Friday, March 17, 2006

- have a nice day -

currently listening to - Delta Goodrem
mood - i feel abandoned. *...* nevermind. =p

ah, finally.. bought the original "A Fine Day For Kangarooing". so i thought i'd wanan try translating the entire story. check out the difference in the parts which i've translated before (pls refer to 11 March's post).


カンガルー日和: Kangaruu Biyori
A Fine Day For Kangarooing
author: MURAKAMI Haruki
translator: siaokia

Within the fenced area, there were four kangaroos. One male, two females, and a new-born baby.

In front of the fence, there was no one but her and I. Originally, this wasn't a very popular zoo. On top of that, it was a monday morning. The visitors were greatly outnumbered by the zoo animals.

Our main purpose of visiting was, of course, the baby kangaroo. Other than that, we couldn't think of anything that we ought to see.

We found out about the birth of the baby kangaroo in the newspaper's local section a month ago. And for a month, we waited for the arrival of a suitable morning to visit the baby kangaroo. Unfortunately, such a morning was far from coming to us. One morning, it rained. The next morning, it still rained. Yet the next morning after that, the floor was muddy, and an unpleasant wind was blowing for the following two days. One morning, her decayed tooth ached. One morning, I had to go to the government office.

And so, a month glided away.

A month was, honestly, such a short period of time. What had I actually done during the month? Clearly, I couldn't remember. I felt as if I'd done a lot of things, and, at the same time, I felt as if I'd done nothing. Before the newspaper bill collector's arrival at the end of the month, I didn't even realise that a month had just gone by.

Still, in any case, the morning which we decided to visit the baby kangaroo came. We woke up at six a.m. sharp, drew open the curtains, and confirmed that it was a fine day for kangarooing. We washed our faces, finished our meals, fed the cat, did our laundry, put on our sun hats and left the house.

'Hey, d'you think the baby kangaroo's still alive?' she asked me in the train.

'I'm sure it's alive, 'coz there isn't any news about it dead.'

'It might've fallen sick.. It might've been admitted to some hospital?'

'If that's the case, it'll be reported on the newspaper as well.'

'I wonder if it became neurotic and hides deep inside the pen?'

'You mean, the baby?'

'You gotta be joking. I'm talking about the mother. I wonder if she's hiding in the room deep inside, along with her baby?'

Girls can really think of a variety of possibilities, I thought.

'I feel like.. If we missed this chance, we wouldn't be able to see a baby kangaroo again..'

'Is that so?'

'Well, have you ever seen a baby kangaroo before this?'

'No, I haven't.'

'Are you confident that you'll see again after this?'

'I wonder. No idea.'

'That's why I'm worried.'

'The thing is..' I objected. 'You might be true, but I've not even seen a giraffe giving birth, and I've not even seen a whale swimming as well. Why should the case of a baby kangaroo be bothering to me?'

'Because it's a baby kangaroo, that's why,' she said.

I gave up, and stared at the newspaper. So far, I've not won debating with a girl for even once.

The baby kangaroo was, needless to say, alive. He (or it might be a "she") was much bigger than the one we saw in the picture on the newspaper, hopping around the place energetically. It should be a mini kangaroo, rather than a baby. The truth had disappointed her slightly.

'Looks like it's not a baby anymore.'

It's still something like a baby, I consoled her.

'We should've come earlier..'

After I had returned from the stall with two chocolate ice-creams, she was still leaning on the fence, watching the kangaroo intently.

'It's not a baby anymore,' she repeated.

'You think so?' I said, passing her one of the ice-creams.

'If it's a baby, it would've been kept inside the mother's pouch.'

I nodded while licking my ice-cream.

'But it's not in the pouch.'

For the time being, we looked for the mother kangaroo. We were able to identify the father kangaroo immediately. The biggest and most silent among the herd was him. He was scanning the green leaves in the feed box with an expression similar to a composer whose talent had long dried up. The remaining two were females, and they were identical in build, identical in colour, and even identical in expression. Calling either of them the mother was probably fine.

'But, one of them is the mother, and the other isn't,' I said.


'Then, what's the other one if she's not the mother?'

I don't know, she said.

The issue was none of the baby kangaroo's concern. He, or she, was running around the place, pointlessly digging holes with its front paws here and there. Apparently, he didn't recognise what was "boredom". He went round and round his father, took only a few bites of the green grass, dug the floor, played the mischief with the two females, lied down on the floor, stood up and started running once more.

'Why does a kangaroo hop so fast?' she asked.

'To escape from the enemies.'

'Enemies? What kind of enemies?'

'Human,' I said. 'Human kill kangaroos with boomerangs for their meat.'

'Why does a baby kangaroo enters it's mother's pouch?'

'To escape together. Kids can't run as fast as adults.'

'So, it's being protected?'

'Yeap,' I said. 'Children are all being protected.'

'How long are they protected?'

I should have studied everything and anything about kangaroos from the animal encyclopedia. I knew this was gonna happen from the start.

'One or two months, I guess.'

'So, that one's only a month old,' she pointed at the baby kangaroo. 'That's why it still goes into the mother's pouch?'

'Yeah,' I said. 'Probably.'

'Hey, wouldn't it be wonderful to enter that pouch?'

'I guess so.'

'D'you think Doraemon's Pocket kinda' symbolises the wish to return to the womb?'

'I wonder..'

'That must be it.'

The sun was entirely high up in the sky. Sounds of children frolicking happily in the pool nearby reached our ears. The summer clouds were sharply outlined against the sky.

'D'you wanna eat something?' I asked her.

'Hotdog,' she said. 'And coke.'

The hotdog vendor was a young part-timer student. He had brought a huge boom box into the wagon-shaped stall. While waiting for the hotdogs to be ready, I listened to songs by Stevie Wonder and Billy Joel.

Once I had returned to the kangaroo pen, she exclaimed 'Look!' and pointed at one of the kangaroos.

'Look! Did you see it? It's gone into the pouch!'

The baby kangaroo had crept into the mother's pouch, all right. The pouch swelled a lot, and only the tiny pointed ears and the tip of the tail poked out.

'Isn't it heavy?'

'Kangaroos are powerful.'


'That's why they survived till now.'

The mother did not even sweat under the scorching sun. She looked as though she was taking a break at the coffee shop after shopping at Aoyama Boulevard's supermarket early in the afternoon.

'The baby's being protected, isn't it?'


'D'you think it's fallen asleep?'


We finished our hotdogs and cokes, and left the kangaroo pen.

Even when we were leaving, the father kangaroo was still searching around in the feed box for the lost music notes. The mother kangaroo and the baby kangaroo were united as one, resting as time went by; whereas the other mysterious female kangaroo was hopping continuously as though examining its tail's condition.

It was a swelteringly hot day in a long time.

'Hey, d'you wanna have some beer?' she said.

'That'll be nice,' I answered.



ah, finally.. it's done. (=.=;;;)

just my point of view, but.. ARE GIRLS SUPPOSED TO BE SO DUMB? i dunno.. i think if i were to marry a girl, DEFINITELY, i won't go for those who ask questions from the beginning of our meeting till the end of my life, as if they come from pluto or something..


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