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The translation center of the Ulyanovsk - UNESCO City of Literature program continues its work

The Directorate of the Ulyanovsk – UNESCO City of Literature Program continues to publish the work of 2nd year Master’s students of the Institute of International Relations, Faculty of Linguistics, Intercultural Relations and Professional Communication of Ulyanovsk State University (Ekaterina Krasheninnikova, Mohammad Temple, Xenia Skvortsova, Diana Aliyeva, Maria Parfenova, Terekhina Anastasia) based on the translation into English of novels and short stories by the Ulyanovsk author Valery Eremin.

About the author:

Eremin Valery Alexandrovich - a poet and prose writer from the working settlement of Surskoye Ulyanovsk. He is a member of the Union of Journalists of the Russian Federation, the Union of Writers of Russia, the chairman of the Sursky literary and poetic association "Promzin syllables". Valery Alexandrovich is a regular contributor to the Literary Page of the regional newspaper Surskaya Pravda, has publications in the regional literary and artistic almanacs Karamzinsky Garden and Simbirsk, and is the author of several collections of short stories and poems.

Today you can read novels and stories from the book "The Conversation", published in 2021, the literary translation of which was prepared by a student from Lebanon, Khram Mohammad.

The student believes that participation in the work of the translation center is a great opportunity to improve the quality of work, to be more accurate and experienced. Mohammad noted that his qualities are enthusiasm and a desire to contribute to success through hard work, attention to detail, dedication and excellent translation skills. Motivated to learn and work harder. Always positive and ready to work better and create better artistic texts.

Based on his experience, the student noted the most important thing to follow when preparing a translation:

- Plan: effective implementation of the tasks in the required time frame.

- Work as efficiently as possible.

- Be sure to edit the translated texts.

- Fix all bugs.

- Eliminate "embarrassments", such as any statements or suggestions that could lead to a "cultural clash".

- Learn and use the best and equivalent terms.

- Be responsible for what you translate.


We invite everyone to read it, as well as readers from other countries.





Gerka recognized her immediately when they met for the first time, many years after school graduation. Although, of course, she has changed. But where can you put these eyes, a lively and quick look. Slightly muffled voice and gesticulation during a conversation. They once went to the first class of this famous “red” school in the village together, opened back in tsarist times, and recently she houses a museum. The lessons were held in the most spacious bright classroom. Jenney sat at the second desk of the third row, with an old large Dutch oven on the opposite side. The classroom contained old desks with hinged lids near the drawers, which sometimes treacherously made a loud sound at the wrong moment. The desks had inkwells indentations for non-spillers and fountain pens with an eleventh number feather. Jenney, like her classmates, did not stand out in any way. She lived near the school, one might say very close, and sometimes at during the long break she could run home, which many envied her. Once we saw her with her father, he built an impression on us, and especially on the guys. I remember back then someone told Jenney:

- He looks like Budyonny.

Another immediately argued:

- Not. On Selleck.

- Mom at home calls him Selleck for his mustache, Jenney ingenuously clarified.

But the most memorable incident with Jenney was different and he, of course, noticed it later that time. And now she speaks quickly, trying to give some grace to the words, after all, she lives in Moscow now. Rotated – as she claimed – in her in theatrical circles, grieved the early loss of her husband, and her daughter who had somehow grew up quickly, is now rushing abroad towards the unknown. Suddenly somehow she switched to a simple and native, more familiar language. And suddenly said:

- I read a story in the local newspaper. What's yours?

“Probably mine,” he replied, a little embarrassed.

So how did they write their last name? Instead of the letter U “ё”, they printed the letter E, she was slightly indignant.

Silently and carefully he looked at her.

She intercepted and read his glance. Changing the subject, quickly asked:

- Do you remember Filka?

He raised his eyebrows slightly in surprise. Although he understood everything perfectly.

- Well, Vovka, Vovka. He the same classmate who lived over there, on that street, in Valkovka, - and she showed her hand. “I think he was also your friend.”

- Oh, well, yes ... I immediately said, you also said so. He is now a doctor, professor, and head of the department.

- Yes, I have half of Moscow professors’ acquaintances. Too bad the pics are not with me. I'll grab them for the next time we meet and I'll show them to you, and you better tell me how to find him, people say he's here. I spoke to Vera, we needed to meet. She has a car at work, they will take her to nature. Let's sit for couple of shots, drink, talk, and remember our school years. What do you think? Will your wife allow it?

- Of course I do not mind, neither do my folks. I think they’ll understand.

- Well, that's great, and you should definitely catchup with Vladimir Viktorovich. He’s speaking to himself.

“I can’t tell you anything, since we haven’t met yet,” he said, although he heard that Vovka had something like that, and he completely hit science. I traveled a lot around the country, well, here is the result.

- Okay. Do you have a phone? Good! Listen, maybe now we can run to him, and warn him.

- No. I can’t. Work. Maybe you feel lonely, let me tell you where he lives.

And he explained as much as possible.

Soon Gerka got a call. In the receiver he heard the voice of Vera, and against her background, so to speak in the background, Evgenia's chirping.

- So. Now a car will pick you up, don't take anything, we have everything, and then for Volodya.

And here they are in the car. Vladimir has a place of honor next to the driver’s seat. Under the converted heat from burning gas of the UAZ engine and the shaking lights above the bumps on the road, the words were a little uneven. They exchanged separate cheerful, insignificant phrases and laughed loudly, uncontrollably. This clarified that everyone was happy with this meeting.

The area where they were born, by the God’s will, grace and mercy, was magnificent. And when the car hit the road, went up the street and drove towards the forest, everyone involuntarily turned their heads to the right. There, behind the glass, was a real beauty and they fell silent at once. Their eyes glided over the waves of the forest on the hillocks. Here it is Strelka, Kubyshka, and there is the legend of the village of Nikolskaya Gora. Behind it is the bank of the river, further up to the sky there is a forest and fields. And here, very close by, under the mounds, the houses of the old native village are hiding in the greenery, and all this under a bottomless blue sky with white air clouds frozen in it. My God! What a gift for a short life moment they were given.

In the meantime, the car broke the silence of the forest and zigzag along the tape of the road going downhill, and parted the greenery of the bushes and trees without any previous warning.

   They again vied with each other, began to clamor. Separate words reached Gerka. Beauty, miracle, wonder, unseen, beauty, charm, splendor!

And so to the very place, to the clearing on the lake. The place where they settled down was called "Crosses". It was the old river. Having unloaded the supplies, they sat down on a colored blanket, so in harmony with the flowers growing in the clearing. For some time they silently inhaled the pure intoxicating air, looking around the surrounding beauty.

And then, after drinking a glass, they broke through.

- Do you remember? Remember? And memories began to sound over the clearing like a many-voiced beautiful song, throwing them back to such a distant childhood and youth. At once there were no professors, no bosses. They became students again. Gerka looked at his friends and thought with joy: “What a good, glorious thing this is, a peculiar school memory!”

Suddenly, some kind of deck appeared in Jenney's hands. At first it seemed to Gerka that these were maps, but looking closer, he realized that these were photographs.

- Where did she get the pictures from? - A question appeared in his head. She didn't seem to be interested in photography at school. Interesting!

“Here we are with Gorbachev,” Jenney said, passing the photo to the slightly surprised Vladimir. - And here with Raikin, and here with Pugacheva, and in this photo ... Yevgenia spoke with a meaningful look.

“Don’t be surprised, Jenney is working in the administration of the Raikin Theater, so she took a picture, taking advantage of the moments, and now she is boasting,” Vera made some clarity.

Everyone silently, with some interest and distrust, examined and passed the photographs to each other.

Then someone said:

- Of course, all this is wonderful, but they have their own lives, and we have our own. You, Evgenia, it’s better for us from your school life, give something that knocks you off your feet.

- I have something like that, but you yourself know, just keep quiet for some reason. Don't you remember how, in elementary school, I let a stream from under the desk all the way to the Dutch girl. I remember, I raised my hand, raised it, asked for leave, asked for leave, but they didn’t let me out of the class. Well, that's the result and opsisidila.

Gerka looked at Jenney with approval and thought:

- It's great she fell from heaven to the sinful earth! It is rightly said that we all come from childhood and all once ran without pants. And then who's lucky. To whom what fate fell the villainю What Mother Nature breathed into you. Well, of course, a lot depended on it.

- I did not expect such revelations from you Eugene, - said Vladimir.

- What's wrong here? Gerka even write, I do not mind. How are you George?

“We need to think about it,” George answered cautiously.

- What is there to think. We need to pour and drink for our school friends and our friendship,” Vera suggested.

More years passed. George met Vera. They again began to remember friends.

- How is our Evgenia? - he asked.

So she just arrived. You know, her brother died, and she came to sell the house. I persuaded her not to, repair it, you will come to your homeland for the summer. She said okay, I’ll think about it, but she took it and sold it, you see, she needs to go abroad to her daughter. And she has her, how many countries has she changed? Meet a man on the Internet and to him. This is how it roams. I somehow call her here and say: “Hello Jenney! How is it going? How are you?" And she told me: “Yes, yes! I'm Jenny! I'm Jenny! I am listening to you! I'm listening to!". Well, I said a few words to her in Russian, and she hung up. I thought maybe they were calling her from abroad. Jenny.



Gerka was found in the class of the basics of computer science and computer technology. He taught this new subject unknown to anyone at that time in the village, in the school. I had to explain on my fingers, with chalk at the blackboard. Thanks to the director, he got hold of a dozen programmable calculators somewhere. What no, but computer technology.

- Go you someone to phone demands, - having glanced in a class, the teacher on duty has told.

Going into the teacher's room, Gerka picked up the telephone receiver lying on the table.

- Yes, - he said and heard the familiar voice of a friend with whom he worked not so long ago in the department of agriculture.

- Hey, do you have time? Run, we need to talk.

- What do you have there? Speak.

- No, I can't over the phone. I'll introduce you to a friend here, he's from the region. There is a conversation.

- Okay. I have a window between lessons, I'll come.


And here they are in the office. The new interlocutor is young, handsome. Feels smart and energetic. The former Komsomol grip is visible.

- Guys, I'll tell you a secret, changes are coming.

- Another restructuring? Gerka couldn't resist. So I'm fed up with her.

- Look deeper. The changes will be big. And you need to do everything quickly and on time. Soon you can rent the land. If one, then five hectares, ten together. Buy equipment. I love it and as much as possible.

- For what? - Herka could not stand it again.

- Will issue an interest-free loan. And money and prices will change. Things will not go well, sell everything, pay off and yourself more, there will be left. And who knows, a loan can be forgiven.


Gerka thought for a moment and then asked:

How about collective farms? Will they stay?

- As for the collective farms, I can’t say anything yet.

Gerka was silent, and various thoughts danced in his head. Well, he couldn't jump right into it like that. Here it is necessary to have a special character.

- And what will the farm be called?

- Farming, and you are farmers.

Gerka again went into his thoughts. He could not imagine himself a farmer - the owner of agricultural production.

- And what will it all lead to? he thought. Will people be better or worse, he did not know, and could not know.

- It's hard to write an algorithm for solving this problem right away, - he said, getting up from his chair. - Thanks for the information. I'll try to draw up a program of action ... Sorry, but I have a lesson. And I thought to myself:

- Up there, someone has already compiled an algorithm and a program for us, but who will perform it and how, this is another question.



We met with him after he once saw me with a dog that I led on a leash. This time Stanislav asked me:

- Was that your dog? And what breed, I did not understand?

To which I jokingly replied:

- Doggy. Judge for yourself if the mother is a spaniel and the father is the butler. What breed will she be? And we both laughed.

- Are you a hunter? How so?

What kind of hunter am I now? The name is one. You understand your age, so I’ll go out sometimes, I’ll walk with a gun. In general, take the soul away, calm down. And he brought this to his grandson, the case turned up, otherwise he reed for two years: “Grandfather, let's get a dog.”

Stanislav was an old, avid hunter and fisherman. He lived not far from Moscow and traveled a lot in search of good hunting and fishing. Fate, or rather his wife, brought him to our region. She was from our area. She left her parental home here, in which they regularly ran into. From early spring to late autumn they lived in it. We dug in the garden and very often went out into nature. My wife had a great passion for fishing, and she often went hunting with him, as Stanislav said in her youth. No, she didn't hunt, of course, but still. They used to take dogs too. And Stanislav sometimes loved to talk about hunting and his adventures. And this time he immediately picked up the topic of dogs.

- Do you know what kind of dog I had? English ponter. Male. And what color. Himself white and on it light brown large spots. You will fall in love. Well, and the pedigree in general, parents are champions of the Moscow region. Can you imagine? Exterior - take a look. Upper flair for twenty meters.

At this time, Stanislav's wife Ella came up to us, listened and, realizing what was happening, joined our conversation:

- Yes, he was handsome, handsome and so smart, kind and obedient.

- And his nickname was Fram, - said Stanislav and looked at me.

Of course, I did not understand and asked again:

- What is it? In what language?

- This is in Swedish, translated into ours, it means “Forward,” Stanislav answered.

- What Swedish? Ella said. - Fram. It's in Norwegian.

A small dispute flared up, which did not lead to anything, and in order to stop it, I asked Stanislav:

- Well, how are you with him, with Fram?

- How, how to participate in the shows.

I told him not to, but he didn't listen to me.

- After these shows and demonstrations, many hunters asked me to sell it. Yes, could I. I put so much work into it. Trained, coached. Every God's day off to the meadows, to the fields there, by the Moscow River.

“Yeah, he got too much attention,” Ella remarked with little resentment. - You better tell me about the pants.

- What other pants? - Stanislav said, flashing his eyes at Ella, and asked me. – Do you know how punter is translated? Not? Arrow.

- Why? I was surprised.

- Have you seen how a punter works on a hunt? When, smelling a bird, he stands in a stance, he stretches himself from the tip of his nose to the tip of his tail and aims, in general, he turns into an arrow, - Stanislav said with inspiration.

- No, you still tell me about the pants, - Ella said again.

- You, that stuck to me with your pants, - Stanislav could not stand it.

“Not with mine, but with yours,” she clarified.

- I'll tell you, I'll tell you. So what? You understand, I once went with Fram across the Moscow River, to the glades to train him. In general, to learn to walk in search of a bird by shuttle. The weather was good, one might say excellent. Morning. The sun rises and slowly walks across the sky, and Fram and I through the meadows. I feel like it's starting to get hot. I took off my shirt first. I put it in my gas mask bag.

- In short, we'll take off our shirts, show the physique, - Ella clarified. - There, on the river, the female sex probably began to appear.

- Yes, yes, to appear, but at that time I had something to show. Pumped up. There were muscles. In short, it's all nonsense. And the grass is green and a little high to go hinders. Pants in it are confused and clinging. Well, I took and took them off. Left in sneakers and swimming trunks. I tried my pants in a bag, shove them, they don’t climb.

“If we show the physique, then of course completely,” the wife quipped.

To which Stanislav just waved his hand.

- I go, I shift my pants from hand to hand, otherwise sometimes I’ll put it on my shoulder. Here it is necessary to work with the dog, but they interfere.

- And yet no one interfered? Ella asked.

- Stop your jokes. Well, I still put them in my bag, though they look out, but I think it’s okay, and so it will do. In general, we worked up Fram, worked hard, got tired, I think I need to get ready for home and get out on the road. I wanted to get dressed, but there were no pants with a shirt. They hit me in the head like the butt of a gun. How do I think to go home to the city with transfers by bus? It's now, on a bet, naked, they will pass in the subway. We are brought up differently. I remember as a kid, on the river, friends will hide their pants, so you swim until night. It's embarrassing to go home in shorts. In general, I go back and forth, I say to Fram, look, and he looks at me with his intelligent eyes and seems to want to tell me: “You didn’t drag me to look for my pants.”

- And how are you? I asked.

- All the same, I wandered around, and in the evening I took a ticket on the bus. I go in and say: “Citizens-comrades, so, they say, and so, sorry, they misfired with Fram and completely lost their scent, and not only their scent, but also their shirt and pants.” We laughed and went.

- You must have fed all the game after such a nataska? I asked.

- What did you feed there? They stole Fram from me, - Stanislav answered sadly.

- How was it stolen?

- Very simple. Ella let her out of the apartment for a walk, she goes out after him, but he is not there.



Sergei was a passionate, fiery lover of nature. He could not sit at home for a day without a sortie for her dear, dear. Whatever he was not interested in. He fished and hunted, but his special passion and attraction was gathering. It was hard to tell what he didn't collect. The spring blue sky will blaze, the birches will cry with spring tear-juice, he is right there, picking up an intoxicating, intoxicating drink. The snow cover will come down, the first morel mushrooms will look out into the light of day, and he is in the forest with a basket. And there you look and it went, and it spun, and it spun. A wild onion broke through, appeared in the meadows and played with cheerful greenery and wild sorrel spread tender leaves. And then you look, they flared up, lit up with bright red lights and breathed in the stunning, inimitable aroma of strawberries, and behind it, along the mounds and glades in the lush grass, a noble, large strawberry began to hide and bury. Along the banks of rivers and rivulets, next to the bird cherry, in shady places and on the outskirts of the marshes, currants lurk, gleaming with black eyes from under juicy carved leaves. And somewhere nearby, red currants hid and blushed with embarrassment. And not far away, in young clearings, under the brilliant foliage, a bearberry-raspberry begins to ripen. And so on until late autumn. And after all around, Sergey is in time everywhere. You just ask him: “Did you pick up nuts?” And you can hear the answer: "No, this year the hazel did not bloom." "And the mushrooms?" And you will hear what, where, when and how much he collected. Even when there is a crop failure in our area, Sergey can wave, rush, so to speak, for hundreds of miles. That's how he is. But I want to tell you about blueberries. About Seryozhkina blueberry.

Sergey, in general, is not one of our places. He came to study at the school, after graduation he married a local girl, and he stayed that way.

During his studies, he did not show particularly brilliant knowledge. I always sat at the last table. He reacted calmly to the received deuces, saying: "A threesome will be provided for the year anyway." But he was kind and hardworking. Loved friends and teachers. He loved to prepare the blackboard for the lesson, arrange manuals and hang up posters. The top of everything for him was practice. There Sergei could move mountains.

After graduation, he somehow quickly and vividly, at his own pleasure, studied and fell in love with the nature of our places. This river, these forests, meadows and fields, and was well oriented, easily and without much difficulty finding the places he needed.

Meeting with former teachers, he was interested in their life and spoke with great pleasure about his own, and he always invited me to nature with him. And then one day he met his former mathematician, who once mercilessly gave him deuces, but always regularly, in the end, brought out the triple he needed so much. They started talking. She said that blueberries are needed. Son for the eyes, as she explained. Sergey immediately picked up the conversation:

- So I brought so much that year!

And he, without stopping, began to tell where he was, with whom he was and how you can easily and freely get there if you have a car. In general, we agreed to give up, especially since the husband of the mathematics teacher Tatyana Ivanovna, Georgy, had a Niva car.

And so Sergei began to call and find out when it would be possible to go. Tatyana Ivanovna began to press on her husband. And in addition, as luck would have it, the front drive axle failed at the car. And he explained to her:

- Well, where are we going to the forest on one rear bridge, think for yourself.

Sergey on the phone proved that it was okay that they went to this place in a simple Zhiguli car.

What can you say to a woman, and even a mathematician, who with her formulas can put any mind in order. And the husband agreed.

Sergei, sitting in the seat next to the driver, famously, valiantly, cheerfully talked about the last trip for blueberries, while the car ran easily along the asphalt. But behind the last village, where, as they say, it was within easy reach of the forest, the good road ended, ruts started, and the rains that had passed not very long ago filled them with water. Sergey sang another song:

- Yes, do not be afraid, there is not much here, and there is sand in the forest, by the way, now you can turn into the field.

- Sergei, maybe we'll be back? - said Georgy, Tatyana Ivanovna's husband, who was driving.

- Yes you cho, add gas, - Sergey has cheerfully told.

At this time, the car shook, it stalled and stopped in a rut.

“But this should not have been done,” Sergey said. - Start up and let's go. If we push with Tatyana Ivanovna. How are you?

She was silent. Then all their attempts to help the car were in vain.

- Okay, - said Sergei. - I'll go to the village, everything will be hockey! Look, there is a tractor. And the beast runs to the catcher, he will instantly drive us to the forest!

In the forest, the car was unhooked from the tractor. The road was wet, dense and sandy. Sergey chirped again:

- Yes, I am, yes we are here ... You see how we overcome these puddles with a song.

And suddenly the road began to fork. George involuntarily slowed down, wondering where to turn.

- Come on to the left, - commanded Sergei.

- Yes, there is a puddle further on and it seems that they have traveled for a long time.

- Why didn’t we go that year, on simple Zhiguli here with a song, let’s say.

And George leaned in and at the same moment, one might say, got stuck and hard. What they just didn’t do: they pushed back and forth, and swung back and forth. And in no way. Some kind of strong "magnet" kept the car in a deep puddle. Even a stump of a decent pole, used by Sergei, did not help. Suddenly he shouted:

- Oh, oh, I can't take it anymore! Leg, leg! Probably tore a muscle.

He dropped the wagon and crawled out of the puddle to a dry place. He stretched out on the grass, on his back, spreading his arms and legs wide, and breathing heavily.

Taking a deep breath, he said:

- I'll go look for a tractor or a car.

He got up and wandered in a direction known only to him.

George and Tatyana saw him off in silence.

It is difficult to describe the charms of a truly Russian forest, its bushes and flowers, a sandy road, a swamp with a car stuck in it, and a blue sunny sky with white clouds.

George was the first to come to his senses, still silently, he opened the trunk of the car, took out two small plastic buckets and a sapper shovel. Together they began to pump water out of the puddle. We soon noticed that the water was not draining well. After examining the place, they came to the conclusion that a stream flows into the puddle.

- So. This is the work of Sisyphus, George concluded. - Let's better dig a ditch so that more water flows out of the puddle.

Drenched in sweat, they dug a solid ditch, through which water rushed from a puddle. They took up the buckets. Soon the water in the puddle was greatly reduced. George started the engine, trying to get out, but no. I dug under the wheels, the result is the same, the sand immediately enveloped them. They began to collect sticks and dug bitches and tried to slip them under the wheels. George again and again tried to leave, but in vain. He sat down to rest, listening to the sounds of the forest, and looked at the road, waiting for help from Sergei. And suddenly he remembered the rope in the trunk. She was long and strong. He got her. Stretched and tied one end behind the car, stretched the other to a tall pine tree. He took out a jack and began to fit it to the tree with a tow rope. I threw a loop, ropes on the movable element of the jack and began to rotate the handle. The rope stretched, and for some millimeters, as it seemed to Georgy, it moved the car. He waited. Tied up the rope. He set up the jack and began to rotate the handle, and then he was sure that the car had moved two or three centimeters. He was so delighted that he almost sang and danced near the pine tree. He repeated and repeated, one and the same, the procedure, and centimeter by centimeter, pulled the car stuck in a puddle. How long this went on, he did not know this, but when the rear driving wheels were on a hard road, how Sergey grew out of the ground. He began to wonder aloud:

- No, listen, how are you? So she has to leave now! Sit down and we'll push!

Georgy sat down, started it and carefully began to drive away, and Sergey, pushing the car with his hands into the hood, explained to his beloved teacher:

- I ran half the forest over not a single car, not a tractor! And the one that passed, as if it fell through the ground!

And when we packed our things and set off again, Georgy, listening to Sergei's stories, said half in jest:

- Now only I will make decisions and no one, but you, Seryoga, it seems to me, was not looking for any tractors and cars. And I was lying somewhere, next to me in the bushes, healing my leg, and looking at how I was wallowing.

But they still found blueberries that day and collected a whole glass.

On the way back, Sergei talked aloud:

- Apparently today is not a fruitful year for blueberries, but how much was that year ...



She ran and screamed, screamed and fell, got up and ran again, and screamed, not paying attention to her broken knees, from which blood oozed.

- My dear, my dear! Good!

On the street of the village, along which she flew headlong, people also began to run out and asked each other:

- What is she? What's happened? Where is he running?

- Yes, like to the river, to the bridge, - someone said.

And she rushed on and no longer screamed, but yelled at the top of her lungs:

- You are my dear, beloved, my soul, you are my dear, you are my light, ah-ah-ah-ah-ah-ah! Precious! My heart! Ah-ah-ah-ah-ah!

The men, smoking, asked the crowded women:

- Who is she talking about? What about children?

- About what children! What do you not see? The children run after her.

- What about the husband something? So they didn't seem to be doing very well. He sometimes beat her, as it were, and she ran too, but screamed something completely different.

- So they first lived like doves. What don't you remember? They say they had love. And then he started drinking.

- Just don't drink. Probably began to pour salt and pepper on sore spots.

And along the street without stopping, everything rushed:

- Dove you are my desired, dear! Ah-ah-ah-ah! Darling, the light of my eyes! Falcon clear! My kasatik! Beloved, dear, my dear! Ah-ah-ah-ah-ah!

- Look ... what words ... Here sometimes in your whole life you will not hear one such. Okay, let's go and see. Can help as needed.

And the men hurried after the unfortunate woman.

People crowded on the steep bank near the bridge.

The duty officer on the crossing was sadly turning the winch, putting the pontoons in place, connecting the drawn bridge. Above the bridge was a self-propelled barge.

Without waiting for the procedure to be completed, the woman still with the same screams, bowing her head with a tear-stained face, ducked under the closed barrier and jumped onto the plow. She fell off him and almost ended up in the water, having managed to catch on the edge. The man, leaving the winch to turn, grabbed her and helped her out. And she, shouting: “Where is he?”, attacked him with her fists. The men came to the rescue and dragged her away.

The people gathered at the bridge discussed what was happening.

- Where? Where? He was driving from the other side in a UAZ. And here comes the barge. The bridge began to be raised. And he goes on and on. He probably thought he would. Or maybe he was under this case, or maybe he was upset with something, something was wrong with the woman at home. You saw how he has a fighting ... In.

- Well, what's next?

- What ... what ... From this shore they shout to him, and whistle, and wave their hands, but at least henna to him. Pret and that's it. Well, I dived along with the UAZ.

Why didn't anyone help?

- Yes, the men dived with the kids ... the car is at the bottom, the cockpit is open, and there is nothing in it ...

- Tea was carried away by the current ...

- May be…

- Look, the boat has been brought up. Do they want to dive again? They show something under the bridge.

- Show and laugh for some reason. Here you have to cry, but they laugh. What did they find funny?

- Look, they put his woman in a boat. And she pulls the oar from them and waves the oar. And something is screaming.

 A huge crowd on the shore heard:

- What are you doing here under the bridge? To whom did you decide to arrange a concert? Oh, you bastard, oh you bastard! Let's get on the boat! Well, you are both a bastard and a scoundrel! Scoundrel in one word. It's that you are such a bastard in front of the people to disgrace me.

At first, the involuntary spectators of what was happening, and they probably became half a village, were silent, and after listening and realizing what was happening, they began to laugh and laugh in unison at every expression that they thought was successful.

- Probably got drunk, like a pig, you are a hornless cattle, you are a shabby goat, - the wife caressed her husband.

- Come on, let's take a sip of it, - rushed from the crowd.

- She is his joy.

- Give it to him, shtob loved more strongly.

For a long time the wind and water in the river carried away the words: reptile, creature, scoundrel, rubbish, scoundrel ...

Laughing, people dispersed, they were glad that despite all the tragedy of what happened, everything ended so well and safely.



Gerka did not even know that his friend Peter, there, in his homeland near Moscow, was nicknamed the Afghan. He found out about it purely by accident. In general, he casually let it slip when Georgy asked him about the peasant, about Sergei from the village where Peter now lived. And this Sergei among themselves people called "Czech". Sergei was a simple Russian peasant. Loved to tease. He could snatch something from the collective farm, but only on trifles. But the fellow villagers, God forbid, no, no. He worked as a tractor driver, the worker was not bad, hardworking. For good progress in his work, he was nominated and appointed foreman of the tractor brigade. But he could not work for a long time. Sometimes, people had to step on their tails, and as they say, he didn’t have the spirit for this business. I had to leave, the character turned out to be soft. Well, like any Russian peasant, Sergei liked to drink bitter. And if for free - a holy cause. Sometimes it even went to hell. Boil in it, proletarian blood will play. Black thunderclouds will run over his soul, make a noise, scream loudly, he will shake his fists strongly, but not with malice, and he never fights. It will flash with lightning, rumble with thunder, splash out with a verbal stream and subside. Coming to his senses, he will start hugging and kissing everyone in a row. The next day, he is generally silent, feeling very guilty. His wife does not pay any attention to him and his tricks. And he reacts very calmly. From this, the family lives well, amicably. They also have children. They love their father, which, of course, he is very pleased with. Fellow villagers know Sergei, got used to him and no one ever takes offense at him. Here is such a "Czech".

- So you tell me, please, why, for what such merits is he called "Czech"? - then asked George Peter.

- What are the merits, once served in the Soviet era in Czechoslovakia in the army, and when he returned home to the village, he often began to say in a conversation: “But here we are in Czechoslovakia” and fellow villagers began to call him “Czech”. That's all," said Peter. - And they called me "Afghan" near Moscow, - he said unexpectedly.

- So you didn't serve in Afghanistan?

- No, of course, but it turned out, as they say.

- Interesting! And you never said anything about it.

- But what can I say, nothing interesting, because life twists you in every way, sometimes you forget everything.

And Peter suddenly began to tell how, after studying, he went into the army, how and where he served, how he returned and acquired the specialty of an adjuster, which was scarce at that time. He began to work as a foreman of the tractor and car fleet and earn good money. How quickly he met a girl and got married, although his sister’s husband tried to dissuade him, saying that it’s too early for you to stick your head into this collar. And soon a son was born. As a good worker, he soon joined the party. As I started to drink a little beer to relax in the beer house. And there friends and read their poems from the heart. And at home at this time, something deregulated. In production, any engine, even a tractor, even a combine or automobile engine, could be adjusted, but here it couldn’t, it didn’t work out. Who is guilty? Yes, probably both. Well, they fled. And here in Afghanistan this mess turned out. There friends familiar in it participated. Some orders, medals received. It crossed my mind that I was no worse than them, for a just cause, I could also, as they say, wave my fists. And somehow he took it, and went to the military registration and enlistment office. I say so, they say, and so, I want to go to Afghanistan. They began to ask me how, what, and why. They asked if I belonged to the party. Knowing that yes. They said that if something happens, the Mujahideen will not put me in a pit, immediately against the wall. I stuck with them for half a day and no sense. I left the recruiting office and my legs themselves led me to the pub. Only I, as they say, splashed a mug of beer on my soul, a friend comes in. I laid everything out to him, told him how I had not been treated fairly. We, of course, dealt with this particular case with him. And they came to a common opinion and concluded that it was unfair. We added a little more vodka to the beer. And when we left the pub and headed home, our path lay past the military registration and enlistment office. Having come up with the building, we, without saying a word, as if on command, put our right hands to the headdress and began to mint a drill step. And we must have seen the workers of the military registration and enlistment office. In some places, even the windows began to swing open. Someone pointed at us with his hand and said something, and a military man I already knew loudly, apparently so that my friend and I could hear cheerfully, said:

- Look, our Afghans are coming!

That's how my friend and I became Afghans, and it stuck to us firmly and for a long time.



Gerka walked and rejoiced. With both not strong, still childish hands, he pressed a dense and rather heavy fork of cabbage to himself. And he was pleased that everyone at home would be happy: father, mother, and elder brother. He imagined how his mother would bake a delicious pie in a Russian oven on a large iron pan, and fry pies in a frying pan.

“There’s enough for everything,” he said to himself. - There will still be leftovers.

Suddenly, strong, strong fingers grabbed his left ear and squeezed it quite painfully.

-Ahhh... He involuntarily cried out and almost dropped the fork.

- So ... Tell me, where did you steal the cabbage? - he heard a rough male voice, and when, having contrived, he turned his head and squinted his eyes, ready to splash with tears, he saw the policeman with whom he had been frightened before. He also remembered that he was called "Shvonder".

Having recovered a little, Gerka yelled plaintively:

- I did not steal anything ... they gave me!

- Why did they give it to you, and by whom? - Asked "Shvonder", loosening his grip, but not letting go of Gerka's ear.

- Who, who ... uncle ... over there ... they were unloading cabbage into the warehouse ... they had nothing to write with. They saw me and asked: “Do you happen to have a pencil?” And I had it. That's what I gave them. And then they gave me back the pencil and the cabbage. I didn’t take cabbage, but they say: “No, take it, you helped us out, take it.” If you don't believe me, go ask yourself.

- Okay... where do you live? - asked "Shvonder".

 Having received the answer, he left Gerka and his ear alone. And he walked on with a sense of accomplishment, moving his polished chrome boots to a mirror shine. And at this time, two or three people had already gathered around them, and among them Gerkin's friend, Lyoshka. He was often called Lyonka "Grey", for his white hair, shimmering in places with a golden sheen. He, choosing the moment, asked Gerka:

- And why is he you?

- On, here, better, hold it, - and Gerka handed Lyoshka a fork.

- Why is he me? - he did not understand.

- Hold, I say, and I'll unbutton my shirt.

And giving the cabbage, he unbuttoned the buttons.

- Now come on, - and, taking the fork, pressed it to the naked body. - Now fasten it, but don't tear off the buttons.

Thus, Gerka decided to hide the head of cabbage from prying eyes, so that some other "Shvonder" would not wind up his right ear as well.

“Let’s run,” he said to his friend, holding the forks peeking out from under his shirt with his hands, and he himself began to talk about what had happened to him.

At Gerka's house they parted. Catching his breath, Gerka entered the house. His mother came across him, going out into the yard, she asked:

- What are you hiding there? What are you talking about, I told you, don't take anything anywhere.

- Well, here are the Shvonders at home, too, thought Gerka. - Here, too, you can get a job.

In the back room, he saw his father sitting at the table finishing his meal. He slowly drank tea, which he loved very much. The older brother with a book has already perched on the bed. They saw Gerka and of course they certainly heard the words of their mother. The brother, looking at Herka, said:

- You are doing the right thing, brother, bring everything you can into the house. These are only fools and drunks from home.

- Wait, you! Father interrupted his brother. - What you have there. Where did you get her? Why are you hiding? asked the father in surprise.

Gerka had to tell everything as it was.

At the end of the story, the brother added:

- Well, bro, your ear has blossomed like a red poppy!

Mother entered the house from the street, and, seeing a head of cabbage, she continued:

- And where did you bring her, my dear?

- Everything is normal, we found out everything. And I also want to tell him how you can earn money with a pencil and a pen. It was you who just borrowed a pencil and received a gift for it, an award, so to speak. True, not so hot, but I got it.

And the father gave the brothers a whole lecture on what can be done with a pencil and a pen. And how much and how to do this you need to study. Then he caught himself and ran to work.

    The older brother looked cheerfully at Gerka and said:

- Here's what, take money from your mother, you are due for cabbage and quickly to the store.

- What is this for? Gerka didn't understand.

- Why. You count if you have five pencils. How much cabbage can you earn?

- Go and buy yourself, and learn better. Maybe you'll be smart. Troeshnik, - Gerka said a little offended and went to wash his hands.

“You don’t worry about me, brother… I’ll be smart anyway,” said the brother, putting the book on his head, and turned away to the wall.