又中又英——prolonged muggy days

  This year we did not have a winter at all. There were only three cold days and even those three days were not very cold. There were instead many muggy days during the winter that just ended. It is now spring, which should be pleasant. But almost every morning when I look out the window I see fog. Foggy and muggy days depress me a lot. I cannot dry laundry in my kitchen balcony and must use the dryer in my washing machine, which wastes electricity. A muggy day is an unpleasantly warm and humid day. If something depresses you, it means it makes you unhappy and without hope.

  What depresses me most about prolonged muggy days is that they cause mold (mould in British English) to grow on my walls, closets, and even my shoes. The word "prolong" means to make something last longer. The word "mold" has several meanings but used this way it means a type of fungus that grows on walls, clothes, and even food during prolonged muggy days. Recently, the walls near the windows of all the rooms in my apartment were covered with black mold. I was shocked. My part-time domestic helper and I spent a long time cleaning the mold. We tried our best not to breathe in the mold spores.

  A spore is a tiny cell that can reproduce by itself. Spores in fungi (plural of fungus) multiply very quickly in muggy or humid conditions. Mold can cause many types of health problems, such as coughing, itchy skin, stuffy or runny nose, and red eyes. In fact, I often have a runny nose when I am at home. One way to clean mold on walls is to mix bleach with water to wipe away the mold. It is also important to open the windows in your apartment to let fresh air in. But as I said in a previous column, I don’t like opening the windows in my apartment because I don’t want insects to fly in.

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  今年我們完全沒有冬天,只得三天寒冷,那三天還也不是那麼冷。剛完結的那個冬季倒是有許多悶熱潮濕(muggy)的日子。現在春季已到,本應是宜人的。然而,差不多每個早上起來,我望出窗外也只見到霧。多霧與悶熱潮濕(muggy)的天氣令我很消沉(depress)。我不能在廚房露台晾乾我那洗了的衣服,而一定要用洗衣機內的乾衣功能,浪費了很多電。A muggy day就是令人不舒服的悶熱潮濕日子。若某事depresses你,那即是說它令你沮喪、心灰意冷。

  那長久的(prolonged)悶熱潮濕(muggy)天氣最令我沮喪(depresses)的是,它們會令我的牆壁、衣櫃甚至鞋上都長出黴菌(mold,英式英語為mould)來。Prolong一字是指延長某事;mold有幾個意思,在這裏是指黴菌,屬真菌的一種,在長期(prolonged)悶熱潮濕(muggy)的日子裏,會長在牆壁、衣服甚至食物上。最近,我單位內所有房間的窗旁的牆上,也覆蓋着黑色的黴菌(mold),令我很震驚。鐘點傭工和我花了很長的時間清潔那些黴菌(mold)。我們盡量不讓自己吸入那些黴菌孢子(mold spores)。

  A spore是孢子,是能自我繁殖的微小細胞。真菌的孢子(spores)在悶熱(muggy)或潮濕的環境中會快速繁殖。黴菌(mold)可以導致多種健康問題,例如咳嗽、皮膚痕癢、鼻塞或流鼻水及紅眼。事實上,我在家中常常流鼻涕。清潔牆上黴菌(mold)的其中一個方法,就是用水混和漂白劑來抹走那些黴菌。把你單位的窗戶打開,帶入新鮮空氣,也是很重要的;不過正如我之前曾在專欄中所說,我不喜歡開家戶的窗,因為我不想讓昆蟲飛進來。mickchug@gmail.com

中譯:七刻

Michael Chugani 褚簡寧


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