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6-14 小狗快运(上)

时间:2006-10-10 16:00来源:互联网 提供网友:KK320   字体: [ ]

The Puppy Express


The Topps stood on the shoulder1 of the road and watched as their truck's engine shuddered2 and died. Nancy and Joe, their two children, Jodi, twelve, and Matthew, fifteen, and their elderly dog, Snoopy, were 1,500 miles from home, stranded3 on a highway in Wyoming, with the old truck clearly beyond even Joe's gift for repairs. The little dog, peering around the circle of faces with cataract-dimmed4 eyes, seemed to reflect their anxiety.


The Topps were on the road because five months before, a nephew had told Joe there was work to be had in the Napa Valley and he and Nancy decided3 to gamble. Breaking up their home in Fort Wayne, Indiana, they packed up the kids and Snoopy and set out for California. But once there, the warehousing job Joe hoped for didn't materialize5, Nancy and the kids were very homesick, and their funds melted away6. Now it was January and, the gamble lost, they were on their way back to Fort Wayne.


The truck had taken them as far as Rock Springs, Wyoming, but now there was nothing to do but sell it to a junk dealer4 for twenty? five dollars and hitch57 a ride to the bus station. Two pieces of bad news greeted them at the station. Four tickets to Fort Wayne came to much more money than they had, and dogs were not allowed on the bus.


“But we've got to take Snoopy with us.” Nancy pleaded with the ticket? seller, tears welling in her eyes.


Joe drew her away from the window. It was no use getting upset about Snoopy, he told her, until they figured how to get themselves on the bus. With no choice but to ask for help, they called Travelers' Aid, and with kind efficiency, the local representative arranged for a motel room for them for the night. There, with their boxes and bags piled around them, they put in a call to relatives back home, who promised to get together money for the fare and wire8 it the next day.


“But what about Snoopy?” Matthew said as soon as his parents got off the phone.


“We can't go without Snoopy,” Jodi stated flatly. At seventeen, Snoopy had a bit of a heart condition and some kidney problems, and the family worried about her.


Joe picked up the little dog. “Snoopy,” he said, tugging6 her floppy7 ears in the way she liked. “I think you're going to have to hitchhike.”


“Don't tease, Joe,” said Nancy shortly9.


“I'm not teasing, honey,” he assured her, tucking Snoopy into the crook8 of his arm. “I'm going to try to find an eastbound trucker to take the old girl back for us.”


At the local truck stop, Joe sat Snoopy on a stool beside him while he fell into conversation with drivers who stopped to pet her. “Gee9, I'd like to help you out,” one after another said.“ She's awful cute and I wouldn't mind the company, but I'm not going through Fort Wayne this trip.” The only driver who could have taken her picked Snoopy up and looked at her closely. “Naw10,” the man growled10, “with an old dog like her, there'd be too many pit stops11. I got to make time.” Still hopeful, Joe tacked11 up a sign and gave the motel's phone number.


“Somebody'll call before bus time tomorrow,” he predicted to the kids when he and Snoopy got back to the motel.


“But suppose nobody does?” Jodi said.


Joe answered, “Sweetie, we've got to be on that bus. The Travelers' Aid can only pay for us to stay here one night.”


The next day Joe went off to collect the wired funds while Nancy and the kids sorted through their possessions, trying to decide what could be crammed12 into the six pieces of baggage they were allowed on the bus and what had to be left behind. Ordinarily Snoopy would have napped, but now her eyes followed every move of Nancy and the children, and if one of them paused to think, even for a minute, Snoopy nosed at the idle hand, asking to be touched, to be held.


“She knows,” Jodi said, cradling her. “She knows something awful is going to happen.”


The Travelers' Aid representative arrived to take the belongings13 they couldn't pack for donation to the local thrift14 shop12. A nice man, he was caught between being sympathetic and being practical when he looked at Snoopy. “Seventeen is really old for a dog,” he said gently. “Maybe you just have to figure she's had a long life and a good one.” When nobody spoke15, he took a deep breath. “If you want, you can leave her with me and I'll have her put to sleep13 after you've gone.”


The children looked at Nancy but said nothing; they understood there wasn't any choice and they didn't want to make it harder on their mother by protesting. Nancy bowed her head. She thought of all the walks, all the romps14, all the picnics, all the times she'd gone in to kiss the children goodnight and Snoopy had lifted her head to be kissed too.


“Thank you,” she told the man. “It's kind of you to offer. But no. No,” she repeated firmly,“ Snoopy's part of the family, and families don't give up on each other.” She reached for the telephone book, looked up “Kennels15” in the Yellow Pages, and began dialing. Scrupulously1816, she started each call with the explanation that the family was down on their luck. “But,” she begged, “if you'll just keep our little dog until we can find a way to get her to Fort Wayne, I give you my word we'll pay. Please trust me. Please.”


A veterinary clinic, which also boarded pets, finally agreed, and the Travelers' Aid representative drove them to the place. Nancy was the last to say good? bye. She knelt and took Snoopy's frosted muzzle1917 in her hands. “You know we'd never leave you if we could help it,” she whispered, “so don't give up; don't you dare give up. We'll get you back somehow. I promise.”



1.shoulder [5FEuldE] n. 路肩;(车行道两侧的紧急停车道

2.shudder1 [5FQdE] vi.(机器、车辆等)突然震动,颤动

3.strand2 [strAnd] vt. 使搁浅使处于困境使束手无策

4.cataract-dimmed [5kAtErAkt5dimd] a. 因白内障而视力差的

5.materialize [mE5tiEriElaiz] vi. 实现

6.meltaway 逐渐减少逐渐消失

7.hitch [hitF] vt.〈口〉免费得到搭乘

8.wire [5waiE(r)] vt. 〉用电报传送打电报给

9.shortly [5FC:tli] ad. 唐突地不耐烦地

10.naw [nC:] ad.〈俚〉不不是没有用以表示否定的回答

11.pit stop 旅途中为用餐、加油或休息等的中途停车

12.thrift [Wrift] shop〈美〉尤指为慈善目的而开设、主要出售衣服的廉价旧货店

13.put to sleep 无痛苦地处死生病的动物等

14.romp16 [rCmp] n. 嬉耍喧闹(的一段时间)

15.kennel17 [5kenl] n. [常作~s](驯养或临时寄养狗的)养狗场

16.scrupulously [5skru:pjulEs li] ad. 细致地,一丝不苟地

17.muzzle [5mQzl] n.(四足动物的)鼻口部













































1 shudder JEqy8     
  • The sight of the coffin sent a shudder through him.看到那副棺材,他浑身一阵战栗。
  • We all shudder at the thought of the dreadful dirty place.我们一想到那可怕的肮脏地方就浑身战惊。
2 strand 7GAzH     
  • She tucked a loose strand of hair behind her ears.她把一缕散发夹到了耳后。
  • The climbers had been stranded by a storm.登山者被暴风雨困住了。
3 decided lvqzZd     
  • This gave them a decided advantage over their opponents.这使他们比对手具有明显的优势。
  • There is a decided difference between British and Chinese way of greeting.英国人和中国人打招呼的方式有很明显的区别。
4 dealer GyNxT     
  • The dealer spent hours bargaining for the painting.那个商人为购买那幅画花了几个小时讨价还价。
  • The dealer reduced the price for cash down.这家商店对付现金的人减价优惠。
5 hitch UcGxu     
  • They had an eighty-mile journey and decided to hitch hike.他们要走80英里的路程,最后决定搭便车。
  • All the candidates are able to answer the questions without any hitch.所有报考者都能对答如流。
6 tugging 1b03c4e07db34ec7462f2931af418753     
n.牵引感v.用力拉,使劲拉,猛扯( tug的现在分词 )
  • Tom was tugging at a button-hole and looking sheepish. 汤姆捏住一个钮扣眼使劲地拉,样子显得很害羞。 来自英汉文学 - 汤姆历险
  • She kicked him, tugging his thick hair. 她一边踢他,一边扯着他那浓密的头发。 来自辞典例句
7 floppy xjGx1     
  • She was wearing a big floppy hat.她戴了顶松软的大帽子。
  • Can you copy those files onto this floppy disk?你能把那些文件复制到这张软盘上吗?
8 crook NnuyV     
  • He demanded an apology from me for calling him a crook.我骂他骗子,他要我向他认错。
  • She was cradling a small parcel in the crook of her elbow.她用手臂挎着一个小包裹。
9 gee ZsfzIu     
  • Their success last week will gee the team up.上星期的胜利将激励这支队伍继续前进。
  • Gee,We're going to make a lot of money.哇!我们会赚好多钱啦!
10 growled 65a0c9cac661e85023a63631d6dab8a3     
v.(动物)发狺狺声, (雷)作隆隆声( growl的过去式和过去分词 );低声咆哮着说
  • \"They ought to be birched, \" growled the old man. 老人咆哮道:“他们应受到鞭打。” 来自《简明英汉词典》
  • He growled out an answer. 他低声威胁着回答。 来自《简明英汉词典》
11 tacked d6b486b3f9966de864e3b4d2aa518abc     
用平头钉钉( tack的过去式和过去分词 ); 附加,增补; 帆船抢风行驶,用粗线脚缝
  • He tacked the sheets of paper on as carefully as possible. 他尽量小心地把纸张钉上去。
  • The seamstress tacked the two pieces of cloth. 女裁缝把那两块布粗缝了起来。
12 crammed e1bc42dc0400ef06f7a53f27695395ce     
adj.塞满的,挤满的;大口地吃;快速贪婪地吃v.把…塞满;填入;临时抱佛脚( cram的过去式)
  • He crammed eight people into his car. 他往他的车里硬塞进八个人。
  • All the shelves were crammed with books. 所有的架子上都堆满了书。
13 belongings oy6zMv     
  • I put a few personal belongings in a bag.我把几件私人物品装进包中。
  • Your personal belongings are not dutiable.个人物品不用纳税。
14 thrift kI6zT     
  • He has the virtues of thrift and hard work.他具备节俭和勤奋的美德。
  • His thrift and industry speak well for his future.他的节俭和勤勉预示着他美好的未来。
15 spoke XryyC     
n.(车轮的)辐条;轮辐;破坏某人的计划;阻挠某人的行动 v.讲,谈(speak的过去式);说;演说;从某种观点来说
  • They sourced the spoke nuts from our company.他们的轮辐螺帽是从我们公司获得的。
  • The spokes of a wheel are the bars that connect the outer ring to the centre.辐条是轮子上连接外圈与中心的条棒。
16 romp ZCPzo     
  • The child went for a romp in the forest.那个孩子去森林快活一把。
  • Dogs and little children romped happily in the garden.狗和小孩子们在花园里嬉戏。
17 kennel axay6     
  • Sporting dogs should be kept out of doors in a kennel.猎狗应该养在户外的狗窝中。
  • Rescued dogs are housed in a standard kennel block.获救的狗被装在一个标准的犬舍里。
18 scrupulously Tj5zRa     
  • She toed scrupulously into the room. 她小心翼翼地踮着脚走进房间。 来自辞典例句
  • To others he would be scrupulously fair. 对待别人,他力求公正。 来自英汉非文学 - 文明史
19 muzzle i11yN     
  • He placed the muzzle of the pistol between his teeth.他把手枪的枪口放在牙齿中间。
  • The President wanted to muzzle the press.总统企图遏制新闻自由。
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