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Learn Chinese Online Short Story – 我身后的眼睛 The Eyes Behind Me [4] (Elementary)

Posted by Grace Feng on November 22, 2012

I’ve been thinking about writing a colloquial Chinese short story on Beginner level for a while, but it turns out that it’ll be much easier to tell a complete story on Elementary level instead of Beginner’s. By Elementary, I’m referring to a vocab base built up on 500 to 1500 characters. Again, it’s a vast definition. As long as the number of new words in a single mini novel is well under control, I think I’ll give myself a pass. :-) My dear readers, I’ll also need your feedback to help me understand the difficulty level of my writing.

I’ve always been thinking that Chinese language could be more approachable to the world if enough reading materials on different levels could be available for learners to read, especially for adult learners. That is also the main goal I’m trying to reach in this “Learn Chinese Online Short Stories” session.

Before you begin to read this 4500-character Elementary level short story, I’d suggest that you run through the vocab table first to get familiar with the new words. That way your actual reading process might be much smoother. At the end of each part, there will be a short quiz to test your comprehension.

 

Learn Chinese online mini novel - 我身后的眼睛 The Eyes Behind Me [1] (Elementary)

 

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download mp3 here: eye04-new.mp3

(music credit: Free background music from JewelBeat.com)

 

我身后的眼睛 [4]

 

那是多么漫长的一天.

一上午的会议, 我总是在不停地走神.

中午的时候, 我给老公去了电话.

我告诉他晚上要加班, 会晚回来, 让他带女儿去她最喜欢的必胜客吃晚餐.

放下电话, 我又开始出神.

十三年了, 他这十三年又是怎样度过的呢?

他的生活顺心吗?

他结婚了吗?

他的父母怎么样了?

我的脑海里充满了问题.

六点二十五分, 我赶到了那个路口.

他比我还早.

我们相视一笑.

就象十三年前,他总是先到.

我们打的去了一个离大学很近的餐馆.

是我选的地方,就象当年一样.

他点了菜, 都是我们当年爱吃的.

暗蓝的灯光下, 我仔细的打量着他.

他身上已没了当年的孩子气. 现在的他, 多了一份沧桑, 很男人.

“过得还好吗?” 我问.

“嗯, 还行.”

“太太还好吗?”我试探着问.

“很好.”

“你怎么样?” 他问我.

“还行.”

“孩子多大了?”

“七岁…. 你有小孩吗?”

“还没呢, 我前年刚结的婚.”

他停了筷子, 看着我.

我想起了几年前听另一个同学说, 他尽管已拥有了自己的公司, 却一直没成家.

他就那样看着我, 象要看懂我的心事.

我们之间有过太多的无奈.

“你回去后…为什么没给我回信?” 我忍不住先问了.

 

 

[vocab table]

 

Simplified Chinese Traditional Chinese Mandarin Pinyin English Definition
漫长 漫長 man4 chang2 very long; endless;
走神 走神 zou3 shen2 absent-minded; one’s mind is wandering;
加班 加班 jia1 ban1 to work overtime;
必胜客 必勝客 bi4 sheng4 ke4 Chinese name for “Pizza Hut”
晚餐 晚餐 wan3 can1 evening meal; dinner
顺心 順心 shun4 xin1 happy; satisfactory;
结婚 結婚 jie2 hun1 to marry; to get married
脑海 腦海 nao3 hai3 the mind; the brain;
充满 充滿 chong1 man3 full of; brimming with
餐馆 餐館 can1 guan3 restaurant
当年 當年 dang1 nian2 in those days; in those years
暗蓝 闇藍 an4 dark blue
仔细 仔細 zi3 xi4 careful; attentive
打量 打量 da3 liang5 to check (the look) of sb.
孩子气 孩子氣 hai2 zi5 qi4 boyish; childish;
沧桑 滄桑 cang1 sang1 all that life has to offer
试探 試探 shi4 tan4 to probe; to try out;
筷子 筷子 kuai4 zi5 chopsticks
尽管 儘管 jin3 guan3 despite; even though;
que4 nevertheless
心事 心事 xin1 shi4 a load on one’s mind
无奈 無奈 wu2 nai4 regrets
忍不住 忍不住 ren3 bu4 zhu4 can’t help

 

[pinyin]

wǒ shēnhòu de yǎnjing [4]

 

nàshi duōme màncháng de yī tiān.

yī shàngwǔ de huìyì, wǒ zǒngshì zài bùtíng dì zǒushén.

zhōngwǔ de shíhou, wǒ gěi lǎogong qù le diànhuà.

wǒ gàosu tā wǎnshang yào jiābān, huì wǎn huílai, ràng tā dài nǚ’ér qù tā zuì xǐhuan de Bìshèng Kè chī wǎncān.

fàngxia diànhuà, wǒ yòu kāishǐ chūshén.

shí sān nián le, tā zhè shí sān nián yòu shì zěnyàng dùguò de ne?

tā de shēnghuó shùnxīn ma?

tā jiéhūn le ma?

tā de fùmǔ zěnmeyàng le?

wǒ de nǎohǎi lǐ chōngmǎn le wèntí.

liù diǎn èrshí wǔ fēn, wǒ gǎn dàoliǎo nàge lùkǒu.

tā bǐ wǒ hái zǎo.

wǒmen xiāng shì yī xiào.

jiù xiàng shí sān niánqián, tā zǒngshì xiān dào.

wǒmen dǎdī qù le yī gè lí dàxué hěn jìn de cānguǎn.

shì wǒ xuǎn de dìfang, jiù xiàng dāngnián yīyàng.

tā diǎn le cài, dōu shì wǒmen dāngnián ài chī de.

àn lán de dēngguāng xià, wǒ zǐxì de dǎliang zhe tā.

tā shēnshang yǐ méile dāngnián de háiziqì. xiànzài de tā, duō le yī fèn cāngsāng, hěn nánrén.

“ guòdé háihǎo ma?” wǒ wèn.

“ èn, hái xíng.”

“ tàitai háihǎo ma?” wǒ shìtàn zhe wèn.

“ hěn hǎo.”

“ nǐ zěnmeyàng?” tā wèn wǒ.

“ hái xíng.”

“ háizi duōdà le?”

“ qī suì…. nǐ yǒu xiǎohái ma?”

“ hái méi ne, wǒ qiánnián gāng jié de hūn.”

tā tíng le kuàizi, kàn zhe wǒ.

wǒ xiǎngqǐ le jǐnián qián tīng lìngyī gè tóngxué shuō, tā jìn guǎn yǐ yōngyǒu le zìjǐ de gōngsī, què yīzhí méi chéngjiā.

tā jiù nàyàng kàn zhe wǒ, xiàng yào kàndǒng wǒ de xīnshì.

wǒmen zhījiān yǒu guò tài duō de wúnài.

“ nǐ huíqu hòu… wèishénme méi gěi wǒ huíxìn?” wǒ rěnbuzhù xiān wèn le.

 

[traditional Chinese]

我身後的眼睛[4]

 

於那是多麼漫長的一天.

一上午的會議, 我總是在不停地走神.

中午的時候, 我給老公去了電話.

我告訴他晚上要加班, 會晚回來, 讓他帶女兒去她最喜歡的必勝客吃晚餐.

放下電話, 我又開始出神.

十叁年了, 他這十叁年又是怎樣度過的呢?

他的生活順心嗎?

他結婚了嗎?

他的父母怎麼樣了?

我的腦海裏充滿了問題.

六點二十五分, 我趕到了那個路口.

他比我還早.

我們相視一笑.

就象十叁年前,他總是先到.

我們打的去了一個離大學很近的餐館.

是我選的地方,就象當年一樣.

他點了菜, 都是我們當年愛吃的.

暗藍的燈光下, 我仔細的打量著他.

他身上已沒了當年的孩子氣. 現在的他, 多了一份滄桑, 很男人.

“過得還好嗎?” 我問.

“嗯, 還行.”

“太太還好嗎?”我試探著問.

“很好.”

“你怎麼樣?” 他問我.

“還行.”

“孩子多大了?”

“七歲…. 你有小孩嗎?”

“還沒呢, 我前年剛結的婚.”

他停了筷子, 看著我.

我想起了幾年前聽另一個同學說, 他盡管已擁有了自己的公司, 卻一直沒成家.

他就那樣看著我, 象要看懂我的心事.

我們之間有過太多的無奈.

“你回去後…為什麼沒給我回信?” 我忍不住先問了.

 

 

[English Translation]

Special thanks to John Collett for diligently proofreading my English translation!!

The Eyes Behind Me [4]


Such a long day that was!

That morning was all meetings. My mind kept wandering somewhere else.

At noon, I called my husband.

I told him I had to work late that evening, and asked him to bring our daughter to her favorite Pizza Hut for dinner.

When I put down the phone, my mind started to drift again.

Thirteen years! How had he been through all those years?

Had he been doing well?

Had he married?

What about his parents?

My mind was full of questions.

 

6:25, I arrived at the intersection.

He was earlier than me.

We smiled at each other.

Just like thirteen years ago, he was always earlier than me.

We took a taxi and went to a restaurant near the university.

I picked the place, just like thirteen years ago.

He ordered from the menu for all that we used to love.

In the dim blue light, I looked at him carefully.

Gone was that boyish look. Today, he had gained a manful look.

“How have you been?” I asked.

“Hmn, not bad.”

“And your wife?” I explored a little.

“She’s well.”

“What about you?”

“Not bad.”

“How old is your child?”

“Seven … do you have children?”

“Not yet, I got married two years ago.”

He put down his chopsticks and looked at me.

I remembered now, a few years ago, my old classmate had told me that he was still single though he had already become a business owner.

He looked at me, as if he was trying to read my mind.

Between the two of us, we had too many regrets.

“After you returned home, why didn’t you write back to me?” I couldn’t help but ask.

 

[questions]

<<我身后的眼睛>>阅读理解 - Reading Comprehension [4]

Congratulations - you have completed <<我身后的眼睛>>阅读理解 - Reading Comprehension [4]. You scored %%SCORE%% out of %%TOTAL%%. Your performance has been rated as %%RATING%%
Your answers are highlighted below.
Question 1
Why did "我" told her husband she would work late?
A

because she was going to have dinner with the man

B

because she had too much work to do

C

because she didn't want to go home

Question 2
Did the woman know a lot about the man over the last thirteen years?
A

yes

B

no

Question 3
Did the woman and the man ever have dinner together before?
A

yes

B

no

Question 4
Was the man married?
A

yes

B

no

Question 5
In sentence "他尽管已拥有了自己的公司, 却一直没成家.", what does sentence pattern "尽管 ... 却 ..." means?
A

Not only ... but also ...

B

Even though ...

C

No matter how ...

Question 6
Which of the following could replace "无奈" in context?
A

遗憾

B

无聊

C

不幸

Once you are finished, click the button below. Any items you have not completed will be marked incorrect. Get Results
There are 6 questions to complete.

 

to be continued …

 

Related posts:

Chinese readings: A Real Mystery Story in Lop Nur 失踪 (Missing) 7 [Elmentary]
Mandarin mini story 短信 - The Messages 1 [Elementary]
Beginner to Elementary Level Chinese Story 河平面馆 (He Ping Eatery) 5

 

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6 Responses to “Learn Chinese Online Short Story – 我身后的眼睛 The Eyes Behind Me [4] (Elementary)”

  1. nothing

    Umer khan:

    04-13-2015 7:31 am

    Thanks… it is very helpfull for me

    Reply

  2. nothing

    最好的中文学生:

    08-02-2016 9:53 pm

    就象十三年前,他总是先到. lol, is this a raunchy innuendo?

    Reply

  3. nothing

    Ming:

    05-16-2017 11:27 pm

    The translation “I got married last year” should perhaps be “… year before last”

    Reply

    • nothing

      Grace Feng:

      05-22-2017 5:04 am

      It was a mistake. I just got it corrected. Thanks Ming.

      Grace

      Reply

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