چهارشنبه چهارم اگوست 1943

دوره: آن فرانک: خاطرات یک دختر جوان / درس 30

آن فرانک: خاطرات یک دختر جوان

86 درس

چهارشنبه چهارم اگوست 1943

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متن انگلیسی درس

WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 4,1943

Dearest Kitty,

Now that we’ve been in hiding for a little over a year, you know a great deal about our lives. Still, I can’t possibly tell you everything, since it’s all so different compared to ordinary times and ordinary people. Nevertheless, to give you a closer look into our lives, from time to time I’ll describe part of an ordinary day. I’ll start with the evening and night.

Nine in the evening. Bedtime always begins in the Annex with an enormous hustle and bustle. Chairs are shifted, beds pulled out, blankets unfolded-nothing stays where it is during the daytime. I sleep on a small divan, which is only five feet long, so we have to add a few chairs to make it longer. Comforter, sheets, pillows, blankets: everything has to be removed from Dussel’ s bed, where it’s kept during the day.

In the next room there’s a terrible creaking: that’s Margot’s folding bed being set up. More blankets and pillows, anything to make the wooden slats a bit more comfortable. Upstairs it sounds like thunder, but it’s only Mrs. van D.’s bed being shoved against the window so that Her Majesty, arrayed in her pink bed jacket, can sniff the night air through her delicate little nostrils. Nine o’clock. After Peter’s finished, it’s my turn for the bathroom. I wash myself from head to toe, and more often than not I find a tiny flea floating in the sink (only during the hot months, weeks or days). I brush my teeth, curl my hair, manicure my nails and dab peroxide on my upper lip to bleach the black hairs-all this in less than half an hour.

Nine-thirty. I throw on my bathrobe. With soap in one hand, and potty, hairpins, panties, curlers and a wad of cotton in the other, I hurry out of the bathroom. The next in line invariably calls me back to remove the gracefully curved but unsightly hairs that I’ve left in the sink.

Ten o’clock. Time to put up the blackout screen and say good-night. For the next fifteen minutes, at least, the house is filled with the creaking of beds and the sigh of broken springs, and then, provided our upstairs neighbors aren’t having a marital spat in bed, all is quiet.

Eleven-thirty. The bathroom door creaks. A narrow strip of light falls into the room. Squeaking shoes, a large coat, even larger than the man inside it . . . Dussel is returning from his nightly work in Mr. Kugler’s office. I hear him shuffiing back and forth for ten whole minutes, the rustle of paper (from the food he’s tucking away in his cupboard) and the bed being made up. Then the figure disappears again, and the only sound is the occasional suspicious noise from the bathroom.

Approximately three o’clock. I have to get up to use the tin can under my bed, which, to be on the safe side, has a rubber mat underneath in case of leaks. I always hold my breath while I go, since it clatters into the can like a brook down a mountainside. The potty is returned to its place, and the figure in the white nightgown (the one that causes Margot to exclaim every evening, “Oh, that indecent nighty!”) climbs back into bed. A certain somebody lies awake for about fifteen minutes, listening to the sounds of the night. In the first place, to hear whether there are any burglars downstairs, and then to the various beds-upstairs, next door and in my room-to tell whether the others are asleep or half awake. This is no fun, especially when it concerns a member of the family named Dr. Dussel. First, there’s the sound of a fish gasping for air, and this is repeated nine or ten times. Then, the lips are moistened profusely. This is alternated with little smacking sounds, followed by a long period of tossing and turning and rearranging the pillows. After five minutes of perfect quiet, the same sequence repeats itself three more times, after which he’s presumably lulled himself back to sleep for a while.

Sometimes the guns go off during the night, between one and four. I’m never aware of it before it happens, but all of a sudden I find myself standing beside my bed, out of sheer habit. Occasionally I’m dreaming so deeply (of irregular French verbs or a quarrel upstairs) that I realize only when my dream is over that the shooting has stopped and that I’ve remained quietly in my room. But usually I wake up. Then I grab a pillow and a handkerchief, throw on my robe and slippers and dash next door to Father, just the way Margot described in this birthday poem: When shots rino out in the dark of night,

The door creaks open and into sight

Come a hanky, a pillow, a figure in white. . .

Once I’ve reached the big bed, the worst is over, except when the shooting is extra loud.

Six forty-five. Brrring . . . the alarm clock, which raises its shrill voice at any hour of the day or night, whether you want it to or not. Creak. . . wham. . . Mrs. van D. turns it off. Screak . . . Mr. van D. gets up, puts on the water and races to the bathroom.

Seven-fifteen. The door creaks again. Dussel can go to the bathroom. Alone at last, I remove the blackout screen . . . and a new day begins in the Annex. Yours, Anne

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