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爱丽丝梦游仙境:第三章 一场会议式赛跑和一个长故事

所属教程:爱丽丝梦游仙境

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2017年10月01日

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They were indeed a queer–looking party that assembled on the bank—the birds with draggled feathers, the animals with their fur clinging close to them, and all dripping wet, cross, and uncomfortable.

集合在岸上的这一大群,确实稀奇古怪——羽毛湿了的鸟、毛紧贴着身子的小动物等等,全都是湿淋淋的,横躺竖卧的,显得很狼狈。

The first question of course was, how to get dry again: they had a consultation about this, and after a few minutes it seemed quite natural to Alice to find herself talking familiarly with them, as if she had known them all her life. Indeed, she had quite a long argument with the Lory, who at last turned sulky, and would only say, 'I am older than you, and must know better'; and this Alice would not allow without knowing how old it was, and, as the Lory positively refused to tell its age, there was no more to be said.

重要的是:怎样把身上弄干,对这个问题,他们商量了一会儿。过了几分钟,爱丽丝就同它们混熟了,好像老相识似的。你瞧,爱丽丝已经同鹦鹉辩论了好长时间了,最后鹦鹉生气了,一个劲儿地说:“我比你年龄大,也就肯定比你知道得多。”可爱丽丝不同意这点,因为爱丽丝压根儿不知道它的年龄,而鹦鹉又拒绝说出自已的年龄,她们就再没话可说了。

At last the Mouse, who seemed to be a person of authority among them, called out, 'Sit down, all of you, and listen to me! I'LL soon make you dry enough!' They all sat down at once, in a large ring, with the Mouse in the middle. Alice kept her eyes anxiously fixed on it, for she felt sure she would catch a bad cold if she did not get dry very soon.

最后,那只老鼠——它在它们中间好像很有权威似的——喊道:“你们全部坐下,听我说,我很快就会把你们弄干的!”他们立即都坐下了,围成一个大圈,老鼠在中间,爱丽丝焦急地盯着它,她很清楚,如果湿衣服不能很快干的活,她会得重感冒的,

'Ahem!' said the Mouse with an important air, 'are you all ready? This is the driest thing I know. Silence all round, if you please! "William the Conqueror, whose cause was favoured by the pope, was soon submitted to by the English, who wanted leaders, and had been of late much accustomed to usurpation and conquest. Edwin and Morcar, the earls of Mercia and Northumbria—"'

“咳,咳!”老鼠煞有介事地说:“你们都准备好了吗?下面是我要说的最干巴巴的故事了,请大家安静点。‘征服者威廉的事业是教皇支持的,不久就征服了英国,英国人也需要有人领导,而且已经对篡权和被征服都习惯了。梅西亚和诺森勃列亚(海西亚Mercia和诺森勃利亚Northumbria是英国的两个古国。)的伯爵埃德温和莫卡……

'Ugh!' said the Lory, with a shiver.

“啊!”鹦鹉打着哆嗦。

'I beg your pardon!' said the Mouse, frowning, but very politely: 'Did you speak?'

“请原谅!”老鼠皱着眉头说,但仍然很有礼貌地问:“你有什么话吗?”

'Not I!' said the Lory hastily.

“我没有啥说的!”鹦鹉急忙答道。

'I thought you did,' said the Mouse. '—I proceed. "Edwin and Morcar, the earls of Mercia and Northumbria, declared for him: and even Stigand, the patriotic archbishop of Canterbury, found it advisable—"'

“我以为你有话要说哩!”老鼠说,“我继续讲,这两个地方的伯爵埃德温和莫卡都宣告支持威廉,甚至坎特伯雷的爱国大主教斯蒂坎德也发现这是可行的……”

'Found WHAT?' said the Duck.

“发现什么?”鸭子问,

'Found IT,' the Mouse replied rather crossly: 'of course you know what "it" means.'

“发观‘这’,”老鼠有点不耐烦地回答,“你当然不知道‘这,的意思。”

'I know what "it" means well enough, when I find a thing,' said the Duck: 'it's generally a frog or a worm. The question is, what did the archbishop find?'

“我发现了什么吃的东西时,当然知道‘这’是指什么。‘这’通常指一只青蛙或一条蚯蚓,现在的问题是:大主教发现的是什么呢?”鸭子还不停地呱啦着。

The Mouse did not notice this question, but hurriedly went on, '"—found it advisable to go with Edgar Atheling to meet William and offer him the crown. William's conduct at first was moderate. But the insolence of his Normans—" How are you getting on now, my dear?' it continued, turning to Alice as it spoke.

老鼠一点也不理睬,只是急急忙忙地继续讲:“……发现与埃德加.阿瑟林一起去亲自迎接威廉,并授予他皇冠是可行的,威廉的行动起初还有点节制,可他那诺曼人的傲慢……,你感觉怎么样了?我亲爱的。”它突然转向爱丽丝问道。

'As wet as ever,' said Alice in a melancholy tone: 'it doesn't seem to dry me at all.'

“跟原来一样的湿。”爱丽丝忧郁地说,“你讲这些一点也不能把我身上弄干。”

'In that case,' said the Dodo solemnly, rising to its feet, 'I move that the meeting adjourn, for the immediate adoption of more energetic remedies—'

“在这种情况下,我建议休会,并立即采取更加有效的措施。”渡渡鸟站后来严肃地说。

'Speak English!' said the Eaglet. 'I don't know the meaning of half those long words, and, what's more, I don't believe you do either!' And the Eaglet bent down its head to hide a smile: some of the other birds tittered audibly.

“讲英语!”小鹰说,“你这句话的意思,我连一半都听不懂!更主要的是我不相信你自己会懂,”小鹰说完后低下头偷偷笑了,其它一些鸟也都偷偷地笑出声来。

'What I was going to say,' said the Dodo in an offended tone, 'was, that the best thing to get us dry would be a Caucus–race.'

“我说的是,能让我们把湿衣服弄干的最好办法,是来个会议式的赛跑。”渡渡鸟恼怒地说。

'What IS a Caucus–race?' said Alice; not that she wanted much to know, but the Dodo had paused as if it thought that SOMEBODY ought to speak, and no one else seemed inclined to say anything.

“什么是会议式赛跑?”爱丽丝问,爱丽丝本来不想多问,因为渡渡鸟说到这里停住了,似乎想等别人问似的,而偏偏又没人问它。

'Why,' said the Dodo, 'the best way to explain it is to do it.' (And, as you might like to try the thing yourself, some winter day, I will tell you how the Dodo managed it.)

渡渡鸟说:“对,为了说明它,最好的办法就是咱们亲自做一做。”(由于你在冬天也许会想起来玩这种游戏,所以我占这里告诉你渡渡鸟是怎么做的。)

First it marked out a race–course, in a sort of circle, ('the exact shape doesn't matter,' it said,) and then all the party were placed along the course, here and there. There was no 'One, two, three, and away,' but they began running when they liked, and left off when they liked, so that it was not easy to know when the race was over. However, when they had been running half an hour or so, and were quite dry again, the Dodo suddenly called out 'The race is over!' and they all crowded round it, panting, and asking, 'But who has won?'

前先,它划出个比赛路线,有点像个圆圈,它说:“具体形状没关系的。”然后,这一大群家伙就在圈子内散乱地站着,也不用说“—,二,三,开始!”而是谁想开始就开始,谁想停下,就停下,所以,要知道这场比赛的结束是不容易的。它们跑了大约半个小时,衣服大体上都干了,渡渡鸟就突然喊道:“比赛结束了!”听这话,它们都喘着气围拢过来,不停地问:“谁赢了,”

This question the Dodo could not answer without a great deal of thought, and it sat for a long time with one finger pressed upon its forehead (the position in which you usually see Shakespeare, in the pictures of him), while the rest waited in silence. At last the Dodo said, 'EVERYBODY has won, and all must have prizes.'

这个问题,渡渡鸟得好好考虑一下才能回答。因此,它坐下来,用一个指头撑着前额想了好长时间(就像照片上莎士比亚的那种姿态),这段时间里大家都安静地等待着。最后,渡渡鸟说:“每人都赢了,而且都有奖品!”

'But who is to give the prizes?' quite a chorus of voices asked.

“谁给奖品呢?”大家齐声问,

'Why, SHE, of course,' said the Dodo, pointing to Alice with one finger; and the whole party at once crowded round her, calling out in a confused way, 'Prizes! Prizes!'

“她重当然是她啦!”渡渡鸟用一个手指头指着爱丽丝说。于是,这一大群立即围住了爱丽丝,胡乱喊叫着:“奖品!奖品!”

Alice had no idea what to do, and in despair she put her hand in her pocket, and pulled out a box of comfits, (luckily the salt water had not got into it), and handed them round as prizes. There was exactly one a–piece all round.

爱丽丝真不知该怎么办了,她无可奈何地把手伸进了衣袋,嘿!拿出了一盒糖果,真幸运,还没给咸水浸透,她就把糖果作为奖品,发给了大家。正好每位分到一块,只是她自己没有。

'But she must have a prize herself, you know,' said the Mouse.

“可是她自己也应该有一份奖品啊!”老鼠说,

'Of course,' the Dodo replied very gravely. 'What else have you got in your pocket?' he went on, turning to Alice.

“当然啦,”渡渡鸟非常严肃地回答,“你的口袋里还有别的东西吗,”它转向爱丽丝问道。

'Only a thimble,' said Alice sadly.

“只有一个顶针了。”爱丽丝伤心地说。

'Hand it over here,' said the Dodo.

“把它拿来。”渡渡鸟说,

Then they all crowded round her once more, while the Dodo solemnly presented the thimble, saying 'We beg your acceptance of this elegant thimble'; and, when it had finished this short speech, they all cheered.

这时,大家又围住了爱丽丝,渡渡鸟接过顶针后兑严肃地递给了她,说:“我们请求你接受这只精致的顶针,”它刚结束这句简短的讲演,大家全都欢呼起来了。

Alice thought the whole thing very absurd, but they all looked so grave that she did not dare to laugh; and, as she could not think of anything to say, she simply bowed, and took the thimble, looking as solemn as she could.

爱丽丝认为这些事情全都非常荒唐,可是它们却十分认真,她也不敢笑,一时又想不出许说什么话,只见好鞠了个躬,尽量装得一本正经地接过了顶针。

The next thing was to eat the comfits: this caused some noise and confusion, as the large birds complained that they could not taste theirs, and the small ones choked and had to be patted on the back. However, it was over at last, and they sat down again in a ring, and begged the Mouse to tell them something more.

下步是吃糖果了,这又引起一阵喧闹,大鸟们埋怨还没尝到味儿,糖就没了,小鸟们则被糖块噎着了,还得别人替它拍拍背。不管怎么说,最后,糖果总算吃完了,这时它们又围成一个大圈坐下来,请求老鼠再讲点故事。

'You promised to tell me your history, you know,' said Alice, 'and why it is you hate—C and D,' she added in a whisper, half afraid that it would be offended again.

“你记得吗,你答应过讲你的历史,”爱丽丝说,“作为什么恨……恨‘M’和‘G’呀,”她压低声音,说完了这句话,她怕说出猫和狗这两个字惹老鼠生气,于是只说出猫和狗两字的拼音字头。

'Mine is a long and a sad tale!' said the Mouse, turning to Alice, and sighing.

“我的处事是个结尾悲伤的长故事,”老鼠对爱丽丝叹息着说。

'It IS a long tail, certainly,' said Alice, looking down with wonder at the Mouse's tail; 'but why do you call it sad?' And she kept on puzzling about it while the Mouse was speaking, so that her idea of the tale was something like this:—

爱丽丝没有听清这句话,她看着老鼠的尾巴纳闷了:“它确实是根长尾巴,可为什么说尾巴是悲伤的呢?”老鼠讲故事的整个过程中,爱丽丝还一直为这个问题纳闷,因此,在她脑子里就把整个故事想象成这个样子了:

'Fury said to a mouse, That he met in the house, "Let us both go to law: I will prosecute YOU.—Come, I'll take no denial; We must have atrial: For really this morning I've nothing to do." Said the mouse to the cur, "Such a trial, dear Sir, With no jury or judge, would be wasting our breath." "I'll be judge, I'll be jury," Said cunning old Fury: "I'll try the whole cause, and condemn you to death."'

“猎狗对屋子里的一只老鼠说道:‘跟我到法庭去,我要把你控告,我不睬你的辩解,要把你审判。因为今晨我没事干,所以我要跟你捣捣蛋。’老孔对恶狗说:‘这样的审判,既没有陪审员,又没有法官,不过是白白浪费时间,恩狗说:‘我就是陪审员,我就是法官,我要亲自执法审判,我要判处你的死刑!’”

'You are not attending!' said the Mouse to Alice severely. 'What are you thinking of?'

“你没有注意听,”老鼠严厉地对爱丽丝说,“你在想什么呢?”

'I beg your pardon,' said Alice very humbly: 'you had got to the fifth bend, I think?'

“请原谅!”爱丽丝似乎理亏似地说,“我想你已经拐到第五个弯了吧!”

'I had NOT!' cried the Mouse, sharply and very angrily.

“我没有弯!”老鼠非常生气地厉声说。

'A knot!' said Alice, always ready to make herself useful, and looking anxiously about her. 'Oh, do let me help to undo it!'

“你要个碗(弯)!”爱丽丝说,由于她总是热心帮助别人的,因此就焦急她四周寻找,“哦,让我帮你找找看。”

'I shall do nothing of the sort,' said the Mouse, getting up and walking away. 'You insult me by talking such nonsense!'

“我不吃你这一套,你的这些废话侮辱了我!”老鼠说着站起来就走。

'I didn't mean it!' pleaded poor Alice. 'But you're so easily offended, you know!'

“我没有侮辱你的意思!可是你也太容易生气了!”可怜的爱丽丝辩解着说。

The Mouse only growled in reply.

老鼠咕噜了—声没理她。

'Please come back and finish your story!' Alice called after it; and the others all joined in chorus, 'Yes, please do!' but the Mouse only shook its head impatiently, and walked a little quicker.

“请你回来讲完你的故事!”爱丽丝喊着,其他动物也都齐声说:“是啊!请回来吧!”但是,老鼠只是不耐烦地摇着脑袋,步子走得更快了。

'What a pity it wouldn't stay!' sighed the Lory, as soon as it was quite out of sight; and an old Crab took the opportunity of saying to her daughter 'Ah, my dear! Let this be a lesson to you never to lose YOUR temper!' 'Hold your tongue, Ma!' said the young Crab, a little snappishly. 'You're enough to try the patience of an oyster!'

“它走了,多遗憾哪!”当老鼠刚走得看不见了时,鹦鹉就叹息着,老螃蟹趁这个机会对女儿说:“哦,我亲爱的,这是一个教训,告诉你以后永远也不要发脾气。”“别说了,妈!你这样罗嗦,就是牡蛎都忍耐不了。”小螃蟹耐着小脾气说。

'I wish I had our Dinah here, I know I do!' said Alice aloud, addressing nobody in particular. 'She'd soon fetch it back!'

“我多么希望我的黛娜在这儿呀!”爱丽丝自言自语地大声说,“她一定会马上把它抓回来的!”

'And who is Dinah, if I might venture to ask the question?' said the Lory.

“请允许我冒昧地问一下,那么,黛娜是谁呢?”鹦鹉说。

Alice replied eagerly, for she was always ready to talk about her pet: 'Dinah's our cat. And she's such a capital one for catching mice you can't think! And oh, I wish you could see her after the birds! Why, she'll eat a little bird as soon as look at it!'

爱丽丝随时都乐意谈论她心爱的小宝贝,所以她热心地回答:“黛娜是我的猫,她抓老鼠可是好样的,简直想象不出来。嘿,我还希望你看到她怎么抓鸟的哩,她只要看见一只鸟,一眨眼就合把它吃到肚子里去的!”

This speech caused a remarkable sensation among the party. Some of the birds hurried off at once: one old Magpie began wrapping itself up very carefully, remarking, 'I really must be getting home; the night–air doesn't suit my throat!' and a Canary called out in a trembling voice to its children, 'Come away, my dears! It's high time you were all in bed!' On various pretexts they all moved off, and Alice was soon left alone.

这话惹得大家十分惊慌,有些鸟急急忙忙离开了,老喜鹊小心地把自己裹严,解释道:“我必须回家了,今晚的空气对我的喉咙不合适。”金丝鸟发抖地对它的孩子说:“走吧!我亲爱的,你们早该睡觉了。”它们全都在各种借口下走掉了。不久,又只剩下爱丽丝孤单单的一个人了。


They were indeed a queer–looking party that assembled on the bank—the birds with draggled feathers, the animals with their fur clinging close to them, and all dripping wet, cross, and uncomfortable.

The first question of course was, how to get dry again: they had a consultation about this, and after a few minutes it seemed quite natural to Alice to find herself talking familiarly with them, as if she had known them all her life. Indeed, she had quite a long argument with the Lory, who at last turned sulky, and would only say, 'I am older than you, and must know better'; and this Alice would not allow without knowing how old it was, and, as the Lory positively refused to tell its age, there was no more to be said.

At last the Mouse, who seemed to be a person of authority among them, called out, 'Sit down, all of you, and listen to me! I'LL soon make you dry enough!' They all sat down at once, in a large ring, with the Mouse in the middle. Alice kept her eyes anxiously fixed on it, for she felt sure she would catch a bad cold if she did not get dry very soon.

'Ahem!' said the Mouse with an important air, 'are you all ready? This is the driest thing I know. Silence all round, if you please! "William the Conqueror, whose cause was favoured by the pope, was soon submitted to by the English, who wanted leaders, and had been of late much accustomed to usurpation and conquest. Edwin and Morcar, the earls of Mercia and Northumbria—"'

'Ugh!' said the Lory, with a shiver.

'I beg your pardon!' said the Mouse, frowning, but very politely: 'Did you speak?'

'Not I!' said the Lory hastily.

'I thought you did,' said the Mouse. '—I proceed. "Edwin and Morcar, the earls of Mercia and Northumbria, declared for him: and even Stigand, the patriotic archbishop of Canterbury, found it advisable—"'

'Found WHAT?' said the Duck.

'Found IT,' the Mouse replied rather crossly: 'of course you know what "it" means.'

'I know what "it" means well enough, when I find a thing,' said the Duck: 'it's generally a frog or a worm. The question is, what did the archbishop find?'

The Mouse did not notice this question, but hurriedly went on, '"—found it advisable to go with Edgar Atheling to meet William and offer him the crown. William's conduct at first was moderate. But the insolence of his Normans—" How are you getting on now, my dear?' it continued, turning to Alice as it spoke.

'As wet as ever,' said Alice in a melancholy tone: 'it doesn't seem to dry me at all.'

'In that case,' said the Dodo solemnly, rising to its feet, 'I move that the meeting adjourn, for the immediate adoption of more energetic remedies—'

'Speak English!' said the Eaglet. 'I don't know the meaning of half those long words, and, what's more, I don't believe you do either!' And the Eaglet bent down its head to hide a smile: some of the other birds tittered audibly.

'What I was going to say,' said the Dodo in an offended tone, 'was, that the best thing to get us dry would be a Caucus–race.'

'What IS a Caucus–race?' said Alice; not that she wanted much to know, but the Dodo had paused as if it thought that SOMEBODY ought to speak, and no one else seemed inclined to say anything.

'Why,' said the Dodo, 'the best way to explain it is to do it.' (And, as you might like to try the thing yourself, some winter day, I will tell you how the Dodo managed it.)

First it marked out a race–course, in a sort of circle, ('the exact shape doesn't matter,' it said,) and then all the party were placed along the course, here and there. There was no 'One, two, three, and away,' but they began running when they liked, and left off when they liked, so that it was not easy to know when the race was over. However, when they had been running half an hour or so, and were quite dry again, the Dodo suddenly called out 'The race is over!' and they all crowded round it, panting, and asking, 'But who has won?'

This question the Dodo could not answer without a great deal of thought, and it sat for a long time with one finger pressed upon its forehead (the position in which you usually see Shakespeare, in the pictures of him), while the rest waited in silence. At last the Dodo said, 'EVERYBODY has won, and all must have prizes.'

'But who is to give the prizes?' quite a chorus of voices asked.

'Why, SHE, of course,' said the Dodo, pointing to Alice with one finger; and the whole party at once crowded round her, calling out in a confused way, 'Prizes! Prizes!'

Alice had no idea what to do, and in despair she put her hand in her pocket, and pulled out a box of comfits, (luckily the salt water had not got into it), and handed them round as prizes. There was exactly one a–piece all round.

'But she must have a prize herself, you know,' said the Mouse.

'Of course,' the Dodo replied very gravely. 'What else have you got in your pocket?' he went on, turning to Alice.

'Only a thimble,' said Alice sadly.

'Hand it over here,' said the Dodo.

Then they all crowded round her once more, while the Dodo solemnly presented the thimble, saying 'We beg your acceptance of this elegant thimble'; and, when it had finished this short speech, they all cheered.

Alice thought the whole thing very absurd, but they all looked so grave that she did not dare to laugh; and, as she could not think of anything to say, she simply bowed, and took the thimble, looking as solemn as she could.

The next thing was to eat the comfits: this caused some noise and confusion, as the large birds complained that they could not taste theirs, and the small ones choked and had to be patted on the back. However, it was over at last, and they sat down again in a ring, and begged the Mouse to tell them something more.

'You promised to tell me your history, you know,' said Alice, 'and why it is you hate—C and D,' she added in a whisper, half afraid that it would be offended again.

'Mine is a long and a sad tale!' said the Mouse, turning to Alice, and sighing.

'It IS a long tail, certainly,' said Alice, looking down with wonder at the Mouse's tail; 'but why do you call it sad?' And she kept on puzzling about it while the Mouse was speaking, so that her idea of the tale was something like this:—

'Fury said to a mouse, That he met in the house, "Let us both go to law: I will prosecute YOU.—Come, I'll take no denial; We must have atrial: For really this morning I've nothing to do." Said the mouse to the cur, "Such a trial, dear Sir, With no jury or judge, would be wasting our breath." "I'll be judge, I'll be jury," Said cunning old Fury: "I'll try the whole cause, and condemn you to death."'

'You are not attending!' said the Mouse to Alice severely. 'What are you thinking of?'

'I beg your pardon,' said Alice very humbly: 'you had got to the fifth bend, I think?'

'I had NOT!' cried the Mouse, sharply and very angrily.

'A knot!' said Alice, always ready to make herself useful, and looking anxiously about her. 'Oh, do let me help to undo it!'

'I shall do nothing of the sort,' said the Mouse, getting up and walking away. 'You insult me by talking such nonsense!'

'I didn't mean it!' pleaded poor Alice. 'But you're so easily offended, you know!'

The Mouse only growled in reply.

'Please come back and finish your story!' Alice called after it; and the others all joined in chorus, 'Yes, please do!' but the Mouse only shook its head impatiently, and walked a little quicker.

'What a pity it wouldn't stay!' sighed the Lory, as soon as it was quite out of sight; and an old Crab took the opportunity of saying to her daughter 'Ah, my dear! Let this be a lesson to you never to lose YOUR temper!' 'Hold your tongue, Ma!' said the young Crab, a little snappishly. 'You're enough to try the patience of an oyster!'

'I wish I had our Dinah here, I know I do!' said Alice aloud, addressing nobody in particular. 'She'd soon fetch it back!'

'And who is Dinah, if I might venture to ask the question?' said the Lory.

Alice replied eagerly, for she was always ready to talk about her pet: 'Dinah's our cat. And she's such a capital one for catching mice you can't think! And oh, I wish you could see her after the birds! Why, she'll eat a little bird as soon as look at it!'

This speech caused a remarkable sensation among the party. Some of the birds hurried off at once: one old Magpie began wrapping itself up very carefully, remarking, 'I really must be getting home; the night–air doesn't suit my throat!' and a Canary called out in a trembling voice to its children, 'Come away, my dears! It's high time you were all in bed!' On various pretexts they all moved off, and Alice was soon left alone.


集合在岸上的这一大群,确实稀奇古怪——羽毛湿了的鸟、毛紧贴着身子的小动物等等,全都是湿淋淋的,横躺竖卧的,显得很狼狈。

重要的是:怎样把身上弄干,对这个问题,他们商量了一会儿。过了几分钟,爱丽丝就同它们混熟了,好像老相识似的。你瞧,爱丽丝已经同鹦鹉辩论了好长时间了,最后鹦鹉生气了,一个劲儿地说:“我比你年龄大,也就肯定比你知道得多。”可爱丽丝不同意这点,因为爱丽丝压根儿不知道它的年龄,而鹦鹉又拒绝说出自已的年龄,她们就再没话可说了。

最后,那只老鼠——它在它们中间好像很有权威似的——喊道:“你们全部坐下,听我说,我很快就会把你们弄干的!”他们立即都坐下了,围成一个大圈,老鼠在中间,爱丽丝焦急地盯着它,她很清楚,如果湿衣服不能很快干的活,她会得重感冒的,

“咳,咳!”老鼠煞有介事地说:“你们都准备好了吗?下面是我要说的最干巴巴的故事了,请大家安静点。‘征服者威廉的事业是教皇支持的,不久就征服了英国,英国人也需要有人领导,而且已经对篡权和被征服都习惯了。梅西亚和诺森勃列亚(海西亚Mercia和诺森勃利亚Northumbria是英国的两个古国。)的伯爵埃德温和莫卡……

“啊!”鹦鹉打着哆嗦。

“请原谅!”老鼠皱着眉头说,但仍然很有礼貌地问:“你有什么话吗?”

“我没有啥说的!”鹦鹉急忙答道。

“我以为你有话要说哩!”老鼠说,“我继续讲,这两个地方的伯爵埃德温和莫卡都宣告支持威廉,甚至坎特伯雷的爱国大主教斯蒂坎德也发现这是可行的……”

“发现什么?”鸭子问,

“发观‘这’,”老鼠有点不耐烦地回答,“你当然不知道‘这,的意思。”

“我发现了什么吃的东西时,当然知道‘这’是指什么。‘这’通常指一只青蛙或一条蚯蚓,现在的问题是:大主教发现的是什么呢?”鸭子还不停地呱啦着。

老鼠一点也不理睬,只是急急忙忙地继续讲:“……发现与埃德加.阿瑟林一起去亲自迎接威廉,并授予他皇冠是可行的,威廉的行动起初还有点节制,可他那诺曼人的傲慢……,你感觉怎么样了?我亲爱的。”它突然转向爱丽丝问道。

“跟原来一样的湿。”爱丽丝忧郁地说,“你讲这些一点也不能把我身上弄干。”

“在这种情况下,我建议休会,并立即采取更加有效的措施。”渡渡鸟站后来严肃地说。

“讲英语!”小鹰说,“你这句话的意思,我连一半都听不懂!更主要的是我不相信你自己会懂,”小鹰说完后低下头偷偷笑了,其它一些鸟也都偷偷地笑出声来。

“我说的是,能让我们把湿衣服弄干的最好办法,是来个会议式的赛跑。”渡渡鸟恼怒地说。

“什么是会议式赛跑?”爱丽丝问,爱丽丝本来不想多问,因为渡渡鸟说到这里停住了,似乎想等别人问似的,而偏偏又没人问它。

渡渡鸟说:“对,为了说明它,最好的办法就是咱们亲自做一做。”(由于你在冬天也许会想起来玩这种游戏,所以我占这里告诉你渡渡鸟是怎么做的。)

前先,它划出个比赛路线,有点像个圆圈,它说:“具体形状没关系的。”然后,这一大群家伙就在圈子内散乱地站着,也不用说“—,二,三,开始!”而是谁想开始就开始,谁想停下,就停下,所以,要知道这场比赛的结束是不容易的。它们跑了大约半个小时,衣服大体上都干了,渡渡鸟就突然喊道:“比赛结束了!”听这话,它们都喘着气围拢过来,不停地问:“谁赢了,”

这个问题,渡渡鸟得好好考虑一下才能回答。因此,它坐下来,用一个指头撑着前额想了好长时间(就像照片上莎士比亚的那种姿态),这段时间里大家都安静地等待着。最后,渡渡鸟说:“每人都赢了,而且都有奖品!”

“谁给奖品呢?”大家齐声问,

“她重当然是她啦!”渡渡鸟用一个手指头指着爱丽丝说。于是,这一大群立即围住了爱丽丝,胡乱喊叫着:“奖品!奖品!”

爱丽丝真不知该怎么办了,她无可奈何地把手伸进了衣袋,嘿!拿出了一盒糖果,真幸运,还没给咸水浸透,她就把糖果作为奖品,发给了大家。正好每位分到一块,只是她自己没有。

“可是她自己也应该有一份奖品啊!”老鼠说,

“当然啦,”渡渡鸟非常严肃地回答,“你的口袋里还有别的东西吗,”它转向爱丽丝问道。

“只有一个顶针了。”爱丽丝伤心地说。

“把它拿来。”渡渡鸟说,

这时,大家又围住了爱丽丝,渡渡鸟接过顶针后兑严肃地递给了她,说:“我们请求你接受这只精致的顶针,”它刚结束这句简短的讲演,大家全都欢呼起来了。

爱丽丝认为这些事情全都非常荒唐,可是它们却十分认真,她也不敢笑,一时又想不出许说什么话,只见好鞠了个躬,尽量装得一本正经地接过了顶针。

下步是吃糖果了,这又引起一阵喧闹,大鸟们埋怨还没尝到味儿,糖就没了,小鸟们则被糖块噎着了,还得别人替它拍拍背。不管怎么说,最后,糖果总算吃完了,这时它们又围成一个大圈坐下来,请求老鼠再讲点故事。

“你记得吗,你答应过讲你的历史,”爱丽丝说,“作为什么恨……恨‘M’和‘G’呀,”她压低声音,说完了这句话,她怕说出猫和狗这两个字惹老鼠生气,于是只说出猫和狗两字的拼音字头。

“我的处事是个结尾悲伤的长故事,”老鼠对爱丽丝叹息着说。

爱丽丝没有听清这句话,她看着老鼠的尾巴纳闷了:“它确实是根长尾巴,可为什么说尾巴是悲伤的呢?”老鼠讲故事的整个过程中,爱丽丝还一直为这个问题纳闷,因此,在她脑子里就把整个故事想象成这个样子了:

“猎狗对屋子里的一只老鼠说道:‘跟我到法庭去,我要把你控告,我不睬你的辩解,要把你审判。因为今晨我没事干,所以我要跟你捣捣蛋。’老孔对恶狗说:‘这样的审判,既没有陪审员,又没有法官,不过是白白浪费时间,恩狗说:‘我就是陪审员,我就是法官,我要亲自执法审判,我要判处你的死刑!’”

“你没有注意听,”老鼠严厉地对爱丽丝说,“你在想什么呢?”

“请原谅!”爱丽丝似乎理亏似地说,“我想你已经拐到第五个弯了吧!”

“我没有弯!”老鼠非常生气地厉声说。

“你要个碗(弯)!”爱丽丝说,由于她总是热心帮助别人的,因此就焦急她四周寻找,“哦,让我帮你找找看。”

“我不吃你这一套,你的这些废话侮辱了我!”老鼠说着站起来就走。

“我没有侮辱你的意思!可是你也太容易生气了!”可怜的爱丽丝辩解着说。

老鼠咕噜了—声没理她。

“请你回来讲完你的故事!”爱丽丝喊着,其他动物也都齐声说:“是啊!请回来吧!”但是,老鼠只是不耐烦地摇着脑袋,步子走得更快了。

“它走了,多遗憾哪!”当老鼠刚走得看不见了时,鹦鹉就叹息着,老螃蟹趁这个机会对女儿说:“哦,我亲爱的,这是一个教训,告诉你以后永远也不要发脾气。”“别说了,妈!你这样罗嗦,就是牡蛎都忍耐不了。”小螃蟹耐着小脾气说。

“我多么希望我的黛娜在这儿呀!”爱丽丝自言自语地大声说,“她一定会马上把它抓回来的!”

“请允许我冒昧地问一下,那么,黛娜是谁呢?”鹦鹉说。

爱丽丝随时都乐意谈论她心爱的小宝贝,所以她热心地回答:“黛娜是我的猫,她抓老鼠可是好样的,简直想象不出来。嘿,我还希望你看到她怎么抓鸟的哩,她只要看见一只鸟,一眨眼就合把它吃到肚子里去的!”

这话惹得大家十分惊慌,有些鸟急急忙忙离开了,老喜鹊小心地把自己裹严,解释道:“我必须回家了,今晚的空气对我的喉咙不合适。”金丝鸟发抖地对它的孩子说:“走吧!我亲爱的,你们早该睡觉了。”它们全都在各种借口下走掉了。不久,又只剩下爱丽丝孤单单的一个人了。

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