1. They did not make me happy, however, as this was the day I was to be thrown into school for the first time. (1)
But my new clothes did not bring any happiness to me, because it was the day I was forced to go to school for the first time.
2.“Why school” I asked my father. “What have I done”(3)
Why do I have to go to school I don’t think I’ve done anything wrong to be punished like this.
3. I did not believe there was really any good to be had in tearing me away from my home and throwing me into the huge, high-walled building. (5) Paraphrase:
I didn’t think it was useful to take me away from home and put me into that building with high walls.
4. It was not all a matter of playing and fooling around. (15)
What we did at school wasn’t just playing and wasting time doing nothing useful.
5. In addition, the time for changing one’s mind was over and gone and there was no question of ever returning to the paradise of home. (16) Paraphrase:
Besides, it was impossible for us to quit school and return to the good old days when we stayed home playing and fooling around all day. Our childhood was gone, never to come back.
1. If banks were required to sell wallets and money belts, they might act less like churches. (para. 1)
Banks act like churches which usually control people’s life and can interfere in people’s life. So, the author thinks it is ridiculous for banks to act like churches.
2. It was lunchtime and the only officer on duty was a fortyish black man with short, pressed hair, a pencil mustache, and a neatly pressed brown suit. (para. 3)
uncurled hair, a thin mustache looking like a line drawn by a pencil, and a neat and tidy brown suit
3. Everything about him suggested a carefully dressed authority. (para. 3) Paraphrase:
Everything about him—his clothes, manner, etc. indicated that he was a carefully dressed man who had an important position and power.
4. I moved in for the kill. (para. 19)
I began to prepare to kill, destroy or defeat my enemy.
5. I zeroed in on the officer. (para. 20)
I’m going to have a strong argument to silence the bank officer.
6. Look, … we’re just wasting each other’s time. (para. 29)
Look, let’s stop talking a bout this because it is a waste of time./You are just talking nonsense. I don’t want to listen to you any more.
7.… has been shaking this boy down… (para. 30)
… has been getting money from the boy by using threats…
8. Anyway, the police are on the case… (para. 30)
Anyway, the police are working on the case…
9. Not that I ever heard of. (para. 32)
I have never heard of such rules.
1. My husband moved into our house as is the way with us in Esarn. (para. 1) Paraphrase:
When we got married, we followed the tradition in Esarn and my husband came to live with my family.
2. He has ears which don’t hear, a mouth which doesn’t speak, and eyes that don’t see. ( para. 2)
He does not notice what is happening around us and to our children, nor does he express his thoughts and feelings. (The woman is complaining that her husband does not bother about their children’s troubles.)
3. … and it is no longer fertile, bleeding year after year and, like us, getting old and exhausted. (para. 3)
Our land is getting poorer with each passing year, like us who are getting old, weak and tired.
4.… but in a bad year, it’s not only the ploughs that break but our hearts, too. (para. 3)
When there is a draught, the soil is so hard that it breaks the ploughs and we feel so sad that our hearts break too.
5. Only ten years ago, you could barter for things, but now it’s all cash. (para. 4)
Just ten years ago, we could exchange one thing for another, but now we have to buy everything from the market.
6. Shops have sprung up, filled with colorful plastic things and goods we have no use for. (para. 4)
Shops have suddenly appeared in the village selling attractive plastic things and things we don’t need.
7. As for me, I wouldn’t change, couldn’t change even if I wanted to. (para. 7)
I didn’t want to change myself and my life, and actually I did not have the ability to change even if I wanted to.
8. Yes, this bag of bones dressed in rags can still plant and reap rice from
morning till dusk. (para. 7)
Though I’m poor, old and weak, I can still work in the rice field all day.
9. I am at peace with the land and the condition of my life. (para. 9) Paraphrase:
I am content with my land and accept my situation in life without complaint.
10. I have been forcing silence upon her all these years, yet she had not once complained of anything. (para. 9)
All these years, I hardly talk with her or listen to her, so she has to keep silent about her thoughts and feelings, but she has never told anyone else about her unhappy feelings about my silence.
11. Still the land could not tie them down or call them back. (para. 10) Paraphrase:
My children grew up and had happy days on this land, but this could not prevent them from leaving for cities or attract them back from cities.
12. Sickness comes and goes, and we get back on our feet again. (para. 11) Paraphrase:
Inevitably we sometimes fall ill, but when we get well again we can always get back to our normal life and work on our land.
1. Ausable was, for one thing, fat… Though he spoke French and German passably, he had never altogether lost the New England accent he had brought to Paris from Boston twenty years ago. (para. 2)
Ausable was, for one reason, fat… His French and German were not very good, but acceptable. Although he had been in Paris for twenty years, he never lost the American accent.
2. …a sloppy fat man who, instead of having messages slipped into his hand by dark-eyed beauties, gets only an ordinary telephone call making an appointment in his room. (para. 4)
…an untidy fat man just has an ordinary phone call agreeing to meet somebody later in his room. There are no other imagined things as a beautiful lady with dark eyes putting a slip of message secretly into his hand.
3. The fat man chuckled to himself as he unlocked the door of his room and stood as aside to let his frustrated guest enter. (para. 4)
The fat man laughed to himself when he opened the door of his room and gave way to his dissatisfied guest.
4. You are disillusioned. (para. 5)
You are disappointed because what you believe in has turned out to be wrong.
5. Before long you will see a paper, a quite important paper for which several men and women have risked their lives, come to me in the next-to-last step of its journey into official hands. (para. 5)
Soon you will see a document/a report come to me. Several people took chances in order to get it. When I receive the paper, I will place it in the hands of
the proper authorities.
By then I will have fulfilled my mission.
6. For halfway across the room, a small automatic pistol in his hand, stood a man. (para. 6)
In the middle of the room, there was a man with a small automatic pistol in his hand.
7. I’m going to raise the devil with the management this time. (para. 11) Paraphrase:
(He was making up a story, which turned out to be a trap for Max.
To make Max swallow this bait, Ausable pretended to be angry with the management and explained to Fowler (not to Max) why he was going to complain to the management about the balcony.)
8. It might have saved me some trouble had I known about it. (para. 12) Paraphrase:
If I had known about it, I would not have spent so much effort.
9. I wish I knew how you learned about the report, … (para. 15) Paraphrase:
I want to know how you succeeded in finding out the report, but I have no idea.
10. Keeping his body twisted so that his gun still covered the fat man and his guest, … (para. 22)
He twisted his body in order to point his gun right at the fat man and his guest.
1. My ancient jeep was straining up through beautiful countryside when the radiator began to leak. (para. 1)
When the radiator started to drip, my old jeep was trying hard to climb up the mountain in the scenery rural area.
2. The over-heated engine forced me to stop at the next village, which consisted of a small store and a few houses that were scattered here and there. (para. 1)
Due to the high temperature of the engine, I had to stop at the next village, which contained a small shop and several houses that were loosely distributed.
3. He, in turn, inspected me carefully, as if to make sure I grasped the significance of his statement. (para. 3)
Then he examined me with great caution in the way of ensuring whether I understood the importance of his words.
4. As a product of American education, I had never paid the slightest attention to the green banana, except to regard it as a fruit whose time had not yet come. (para. 5)
As someone educated in the United States, I naturally had never paid any attention to the green banana, except to take it as a fruit which was not yet ripe or which was not yet ready to be picked and eaten.
5. It was my own time that had come, all in relation to it. (para. 5) Paraphrase:
It was me who had come to know the green bananas, and everything connected with it. According to the author, every civilization has special geniuses (symbolized by the green banana), which have existed for many years. But they will not come to your notice and benefit you until and unless you are ready to go out and meet them.
6. I had been wondering for some time about what educators like to call “learning moments”, and I now knew I had just experienced two of them at once. (para. 5)
The two things that suddenly dawned on him are: the fact that every civilization has wonderful treasure to share with others and the idea that every village, town, region or country has a right to regard itself as the center of the world.
7. The cultures of the world are full of unexpected green bananas with special value and meaning. (8)
The green bananas have become a symbol of hidden treasures from every culture. For proper understanding of a piece of writing, it is often important to notice such symbolic language and to know what the symbols stand for.
1. He had his thumb out and held a gas can in his other hand. (para. 1) Paraphrase:
He held his thumb out and the gas can to show that he was out of gas and needed a lift to the nearest gas station. Generally speaking, at the same time of holding his thumb out, a hitchhiker also has a board in his hand, on which the name of the place he wants to go is written. Here, the gas can shows that the young man has run out of gasoline for his car.
2. Leaving him stranded in the desert did not bother me so much. (para. 2) Paraphrase:
Because the author thought it was sensible for him to do so and did so indeed as a matter of course as other people would do the same in the situation.
It shows that it was really something common. The real issue then was not that he didn’t help the young man but that he never thought about offering help to strangers.
3. It would be cashless journey through the land of the almighty dollar. (para. 5)
I would travel without a penny through the country where money was extremely important.
4. I rose early…and a sign displaying my destination to passing vehicles “America”. (para. 6)
Because what he wanted to do was to discover America and American people. The destination of the journey was Cape Fear, just literally, but the real destination was to seek understanding of the country and its people.
5. In Montana they told me to watch out for the cowboys in Wyoming. In Nebraska they said people would not be as nice in Iowa.
They suggest that the people there (probably people everywhere), were more or less provincial (another sub-concept of ethnocentric). They tended to make false assumptions about people in other places, . the people in their place were nicer/better than those in other places.
6. I didn’t know whether t o kiss them or scold them for stopping. (para. 8) Paraphrase:
(Because the situation when the two little ladies stopped for the author was, in his eyes, potentially dangerous for them. He says so to emphasize both the kindness and courage the ladies showed in that particular situation.)
7. Once when I was hitchhiking unsuccessfully in the rain, a trucker pulled over, locking his brakes so hard he skidded on the grass shoulder. (Para. 9) Paraphrase:
(Because he had to. Otherwise he would not be able to stop right before the author. It shows the mental struggle that was probably going on in the driver’s mind. He was once robbed at knifepoint by a hitchhiker, which made it more difficult for him to make such a decision at the moment than others. However, he chose to stop finally and his kindness was thereby highlighted.)
8. Those who had the least to give often gave the most.
Poor people are often more generous. They are often ready/willing to give comparatively more of what they have to those in need than rich people.
9. Now we’re talking, I thought.
Now he knew what I wanted and the talk was going in the right direction.
10. “When we do, ” he said, “it’s usually kin.” (Para. 13) Paraphrase:
(The local people do not usually entertain/receive guests at home.) They only do this for their kin relatives.
11. In spite of everything, you can still depend on the kindness of strangers. Paraphrase:
(It means the fact that there are people who are indifferent to other people’s needs/ who refuse to help others/who may hesitate to help and people may say about lack of compassion in our society and a generally moral decay in our society.
I find, however, on the whole you can still depend on the kindness of strangers.)
1. The impressiveness was normal and not for show, for spectators were few. (para. 1)
The police officer walked that way habitually, not to attract attention or admiration because there were few people in the streets to be impressed. The description shows that the policeman quite enjoyed his work.
2. Trying doors as he went, swinging his club with many clever movements, turning now and then to cast his watchful eye down the peaceful street, the officer, with his strongly built form and slight air of superiority, made a fine picture of a guardian of the peace. (para. 2)
From how he looked and what he did on the beat, we can see that the policeman was competent at, confident of, proud of, and dutiful to his job. All these factors gave people the impression that he was a trustworthy protector of the peace. ( Notice how a string of present participles are used as adverbials to vividly describe the policeman’s actions.)
3. The area was one that kept early hours. (para. 2)
People in that area closed their stores pretty early.
4. The next morning I was to start for the West to make my fortune. (para. 7) Paraphrase:
The next morning I was going to leave (New York) for the West as planned to make a lot of money and get rich.
5. We figured that in twenty years each of us ought to have our fate worked out and our fortunes made, whatever they were going to be. (para. 7) Paraphrase:
We thought by that time we would have found out our fate and known how much we have achieved materially—whether our fortune huge or small.
6. But after a year or two we lost track of each other. (para. 9) Paraphrase:
We wrote letters and kept in touch with each other for a year or two, and then we stopped writing and haven’t heard from or heard of each other. Now neithe r of us knows what has happened or is happening to the other.
7. You see, the West is a pretty big place, and I kept running around over it pretty lively. (para. 9)
I kept moving around in the West, never staying in the same place for long. (And that’s why it was hard for us to keep track of each other.)
8. …and it’s worth it if my old partner turns up. (para. 9)
If my old friend comes to meet me as he promised, I would think my trouble of travelling so far is fairly rewarded.
9. He was a kind of slow man, though, good fellow as he was. (para. 13)
However, he wasn’t very smart, even thought he was a good person.
10. I’ve had to compete with some of the sharpest brains going to get my money. (para. 13 )
In order to make money, I had to compete with the most shrewd and crafty people.
11. A man gets stuck in New York. It takes the West to make a man really keen. (para. 13)
A man is unable to go very far or to be very successful in New York where life
is boring and opportunities for change are few. He has to go to the West to become
an eager and exciting person.
The man from the west means that New York City was “civilized”; it had too many laws, and that getting rich quickly was less likely. In the West, however,
one could by-pass the rules, and though being tougher and smarter one could become
rich very fast.
12. I should say not! (para. 16)
Of course I am not going to leave immediately.
13. The few foot passengers in that quarter hurried dismally and silently along with coat collars turned high and pocketed hands. (para. 18 )
There were few people in the street of this part of the city. They had turned their coat collars high and kept their hands in their pockets for warmth. They didn’t look happy and were walking fast without saying anything.
14. “Bless my heart!” exclaimed the new arrival. (para. 21)
“Bless my heart!” the man who had just arrived said aloud in surprise.
15. It’s Bob, sure a fate. (para. 22)
Definitely it’s you, Bob.
16. How has the West treated you, old man (para. 22)
How well did you do in the West, old friend
17. …we’ll go around to a place I know of, and have a good long talk about old times. （para. 26）
I’ve heard of a place, so let’s go there and we will have a long talk about those happy days we spent together in the past. Note that probably the plainclothes policeman was thinking: I’ll take you to the police station and you will tell me about the crimes you committed in the past.
18. At the corner stood a drugstore brilliant with electric lights. (para. 28) Paraphrase:
There was a drugstore at the corner. Its electric lights were on and it was very bright inside.
19. Chicago thinks you may come over our way and telegraphs us she wants to have
a chat with you. (para. 31)
The Chicago Police Department thinks you may come to New York, sent us a telegraph
and asked us to help them track you down and arrest.
20. Going quietly, are you That’s sensible. (para. 31)
You won’t put up a fight and resist arrest, will you. That (cooperating will us without causing any disturbance) is the right thing to do.
21. Somehow I couldn’t do it myself, so I went around and got a plain clothes man to do the job. (para. 33)
For some reason I couldn’t arrest you myself, so I had a policeman not wearing a uniform do it.
Jimmy had mixed feelings. He knew what his duty was. But the memories of their friendship, the expressions of Bob’s undy ing respect and admiration for him and the fact that Bob had come all the way from a thousand miles away just to keep the appointment made 20 years before must have deeply touched him. Therefore, he could not bring himself to arrest Bob.
1. The end of manual labor was liberating. (1)
Mandela is talking about forced labor. He felt liberated after the manual labor had been ended.
2. To survive in prison, one must develop ways to take satisfaction in one’s daily life. (2)
In order not to die and go on living in prison, prisoners must cultivate ways to learn to enjoy themselves in their daily life.
3. But eventually they gave in, and we were able to cut out a small garden on
a narrow patch of earth against the far wall. (3)
But finally they agreed unwillingly, and we were able to mark out a small garden on a strip of earth against the wall in the distance.
4. At the time, some of my comrades joked that I was a miner at heart, for I spent my days in a wasteland and my free time digging in the courtyard. (4) Paraphrase:
At that time, some of my comrades said jokingly that I was really a miner since I spent my days in a land which had been deserted for a long time and my spare time digging in the courtyard.
5. The authorities did not regret giving permission, for once the garden began to flourish, I often provided the warders with some of my best tomatoes and onions.
The person in charge didn’t feel regretful that they had allowed me to have a garden because as soon as the garden began to grow well, I often gave the warders some of my best tomatoes and onions.
6. I told her this small story at great length. I do not know what she read into that letter, (11)
I told her this small story in detail. I do not know whether she understood the meaning of the letter more than it did.