Skip to content

【纽约时报】生活的恩惠:一只狗的真心

【纽约时报】生活的恩惠:一只狗的真心

生老病死,是每一个人都要经历的一个过程。但是,我们很难完整地观察到另外一个人完整的一生。但是,养过狗狗的人,会有这样一种体验。狗狗的一生最多也就十几年。你看着TA步履蹒跚地来到了家,看着TA学会上厕所,看着TA有了小宝宝,又看着TA步入晚年,最后无力地瘫在地上。


生活的恩惠:一只狗的真心


【纽约时报】生活的恩惠:一只狗的真心

作者:Jennifer Finney Boylan

译者:倪凌晖

校对:刘   璠

策划:刘   璠


Inside of a Dog

一只狗的真心


本文选自 The New York Times | 取经号原创翻译

关注 取经号,回复关键词“外刊”

获取《经济学人》等原版外刊获得方法


I took her picture last year, one sparkling autumn day, as she stood on our dirt road waiting for me. There was a bright red maple leaf on the ground.

去年,我为她拍下了这张照片。那天,秋高气爽,她立在那条土路上等我。一片鲜红的枫叶飘落在地上。


This fall, I held that photo in my hands as the tears rolled down. Eva Cassidy was singing on the radio: “But I miss you most of all, my darling, when autumn leaves start to fall.”

今年秋天,手捧着这张照片,我泪流满面。收音机中,伊娃•卡斯迪正唱着:“可是亲爱的,落叶飘零之际,亦是我对你的思念最深之际。”


This is the season when columnists write stories about lives that came to an end during the year and remember small acts of grace — those gifts that cannot be asked for, only received. Here’s mine.

在秋天这个季节里,专栏作家们总会写一些有关这一年中生命流逝的故事,感念生活中的点滴恩惠——那些可遇不可求的恩惠。下面就是一则我的故事。


My sons were 12 and 10 in 2006, and our family had been through a wrenching couple of years. And yet, we’d emerged on the other side of those days still together, the four of us plus Ranger, the black lab. Our lives revolved around that dog, and one another. But we worried that Ranger felt puny when we weren’t around. Sometimes we arrived back at the house to hear him howling piteously. It was heartbreaking, his loneliness.

2006年,我的两个儿子,一个12岁,一个10岁。那时,我们刚刚经历过几年痛苦的日子。但我们一家四口和Ranger,一条黑色的拉布拉多犬,一起熬过了那段黑暗时光。他是我们生活的中心,我们各自也是彼此生活的中心。但我们担心当我们不在他身边的时候,Ranger会感到害怕。有时回到家,我们会听到他可怜叫声。那里面的孤独让人心碎。

puny /ˈpju:ni/ adj.(disapproving) small and weak 弱小的;孱弱的

piteous /ˈpɪtiəs/ adj. (literary) deserving or causing pity 可怜的;令人怜悯的;令人同情的


Then, someone emailed us about this dog named Indigo. She’d had puppies a few months before, and now she needed a home. Were the Boylans interested?

后来,有人发邮件问我们是不是有兴趣收养一条叫Indigo的狗。她几个月前刚生下一窝小狗。现在她需要一个家。


The Boylans were. And so Indigo joined us, as Ranger’s wing-dog. When she first stepped through the door, her underbelly still showed the recent signs of the litter she’d delivered. Between the wise, droopy face and the swinging dog teats, she was a sight to behold.

我们当然愿意收养她。于是Indigo就这样来了,成了Ranger的陪伴犬。当年她迈进家门的时候,肚子上仍然有着生产后留下的痕迹。她有着一张机灵的长脸,摇晃着乳头,看上去可不像一般的狗狗。

underbelly [N-COUNT 可数名词] 动物的下腹部;交通工具的底部,下部;The underbelly of an animal or a vehicle is the underneath part of it. [usu with supp]


She had a nose for trouble. On one occasion, I came home to find that she’d eaten a five-pound bag of flour. She was covered in white powder, and flour pawprints were everywhere. I asked the dog what had happened, and Indy just looked at me with a glance that said, “I cannot imagine what you are referring to.”

Indigo总会惹麻烦。有一次,我回到家,发现她吃了一袋五磅的面粉。她浑身雪白,家里布满了白色的脚印。我问她发生了什么?她瞥了我一眼,好像是在对我说:“我不知道你在说什么。”


Time passed. Our boys grew up and went off to college. I left my job at Colby College in Maine and joined the faculty at Barnard College in New York. My mother died at age 94. The mirror, which had reflected a young mom when Indigo first barged through the door, now showed a woman in late middle age. I had surgery for cataracts. I began to lose my hearing. We all turned gray: me, my spouse, the dogs.

时光流逝,一转眼,孩子们都长大了,上了大学。我从缅因州的科尔比学院离职,加入了纽约巴纳德学院。我的母亲也去世了,享年94岁。当年Indigo第一次进家门时见到的那个年轻的母亲,如今已是一个迟暮的中年妇人。我做了白内障手术,听力也在逐渐退化。我、我的丈夫和狗狗们都老了。


This summer, I took Indigo for one last walk. She was slow and unsteady on her paws. She looked up at me mournfully. “You did say you’d take care of me, when the time came,” her eyes said. “You promised.”

这个夏天,我带Indigo出门散步。这是我们最后一次一起散步。她走得很慢,步履蹒跚。她哀伤地看着我,像是在说:“你说过,当那一刻真的来临的时候,你会好好照顾我。你答应过我的。”


She died on an August afternoon, a tennis ball at her side.

她在八月的一个午后去世了,身边有一个网球。


Sometimes, this autumn, I’d find myself looking for her, as if she might be sleeping in one of my children’s empty bedrooms. But she wasn’t there.

今年秋天,我有时还会下意识地寻找她,好像她还活着,可能正睡在孩子们的空房间里。但她并不在那里。


When you lose a dog, you not only lose the animal that has been your friend, you also lose a connection to the person you have been. For a dozen years, Indigo had been a constant, part of the glue that held us together. Now she was gone.

当你失去了爱犬,你失去的不仅仅是那个曾经的朋友,还是那个曾经的自己。12年来,Indigo已经成为了这个家的一员,把我们一家人团结在一起。如今她却走了。


Then one day I got a call from the place where we board our dogs when we are out of town, a “bed ’n’ biscuit” called Willow Run. One of their customers was dying of cancer. Her dog, Chloe, was a black lab, and she needed a home. We rolled our eyes. They had to be kidding. We were in mourning, and we were pretty sure we didn’t want another big dog, especially an older one, and we were just too banged up. We told them we were sorry, but no.

一天,我接到了Willow Run宠物寄养中心打来的电话,平时我们出远门的时候会把狗狗寄养在那里。他们的一位顾客由于癌症即将离世。她有一条黑色的拉布拉多犬Chloe需要一个新家。我们翻了一个白眼,心想:开什么玩笑,我们刚刚失去爱犬,肯定不想再收养另一条大狗,特别是年纪大的狗狗。Indigo的死令我们伤心至极。我告诉他们,我们感到非常抱歉,但无能为力。

banged up adj. injured or damaged 受伤的;损坏的


Then, one weekend when I picked up Ranger after an overnight at Willow Run, I met Chloe. Her face was soft. I asked, maybe I could just take her home for a day? You know how this story ends.

后来的一个周末,我去Willow Run把寄养了一夜的Ranger接回家。在那里,我遇到了Chloe。她的脸软软的。我问店员,能不能带她回家呆一天?但你应该能够猜到她肯定呆了不止一天。


When Chloe entered our house, she was cautious and uncertain. She spent hours that first day going to every corner, sniffing things out. At the end of the day she sat down by the fireplace and gave me a look. “If you wanted,” she seemed to say, “I would stay with you.”

当Chloe进入我们家时,她有些警惕和不安。第一天,整整几个小时,她在家里四处乱转,嗅来嗅去。最后,她躺在了炉火边,看着我,像是在说:“如果你愿意,我可以陪着你。”


Ranger has a new wing-dog.

从此,Ranger有了一条新的陪伴犬。


I had hopes of having a conversation with Chloe’s owner, trying to learn what their history had been. I wanted to bring Chloe over to her house so that her owner could know that her dog had a good home, so that the two of them could have a proper farewell. When I finally got through, though, I learned that Chloe’s owner had died the week before.

我本来希望和Chloe的主人聊一聊,问问她们之间的往事。我想带Chloe去她家,让她知道Chloe找到了一个好归宿,她俩也能好好地做一次告别。但当我最终和那边取得联系的时候,才知道她的主人已经在一周前去世了。


It snowed that night, and I woke up in a room made mysterious by light and stillness. In the morning I sat up and found that Chloe had climbed into bed with us as we slept.

那晚下起了雪。晚上醒来,我发现灯光和寂静将房间装扮得略感神秘。早上,我坐起身来,发现Chloe趁着我们熟睡之际爬上了我们的床。


“Well?,” she asked. I touched her soft ears in the bright, quiet room and thought about the gift of grace.

“这样好吗?”她问。在那明亮安静的房间里,我抚摸着她柔软的耳朵,想着:她是生活的恩惠。


“If you wanted,” I said, “I would stay with you, too.”

我说:“如果你愿意,我也愿意陪着你。”



你是否也有和狗狗在一起生活的经历,

欢迎在评论区留言,

与我们分享那些或温馨或感伤的时光。



#访问取经号官网#

网站域名 qujinghao.com,即“取经号”的全拼

#读译交流#

后台回复 读译会,参与取经号Q群交流

#外刊资源#

后台回复 外刊,获取《经济学人》等原版外刊获得方法

#关注取经号#

扫描 二维码,关注跑得快的取经号(id: JTWest


【纽约时报】生活的恩惠:一只狗的真心

<原文链接:https://www.nytimes.com/2017/12/27/opinion/rescue-animals-dogs-adopt.html>

Be First to Comment

发表评论

电子邮件地址不会被公开。 必填项已用*标注