风雨河岸柳
The Wind in the Willows


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    1 The river
    1 The river
    
    The Mole worked very hard all morning, cleaning his little home. He brushed, and he washed; he cleaned the floors and the walls, he stood on chairs to wash the tops of cup boards, he got under the beds, he took up the carpets. He cleaned and he cleaned, until his arms and his back ached with tiredness.
    It was springtime, and the smell and the sound of spring were everywhere, even in the Mole's dark little house under the ground. And with the spring comes the promise of change, of sunshine, of new green leaves. So it was not surprising that the Mole suddenly put down his brushes and said, 'Oh bother! 'and then, 'I'm tired of cleaning! 'Something up above the ground was calling to him, and he ran out of his house and began to dig his way upwards to the sun.
    He dug and he pushed, and he pushed and he dug. 'Up we go! Up we go! 'he said to himself, until at last his nose came out into the sunlight, and he found himself in the warm grass of a field.
    'This is fine! 'said the Mole. 'This is better than cleaning! 'The sunshine was warm on his back and the air was filled with the songs of birds. He gave a little jump for happiness, shook himself, and then began to cross the field towards some trees. Here and there he went, through the fields and the woods, looking and smelling and listening. Everywhere animals and birds were busy, talking and laughing, looking for food, making new homes for the spring. The Mole enjoyed it all.
    Then, suddenly, he came to a river. He had never seen a river before in his life-this wonderful bright shining thing, which danced its way in and out of the shadows under the trees. It was never still for a minute, hurrying and laughing and talking to itself.
    And at once, the Mole was in love with it. He walked along the river bank, listening and watching all the time. At last he sat down on the grass and looked across the river to the bank opposite. There was a dark hole in the bank, and the Mole watched it dreamily, thinking that it would be very pleasant to have a little house by the river. As he watched, he saw some thing shining in the hole. Soon he saw that it was an eye, and then a face appeared as well.
    A brown little face, with whiskers.
    With bright eyes, and small ears, and thick shiny hair.
    It was the Water Rat!
    Then the two animals stood up and looked at each other.
    'Hello, Mole! 'said the Water Rat.
    'Hello, Rat! 'said the Mole.
    'Would you like to come over?' asked the Rat.
    'Oh, it's easy to talk, 'said the Mole, a little crossly. The river was new to him and he did not know how to get to the other side.
    The Rat said nothing, and disappeared. Then he appeared again, in a little blue and white boat, which came quickly across the river towards the Mole. It stopped by the bank, and a moment later the Mole, to his great surprise and excitement, found himself actually sitting in a real boat.
    'Do you know, 'he said, as the Rat began to row away from the bank, 'I've never been in a boat before in all my life. '
    'What?' cried the Rat. 'My dear fellow, you haven't lived! Believe me, 'he went on seriously, 'there is nothing-really nothing-nicer than just messing about in boats. You can go up river, down river, stay where you are, it really doesn't matter. There's always something to do, but you don't have to do it if you don't want to. You can do what you like. Look here! If you're not busy today, why don't we spend the day on the river together?'
    The Mole had listened to all this with great interest. Now he sat back in the comfortable seat and said, 'What a wonderful day this is! Let's start at once! '
    But first the Rat went into his hole, and after a while came out carrying a very large and heavy lunch basket. This went in to the boat, under the Mole's feet, and then the Rat began to row down river. The two friends talked from time to time, but mostly the Mole just watched the river dreamily, enjoying the sounds and the smells and the sunlight. At last they turned off the big river into a little side river that came down to join it. The Rat stopped the boat and they got out on to a bank of soft green grass under tall willow trees. It was very quiet and very peaceful.
    The Mole sat down and looked around him. 'What a beautiful place! 'he said happily.
    'Time for lunch, 'said the Rat, opening the basket. 'Come on, Mole! Let's get to work. '
    The Mole was happy to obey, because he was very hungry indeed after all his cleaning earlier in the day. And what a lunch it was! There were cold meats and egg sandwiches, cooked chicken and tomatoes, apples and bananas and a large cake.
    When at last they could eat no more, the Mole lay back and watched the river lazily. After a while he sat up.'I can see a long line of bubbles in the water, 'he said. 'I wonder what it is. '
    'Bubbles? Oho! 'said the Rat, and he called out across the river in a friendly kind of way.
    The bubbles stopped and turned. Soon a wet whiskery nose appeared above the edge of the bank, and the Otter pulled him self out and shook the water from his coat.
    'A lunch party! 'he said, going straight towards the food. 'Why didn't you invite me, Ratty?'
    'We didn't plan it, 'explained the Rat. 'We only decided to come this morning. Oh, and this is my friend, Mr Mole. '
    'Happy to meet you, 'said the Otter, and the two animals were friends at once.
    'All the world seems to be out on the river today, 'said the Otter while he ate. 'I came up this side river to try and get a moment's peace, and then I find you fellows having a lunch party! '
    Suddenly there was a noise in the thick bushes behind them, and a big black and white head looked out at them.
    'Come on, old Badger! 'shouted the Rat.
    The Badger came forward a few steps, then stopped. 'Hmm! A crowd! 'he said crossly, and turned his back and disappeared again into the bushes.
    'What a pity! 'said the Rat. 'Dear old Badger! He's a good fellow, but he does hate a crowd. We won't see him again today. But tell us, who's out on the river?'
    'Toad's out, for one, 'replied the Otter. 'In his shiny new boat. He's got new boating clothes, and everything! '
    The Rat and the Otter looked at each other and laughed.
    'Toad's always trying something new, 'the Rat explained to the Mole. 'But he always gets bored so quickly. Last year it was a house-boat, and he wanted to spend the rest of his life living on the river. This year it's rowing-boats. '
    'He's a nice fellow, of course, 'said the Otter. 'But he never learns from his mistakes! '
    From where they sat they could see a bit of the big river. And just then they saw a rowing-boat going past, and in it a short fat animal, rowing very hard and very badly.
    'There's Toad going past now, 'said the Rat. 'Look at him! He'll turn that boat over in a minute. '
    'Of course he will, 'laughed the Otter. Toad had now disappeared up river, and the Otter went on, 'Did I ever tell you that story about Toad and the…'
    There was a sudden movement in the water near the bank. Something silvery shone for a second, then it was gone. And so was the Otter. The Mole looked down. The Otter's voice was still in his ears, but the Otter had disappeared.
    There was just a long line of bubbles in the river.
    The Rat sang a little song to himself, and the Mole remembered that it was not at all polite, in the animal world, to say anything if your friends disappeared at any moment, for any reason.
    'Well, well, 'said the Rat. 'I suppose we should think about getting home. '
    The Mole packed the things away in the lunch basket, and soon the Rat began to row gently homewards while the after noon sun went down behind the trees. The Rat was dreaming quietly to himself, but the Mole was very full of lunch and the excitements of the day. He began to think that he knew every thing about boats now.
    And in a while he said, 'Ratty! Pleas, I want to row! '
    The Rat shook his head with a smile. 'Not yet, my young friend, 'he said. 'Wait until you've had a few lessons. It's not as easy as it looks. '
    The Mole was quiet for a minute or two. But he wanted to row very much indeed. He was sure that he could row as well as Rat. Then, before the Rat could stop him, he jumped up, and pulled the oars out of the surprised Rat's hands. The Rat fell backwards off his seat, calling out, 'Stop it, you silly fellow! You'll have us in the river! '
    The Mole made a great dig at the water with the oars, but the oars never touched the water at all. The Mole's legs flew up above his head, and he found himself lying on top of the Rat in the bottom of the boat. Frightened, he tried to get up, got hold of the side of the boat, and the next moment-splash!
    Over went the boat, and the Mole and the Rat and the lunch basket were all in the water.
    It was the Rat, of course, who pulled the Mole out of the water, who turned the boat right way up, who found the oars, who got the lunch basket from the bottom of the river. And he laughed and laughed.
    When all was ready again, the unhappy Mole sat in the boat very wet and very miserable. As they left, he said in a low voice, 'Ratty, my dear friend! I have been so silly and so ungrateful. I really am very sorry indeed. '
    'That's all right! 'replied the Rat kindly. 'I'm always in and out of the water myself, so don't worry about it. But I re ally think you should come and stay with me for a while. You'll be very comfortable, and I'll teach you to row and to swim. Soon you'll be as good a boatman as any of us. '
    The Mole was almost too happy to speak and could find no words to thank his friend.
    When they got home, they had a good hot supper in front of a bright fire while the Rat told exciting stories of life on the river. Then he took the Mole upstairs to the best bedroom, and soon the Mole was lying warm and comfortable, listening to the sound of his new friend the River running past his bedroom window.
    That was the first of many wonderful days for the Mole, as the spring turned slowly into a golden summer. He learnt to swim and to row, and he learnt to love the sound of the wind when it went whispering its secrets through the trees and the plants by the river.
    
    1 河
    
    鼹鼠整个早上都在辛苦地打扫着他的小屋。他扫着,洗着;拖地板,掸墙壁,一会儿站在椅子上擦洗着食品柜顶。一会儿钻进床底清理杂物,一会儿又卷起地毯。他不停地清扫着,直到累得胳膊酸脊背疼。
    这正是开春时节,到处都充满了春天的气息,就连鼹鼠这个地下阴暗的小窝里也洋溢着春意。春天,意味着万物变化,阳光明媚,新叶吐芽,所以大家一点也不奇怪鼹鼠突然扔下扫帚感叹道:“噢,真无聊!我讨厌大扫除!”地面上有什么东西在召唤着他,他跑出房间,开始挖洞钻向有阳光照耀的地方。
    他挖了推,推了挖,嘴里还喃喃自语着“向上!向上!”最后他的鼻子触到了阳光,他发现他正在一块田地的暧烘烘的草丛里。
    “这真不错!”鼹鼠说道,“这比大扫除要好的多!”太阳照在他的背上,暖洋洋的,四周有鸟儿在唱着动听的歌。他高兴地蹦了一下,活动活动筋骨,然后穿过田地向树丛走去。他这里走走,那里转转,穿过田野,逛过树林,最大限度地调动自己的视觉,嗅觉和听觉。各处的动物和鸟儿都一边说笑着,一边忙着找食物,忙着为春天筑新巢。鼹鼠可喜欢这些了。
    不知不觉,他来到了一条河边。他至今还从未见过河水——这个明澈耀眼的奇妙之物,它欢蹦乱跳地穿梭在岸边树林的倒影之间。它从不停息,匆匆奔流着,却一路欢声笑语。
    鼹鼠马上就喜欢上它了。他沿着河岸走着,并一直听着,看着。最后他坐在草地上欣赏着河对岸的风景。那儿有一个黑洞,鼹鼠出神地看着,想:在河边有一间小房子应该会很惬意的。他看着看着,发现有东西在洞里闪烁。很快他看清那是一只眼睛,然后一张脸也出现了。
    一张褐色的小脸,长着几根胡须。
    眼睛亮亮的,耳朵小小的,毛发厚而亮。
    这是只水老鼠。
    于是他们俩都站了起来,看着对方。
    “你好,鼹鼠!”
    “你好,水鼠!”
    “你愿意过来吗?”水鼠问道。
    “噢,说起来容易,”鼹鼠有点嗔怪地说。河,对他来说是很陌生的,他不知道怎样才能到达河对岸。
    水鼠一声没吭便不见了,不久又出现了,坐在一条蓝白相间的小船上,它很快地向鼹鼠这边驶来,靠岸边停了下来。不一会儿,鼹鼠满怀好奇和兴奋地发现他自己确确实实地坐在了一条真正的船上。
    “你知道吗,”当水鼠将船划离河岸时,鼹鼠对他说,“我这辈子还从未坐过船呢。”
    “什么?”水鼠叫道。“我亲爱的伙计,你算白活了!相信我,”他一本正经地继续着,“没有什么——真的没有什么——比在船上打发时光更惬意。你可以划向河的上游,或下游,还可以随意停下来,一点问题也没有。总有事做,但如果你不想去做也不用勉强,你可以干你愿意干的事。看这儿!如果你今天没事,我们为什么不一起在河上玩它一整天呢?”
    鼹鼠带着极大的兴趣听完了这一切。然后,他向后靠坐在那张舒服的座位上回答道:“这将是多么美妙的一天!我们现在就出发吧!”
    但是水鼠先回到了洞里,一会儿又出来了,提着一只又大又沉的午餐篮。他把篮子移进船内鼹鼠的脚下,然后开始向下游划去。这俩朋友时不时地聊着天,但更多的时候,鼹鼠仅仅是神思恍惚地注视着河水,享受着自然界的音响,气味,还有阳光。最后他们划离主河道转入一条与大河交汇的小支流。后来水鼠把船停了下来,他们就一起上了岸。岸上高大的柳树掩映着一片松软的绿油油的草地,非常安怡恬静。
    鼹鼠坐下来,看了看他的周围,愉快地说道:“多么美丽的地方!”
    “该用午餐了,”水鼠边说边打开篮子,“快点,鼹鼠!过来准备吧。”
    鼹鼠高兴地服从吩咐,经过一早上的大扫除,他确实非常饿。这是一顿多么丰富的午餐啊!有冷肉和鸡蛋三明治,有炸鸡和西红柿、苹果、香蕉,还有一大块蛋糕。
    最后他们再也吃不下了,鼹鼠躺倒在地,懒懒地看着河水。不一会儿,他坐了起来说:“我看见水里有一长串水泡,那是什么?”
    “水泡?哦噢!”水鼠友好地向河水那儿叫道。
    水泡没了,又转到了另一个地方。很快一个湿漉漉的长着胡须的鼻子出现在河岸边,水獭爬上了岸,抖动着外衣上的水。
    “午餐派对!”他边说边径直向食物走去。“你为什么不邀请我,阿鼠?”
    “我们不是事先计划好的,”水鼠解释道。“我们今天早上才决定过来的。哦,这是我的朋友,鼹鼠先生。”
    “很高兴认识你,”水獭招呼道,这两只动物马上就成了朋友。
    “今天所有人似乎都在河上,”水獭边吃边说,“我游到这条支流上是想安静一会儿,不想却碰到你们哥俩在搞午餐派对!”
    突然,他们身后浓密的灌木丛里发出了响声,一个大大的黑白脑袋探出头瞅着他们。
    “过来,老獾!”水鼠叫道。
    獾向前走了几步又停下来,“呣,这么挤!”他愠怒地说着,转身消失在灌木丛里。
    “多遗憾!”水鼠叹道。“亲爱的老獾!他人倒不错,就是讨厌人多,今天就甭想见他了。但你给我们说说,谁还在河上?”
    “癞蛤蟆出来了,算他一个,”水獭回答道。“坐在他那亮晃晃的新船上,穿着崭新的划船装,总之,什么都是新的!”
    水鼠和水獭相互对视一下,然后笑了起来。
    “癞蛤蟆总是在尝试新鲜的玩意儿,”水鼠向鼹鼠解释。“但他总是很快又厌倦了。去年是一种房子船,他曾打算在河上度过他的余生。今年他又喜欢上了划艇。”
    “当然,他这哥们儿不错,”水獭接着说,“但是他从来不从他的错误里吸取教训!”
    从他们坐的地方能看见大河的一点风景。这时,他们恰好看到一艘划艇经过,一只短粗肥胖的动物正在非常吃力、非常笨拙地划船。
    “正朝这边来的就是蛤蟆,”水鼠说,“看他!很快就会把船弄翻的。”
    “那是当然的,”水獭笑道,癞蛤蟆此时已不在他们视线里了,水獭继续着,“我曾告诉过你关于蛤蟆的故事和那……”
    只见岸边的水突然晃动了一下,什么东西银光一闪便不见了,水獭也一晃眼就离开了。鼹鼠低头看着河水,水獭的声音仍在耳边未落,但身影已消失。
    河面上仅仅留下了一长串水泡。
    水鼠自个儿哼着歌,鼹鼠记起来了:在动物世界里,不管你的朋友在何时为何事突然消失,你都不能发表任何看法,否则就会被视为无礼。
    “好了,好了,”水鼠说。“我想我们该准备回家了。”
    鼹鼠把东西收拾到午餐篮里,很快水鼠就开始轻松地划着船回去了。午后的太阳已落在树后,水鼠在那儿一声不吭沉浸在自己的梦中,鼹鼠则满肚子的午餐,满脑子的兴奋。他开始认为他现在完全了解船了。
    过了一会,他说:“阿鼠!拜托,我想划船!”
    水鼠微笑着摇摇头。“还不行,我年轻的朋友,”他说。“等你学了几招再划,这并不像看起来那么简单。”
    鼹鼠安静了一两分钟,但是他确实非常想划船,他相信他能划得像水鼠那样好。紧接着,他跳了起来,水鼠还没来得及阻止,他已从吃惊的水鼠手中抽过船桨。水鼠从座位上摔了下来,叫道:“停下,你这傻蛋!你会把我们弄下水的!”
    鼹鼠用木桨在水面上划过很大的弧度,但双桨根本挨不着水,而他的腿已翘过他的头,他发现他正压在摔倒在船底板上的水鼠身上。惊恐中,他试图站起来,便抓住船的一边,只听——扑通一声。
    船翻了,鼹鼠,水鼠,午餐篮统统落入水里。
    是水鼠,当然是水鼠把鼹鼠拉出水面,是他把船翻正,找回双桨,从河底捞出午餐篮,然后他笑个不停。
    待一切收拾停当,鼹鼠不开心地坐在船上,浑身湿漉漉的,非常可怜。当他们起程回家时,他低声地说,“阿鼠,我亲爱的朋友!我是多么愚蠢,多么不知好歹,我真的非常抱歉。”
    “没什么!”水鼠友善地回答道。“我总是在水里出入,不要为此担心。但是我真的认为你应该来和我呆一段时间。你会很舒服的,我将教你划船,教你游泳,不久你就会和我们划得一样好。”
    鼹鼠太高兴了,他简直不知道该说什么来感谢他的朋友。
    他们回到家,坐在明亮的火炉前用着可口的热乎乎的晚餐,水鼠边吃边说着河上的生活趣事。然后他把鼹鼠带到楼上最好的卧室,不久鼹鼠就暖和地,舒服地躺下了,聆听着他的新朋友——河水——流过窗边的声音。
    那是春天慢慢向金色的夏天转变时,鼹鼠所经历的多彩生活的第一天。从那以后,他学着游泳,划船,还学着去喜欢听风声——听它吹过河边的树木和花草时沙沙低语着自己的秘密。
    

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