Cheng Jia Yang
Spring always comes unexpectedly in this city. It is a pity it isn’t a beautiful season, Inner Mongolia had a sandstorm blowing. Qiao Fei and I changed our plans of going to the countryside and decided to go to a Thai restaurant instead to eat this weekend at noon.
The restaurant was nicely decorated, lush, filled with the fragrance of bamboo leaves while Buddhist music played in the background. Fei curiously looked around.
“Not bad right?” I said. “I came here before with a friend and thought that you would like it.”
“It is indeed not bad.” The waiter served us an opened coconut and Fei drank a sip and said, “It tastes good.”
“If you like it, can we go on a trip there (Thailand) during the holidays?” I asked in a pleasing tone.
She looked at me and said: “Yeah sure, if we have time.”
I was very happy, and prayed inside my heart that nobody would find out about such an unpromising scene of me.
Fei looked behind me and smiled, and at the same time someone tapped on my shoulder. I looked back and saw that it was Xu Dong’s ex-lover, the female star Wu Jia Yi.
“Hello, Jia Yang.” The woman said hi to me enthusiastically. “Eating with a friend?”
“Hello.” I was not good at dealing with such situations and while I was still thinking about how to get out of it, Fei pulled out a chair and said: “Please sit.”
“Thank you.” The female star sat down, shook hands with Fei and said: “Hello, I am Wu Jia Yi.”
“I know, I’m your fan. My name is Qiao Fei.”
Okay, I let them talk. I paused to think of a plan. What if she asked about Xu Dong? What if she asked me to convey a message to him? What if she said “all of you guys are equally bad”? What should I do?
“Your name is Fei?”, Wu Jia Yi asked. “Jia Yang asked me for my autograph before, it was for you I’m guessing?”
Memorizing scripts sure helped, her memory was really good.
I waited as she slowly brought the topic closer to Xu Dong.
“…at a premiere of one of my movies, Jia Yang is my friend’s friend.”
“That’s right, friends.” I laughed.
“By the way, Jia Yang, how is Xu Dong?” She finally brought up the main topic.
What should I say to her? Tell her that Xu Dong is going to get married to a wise and virtuous woman from a rich family? I couldn’t do such a cruel thing. Furthermore, she might not not know about it yet. I shouldn’t be the one to tell her about it.
“I haven’t seen him in a long time and I don’t know what he has been up to lately.”
At this moment, the woman gave a long sigh. “Ah, he is the kind of person that will be with you all the time when he is on good terms with you. But when you are on bad terms with him, he won’t even give you a call.”
What she said made her sound really pitiful. I watched as Qiao Fei looked at this future Best Actress’s performance without blinking.
“Never mind.” Wu Jia Yi stood up. “I still have a few friends waiting for me over there. Jia Yang, help me send my greetings to Xu Dong when you see him.”
I stood up to send her off. Afterwards, l dedicated dinner to talking about this subject to satisfy Qiao Fei’s curiosity.
“It’s nothing.” I tried to graze over it. “It’s just that my friend used to date with Miss Wu before, and now my friend is going to get married so he wants to cut off all ties with her and end their relationship.”
“End it just like that? He didn’t even give her an explanation？He didn’t even call her at least once?”
Talking about this, I began to feel that what Xu Dong was doing was also not very good. When they were together, they loved so passionately that they had no one else in their eyes. But now he didn’t even have the basic courtesy to explain anything to this woman. This wasn’t his usual style.
“Err.” I looked at Fei, she just kept looking at me. “I also don’t know how to explain this to you.”
“It’s okay, you can’t say anything. But really！Ｅven a person like Wu Jia Yi could get dumped.”
“You don’t have to pity them. It’s impossible for them to get married anyways.”
“Family background.” I blurted.
Fei did not continue to say anything.
“Quickly order your food. I’m hungry.” I said, “What would you like to eat?” I passed the menu to her and accidentally hit a small saucer, causing it to drop to the ground with a crisp sound.
“How did you manage to meet her? What did you say about me?” Xu Dong knew I met Wu Jia Yi and was so nervous as if he had stepped on the tail of a mouse.
“I said I never met you, and don’t know anything. That’s what I said.”
He drank some whisky to calm himself down and after a long time said, “What about her? What did she say?”
“She said, when you guys were together, you both clung to each other everyday. But after breaking up, you don’t even give her a single call.”
Xu Dong rubbed his temples. “Ah, never mind, never mind.”
I went over to pat him on his shoulders.
“Next time you see her, answer her the same thing and say that you never saw me.”:
“This world isn’t a small place,where would I go to see this female star often?”
“It’s hard to say, maybe she went to look for you because she couldn’t find me.”
At this point, I really had nothing else to say. I had watched as the two of them loved each other so much they couldn’t part. At times, Xu Dong is like a wife full of complains, unable to let go easily like Wu Jia Yi and was even scared of this woman to such an extent. Feelings sure make people sigh in impatience.
Zhou Xian Fu said, “Xiao Qiao, you prepare for this afternoon’s talk. You and Michelle will be translating.
“The French enterprise and Yantai local leaders’ discussion about a joint venture; search up the information online.”
I finally waited for this day but it came so suddenly that I don’t have enough time to prepare for it. I searched online and flipped through the dictionary, looking for information materials. The fax from the China representative about the presentation materials finally came during my lunch break. At least it would not be so rushed. I was very happy and started laughing but saw Yang Yan Yan opposite me. She looked at me with slanting eyes, having a expression that seemed as if she despised me.
At this talk, I finally got into trouble because of someone.
We split up the jobs so that I did the interpretation of Chinese to French while she did the interpretation of French to Chinese. Initially it went pretty smoothly, and I got into my role very quickly and interpreted rather smoothly because of the preparation work I had did beforehand. However, there were a few difficulties that I encountered in the middle of the talk. China’s representative introduced the tax concessions given to foreign-funded enterprises and mentioned something about the “Three Free Five Minus” and some other policies. I didn’t even understand the meaning in Chinese and had no choice but to force myself to interpret it literally and after interpreting it, I looked at the foreigner and saw that his expression seemed confused. They also looked at Yang Yan Yan and hoped that since she was older, she would be more experienced in making the meaning clearer. However she just bent her head down if she was taking notes, acting as if the matter was none of her concern.
After the talk ended, the French representative said to the China representative, “Thank you for your presentation, we will go back to study it and contact you as soon as possible.”
The French side knew how to give face to the China side. In saying this, they implied that the joint venture would not happen.
I told Cheng Jia Yang about this, and all I could see was Yang Yan Yan’s face. I was already not angry, but only a bit baffled. Even if we were strangers that had never worked together before, she should at least have had some team spirit and helped me out since we were all interpreters anyways.
“I know this person,” Jia Yang said. “Ah, she actually went to that extent； you didn’t mention this person to me in the first place.”
“I feel that this person is not worth mentioning.” I said.
“She is actually a decent interpreter, but because of an incident, she got transferred out. After so many years, she still didn’t change her temperament.”
“What happened to her?”
“She originally did simultaneous interpretation in our department. There was this time where she had to pair up with another person to do translation for a global meeting, the person she paired up with was even her senior. In the end, when her senior was interpreting, I don’t know what was wrong, maybe something had happened to her health, but she couldn’t continue interpreting.
“Yang Yan Yan didn’t take over?”
“Nope, she waited until it was her time before she opened her mouth to speak. In that meeting, the french interpretation was suspended for six minutes.”
“Wow, what a drag. How was the matter resolved in the end?”
“Because of health reasons, that senior got transferred out of the Institute and got transferred over to the Chinese embassy of Belgium. On the other hand, Yang Yan Yan had to suffer the punishment and got transferred out of our department.
“Who asked her to be so uncooperative?”
“Ah, but you can’t say such things.” Jia Yang said, “You have never done simultaneous interpretation so you don’t really understand. It’s like you are mentally collapsing on a string, unable to even relax for a moment, and there is great mental stress. That is why the time for translation can not be more than 15 minutes and immediate rest is required. I think that Yang Yanyan was also overloaded that day, otherwise she would not have been so irresponsible.”
“Do you know? Shanghai has an Ｅnglish interpreter that does simultaneous interpretation and worked for a year, earning about $30,000 but then tired herself out until she was only left with one kidney. I heard that when Yang Yan Yan was in the department, she was a professional in her specialty, but I’m not sure if she is married or not now.”
“Ah, now I feel bad for her after hearing what you said. Never mind then, I can only blame myself for lacking in terms of skills and having inadequate preparation. If only I knew how to interpret “Three Free Five Minus” policy… then I wouldn’t have to depend on others already. ＂
“Hello， miss, there are more opportunities to come in the future，keep practicing, I have faith in you, you definitely can become an outstanding interpreter.” Jia Yang said.
“That’s what you think?” I was pretty pleased to hear it.
“Of course. You are special in that you can focus on many things at the same time.” He said, grinning.
I can never tell if he is complimenting me or just being sarcastic so I immediately spread yogurt all over his mouth in a flash.
“Come, let’s eat together.” He wanted to hug me and make me eat the yogurt on his mouth, but I used my elbow to resist.
“We are already like an old married couple, what are you being shy about?”
“Ah speaking of this, Fei, do you want to go abroad to study for a period of time?”
I looked at him.
“I know an international student.”(This is Qiao Fei speaking)
“Is it a man or a woman?”
“Woman.” I glared at him, “From Montpellier.” Speaking of such, that place was pretty great, it is located near the Mediterranean coast, close to, Cannes , Marseille and outrageously beautiful.
“Oh Montpellier, it is indeed decent. Their third university has a very famous translation training centre. And the city is indeed very beautiful, it has a friendly relationship with the capital. Why, you want to go there?”
“Just casually talking about it.” I sat up, “I just want to finish my studies here, and find a good job after I graduate. I’ll talk about going there after I earn enough money.” I stretched and kissed Cheng Jia Yang, “Bro, you have done so much for me, you don’t have to busy yourself out just for me.”