When I was quite young my family had one of the first telephones in our neighborhood.
I remember well the polished oak case fastened to the wall on the lower stair landing.
The shiny receiver hung on the side of the box.
I even remember the number -- 105.
我甚至记得电话号码 -- 105号。
I was too little to reach the telephone, but used to listen with fascination when my mother talked to it. Once she
lifted me up to speak to my father, who was away on business. Magic!
Then I discovered that somewhere inside that wonderful device lived an amazing person -- her name was "Information
Please" and there was nothing she did not know.
以后我发现那个奇妙的装置里面的什么地方住了一个令人惊奇的人 -- 她的名字叫做「询问处」，而且她没有什么不知道的事。
My mother could ask her for anybody's number; when our clock ran down, Information Please immediately supplied the
My first personal experience with this genie-in-the-receiver came one day while my mother was visiting a neighbor.
Amusing myself at the tool-bench in the basement, I whacked my finger with a hammer.
The pain was terrible, but there didn't seem to be much use crying because there was no one home to offer sympathy.
I walked around the house sucking my throbbing finger, finally arriving at the stairway.
The telephone! Quickly I ran for the footstool in the parlor and dragged it to the landing.
Climbing up, I unhooked the receiver and held it to my ear.
"Information Please," I said into the mouthpiece just above my head.
A click or two, and a small, clear voice spoke into my ear. "Information."
"I hurt my fingerrr --" I wailed into the phone.
The tears came readily enough, now that I had an audience.
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