پنجشنبه شانزدهم سپتامبر 1943دوره: آن فرانک: خاطرات یک دختر جوان / درس 34
پنجشنبه شانزدهم سپتامبر 1943
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THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 16, 1943
Relationships here in the Annex are getting worse all the time. We don’t dare open our mouths at mealtime (except to slip in a bite of food), because no matter what we say, someone is bound to resent it or take it the wrong way. Mr. Voskuijl occasionally comes to visit us. Unfortunately, he’s not doing very well. He isn’t making it any easier for his family, because his attitude seems to be: what do I care, I’m going to die anyway! When I think how touchy everyone is here, I can just imagine what it must be like at the Voskuijls’.
I’ve been taking valerian every day to fight the anxiety and depression, but it doesn’t stop me from being even more miserable the next day. A good hearty laugh would help better than ten valerian drops, but we’ve almost forgotten how to laugh. Sometimes I’m afraid my face is going to sag with all this sorrow and that my mouth is going to permanently droop at the corners. The others aren’t doing any better.
Everyone here is dreading the great terror known as winter. Another fact that doesn’t exactly brighten up our days is that Mr. van Maaren, the man who works in the warehouse, is getting suspicious about the Annex. A person with any brains must have noticed by now that Miep sometimes says she’s going to the lab, Bep to the file room and Mr. Kleiman to the Opekta supplies, while Mr. Kugler claims the Annex doesn’t belong to this building at all, but to the one next door.
We wouldn’t care what Mr. van Maaren thought of the situation except that he’s known to be unreliable and to possess a high degree of curiosity. He’s not one who can be put off with a flimsy excuse.
One day Mr. Kugler wanted to be extra cautious, so at twenty past twelve he put on his coat and went to the drugstore around the corner. Less than five minutes later he was back, and he sneaked up the stairs like a thief to visit us. At one-fifteen he started to leave, but Bep met him on the landing and warned him that van Maaren was in the office.
Mr. Kugler did an about-face and stayed with us until one-thirty. Then he took off his shoes and went in his stockinged feet (despite his cold) to the front attic and down the other stairway, taking one step at a time to avoid the creaks. It took him fifteen minutes to negotiate the stairs, but he wound up safely in the office after having entered from the outside.
In the meantime, Bep had gotten rid of van Maaren and come to get Mr. Kugler from the Annex. But he’d already left and at that moment was still tiptoeing down the stairs. What must the passersby have thought when they saw the manager putting on his shoes outside? Hey, you there, in the socks!
WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 1943
It’s Mrs. van Daan’s birthday. Other than one ration stamp each for cheese, meat and bread, all she received from us was a jar of jam. Her husband, Dussel and the office staff gave her nothing but flowers and also food. Such are the times we live in!
Bep had a nervous fit last week because she had so many errands to do. Ten times a day people were sending her out for something, each time insisting she go right away or go again or that she’d done it all wrong. And when you think that she has her regular office work to do, that Mr. Kleiman is sick, that Miep is home with a cold and that Bep herself has a sprained ankle, boyfriend troubles and a grouchy father, it’s no wonder she’s at the end of her tether. We comforted her and told her that if she’d put her foot down once or twice and say she didn’t have the time, the shopping lists would shrink of their own accord.
Saturday there was a big drama, the likes of which have never been seen here before. It started with a discussion of van Maaren and ended in a general argument and tears. Dussel complained to Mother that he was being treated like a leper, that no one was friendly to him and that, after all, he hadn’t done anything to deserve it. This was followed by a lot of sweet talk, which luckily Mother didn’t fall for this time. She told him we were disappointed in him and that, on more than one occasion, he’d been a source of great annoyance.
Dussel promised her the moon, but, as usual, we haven’t seen so much as a beam. There’s trouble brewing with the van Daans, I can tell! Father’s furious because they’re cheating us: they’ve been holding back meat and other things. Oh, what kind of bombshell is about to burst now? If only I weren’t so involved in all these skirmishes! If only I could leave here! They’re driving us crazy! Yours, Anne SUNDAY, OCTOBER 17, 1943
Mr. Kleiman is back, thank goodness! He looks a bit pale, and yet he cheerfully set off to sell some clothes for Mr. van Daan.
The disagreeable fact is that Mr. van Daan has run out of money. He lost his last hundred guilders in the warehouse, which is still creating trouble for us: the men are wondering how a hundred guilders could wind up in the warehouse on a Monday morning. Suspicion abounds.
Meanwhile, the hundred guilders have been stolen. Who’s the thief? But I was talking about the money shortage. Mrs. van D. has scads of dresses, coats and shoes, none of which she feels she can do without. Mr. van D.’s suit is difficult to sell, and Peter’s bike was put on the block, but is back again, since nobody wanted it. But the story doesn’t end there. You see, Mrs. van D. is going to have to part with her fur coat. In her opinion, the firm should pay for our upkeep, but that’s ridiculous. They just had a flaming row about it and have entered the “oh, my sweet Putti” and “darling Kerli” stage of reconciliation.
My mind boggles at the profanity this honorable house has had to endure in the past month. Father walks around with his lips pressed together, and whenever he hears his name, he looks up in alarm, as ifhe’s afraid he’ll be called upon to resolve another delicate problem.
Mother’s so wrought up her cheeks are blotched with red, Margot complains of headaches, Dussel can’t sleep, Mrs. van D. frets and fumes all day long, and I’ve gone completely round the bend. To tell you the truth, I sometimes forget who we’re at odds with and who we’re not. The only way to take my mind off it is to study, and I’ve been doing a lot of that lately.
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