讨人喜欢。他也太冒失,太吵,而且他讲的粗俗笑话也一点都不可笑。还有,他并没有你这么干净,更没你这么有礼貌。经过刚才的简短交谈,我发现我非常讨厌他。不过,威伯,考虑到他的个头和体重,他可能会是一个很难击败的对手。但如果有我帮你,你就能赢他。”

      “那你要在什么时候织网呢?”威伯问。

      “下午晚些时候吧,如果那时我不太累的话,”夏洛说,“这些天里,就是最轻的活儿也会使我疲倦的。我好像不再有以前那样的精力了。可能是我老了吧。”

      威伯看着他的朋友。她看起来相当的憔悴,一脸倦容。

      “听到你说感觉不好,我非常难过,夏洛,”他说,“也许你织一张网,抓到几只苍蝇后就能感觉好一点儿。”

      “也许,”她无力地说,“但是我感觉那些漫长的日子快结束了。”她爬上猪圈的顶层睡着了,把忧心忡忡的威伯留在下面。

      整个早上人们都从威伯的猪圈旁走过。无数的陌生人在此驻足,羡慕地看着威伯那丝绸一样光滑的白皮肤,卷曲的尾巴,还有他那善意的表情,光彩照人的样子。然后他们去看下一个猪圈里的那头更大的猪。威伯听到好几个人在赞美那个伯伯的个头。他忍不住去偷听那些评论,并情不自禁地担心起来。“现在,夏洛的感觉又不好……”他想,“唉,天呐!”

      坦普尔曼一早上都在稻草里熟睡。天气像火一样热。下午祖克曼夫妇和阿拉贝尔夫妇回到了猪圈。几分钟后,芬和埃弗里也出现了。芬的胳膊下夹着一个玩具猴,嘴里嚼着琥珀爆米花②。埃弗里的耳朵上系着一个汽球,嘴里吃着苹果蜜饯。孩子们的身上都是汗,看起来很脏。

      “很热吧?”祖克曼太太问。

      “热死了。”阿拉贝尔太太说着,用手里的那份冰箱广告当扇子扇起来。

      他们一个又一个地走进卡车,打开午餐盒。到处都是热辣辣的阳光,晒得人都没有兴致吃饭了。

      “裁判什么时候能宣布威伯的名次?”祖克曼太太问。

      “明天吧。”祖克曼先生说。

      鲁维走了过来,扛着刚才赢来的印第安毛毯。

      “那正是我们需要的,”埃弗里说,“一条毛毯。”

      “当然了。”鲁维回答。他把毛毯围在卡车护栏的四周,使后车厢看起来就像个小帐篷。孩子们坐在毛毯围出的阴影里,感觉舒服多了。

      午餐后,他们都躺下来,睡了。

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