我陪你变老

【英语学习方法】 2018-01-11本文已影响

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She sat on the couch, as always, and as I stood in front of her I couldn't stop staring at the knee-high stockings which fell below her pale exposed knees. The green couch she sat on smelled like old people and her thick-soled1) shoes were planted on a transparent plastic mat.MJV68学习网-学习教育资源分享平台

Although I was young and small, about six years old, I could tell that the dark apartment was not large. I sat down in one of the overstuffed chairs and glanced back and forth between the game show on the television and the ninety-three-year-old woman sitting next to me. She was my grandfather's mother and we called her Nanny. I needed to get out of the room that smelled of stale2) cigars and medicine but I didn't want to leave Nanny. I asked my mother if I could go play in the other room across the hall. As I stood up to leave, Nanny asked my mother if I was able to walk there by myself. At first I was confused but then my mother explained to me in a whisper that Nanny remembered me as much younger and didn't realize that I was now old enough to walk.MJV68学习网-学习教育资源分享平台

I played in the other room for a while and then came back to the living room. My mother's uncle Dave sat across the room smoking a cigar and watching the game show. My mother was sitting close to Nanny on the couch and was talking very loudly because Nanny was hard of hearing. Nanny motioned for me to sit next to her and although I was somewhat scared I sat down. She began to tell me the story about the braids3) that I'd heard many times before, but I was happy to hear it once more since it changed slightly every time she told it. When she was a girl she had very long, thick, dark braids. She began to get severe headaches and the doctor suggested that she cut off her braids. It made her sad to have to do this, but she did and her headaches went away. She saved the braids her whole life.MJV68学习网-学习教育资源分享平台

I loved to hear this story and I loved to watch her tell it. She had short colorless gray hair and large bags under her eyes. I could see the deep wrinkles that lined her face; they seemed to be marks left from all she had lived through.MJV68学习网-学习教育资源分享平台

When Nanny was sixteen she left her whole family in Austria to come to America. It was 1904 and at the train station her mother sent her off with the words, "I'll never see you again." And she never did see her mother again because her parents were later killed during the Holocaust4). When Nanny arrived in America, her uncle who had said he would take her in made her work as a maid. She cleaned his house and took care of his children, for nothing other than room and board. After several years, my great-grandfather met her and fell in love at first sight and she married him in order to get out of her uncle's house. MJV68学习网-学习教育资源分享平台

MJV68学习网-学习教育资源分享平台

As I got older my visits to Nanny's became fewer. I seemed to be preoccupied with my own life and didn't seem to have the energy to spend even an hour with her. About a year before she died she had a heart attack. My grandfather and Uncle Dave were there. Nanny told them not to call an ambulance. She had accepted the fact that death had finally come. However Uncle Dave couldn't bear to let her die and called an ambulance. Nanny died a year later in the hospital. I was ten years old.MJV68学习网-学习教育资源分享平台

It amazes me that after raising her children, giving them so much love and devotion, and then loving her grandchildren just as much, after ninety-five years Nanny still had love left for me.MJV68学习网-学习教育资源分享平台

她坐在沙发上,和平时一样,我站在她面前,忍不住盯着那双已经滑落到膝下、将她苍白的膝盖暴露无遗的及膝长袜。她坐的那张绿沙发闻起来有股老年人的味道,她脚穿一双厚底鞋,踩在一块透明的塑料地垫上。MJV68学习网-学习教育资源分享平台

尽管那时我还幼小,大概六岁吧,但我能判定这间昏暗的公寓面积不大。我在其中一把带加厚软垫的椅子上坐下,眼睛在电视上的游戏竞赛节目和这个坐在我身边的93岁老太太之间来回扫视。她是我外祖父的母亲,我们都叫她外曾祖母。我必须离开这个散发着一股难闻的雪茄味和药味的房间,但我又不想离开外曾祖母。我问妈妈我是不是可以到走廊那头的另一个房间去玩。当我起身要离开时,外曾祖母问我妈妈我是否能自己走到那边。一开始我很困惑,但接着妈妈就悄声和我解释:外曾祖母记忆里的我比现在小得多,她没意识到我那时已经长大了,会走路了。MJV68学习网-学习教育资源分享平台

我在另一个房间玩了一会儿,然后回到了客厅。妈妈的叔叔戴夫坐在客厅的另一头,一边抽雪茄一边看游戏竞赛节目。妈妈则紧挨着外曾祖母坐在沙发上,很大声地说着话,因为外曾祖母耳背得厉害。外曾祖母示意让我过去坐她身边,尽管我有那么几分害怕,但还是坐了下来。她给我讲起了她的辫子的故事,虽然我之前已经听过很多遍了,但我还是愿意再听一遍,因为她每次讲的都有一些小变化。她还是个姑娘时,有一头又长又粗又黑的辫子。后来她开始头疼,疼得厉害,医生建议她把辫子剪掉。虽然必须要剪头发让她很不开心,但她还是照做了,她的头也不疼了。这些辫子她保存了一辈子。MJV68学习网-学习教育资源分享平台

我喜欢听这个故事,也喜欢看她讲故事时的样子。她有一头暗灰色的短发,眼睛下面有大大的眼袋。我能看到她脸上布满了深深的皱纹,它们就像是她一生的经历留下的印记。MJV68学习网-学习教育资源分享平台

外曾祖母16岁时离开所有家人,从奥地利来到美国。那是1904年,她的母亲在火车站送她时说:“我再也见不到你了。”而她确实再也没有见到她母亲,因为她的父母随后都在二战的大屠杀中被杀害了。外曾祖母到美国之后,之前说过要收留她的叔叔却把她当成了女仆支使。外曾祖母为他打扫屋子、照料孩子,得到的却只有每日的食宿。几年后,我的外曾祖父遇见外曾祖母并对她一见钟情,为了离开叔叔家,外曾祖母嫁给了他。MJV68学习网-学习教育资源分享平台

随着我慢慢长大,去外曾祖母家的次数也变得越来越少。我似乎整日忙于自己的生活,根本没有精力花上哪怕一个小时陪陪她。她去世的前一年犯过一次心脏病,我的外祖父和舅姥爷戴夫当时都在。外曾祖母告诉他们不要叫救护车,因为她已经接受死神终于来了这个事实。但是舅姥爷戴夫无法忍受就这么让她离开,还是叫了救护车。一年后,外曾祖母在医院里去世了。那年我十岁。MJV68学习网-学习教育资源分享平台

外曾祖母不仅养大了自己的孩子,为他们付出了如此多的关爱与深情,而后又对她的外孙们付出了同样多的关爱,经历了这些之后,95岁高龄的外曾祖母依然还有余力对我疼爱有加,这着实令我惊叹。MJV68学习网-学习教育资源分享平台

1.thick-soled: 厚底的MJV68学习网-学习教育资源分享平台

2.stale [ste?l] adj. (因空气不流通或香烟雾气充塞而)气味不好的MJV68学习网-学习教育资源分享平台

3.braid [bre?d] n. 辫子MJV68学习网-学习教育资源分享平台

4.the Holocaust: (第二次世界大战期间纳粹对犹太人的)大屠杀。 holocaust [?h?l?k??st] n. (大量烧杀人畜的)大屠杀,虐杀 MJV68学习网-学习教育资源分享平台

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