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旅行的艺术:Ⅷ 对美的拥有-1

所属教程:旅游英语口语

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2020年09月16日

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很多地方,我们去过了,但却只是走马观花,或者不以为意;然而,它们之中,偶尔也会有几个地方非常特别,给我们强烈的震撼,迫着我们去注意它们。这些地方共有着一种特质,可以用“美”这个笼统的字来概括。这种品质并不见得是指漂亮,也不意味着它包涵任何旅游手册所描绘的美丽景点的特征。求助于语言或许是另一种表达我们对一个地方的喜爱的方式。

Among all the places we go to but don't look at properly or which leave us indifferent, a few occasionally stand out with an impact that overwhelms us and forces us to take heed. They possess a quality that might clumsily be called beauty. This may not involve prettiness or any of the obvious features that guidebooks associate with beauty spots. Recourse to the word might just be another way of saying that we like a place.

在我的旅途中有许多美丽的东西。在马德里,距离我所住的旅馆几个街区的地方,有一块荒废的空地,周边是公寓式的建筑物和一个大型的带有洗车间的橙色加油站。一天晚上,在黑暗中,一列长长的、造型优美、几乎空无一人的列车在距离加油站屋顶几米的上方经过,与公寓中间楼层擦肩而过。列车行驶的高架轨道在黑夜里难以辨析,所以列车看上去像是飘浮在半空中,加之列车新潮的造型和从窗户玻璃散发出的苍白如幽灵般的绿光,它看上去更像一项杰出的技术成就。公寓里,人们在看电视或是在厨房里忙碌;同时,车厢里零零星星的乘客,有的凝视窗外的城市,有的则在看报纸:这是一次前往塞维尔或是科尔多瓦的旅程的开始,这次旅程将在洗碗机停止旋转或是电视机陷入安静之后很久才会结束。乘客和公寓里居住的人很少会注意到彼此,他们的生活沿着永不相交的直线向前发展,除了在一个短暂的时刻,同时进入一个观察者的眼里,而这个观察者是为了逃避旅馆里的哀伤氛围而出来散步的。

There was much beauty on my travels. In Madrid, a few blocks from my hotel there lay a patch of waste ground bordered by apartment buildings and a large orange-coloured petrol station with a car wash. One evening, in the darkness, a long, sleek, almost empty train passed several metres above the roof of the station and wended its way between the middle floors of the apartment buildings. With its viaduct lost in the night, the train appeared to float above the earth, a technological feat that looked more plausible given the train's futuristic shape and the pale ghostly green light emanating from its windows. Inside their apartments, people were watching television or moving around the kitchen; meanwhile, dispersed through the carriages, the few passengers stared out at the city or read newspapers: the start of a journey to Seville or Cordoba that would end long after the dishwashers had reached the end of their cycles and the televisions fallen silent. The passengers and apartment dwellers paid little attention to one another, their lives ran along lines that would never meet, except for a brief moment in the retina of an observer who had taken a walk to escape a sad hotel room.

在阿姆斯特丹,一扇木门后面的庭院里,有一堵老旧的砖墙,尽管沿着运河刮来冷风,让人的眼睛极不舒适,几欲流泪,但这堵墙,在微弱的早春阳光中慢慢暖和起来。我将双手从口袋里伸出,让它们顺着砖块粗糙而凹凸不平的表面滑过。砖块似乎很轻,而且易碎。我有一种想亲吻它们的冲动,想去更加亲近地感受一种质地,这种质地让我想起了浮石,还有来自一家黎巴嫩食品店的哈尔瓦(芝麻蜜饼)。

In Amsterdam, in a courtyard behind a wooden door, there was an old brick wall which, despite a tear-inducing wind blowing along the canals, had slowly heated itself up in a fragile early spring sun. I took my hands from my pockets and ran them along the bricks' gnarled and pitted surface. They seemed light and ready to crumble. I had an impulse to kiss them, to feel more closely a texture that reminded me of blocks of pumice or halva from a Lebanese delicatessen.

在巴巴多斯的东海岸,我眺望一片深紫色的大海,它延绵着,一路畅行至非洲海岸。我所在的小岛突然显得小而柔弱,它那由野生的粉色花朵和杂乱的树木构成的夸张植被,似乎是对大海的森然和单调的抗议。我还记得湖区凡人旅馆窗外晨光中的景色:由柔软的志留纪岩石构成的山丘被嫩绿色的草所覆盖,草面上萦绕着一层雾。丘陵起伏,像是一只巨兽的背脊,这只巨兽已经躺下睡熟,或许随时有可能醒来,站起来有几英里高,它可以像甩掉它绿色毛毡茄克上的绒毛一样震落橡树和灌木。

In Barbados, on the eastern shore, I had looked out across a dark-violet sea that continued unhindered to the coasts of Africa. The island had suddenly seemed small and vulnerable and its theatrical vegetation of wild pink flowers and shaggy trees a touching protest against the sober monotony of the sea. In the Lake District, I remembered the view at dawn from our window in the Mortal Man Inn: hills of soft Silurian rock covered in fine green grass above which a layer of mist was hovering. The hills undulated as though they formed part of the backbone of a giant beast that had lain down to sleep and might at any point awake and stand up several miles high, shaking off oak trees and hedgerows like pieces of fluff caught on its felt green jacket.

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