雙語安徒生童話：What the Old Man Does Is Always Right老爹
雙語安徒生童話：What the Old Man Does Is Always Right老爹
摘要 : 世上并無絕對的幸運兒，所以，不論誰想從苦難中獲得啟迪，該是不愁缺乏必要的機會和材料的。世態炎涼，好運不過爾爾。那種一交好運就得意忘形的淺薄者，我很懷疑苦難能否讓他變得深刻些。一個人只要真正領略了平常苦難中的絕望，他就會明白：一切美化苦難的言
I WILL tell you a story that was told me when Iwas a little boy. Every time I thought of this story，it seemed to me more and more charming; for it iswith stories as it is with many people—they becomebetter as they grow older.
I have no doubt that you have been in thecountry， and seen a very old farmhouse， with athatched roof， and mosses and small plantsgrowing wild upon it. There is a stork's nest on the ridge of the gable， for we cannot dowithout the stork. The walls of the house are sloping， and the windows are low， and only oneof the latter is made to open. The baking-oven sticks out of the wall like a GREat knob. Anelder-tree hangs over the palings; and beneath its branches， at the foot of the paling， is apool of water， in which a few ducks are disporting themselves. There is a yard-dog too， whobarks at all corners. Just such a farmhouse as this stood in a country lane; and in it dwelt anold couple， a peasant and his wife. Small as their possessions were， they had one article theycould not do without， and that was a horse， which contrived to live upon the grass which itfound by the side of the high road. The old peasant rode into the town upon this horse， andhis neighbors often borrowed it of him， and paid for the loan of it by rendering some serviceto the old couple. After a time they thought it would be as well to sell the horse， or exchangeit for something which might be more useful to them. But what might this something be?
“You'll know best， old man，” said the wife. “It is fair-day to-day; so ride into town， andget rid of the horse for money， or make a good exchange; whichever you do will be right tome， so ride to the fair.”
And she fastened his neckerchief for him; for she could do that better than he could， andshe could also tie it very prettily in a double bow. She also smoothed his hat round and roundwith the palm of her hand， and gave him a kiss. Then he rode away upon the horse that wasto be sold or bartered for something else. Yes， the old man knew what he was about. The sunshone with GREat heat， and not a cloud was to be seen in the sky. The road was very dusty;for a number of people， all going to the fair， were driving， riding， or walking upon it. Therewas no shelter anywhere from the hot sunshine. Among the rest a man came trudging along，and driving a cow to the fair. The cow was as beautiful a creature as any cow could be.
“She gives good milk， I am certain，” said the peasant to himself. “That would be a verygood exchange： the cow for the horse. Hallo there! you with the cow，” he said. “I tell youwhat; I dare say a horse is of more value than a cow; but I don't care for that，—a cow willbe more useful to me; so， if you like， we'll exchange.”
“To be sure I will，” said the man.
Accordingly the exchange was made; and as the matter was settled， the peasant mighthave turned back; for he had done the business he came to do. But， having made up hismind to go to the fair， he determined to do so， if only to have a look at it; so on he wentto the town with his cow. Leading the animal， he strode on sturdily， and， after a shorttime， overtook a man who was driving a sheep. It was a good fat sheep， with a fine fleece onits back.
“I should like to have that fellow，” said the peasant to himself. “There is plenty of grass forhim by our palings， and in the winter we could keep him in the room with us. Perhaps it wouldbe more profitable to have a sheep than a cow. Shall I exchange?”
the man with the sheep was quite ready， and the bargain was quickly made. And then ourpeasant continued his way on the high-road with his sheep. Soon after this， he overtookanother man， who had come into the road from a field， and was carrying a large goose underhis arm.
“What a heavy creature you have there!” said the peasant; “it has plenty of feathers andplenty of fat， and would look well tied to a string， or paddling in the water at our place. Thatwould be very useful to my old woman; she could make all sorts of profits out of it. How oftenshe has said， 'If now we only had a goose!' Now here is an opportunity， and， if possible，I will get it for her. Shall we exchange? I will give you my sheep for your goose， and thanksinto the bargain.”
the other had not the least objection， and accordingly the exchange was made， andour peasant became possessor of the goose. By this time he had arrived very near the town.The crowd on the high road had been gradually increasing， and there was quite a rush of menand cattle. The cattle walked on the path and by the palings， and at the turnpike-gate theyeven walked into the toll-keeper's potato-field， where one fowl was strutting about with astring tied to its leg， for fear it should take fright at the crowd， and run away and get lost.The tail-feathers of the fowl were very short， and it winked with both its eyes， and lookedvery cunning， as it said “Cluck， cluck.” What were the thoughts of the fowl as it said this Icannot tell you; but directly our good man saw it， he thought， “Why that's the finest fowl Iever saw in my life; it's finer than our parson's brood hen， upon my word. I should like tohave that fowl. Fowls can always pick up a few grains that lie about， and almost keepthemselves. I think it would be a good exchange if I could get it for my goose. Shall weexchange?” he asked the toll-keeper.
“Exchange，” repeated the man; “well， it would not be a bad thing.”
And so they made an exchange，—the toll-keeper at the turnpike-gate kept the goose，and the peasant carried off the fowl. Now he had really done a GREat deal of business on hisway to the fair， and he was hot and tired. He wanted something to eat， and a glass of ale torefresh himself; so he turned his steps to an inn. He was just about to enter when the ostlercame out， and they met at the door. The ostler was carrying a sack. “What have you in thatsack?” asked the peasant.