02 The Vanished Woods of Childwood
大耳朵英语  http://www.bigear.cn  2008-11-03 10:40:12  【打印
消逝的童年树林 The Vanished Woods of Childhood

By:Dea Stronzi

Growing up, in a decently developed area, a child thrives to find a place that he or she can call his or her own. They yearn for a secret hiding place, where adults would not venture to follow them in case they ever did anything wrong. Not a lot of kids nowadays have these secret 1)hide-outs, but back in the days when I was growing up, me and around 13—19 other children shared a secret spot, where we would all meet, play and live together like our own 2)twisted family.

  每一个在高度发展的地区长大的孩子,幼年都极力想寻找一块可以称为自己的地盘的地方。他们向往有一块隐秘的藏身之地,万一他们做了什么错事,大人们都不会轻易跟随他们去到那里。现在的孩子大多并不拥有这样一些隐秘的藏身之地,但回溯到我成长的那些年月,我和其他的13到19个孩子共同拥有过一块秘密领地。在那里,我们聚集在一起玩耍,并像一个古怪的家庭般共同生活。

  The spot where we could all convene was a small wooded patch near our houses. Again, I’ve lived my whole life in 3)New Jersey, where the area is pretty much all developed. So, for us, to have any patch of woods to play in was a big deal. I remember how we discovered the woods: It was during the summer, as we were trying to run away from one of our neighbors, whose house we had just pelted with 4)inkberries. There was only one place to hide—this small patch of woods that, until that moment all of us had looked down upon. To us it had been no more than just some little spot with thorns, bushes and trees.

  我们所有人聚会的那块地方是我们住宅附近的一片小树林。再说一遍,我一生都生活在新泽西州这个几乎已经开发殆尽的地区。所以对于我们来说,拥有一片可以在其间玩耍的树林是一件天大的事。我现在还记得我们是怎么发现那片树林的——某个夏天,我们把光滑冬青的浆果纷纷投到我们其中一个邻居的房子上,在试图逃开那个邻居追赶的途中,我们发现了它。只有那个地方可以藏身——就是这片小树林,直到那一刻前我们都还很蔑视它。它本来对于我们不过是某块长着荆棘、灌木和乔木的小地方罢了。

  After we had forgotten we had an angry Mexican neighbor chasing us, we were amazed to see how big this forest really was, and decided to explore. It went a decent way back, with lots of big bushes, young bushes and fallen down tree-trunks. After spending the rest of the day exploring, it was decided that we would make our own little town out there, in the woods, a place where we all could go just to get away from our parents, no-sey neighbors and the angry Mexican.

  我们忘记了还有个生气的墨西哥邻居在追赶我们以后,我们惊讶地发现这片树林实际上相当大,于是决定探索一下。它延伸得颇远,一路上有许多大蓬的树丛、幼小的灌木和倒下来的树干。那天余下的时间里,我们一直在探索那片树林,过后,大家决定在那片树林里建立我们自己的城镇,一块我们所有人都可以避开父母、多管闲事的邻居还有那个愤怒的墨西哥人的地方。

  Over the next week we cut down some of the thorn and bushes within the woods, and replanted some more around the perimeter—for protection (from the angry Mexican). We cut out holes in the center of larger trees, to make little huts, and built a large one out of large branches and twigs, upon a tree that had fallen down and was resting on another. The work was arduous; we had hourly tick checks, and as some of us went home with poison ivy stings, others had thorns lodged in their skin.

  接下来的一个星期里,我们砍下了树林里的一些荆棘和灌木,在四周边界上重新种上了更多的灌木,作为(对那个墨西哥邻居的)防御。我们在那些较大的树的树心上砍出了一些洞作为小屋,并用大树枝和嫩枝,在一棵树上建了一间大屋,这棵树已经倒了下来,压在另一棵树上。这些劳作很艰苦。我们每小时都要核对进度。回家的时候,我们有的人早已被有毒的常春藤刺得全身都是,其他的人则是皮肤里还残留着荆棘。

  But after about a week of non-stop work, we had built 13 little huts and a large centralized hut for a meeting area. Each person had a designated hut; brothers were allowed to share a hut. We had our own little society going on, and it was the best thing we ever had created. We had 2 designated leaders, Kyle and myself. We were the ones who dove into the brush first on that day; we were also the eldest. Together we ruled the area like a small town, and even had trials for those who broke the rules we had made. We loved our little village so much, that one night before the summer had ended, we all snuck out of our houses and stayed in our huts for the night. We roasted 5)marshmallows over an open flame and told stories of how we were now able to trap squirrels and other small animals.

  但是经过大约一周不停的劳作后,我们建了13座小屋和一所位于树林中心的用来聚会的大屋。每个人都有一间指定的房子,兄弟之间则共有一间房子。我们自己的小团体生活在继续,这是我们创造过的最棒的东西。我们有两名指定的首领,凯尔和我。我们是那天首先进入树丛中的人,同时我们也是孩子中年龄最大的。我们一起像管理小镇那样管理那片土地,甚至会审判那些打破我们制定的规矩的人。我们太喜欢我们的小村庄了,夏末的一个晚上,我们所有人都偷偷离开家,整夜呆在我们的林间小屋里。我们在篝火上烘烤药蜀葵,谈论我们现在该如何用陷阱捕捉松鼠和其他小动物。

  Over the next 4 or 5 summers we returned to our village, full time, sleeping and eating there, and also visited in winter on weekends, and for meetings after school on Fridays. But, unfortunately, like most children, we all grew up and outgrew playing in the forest together. Time had slipped by us, as one by one we just stopped going there. The brush in wooded patch proceeded to grow uncontrollably, as it had before we discovered it. We left it in our past, and continued with our lives.

  在接下来的四五个夏天,我们回到我们的村庄,整日待在那里又睡又吃。冬季的周末,或是每周五放学后为了聚会,我们也会去那里。但不幸的是,像大多数孩子那样,我们所有人都长大了,渐渐不再到那片树林里一同玩耍了。时间在我们身旁匆匆而过,孩子们一个接一个地不再去那里了。树林里的那些灌木丛开始肆意地生长,像我们发现那里以前一样。我们把树林留在了过去,并继续在生活的道路上前行。

  On Thursday October 3rd, when coming home for fall break from college, I drove around the block, only to see tree cutters and surveyors clearing out our woods. Standing around the forest were 5 people, looking on with nostalgia. It was 5 of my friends I had grown up with, just as stunned as I was, as they watched our childhood go into the 6)chipper, becoming developed, just as all the rest of the area was.

  10月3号星期四那天,我因为大学放秋假回家,开车来到那个街区附近,只见伐木机和监督员正在清除我们的树林。有5个人站在树林附近,带着伤逝之情注视着这一切。他们是和我一起长大的其中5个朋友。当看到我们的童年变成碎片,并和这个地区其他剩下的地方一样被开发时,他们和我同样感到震惊。

  Once again childhood is slipping away. The good times I shared with those other kids in that wooded patch are now just memories. I can’t go and take a hike through the trees to see how badly it had been overrun by the growing brushes. Nor could I take pictures to keep them forever in a 7)scrapbook... Now it’s all gone, and it’s too late to take pictures. As we stood there, watching, we talked about how much we loved playing in those woods together; how it gave us all a sense of belonging and a place of refuge.

  童年再一次溜走了。我和其他那些孩子在那片树林里一同度过的那些美好时光,现在只剩下一些记忆。我无法徒步穿过那片树林,看它已经被一直生长蔓延着的灌木丛弄得如何糟糕。我也无法通过拍照把这些景象永远保存在剪贴本里……现在,它整个都消失了,要拍照也太迟了。我们站在那儿,注视着,一边谈起我们曾经多么喜欢在那片树林里一起玩耍,它如何给了我们所有人一种归属感和一个庇护所。

  I have noticed how much our neighborhood has changed for the worse since we all entered adulthood. All of us are a little more nostalgic for that forest. Now, none of the young children in the neighborhood can 8)relive the joy we found in a little patch of woods we called our own.

  我注意到自我们进入成年期,我们街区的环境每况愈下。我们所有人对于那片树林都有了更深的怀旧之情。现在,没有任何一个住在这里的孩子,能重获我们在那片我们称为自己地盘的树林里所获得的快乐。