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痛苦没有尽头?

"What is this life? Do you understand? I don't." This was Wayan talking.

"人生是怎么回事?你搞得懂吗?我搞不懂。"说话的是大姐。www.for68.com

I was back in her restaurant, eating her delicious and nutritious multivitamin lunch special, hoping it would help ease my hangover and my anxiety. Armenia the Brazilian woman was there, too, looking, as always, like she'd just stopped by the beauty parlor on her way home from a weekend at a spa. Little Tutti was sitting on the floor, drawing pictures of houses, as usual.

我回到她的餐厅吃美味营养的多种维他命午间特餐,希望纾解自己的宿醉与焦虑。巴西女人亚美尼亚也在那儿,一如往常,看起来好似度过水疗周末,而在返家途中顺道造访美容院。小图蒂坐在地板上,照例画着房子。

Wayan had just learned that the lease on her shop was going to come up for renewal at the end of August—only three months from now—and that her rent would be raised. She would probably have to move again because she couldn't afford to stay here. Except that she only had about fifty dollars in the bank, and no idea where to go. Moving would take Tutti out of school again. They needed a home—a real home. This is no way for a Balinese person to live.

大姐刚刚得知,她的店即将在八月底租约期满——距今仅剩三个月——且店租即将提高。她可能必须再次搬家,因为她负担不起。她的存款仅剩五十元左右,不知该何去何从。搬家得让图蒂再次转学。他们需要一个家——一个真正的家。这可不是巴厘人可以过的生活。

"Why does suffering never end?" Wayan asked. She wasn't crying, merely posing a simple, unanswerable and weary question. "Why must everything be repeat and repeat, never finish, never resting? You work so hard one day, but the next day, you must only work again. You eat, but the next day, you are already hungry. You find love, then love go away. You are born with nothing—no watch, no T-shirt. You work hard, then you die with nothing—no watch, no T-shirt. You are young, then you are old. No matter how hard you work, you cannot stop getting old."

"痛苦为何没有尽头?"大姐问。她并未痛哭,只是提出一个简单、毫无解答的无奈问题。"为什么每件事必须重复再重复,没完没了,无止无尽?你辛勤工作一整天,隔天却只是得继续工作。你吃饭,隔天却又饿了。你找到爱,而后爱又离去。你出生时一无所有——没有手表,没有T恤。你辛苦工作,死的时候也一无所有——没有手表,没有T恤。你年轻,却会变老。无论多么辛苦工作,都无法阻止自己变老。"

"Not Armenia," I joked. "She doesn't get old, apparently."

"亚美尼亚可不,"我打趣道,"她显然不会变老。"

Wayan said, "But this is because Armenia is Brazilian," catching on now to how the world works. We all laughed, but it was a fair breed of gallows humor, because there's nothing funny about Wayan's situation in the world right now. Here are the facts: Single mom, preco-cious child, hand-to-mouth business, imminent poverty, virtual homelessness. Where will she go? Can't live with the ex-husband's family, obviously. Wayan's own family are rice farmers way out in the countryside and poor. If she goes and lives with them, it's the end of her busi-ness as a healer in town because her patients won't be able to reach her and you can pretty much forget about Tutti ever getting enough education to go someday to Animal Doctor Col-lege.

大姐说:"那是因为亚美尼亚是巴西人。"如今她已理解世界的运作方式。我们都笑了,然而这是一种黑色幽默,因为大姐此刻在世间的处境可一点也不有趣。事实真相是:单亲妈妈,早熟的孩子,仅足糊口的生意,迫在眉睫的贫穷,实质上的无家可归。她何去何从?显然不能去住在前夫家。大姐自己娘家则是贫困的乡下稻农。她如果回去与家人同住,她在市镇的治疗事业将从此告终,因为她的病患无从与她取得联系,而让图蒂受良好教育、将来上大学念兽医的梦想也将成为泡影。

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