Шапкин Сергей Викторович: другие произведения.

Banya According To The Army Regulations

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    Перевод на английский с русского рассказа "Баня по уставу"


BANYA ACCORDING TO THE ARMY REGULATIONS

Translation from Russian into English: Lubimova Helen.

  
   It all happened in 1981 in Belorussia during military trainings. We were going to go to banya at the end of the week as it was needed to be done by all the soldiers. The major during the morning formation shortly announced : " The banya will be after dinner according to the army regulations". And of course, nobody decided to read that rule. Frankly speaking, none of us had ever read it, there were things more interesting to do. Even more so, we didn't draw attention to the words "the army regulations"
   So, we came to our banya, took off our clothes, grabbed the tubs and went to a washing section. But something was wrong there. Ah, the tap with an uninterrupted and strong spurt of water was the one and only. There must be something single in the army. So was the tap. Everybody washed in banya some time and there they could find two taps - one with cold water and another with hot. Here the situation was absolutely different.
   (Let me look aside concerning "the one and only". In the army "the one and only" can't be just by definition. Only two. Once, soldiers went to the river to bathe in two ranks. At the formation the first rank had to turn into 180 degrees, so that every soldier in it could see the face of the person in the second rank and remember it. Then the first rank went to the water. But it was not so simple as it seemed. Why was the formation so complicated? The opposite face must have watched the remembered soldier not to sink. To march and to run on the parade-ground was possible only in two ranks.)
   Let me continue the story. Everyone was sitting on the tables and waiting for something. The water was sizzling cold. What a fool could endure it or even wash there! As I was explained, the water hadn't been warmed yet so everybody was waiting for the hot water. About fifteen minutes passed by. It was nastily, wet, cold and disgusting there.
   And more five minutes passed. Everybody was still waiting, shrugging their shoulders, nodding their heads. Suddenly we heard a cry: "Warm water". We rushed to the one and only tap to pour out our vessels. But nothing of the sort! The warm water had been running only for two minutes. In three minutes a fervent geyser broke out of the tap. Our soldiers were impossible to be stopped. Hereto somebody shouted that there wouldn't be any cold water. So, everyone took his tub with extremely hot water hoping to wash. That hope was very long. Who wants to scald his hand or another part of the body by the boiling water! But the soldier's mother wit is inexhaustible. It turned out that the bast whisp moistened in hot water is much more pleasant then the hot water itself. Well, that's how we managed to wash. During the evening formation the major explained us that according to the document fifty liters of cold and fifty liters of hot water are supposed to be given to each soldier for the one wash. Exactly in such order we were given the water in the banya. And it didn't worth shouting and getting nervous.
  
  

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