The Moon Under Water by George Orwell ( 散文翻译 )

by 云天


The Moon Under Water

by George Orwell

水月

乔治.奥威尔

My favourite public-house, the Moon Under Water, is only two minutes from a bus
stop, but it is on a side-street, and drunks and rowdies never seem to find their way
there, even on Saturday nights.

我最中意的酒吧,水月,离公车站仅两分钟,但因地处偏街小巷,醉鬼和闹徒们从来摸不着门,即使是周六晚上。

Its clientele, though fairly large, consists mostly of “regulars” who occupy the same
chair every evening and go there for conversation as much as for the beer.

水月的客人尽管相当多,但大都是些“熟客”,每晚必落座同一张椅子,去那里为喝酒,也为聊天。

If you are asked why you favour a particular public-house, it would seem natural to
put the beer first, but the thing that most appeals to me about the Moon Under Water
is what people call its “atmosphere.”

如果有人问你为什么青睐某家特定的酒吧,那么,把啤酒排在首位,似乎再自然不过。但于我,水月的魅力在于所谓的“气氛”。

To begin with, its whole architecture and fittings are uncompromisingly Victorian.
It has no glass-topped tables or other modern miseries, and, on the other hand, no
sham roof-beams, ingle-nooks or plastic panels masquerading as oak. The grained
woodwork, the ornamental mirrors behind the bar, the cast-iron fireplaces, the
florid ceiling stained dark yellow by tobacco-smoke, the stuffed bull’s head over
the mantelpiece —everything has the solid, comfortable ugliness of the nineteenth
century.

首先,水月的整体建筑和装潢设施尽显不折不扣的维多利亚风格。这里看不到玻璃台面桌子,或其它种种时尚悲哀。另外,也看不到装饰性的屋顶假梁、壁炉设施,或仿橡木的塑料面板。纹理暴露的木质品,吧台后面的装饰镜,用来铸铁的壁炉,被烟草熏成暗黄的绘花屋顶,壁炉架上方的公牛头标本 —— 所有这一切,在在让人感受十九世纪固有的厚实而舒适的粗朴。

In winter there is generally a good fire burning in at least two of the bars, and the
Victorian lay-out of the place gives one plenty of elbow-room. There are a public bar,
a saloon bar, a ladies’ bar, a bottle-and-jug for those who are too bashful to buy their
supper beer publicly, and, upstairs, a dining-room.

通常情况下,冬天至少有两个酒吧间里炉火烧得旺旺的。维多利亚式的布局给客人提供了宽敞的活动空间。酒馆里不光有公共酒吧,沙龙酒吧,女士酒吧,还另设独门单间,服务那些羞于在大庭广众之下买晚餐啤酒的客人。楼上经营餐厅。

Games are only played in the public, so that in the other bars you can walk about
without constantly ducking to avoid flying darts.

玩游戏只限于公共酒吧间。这样,在其它酒吧间,你尽管随意走动,而不必老是低头躲闪飞镖。

In the Moon Under Water it is always quiet enough to talk. The house possesses
neither a radio nor a piano, and even on Christmas Eve and such occasions the singing
that happens is of a decorous kind.

水月一向幽静的环境非常适宜交谈。酒馆里既没有收音机,也没有钢琴声,即使在圣诞夜之类的场合,所唱歌曲也属高雅一类。

The barmaids know most of their customers by name, and take a personal interest in
everyone. They are all middle-aged women —two of them have their hair dyed in
quite surprising shades—and they call everyone “dear,” irrespective of age or sex.
(“Dear,” not “Ducky”: pubs where the barmaid calls you “ducky” always have a
disagreeable raffish atmosphere.)

水月的吧女们记得住大部分客人的名字,对每位客人的个人喜好也很上心。她们全是清一色的中年女人 ,其中两位还把头发染成特别抓眼球的颜色。客人无论男女老少,在她们口中一概是“亲爱的”, (是“亲爱的”,而不是“宝贝儿”:被吧女唤作“宝贝儿”的那些酒吧,气氛都比较放荡,令人反感。)

Unlike most pubs, the Moon Under Water sells tobacco as well as cigarettes, and it
also sells aspirins and stamps, and is obliging about letting you use the telephone.

与大多酒吧不同的是,水月既卖烟草,也卖卷烟,还兼售阿司匹林和邮票,并且不介意你使用那里的电话。

You cannot get dinner at the Moon Under Water, but there is always the snack
counter where you can get liver-sausage sandwiches, mussels (a speciality of the
house), cheese, pickles and those large biscuits with caraway seeds in them which
only seem to exist in public-houses.

你在水月吃不到晚餐,但在快餐柜台,你总能买到肝肠三明治,贻贝(水月招牌菜),乳酪,酱黄瓜,还有好像只在酒吧才尝得到的香菜籽大饼干。

Upstairs, six days a week, you can get a good, solid lunch —for example, a cut off the
joint, two vegetables and boiled jam roll — for about three shillings.

一周六天,你都可以到二楼餐厅享受味美量足的午饭。譬如,一块熟肉片,两份素菜,再加一份水煮果酱卷 --- 统共只花三先令左右。

The special pleasure of this lunch is that you can have draught stout with it. I doubt
whether as many as 10 per cent of London pubs serve draught stout, but the Moon
Under Water is one of them. It is a soft, creamy sort of stout, and it goes better in a
pewter pot.

在这儿吃午饭别有乐趣,你可以就着生啤用餐。我怀疑经营生啤的伦敦酒吧是否可达十分之一,而水月就在其中。这款生啤口感绵软,有奶油般的质地, 装在白鑞壶里喝起来会更加可口。

They are particular about their drinking vessels at the Moon Under Water, and never,
for example, make the mistake of serving a pint of beer in a handleless glass. Apart
from glass and pewter mugs, they have some of those pleasant strawberry-pink china
ones which are now seldom seen in London. China mugs went out about 30 years ago,
because most people like their drink to be transparent, but in my opinion beer tastes
better out of china.

水月对酒器格外讲究。比方,用无柄玻璃杯盛啤酒招待客人,水月就不会出这类纰漏。除了玻璃杯和白镴杯,水月还有那种赏心悦目的草莓红瓷杯,这在时下的伦敦是稀罕物。瓷杯大约三十年前就不时兴了,因为大多数人喜欢杯中饮料通透清亮,而我个人以为,从瓷杯里倒出来的酒味道更胜一筹。

The great surprise of the Moon Under Water is its garden. You go through a narrow
passage leading out of the saloon, and find yourself in a fairly large garden with plane
trees, under which there are little green tables with iron chairs round them. Up at one
end of the garden there are swings and a chute for the children.

水月的花园乃一大惊奇。穿过一道狭窄的走廊,你就走出了沙龙,置身于一个颇具规模的花园,那里梧桐树下摆着些小绿桌,铁椅环绕着桌子。花园的一端有些秋千,还有一个滑滑梯,供孩童嬉戏。

On summer evenings there are family parties, and you sit under the plane trees having
beer or draught cider to the tune of delighted squeals from children going down the
chute. The prams with the younger children are parked near the gate.

仲夏之夜,可以在花园里举办家庭聚会。你坐在梧桐树下,品着啤酒或生苹果酒,耳边传来孩子们玩滑梯的开心尖叫声。停放在花园大门旁的婴儿车里躺着小宝贝们。

Many as are the virtues of the Moon Under Water, I think that the garden is its best
feature, because it allows whole families to go there instead of Mum having to stay at
home and mind the baby while Dad goes out alone.

在水月诸多亮点中,我首推花园,因为一家老少因之得以共聚水月。不然的话,父亲独自出外消遣时,母亲只好守在家里照顾幼儿。

And though, strictly speaking, they are only allowed in the garden, the children
tend to seep into the pub and even to fetch drinks for their parents. This, I believe,
is against the law, but it is a law that deserves to be broken, for it is the puritanical
nonsense of excluding children — and therefore, to some extent, women — from
pubs that has turned these places into mere boozing-shops instead of the family
gathering-places that they ought to be.

尽管严格说来,孩子们只允许呆在花园里,但他们往往会溜进酒吧里晃悠,甚至帮他们的父母去拿饮料。我相信,这是违法的,但这个法规应当废除,因为这种清教徒式的荒谬,在禁止孩童出入酒吧的同时,从某种程度上,也将女士们拒之门外了,这样,酒吧就背弃了它作为家庭聚会场所的宗旨,而成了纯粹的纵酒之地。

The Moon Under Water is my ideal of what a pub should be — at any rate, in the
London area. (The qualities one expects of a country pub are slightly different.)

我理想中的酒吧该是水月这样的 --- 至少在伦敦城。(人们对乡村酒吧品质的期望则略有不同。)

But now is the time to reveal something which the discerning and disillusioned reader
will probably have guessed already. There is no such place as the Moon Under Water.

但现在,是披露真相的时刻了,或许目光敏锐并且对现实不抱幻想的读者已经窥到端倪。像水月这样的酒吧哪里寻得到呢。

That is to say, there may well be a pub of that name, but I don’t know of it, nor do I
know any pub with just that combination of qualities.

也就是说,极有可能有一家叫水月的酒吧,但我没听说过,而且,我也不知道任何一家酒吧具备那些综合特色。

I know pubs where the beer is good but you can’t get meals, others where you can get
meals but which are noisy and crowded, and others which are quiet but where the beer
is generally sour. As for gardens, offhand I can only think of three London pubs that
possess them.

据我所知,啤酒好喝的酒吧,不供应餐食。而供餐的酒吧却嘈杂拥挤。其它安静的酒吧呢,啤酒又普遍发酸。至于带花园的,我能马上想到的,也就只有三家伦敦酒吧。

But, to be fair, I do know of a few pubs that almost come up to the Moon Under
Water. I have mentioned above ten qualities that the perfect pub should have and I
know one pub that has eight of them. Even there, however, there is no draught stout,
and no china mugs.

但说句公道话,我确实知道几家酒吧,非常接近水月的档次。我上面提到完美酒吧应具备十条要素,我知道有一间酒吧八项达标。但即使那间酒吧,也没有生啤和瓷杯。

And if anyone knows of a pub that has draught stout, open fires, cheap meals, a
garden, motherly barmaids and no radio, I should be glad to hear of it, even though its
name were something as prosaic as the Red Lion or the Railway Arms.

如果谁知道这样一家酒吧,有生啤喝,有明火烤炉,有廉价的美味餐食,有花园,有母亲般的吧女,又没有收音机,那我听了会很高兴,哪怕这家酒馆有红狮子或铁道之臂般索然寡味的名字。

云天译

2013-10-05 03:42:41