Alice in Wonderland (Chapter 3) -

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Alice in Wonderland (Chapter 3)

Đăng vào lúc 02:18 02/07/2015 bởi Đỗ Thị Hải Yến

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Chapter 3: Conversation with a caterpillar

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‘Now,’ Alice said to herself. ‘First, I must get a little bigger, and second, I must find my way into that beautiful garden. I think that will be the best plan. But oh dear! How shall I get bigger? Perhaps I must eat or drink something, but the question is, what?’

Alice looked all around her at the flowers and the trees, but she could not see anything to eat. Then she saw a large mushroom near her. It was as tall as she was. She walked across to look at it, and there, on top of the mushroom, was a large caterpillar, smoking a pipe. After a while, the Caterpillar took the pipe out of its mouth and said to Alice in a slow, sleepy voice, ‘Who are you?’

‘I don’t really know, sir,’ said Alice. ‘I know who I was when I got up this morning, but I have changed so often since then. I think I am a different person now.’

‘What do you mean by that?’ said the Caterpillar. ‘Explain yourself!’

‘I can’t explain myself, sir,’ said Alice, ‘because I’m not myself, you know.’

‘I don’t know,’ said the Caterpillar.

‘It’s difficult to describe,’ Alice replied politely. ‘One minute I’m very small, the next minute I’m as tall as a house, then I’m small again. Usually, I stay the same all day, and changing so often feels very strange to me.’ ‘You!’ said the Caterpillar, in a very unfriendly voice. ‘Who are you?'

They were now back at the beginning of their conversation, which was not very helpful. Alice felt a little cross and decided to walk away.

‘Come back!’ the Caterpillar called after her. ‘I’ve something important to say.’

This sounded better, so Alice turned back.

‘Never get angry,’ said the Caterpillar.

‘Is that all?’ said Alice, trying not to be angry.

‘No,’ said the Caterpillar. For some minutes it smoked its pipe and did not speak, but at last it took the pipe out of its mouth, and said, ‘So you’ve changed, have you? How tall do you want to be?’

‘I would like to be a little larger, sir, please,’ said Alice. ‘Eight centimetres is really very small.’

For a while the Caterpillar smoked its pipe. Then it shook itself, got down off the mushroom, and moved slowly away into the grass. It did not look back at Alice, but said, ‘One side will make you taller, and the other side will make you shorter.’

‘One side of what?' thought Alice to herself.

She did not say this aloud, but the Caterpillar said, ‘Of the mushroom.’ Then it moved away into the wood.

Alice looked at the mushroom carefully, but it was round, and did not have sides. At last she broke off a piece in each hand from opposite sides of the mushroom. She ate some of the piece in her left hand, and waited to see what would happen.

A minute later her head was as high as the tallest tree in the wood, and she was looking at a sea of green leaves.

Then a bird appeared and began to fly around her head, screaming,

‘Egg thief! Egg thief! Go away!’

‘I’m not an egg thief,’ said Alice.

‘Oh no?’ said the bird angrily. ‘But you eat eggs, don’t you?’

‘Well, yes, I do, but I don’t steal them,’ explained Alice quickly. ‘We have them for breakfast, you know.’

‘Then how do you get them, if you don’t steal them?’ screamed the bird.

This was a difficult question to answer, so Alice brought up her right hand through the leaves and ate a little from the other piece of mushroom. She began to get smaller at once and, very carefully, she ate first from one hand, then from the other, until she was about twenty- five centimetres high.

‘That’s better,’ she said to herself. ‘And now I must find that garden.’ She began to walk through the wood, and after a while she came to a little house.


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