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Mom’s Recipe for Life
Teens -- 1701
 

如果你带着真诚的微笑主动与别人交谈,那么你会发现,大多数人也会报以同样亲切友好的回应。真诚和主动不仅能提升你的个人魅力,还可以缩短人与人之间的心理距离。它有着如此大的魔力,我们不妨也来试一试?

 

 

Mom’s Recipe for Life

母亲的生活秘方

by anonymous

翻译:小狐

文字难度:3

 

I have a lot of Mom’s recipes in a blue 1)tin box where all my special ones 2)reside—the pumpkin pie she made during my growing up years, the light and 3)yeasty 4)dinner rolls that were family 5)faves. Even so, the recipe I 6)treasure most is not on any 7)index card, nor did she send it to me in a letter. On the contrary, she lived this recipe all of her life, but I was too blind to see and appreciate it until her final years.

My mother grew up in a small 8)coal mining town in southwest Iowa. My grandfather once told me that she knew no stranger; she considered everyone in that community her friend. That attitude continued wherever she lived for the rest of her life.

As a 9)tween and teen, I 10)cringed every time my mother 11)addressed strangers in the grocery store or on the city bus. She talked to everyone and offered a smile. In my 12)naiveté, I was embarrassed.

Mom had a cheerful greeting for everyone she 13)encountered and a question of some sort that 14)triggered an answer and more conversation. She spoke to the mailman, the grocery store 15)clerks, and the girls who worked in the neighborhood bakery.

I noticed that she smiled at everyone she passed in the store’s many 16)aisles. Almost all of them responded with a bright 17)beam of their own. Some spoke, others 18)nodded their heads at this elderly woman who brought a little light into their day.

What really 19)sold me on Mom’s approach to life was her experience on the senior bus, a story I’ve repeated to others many times. The weeks I could not be there, she used this low-cost transportation to the grocery store. After her first trip, I asked her how it went.

“Ha!” she said, “I got on that bus and what did I see? Thirteen little old ladies and one old man, and not one word was spoken.”

I wondered how long it would be until the 20)somberness on that bus would change. On my next visit, Mom mentioned the girls on the bus and something one of them had told her.

“Oh, are you talking with them now?” I asked.

“Of course,” she said. “One day I climbed up the steps of the bus and before I looked for a seat, I gave them a big smile and I said, ‘Isn’t it a wonderful day?’ I noticed a few shy smiles.”

Mom didn’t give up. She greeted them all each time she got on the bus and before long, the whole group was laughing and talking to one another. The bus became more than just transportation.

When we went to the various stores, I observed as she smiled and chatted with 21)perfect strangers. Some of them looked like the 22)sourest person you’d ever met, but once Mom smiled at them and started a conversation, most responded favorably. My mother didn’t embarrass me any longer. I found myself admiring her.

She’s been gone for ten years but I’ve carried on her recipe for life. I smile at people as I walk by and often begin a conversation in the checkout line. Silent, 23)solemn people respond with smiles of their own and a bit of 24)chatter. All it takes is for one person to 25)initiate the smile or a greeting.

It was me who had done the smiling first and all those people had responded. My mother didn’t lecture but taught me by example. She’d given me a recipe for life.

 

在一个蓝色的锡盒里,我珍藏了很多母亲留下来的食谱,那里存放着我所有的特殊秘方——比如在我长身体那几年她做的南瓜馅饼,以及全家人都爱吃的松软的酵母小圆面包。尽管如此,我最为珍视的秘方却不在这些索引卡上,她也没有写成信留给我。恰恰相反,她终其一生都在身体力行,而我却太过盲目,直到她生命最后的那几年,我才发现这个秘方,并懂得珍惜。

我的母亲是在衣阿华州西南边的一个小镇上长大的——小镇上的人都以采煤为生。我的祖父曾告诉我,在她眼里没有陌生人;她把那个社区里的每个人都当作是她的朋友。在之后的岁月里,无论她走到哪里,她始终抱着这种想法,未曾改变。

作为一个十几岁的孩子,每当我母亲在杂货店或在城市公交上与陌生人攀谈时,我都会畏缩不前。她会带着一脸微笑与每个人交谈,而那时天真幼稚的我却对此感到难为情。

母亲会热情地与遇到的每个人打招呼,然后问别人一些问题,引出别人的回答,从而带出更多的交谈。她会与邮递员、杂货店店员,还有那些在附近面包坊里工作的姑娘们聊天。

我注意到,当她在商店的走道间穿行时,她会冲着遇到的每个人微笑,而几乎所有的人都会对她回以一个明媚的笑容。有些人会聊上几句,有些人则会冲着这个年迈的女人——这个给他们这一天带来一丝阳光的人点点头。

真正令我开始接受母亲对待生活的方式是因为一段她在老人专车上的经历,这个故事我已经对别人讲了很多遍。在我不能回家的那几个星期里,她都会乘坐这种低价的交通工具到杂货铺去。在她第一次乘车后,我问她是否一切顺利。

“哈!”她说,“我上了那辆车后,你猜我看到了什么?十三个小老太太和一个老头,但他们都没说过一句话。”

我还在想,到底要过多久,那辆公共汽车上的忧郁气氛才会有所改变。在我下一次去探望母亲时,她又提到了那些公共汽车上的女士们,她们当中的一位和她说了些话。

“噢,你现在和他们聊上了吗?”我问道。

“当然了,”她说。“有一天我上了车,在找到座位坐下前,我给了他们一个大大的微笑,并且说:‘今天真是个好天气吧?’我注意到有几个人害羞地笑了。”

母亲并未放弃努力。每次只要她乘坐那趟车,她都会向他们所有人问好;于是没过多久,一车子的老人谈笑风生,互相交流起来。那辆公共汽车也不再仅仅是交通工具了。

当我们去到不同的商店时,我会观察她是如何冲着那些完全陌生的人微笑并攀谈的。他们中的某些人看起来就像是你遇到过脾气最坏的那种人,可一旦我母亲冲着他们微笑并开始交谈后,大多数人的回应还是友好亲切的。我母亲不再令我感到难堪了。我发现自己打心底里赞赏她。

尽管她已经去世十年了,但我依然贯彻着她的人生秘方。每当路过别人身边的时候,我会先对别人微笑,也常会在排队付账时与人攀谈。那些少言、严肃的人也会微笑着与我聊上几句。而这一切只需要一个人首先给对方一个笑容或一声问候就行了。

现在是我先对别人微笑,而其他人都会给予回应。我的母亲并没有给我上课,却以身作则地教会我这一点。她给了我生活的秘方。

 

 

 

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