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絵2

 

 

場所は神田の鍋町であった.

 

4時か5時、何でも夕飯の仕度に豆腐屋のラッパが町に聞こえ始まる頃、伊藤の買ってくれた小さいブリキの洗面器に、二分芯の置ランプと、5、6枚の古新聞と30そこそこの粉石鹸の袋とを、ごた混ぜに入れて縞木綿の風呂敷に包んで、私は私の新しい商売へと出かけるのであった.

 

鍋町から丁字型に、表の電車通りに突き当たろうとする角のところが、私の新しい売店であった.

 

My workplace was in Nabecho town of Kanda area.

 

It was 4 to 5 o'clock. Anyway, it was around the time a bean curd peddler came to town and blew a small trumpet for shoppers of supper preparation.

 

I put the lamp with a wick of 6 mm, five or six sheets of old newspapers and about 30 bags of soap powder into the small basin of tinplate. Mr. Ito had bought the basin for me. And I left home for my new workplace.

 

The road from Nabecho town joined the main street where the streetcars ran. These roadways formed the shape of the letter T. My new workplace was at the corner.


絵3

 

 

私の側には、講談倶楽部や子供雑誌や彩色刷の浮世絵などを並べた古本屋があり、その隣りにはトウモロコシ屋のお婆さんが、箱の上に座り込んで、前に置いた台の上に七輪をのせ、ぱたぱたと団扇をはたいてトウモロコシを焼いていた.

 

There was a used-book vendor next to me. He sold Kodankurabu magazines, children's magazines, color woodcuts and so on.

 

And there was a corn vendor next to the used-book vendor. The corn vendor was an old woman. Sitting on a box, she grilled ears of corn with the charcoal stove on the base in front. She was fanning the stove with a fan.


絵4

 

 

私と向かい合った往来の向かい側には、古着屋が店を開いており、その隣りには袴を穿いて口髭をはやした、大分もう年を取った一人の男が、オットセイの黒焼きだとか、蘇鉄の果だとか称している、得体の知れないものを台の上にのせて、演説口調で何か能書きを並べ立てていた.

 

それからずっと、丁字型の縦の線に沿うては、万年筆屋だの植木屋だの、玩具屋だのといった色々の商売人が店をひろげていた.

 

There was a second-hand clothing vendor in front of me across the street.

 

And there was an elderly man next to the second-hand clothing vendor. The elderly man wore mustache and his pleated pants. There were strange things on his stand. He called them Roasted Seal, Cycad Fruit, or others. And he was giving a talk on their benefits or something.

 

In additon, there were various vendors such as a fountain pen vendor, a garden plant vendor and a toy vendor all along the vertical roadway of T-intersection.


絵5

 

 

私はまず向かいの古着屋さんと隣の古本屋さんとに仲間入りの挨拶をした.古着屋さんは見るからにズルそうな男であったが、古本屋さんは人の良さそうな爺さんであった.

 

「お前さんがかね、へえ、何売るんだね!」と、お爺さんは、口もとに微笑を浮かべながら怪訝そうに私を眺めた.

 

First, I introduced myself for friendship to the second-hand clothing vendor in front and to the used-book vendor next to me.

 

The second-hand clothing vender looked like a sly man. But the used-book vender was a good-natured old man.

 

"Hey, you! What are you going to sell?" the old man said with a smile on his lips and dubiously gazed at me.


絵6

 

 

「粉石鹸を持って来ました」

 

「ほおう、シャボン屋さんだね、まあしっかりやりなされ」

 

こう言ってお爺さんは、珍しそうに私が店をひろげるのを見ていたが、不案内な私の所作がもどかしいといった風に、私の側に寄って来て、かれこれと並べ方を教えたり、商売についての注意を与えてくれたりなどした.

 

"I'm going to sell soap powder."

 

"Oh, Soap Vender. Earn much money!" said the old man.

 

He curiously watched me preparing for the opening. But he seemed to be irritated with my clumsy movement. He came close to me. He told me how to place the goods and gave me some advices about vending.



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