en-es  The 100-year old.
The 100-year old.

By Godfried Bomans.

Translated from Dutch.

"Is father home? ", I asked the old man, who opened the door. He nodded, and led me into a room where there was a still older man, who was almost dead. In a hurry, I ripped an ear trumpet of the wall and shouted in his ear: "Congratulations!"

"You're mistaken," said the old man with a muffled voice, "Dad is upstairs."

"I flew up the stairs, because I understood that it was now a matter of seconds. There was the hundred-year-old hanging from the ropes: he was busy making a bird nest.

I almost crawled in his ear and yelled: "Congratulations!" The jubilarian shook his head, made a double somersault and jumped to the ground. "I'm not deaf," he said, putting on his coat, "I'm just old. What's going on?"

"Didn't you turn a hundred years old?!" I screamed. "Man, do not shout like that," said the geezer, pulling up the rings, "I am well aware of it. Tonight the mayor comes with a twilight lamp and an envelope with content. I don't care for that twilight lamp, but that envelope interests me. What do they usually put in there?" I did not know. "What did you actually come for?" asked the little man grudgingly, "are you offering something?"

"I'm coming to ask something," I said, "first of all, how did you grow so old?"

"It happened by itself," replied the jubilant, "Every year, you turn a year older, that is in the nature of things." When I was seventy, I was seventy, and when I turned eighty, I was eighty. And so it continued till one hundred.” "Do you do anything for it?

"No, I don't do anything for it, it happens by itself. That's the fun of this kind of work."

"Did you know that you would get there?

"At first not, but later I began to realize it. "When I turned ninety, I began to check the obituaries in the newspapers; I struck up a friendship with the porter of the old men's home, and so I could monitor the situation from up close. Persevere, I thought, teeth clenched. And yes, I got there."

"To what do you attribute it.?"

"It's a matter of patience. Persistence pays off, he who laughs last, laughs best, all's well that ends well, you need to look in that direction."

"When did you actually started to become aware of it?"

"That cannot be said precisely. When I turned seventy, I was still an insignificant little man, my time had yet to come. My eightieth birthday was actually a low point: nobody understood why I did not die, and - I did not want to reveal anything. But then, slowly, I started to come forward. At my ninetieth, people began to point me out, and by my ninety-fifth, the troubles were behind me."

"Do you have competition?"

"There are a few ninety-year olds living in the city, but I keep a close eye on them. As one of them has a birthday, I send him a card, with my age on it. They'll give up, eventually."

"Do you enjoy your work?"

"Oh yes. The nice thing about our job is, that once you are a year ahead, they are no longer able to catch up, even though the others work like hell. Every year someone ages, I'll gain one as well, and so they cannot catch up. That breaks them in due course."

"But you have the same feeling about those that are ahead of you?"

"Sure. But there are only three. I cannot catch them; but I can wait. And in the meantime, I keep an eye on them. The widow Boltjens in Schiedam is 102. Good. But yesterday she started to cough. Then you have former Zouave Serremans from Bolsward. A tough cookie. But he lives on the north side, on a corner. Then there is Van Loggem from Venlo with that wooden leg. He has a head start because that other leg, he doesn't have to pay any more attention to. But since last week he needs glasses for the small print, and glasses, we one hundred-year olds know between us, is the beginning of the end."

"What will you do when you have reached the top?"

"Then I'll quit. I have no interest in spoiling the market, the young people must also have a chance."

From: Godfried Bomans, Kopstukken ('De 100-jarige' - "The 100-year old").
Translated from the Dutch.
unit 1
The 100-year old.
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unit 2
By Godfried Bomans.
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unit 3
Translated from Dutch.
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unit 4
"Is father home?
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", I asked the old man, who opened the door.
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unit 11
I almost crawled in his ear and yelled: "Congratulations!"
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unit 13
"I'm not deaf," he said, putting on his coat, "I'm just old.
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unit 14
What's going on?"
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unit 15
"Didn't you turn a hundred years old?!"
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I screamed.
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unit 18
unit 19
I don't care for that twilight lamp, but that envelope interests me.
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What do they usually put in there?"
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unit 21
I did not know.
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unit 22
"What did you actually come for?"
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unit 23
asked the little man grudgingly, "are you offering something?"
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unit 26
unit 27
And so it continued till one hundred.” "Do you do anything for it?
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"No, I don't do anything for it, it happens by itself.
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That's the fun of this kind of work."
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"Did you know that you would get there?
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"At first not, but later I began to realize it.
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unit 33
Persevere, I thought, teeth clenched.
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And yes, I got there."
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unit 35
"To what do you attribute it.?"
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"It's a matter of patience.
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"When did you actually started to become aware of it?"
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"That cannot be said precisely.
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But then, slowly, I started to come forward.
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"Do you have competition?"
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unit 46
As one of them has a birthday, I send him a card, with my age on it.
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unit 47
They'll give up, eventually."
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"Do you enjoy your work?"
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"Oh yes.
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That breaks them in due course."
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"But you have the same feeling about those that are ahead of you?"
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"Sure.
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But there are only three.
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I cannot catch them; but I can wait.
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unit 57
And in the meantime, I keep an eye on them.
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unit 58
The widow Boltjens in Schiedam is 102.
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unit 59
Good.
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unit 60
But yesterday she started to cough.
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Then you have former Zouave Serremans from Bolsward.
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A tough cookie.
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But he lives on the north side, on a corner.
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Then there is Van Loggem from Venlo with that wooden leg.
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"What will you do when you have reached the top?"
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"Then I'll quit.
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unit 71
Translated from the Dutch.
0 Translations, 0 Upvotes, Last Activity None

The 100-year old.

By Godfried Bomans.

Translated from Dutch.

"Is father home?", I asked the old man, who opened the door. He nodded, and led me into a room where there was a still older man, who was almost dead. In a hurry, I ripped an ear trumpet of the wall and shouted in his ear: "Congratulations!"

"You're mistaken," said the old man with a muffled voice, "Dad is upstairs."

"I flew up the stairs, because I understood that it was now a matter of seconds. There was the hundred-year-old hanging from the ropes: he was busy making a bird nest.

I almost crawled in his ear and yelled: "Congratulations!" The jubilarian shook his head, made a double somersault and jumped to the ground. "I'm not deaf," he said, putting on his coat, "I'm just old. What's going on?"

"Didn't you turn a hundred years old?!" I screamed. "Man, do not shout like that," said the geezer, pulling up the rings, "I am well aware of it. Tonight the mayor comes with a twilight lamp and an envelope with content. I don't care for that twilight lamp, but that envelope interests me. What do they usually put in there?" I did not know. "What did you actually come for?" asked the little man grudgingly, "are you offering something?"

"I'm coming to ask something," I said, "first of all, how did you grow so old?"

"It happened by itself," replied the jubilant, "Every year, you turn a year older, that is in the nature of things." When I was seventy, I was seventy, and when I turned eighty, I was eighty. And so it continued till one hundred.”

"Do you do anything for it?

"No, I don't do anything for it, it happens by itself. That's the fun of this kind of work."

"Did you know that you would get there?

"At first not, but later I began to realize it. "When I turned ninety, I began to check the obituaries in the newspapers; I struck up a friendship with the porter of the old men's
home, and so I could monitor the situation from up close. Persevere, I thought, teeth clenched. And yes, I got there."

"To what do you attribute it.?"

"It's a matter of patience. Persistence pays off, he who laughs last, laughs best, all's well that ends well, you need to look in that direction."

"When did you actually started to become aware of it?"

"That cannot be said precisely. When I turned seventy, I was still an insignificant little man, my time had yet to come. My eightieth birthday was actually a low point: nobody understood why I did not die, and - I did not want to reveal anything. But then, slowly, I started to come forward. At my ninetieth, people began to point me out, and by my ninety-fifth, the troubles were behind me."

"Do you have competition?"

"There are a few ninety-year olds living in the city, but I keep a close eye on them. As one of them has a birthday, I send him a card, with my age on it. They'll give up, eventually."

"Do you enjoy your work?"

"Oh yes. The nice thing about our job is, that once you are a year ahead, they are no longer able to catch up, even though the others work like hell. Every year someone ages, I'll gain one as well, and so they cannot catch up. That breaks them in due course."

"But you have the same feeling about those that are ahead of you?"

"Sure. But there are only three. I cannot catch them; but I can wait. And in the meantime, I keep an eye on them. The widow Boltjens in Schiedam is 102. Good. But yesterday she started to cough. Then you have former Zouave Serremans from Bolsward. A tough cookie. But he lives on the north side, on a corner. Then there is Van Loggem from Venlo with that wooden leg. He has a head start because that other leg, he doesn't have to pay any more attention to. But since last week he needs glasses for the small print, and glasses, we one hundred-year olds know between us, is the beginning of the end."

"What will you do when you have reached the top?"

"Then I'll quit. I have no interest in spoiling the market, the young people must also have a chance."

From: Godfried Bomans, Kopstukken ('De 100-jarige' - "The 100-year old").
Translated from the Dutch.