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

Posted by Grace Feng on November 27, 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. To check out how reading levels are rated, please click here. 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: eye06-new.mp3

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我身后的眼睛 [6]


我给他家打电话, 无人接听.

父母开始做我的工作,

“你和他本来就不合适. 两家都只有一个孩子, 一个南, 一个北. 怎么生活到一起去?”

我虽然反感他们的唠叨, 但内心里也开始挣扎.

这一去就没了音讯的他是不是已经变心?

或者, 已经和现实妥协, 不再继续为我们的未来争取?

我开始整夜整夜地失眠,痛哭, 抑郁。我品尝到了失恋的滋味.

后来,我索性换了份离家较远的工作, 在外面租了房子, 过起了真正的单身生活.

我现在的老公就在那时闯进了我的生活….

“你回去后…. 为什么没给我回信?”

这是我长久以来一直想得到答案的问题。

在那个还没有英特网的年代,书信和电话是我们唯一的联系。

我的问题象是击中了他的要害, 他身子向后一靠,吃了一惊.

“我的回信你一封都没有收到吗?” 他反问我.

我肯定地摇了摇头.

他沉思了片刻.

“我给你写过八封回信, 但在我给你写第九封信的时候, 我前面的回信都被一起退回来了.

…. 退回来的邮包里还有你父母给我写的便条.”

[vocab table]

 

Simplified Chinese Traditional Chinese Mandarin Pinyin English Definition
接听 接聽 jie1 ting1 to answer the phone;
本来 本來 ben3 lai2 originally; at first
合适 合適 he2 shi4 suitable; to fit;
虽然 雖然 sui1 ran2 although
反感 反感 fan3 gan3 to dislike; antipathy;
唠叨 嘮叨 lao2 dao5 nagging
挣扎 掙扎 zheng1 zha2 to struggle
音讯 音訊 yin1 xun4 messages; correspondence;
变心 變心 bian4 xin1 to cease to be faithful
妥协 妥協 tuo3 xie2 to compromise; to reach terms
争取 爭取 zheng1 qu3 to fight for; to strive for
失眠 失眠 shi1 mian2 to suffer from insomnia
抑郁 抑郁 yi4 yu4 depressed
品尝 品嘗 pin3 chang2 to taste a small amount
失恋 失戀 shi1 lian4 to lose one’s love
滋味 滋味 zi1 wei4 taste; feeling
索性 索性 suo3 xing4 simply; just;
英特网 英特網 Ying1 Internet
唯一 唯一 wei2 yi1 only; sole;
联系 聯繫 lian2 xi4 connection
要害 要害 yao4 hai4 crucial
沉思 沉思 chen2 si1 to ponder; contemplation
片刻 片刻 pian4 ke4 short period of time; a moment;
邮包 郵包 you2 bao1 postal parcel
便条 便條 bian4 tiao2 note

[pinyin]

wǒ shēnhòu de yǎnjing [6]

wǒ gěi tā jiā dǎdiànhuà, wúrén jiētīng.

fùmǔ kāishǐ zuò wǒ de gōngzuò,

“ nǐ hé tā běnlái jiù bùhéshì. liǎng jiā dōu zhǐyǒu yī gè háizi, yī gè nán, yī gè běi. zěnme shēnghuó dào yīqǐ qù?”

wǒ suīrán fǎngǎn tāmen de láodao, dàn nèi xīnli yě kāishǐ zhēngzhá.

zhè yī qù jiù méile yīnxùn de tā shìbùshì yǐjīng biànxīn?

huòzhě, yǐjīng hé xiànshí tuǒxié, bùzài jìxù wéi wǒmen de wèilái zhēngqǔ?

wǒ kāishǐ zhěngyè zhěngyè dì shīmián, tòngkū, yìyù。 wǒ pǐncháng dàoliǎo shīliàn de zīwèi.

hòulái, wǒ suǒxìng huàn le fèn lí jiā jiào yuǎn de gōngzuò, zài wàimiàn zū le fángzi, guò qǐ le zhēnzhèng de dānshēn shēnghuó.

wǒ xiànzài de lǎogong jiù zài nàshí chuǎngjìn le wǒ de shēnghuó….
“ nǐ huíqu hòu…. wèishénme méi gěi wǒ huíxìn?”

zhè shì wǒ chángjiǔ yǐlái yīzhí xiǎng dédào dá’àn de wèntí。

zài nàge hái méiyǒu Yīngtèwǎng de niándài, shūxìn hé diànhuà shì wǒmen wéiyī de liánxì。

wǒ de wèntí xiàng shì jīzhòng le tā de yàohài, tā shēnzi xiànghòu yī kào, chī le yī jīng.

“ wǒ de huíxìn nǐ yī fēng dōu méiyǒu shōudào ma?” tā fǎnwèn wǒ.

wǒ kěndìng dì yáo le yáotóu.

tā chénsī le piànkè.

“ wǒ gěi nǐ xiě guò bā fēng huíxìn, dàn zài wǒ gěi nǐ xiě dì jiǔ fēng xìn de shíhou, wǒ qiánmiàn de huíxìn dōu bèi yīqǐ tuì huílai le.

…. tuì huílai de yóubāo lǐ háiyǒu nǐ fùmǔ gěi wǒ xiě de biàntiáo.”

[traditional Chinese]

我身後的眼睛[6]

 

我給他家打電話, 無人接聽.

父母開始做我的工作,

“你和他本來就不合適. 兩家都只有一個孩子, 一個南, 一個北. 怎麼生活到一起去?”

我雖然反感他們的嘮叨, 但內心裏也開始掙紮.

這一去就沒了音訊的他是不是已經變心?

或者, 已經和現實妥協, 不再繼續為我們的未來爭取?

我開始整夜整夜地失眠,痛哭, 抑鬱。我品嘗到了失戀的滋味.

後來,我索性換了份離家較遠的工作, 在外面租了房子, 過起了真正的單身生活.

我現在的老公就在那時闖進了我的生活….

“你回去後…. 為什麼沒給我回信?”

這是我長久以來一直想得到答案的問題。

在那個還沒有英特網的年代,書信和電話是我們唯一的聯系。

我的問題象是擊中了他的要害, 他身子向後一靠,吃了一驚.

“我的回信你一封都沒有收到嗎?” 他反問我.

我肯定地搖了搖頭.

他沉思了片刻.

“我給你寫過八封回信, 但在我給你寫第九封信的時候, 我前面的回信都被一起退回來了.

…. 退回來的郵包裏還有你父母給我寫的便條.”

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

The Eyes Behind Me [6]

I called his home, but nobody picked up the phone.

Then my parents began to talk to me,

“You and he are not suitable for each other. Both of our families are single-child families. One lives in the south, one lives in the north. How could the two of you live together?”

Although I was sick of their nagging, my mind started to struggle.

Was he seeing someone else that he even didn’t care to send a word to me?

Or had he already given up and didn’t want to fight for our future together?

Then I started to lose my sleep night after night, weeping and depressed. I experienced the bitter feeling of losing my love.

Thereafter I made up my mind to change to another job, even further from my home.

I rented a place to live by myself and started a real single life.

My current husband came into my life since then.

 

“After you returned home… why didn’t you write to me?”

This is the question that I’ve been waiting for an anwser for so long.

At a time when the Internet did not exist in our life, letters and phone calls were the only ways to keep us connected.

My question was like a punch swung right at him. He leaned back against his chair. He was surprised.

“You hadn’t received even one letter from me?”

I shook my head with certainty.

He paused for a moment,

“I wrote eight letters to you. When I was writing the ninth, all my previous letters were mailed back to me in one parcel. … together with it, was a note from your parents. “

 

[questions]

<<我身后的眼睛>>阅读理解 - Reading Comprehension [6]

Congratulations - you have completed <<我身后的眼睛>>阅读理解 - Reading Comprehension [6]. You scored %%SCORE%% out of %%TOTAL%%. Your performance has been rated as %%RATING%%
Your answers are highlighted below.
Question 1
Were her parents happy with her relationship with him?
A

no

B

yes

Question 2
Why "我" started to lose sleep?
A

Her parents had argument with her.

B

She was sick.

C

She thought her boyfriend had forgotten about her.

Question 3
When did "我" meet her current husband?
A

before she moved out of her parents' home

B

after she moved out of her parents' home

Question 4
Did he actually write back to her?
A

yes

B

no

Question 5
What is the Chinese meaning of "惊" in expression "吃了一惊"?
A

惊讶

B

惊险

C

惊动

Question 6
Sentence "在那个还没有英特网的年代" could be rewritten as:
A

在还没有英特网那个的年代

B

在那个英特网还没有的年代

C

在英特网那个还没有的年代

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 …

 

To navigate other chapters of short story “我身后的眼睛”, click here:

 

Related posts:

Chinese online short story 罪恶有痕 Traces of Sin 46 (Intermediate to Advanced)
Chinese Short Story 心锁 Lock of The Heart [Elementary Level] 22
Beginner to Elementary Level Chinese Story 河平面馆 (He Ping Eatery) 3

 

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

  1. nothing

    白睿:

    11-27-2012 8:40 pm

    Hello Grace, 依我看,这章比前五章难读多了!还好你用的一位好翻译家来提供帮助。

    Reply

    • nothing

      Grace Feng:

      11-28-2012 2:45 am

      白睿, 这一章是有一定难度. 其实我的初稿比这更难. 我就在那儿想, 我要写的是 Elementary Level , 这样不行, 然后我就使劲删减, 改写. 但还是会比上几章难.:-)

      你说的翻译家是John吧, 他要知道了会好高兴呢! 他是个非常棒的语言老师. 不过他的中文还在努力中.这篇小说对他来说还难了点 (他能读懂”分手”).他只能 proofread 我的英文翻译. 当我的翻译让他迷惑的时候他就问我我到底要说啥? 然后我就给他解释. :-))

      Reply

  2. nothing

    Eji:

    04-13-2014 7:51 pm

    Hello Grace, quick question about the last 2 sentences:

    “我给你写过八封回信, 但在我给你写第九封信的时候, 我前面的回信都被一起退回来了.

    …. 退回来的邮包里还有你父母给我写的便条.”

    Is the difference in translation/separation of 退回来 into 退回 来 and then 退 回来 done on purpose?

    Reply

    • nothing

      Grace Feng:

      04-14-2014 2:06 am

      Hi Eji,

      Do you mean the pop up annotation? It’s actually a tool supplied by mandarinspot.com. The two different seperation of “退回来” was not done on “my” purpose. Although I don’t have any insight in how they build the tool to capture words, I’ll guess the seperation is decided by different placement of the word in it’s sentence. That being said, the two “退回来” occurrences are identical and can be translated as “to return to its sender”.

      In “退回来的邮包里”, “退回来的” is a good example of adjective clause that I elaborated in Lesson 29:

      http://justlearnchinese.com/l29-how-to-use-adjective-clause-using-a-sub-sentence-as-adjective-in-chinese/

      Let me know if any more questions,

      Grace

      Reply

      • nothing

        Eji:

        04-14-2014 5:14 pm

        Thanks for response the explanation Grace, I get it now that they are identical in meaning, that was my confusion… and yes I was referring to the pop up annotation, sorry I didn’t make that clear.

        Reply

  3. nothing

    Eji:

    04-18-2014 10:30 pm

    你好, Grace老师我有一个问题。对于第二次句子, “父母开始做我的工作” 的翻译是 “Then my parents began to talk to me”。 我不懂。是口语吗?可不可以给我解释一下?

    That was my first Chinese output ever! :) , I hope I expressed myself correctly/clearly. Your correction is of course welcome.

    Reply

    • nothing

      Grace Feng:

      04-19-2014 4:29 am

      Eji,

      You asked a very good question. Actually yes, “做我的工作” here doesn’t mean “do my job”. It’s an expression to say “to persuade somebody to change his/her opinion/decision”.

      For example, “老师希望我去参加演出. 为了得到我父母的支持, 老师让我做我父母的工作.”

      The complete translation of the above sentence is: “My teacher wished that I could participate in the performance. In order to get support from my parents, my teacher asked me to talk to my parents.”

      Is it clear now?

      Grace

      Reply

      • nothing

        Eji:

        04-19-2014 4:15 pm

        谢谢,我明白了

        Reply

  4. nothing

    Luqman Michel:

    11-24-2015 1:48 am

    Before you begin to read this 4500-character Elementary level short story.
    Could you please let me know how many characters will one actually know when one has learnt all the characters in this story? I am curious as I want to know roughly how many characters I actually know.

    Reply

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