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回忆录。1948-2018 (1991) 英文原文中文译文
送交者: 周郎的赤臂[♂★☆盖世大侠☆★♂] 于 2018-01-03 13:55 已读 323 次 1 赞  
1991, summer

Darkness. Endless darkness.

Never have I been on a plane for what seems like an eternity. It was night when we got on the plane in Beijing, and it’s still night after hours of flight.

I turn my head to check on the guys. The team leader, (Marcus), is sound asleep. Gentle snores can be heard even through the noises of the airplane. Our chief translator continues to flip through the countless books he brought along—probably would not be a good idea to disturb this old professor from XISU right now. Then I look to my right. There he is, my co-worker, (Larry), who is also dozing off.

I tried to sleep as soon as I got on the plane, and normally I am a pretty heavy sleeper, but I just can’t stop my mind from racing. Sure, I might have gone on countless business trips, and I’m rarely ever home, but to spend such an extended period away from my family—my beautiful wife and toddler son, is a first, let alone in a foreign country.

It was two, three days ago I left Xi’an. My wife and my brother came with me to the airport, leaving my sister to watch my baby son. We had a hearty breakfast of hulatang and youtiao; the warmth and sourness of the soup along with the deep fried dough that’s crispy on the outside and soft on the inside, filled the void caused by the uncertainty of the upcoming year at the time. My brother paid for the meal and called us a cab to the airport.

My wife and I sat in the backseat while my brother took shotgun to make small talk with the driver. I prayed as we passed by the Bell Tower and Drum Tower to myself, hoping for a safe flight. My wife looked a bit bleak; in fact, she seemed as though she was going to tear up at any moment, and she definitely would have done so if my brother wasn’t there. I tried to engage in a conversation going with her in hopes of cheering her up a bit with my lame jokes. She sometimes responded, but most of the time she just gave a half-hearted chuckle at my futile attempts.

I don’t blame her. After all, I’m the one leaving her out here, alone in a city that she still hasn’t gotten familiar with, along with our kid. My parents and siblings might be here, but they are not exactly the most reliable when it comes to child-rearing. My in-laws lived a couple of hours away, so they wouldn’t be able to help in the long run.

Is this all worth it? I thought. I had no answer. As the one man selected out of dozens of candidates from our state-own trading company, this was my one opportunity to see the world outside, so that I can perhaps one day, bring everyone I love into the outside world.

It took just under half an hour for us to reach the airport here in the west suburbs. My brother helped me take the luggage out of the trunk. My co-worker was already there, waving at me; the guy’s always had a pretty sharp eyesight. He was dressed in suit and tie, just as I was.

My wife came to face me. She stared at me for a second, hesitantly, then let out a short sigh. Before I could comfort her, she grabbed my tie and fixed it straight.

“Go, have fun. You ain’t the first man in history to leave his family behind.”

I was at a loss of words. Yes. That’s exactly what I had done.

I wanted to hold her, but with my co-worker and brother around, it was too embarrassing.

My brother tapped me on the shoulder. I turned around, and he pointed with his chin towards my waving co-worker.

I looked back to my wife.

“I’ll be back, maybe a year at most, promise. I’ll bring home so much money we’ll be living our dreams!”

“Then don’t you dare show your face here again until you can fulfill that!” Then she turned around.

I felt a bit relieved. At least she’s acting normal again. I took my suitcase, and joined my co-worker.

My wife and brother took off as soon as the rest of the crew arrived. It’s pretty customary to wait for the elder and the leader of the group, and I was quite glad that they arrived only a mere ten minutes after I did.

It took almost no time for us to check in, and the plane to Beijing was smooth as usual. We stayed in Xidan to get some supplies, namely thick coats for the upcoming harsh winter, and random trinkets that we can sell to the locals after we arrive.

And then here I am. Sitting, waiting in this dreaded darkness, stranded in the air.

In my discomfort, I get up from my seat, and walk towards the back of the plane, cigarette in hand.

I took a nice long puff of smoke as I stared blankly into the blankness outside. I exhale. The nicotine is somewhat comforting, even if it’s just a quick fix for the fear of a journey into the unknown.

“I’m going to do this. It’s for profit in the long run. I’m going to be fine.” I keep telling myself as I draw another breath. “You’re young, you’re strong, you’ve got company. You can do this.” And I let out another smoke-filled sigh.

The aroma of tobacco fill the air.

As soon as we arrived, (Jake) and our chauffeur are already at the airport, waiting for us with a limo. He first shakes hands with the team leader and the old professor warmly, and then waves at Larry and myself to get in. It’s already late evening. No, it’s STILL late evening.

The group get into the limo. Here I come, Moskva.


1991 夏




















“莫丝,莫问题。都是有法依代的” 。我这样告诉自己。“男子汉,怕什么!更何况还有一群弟兄呢”。我又吸了一口。



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