Translation:Puss in Boots/Act 3/Scene 4
Outside the tavern.
The Landlord reaping corn with a scythe.
This is hard work! — Oh well, I can hardly expect people to desert every day; and I certainly cannot rely on my children, they're good kids and they have the best of intentions, but when all is said and done, they're rather hopeless. My life consists of nothing but work; drawing beer, filling glasses, rinsing out the empties, and now I even have to reap corn. To live is to work. A scholar who once passed this way said that to live well you must be prepared to forego sleep, because when fate comes knocking on your door, you will not hear it if you're asleep in bed. Certainly, that chap must never have been tired or had a good night's sleep, because as far as I'm concerned there is nothing as delightful or as excellent as sleep. I wish it wasn't so long until my bedtime.
Whoever wants to hear something wonderful, listen to me now! I have been running non-stop all day! First, from the royal palace to Gottlieb; then with Gottlieb to the palace of the Bugbear, where I left him out in the woods; then from there back again to the king; and finally, I am now racing ahead of the king's coach like a courier and showing him the way. O my legs, my feet and my boots! How much they have had to do today! — Hey, my good friend!
Who's there? — Countryman, surely you must be a stranger, for the locals know that I do not sell beer at this time of the year; I need it all for myself; when one does work like mine, one must fortify oneself; I'm terribly sorry, but I cannot help you.
I don't want any beer, I never drink beer; I just want to say a few words to you.
You must be a proper idler indeed, to try and disturb hard-working people at their labor.
I don't wish to disturb you. Just listen: the neighboring king will be driving past here shortly; he will probably get out and ask who these villages belong to; if you value your life and do not wish to be hanged or burned at the stake, then be sure to reply: the Count of Carabas.
But, Sir, surely we are all subject to the law.
I know that well enough, but, as I said, if you do not wish to die, this region here belongs to the Count of Carabas.
Many thanks! — Now, this could be an excellent opportunity for me to get out of ever having to work again. All I have to do is tell the king that this country belongs to the Bugbear. But no. Idleness is the root of all evil: Ora et labora is my motto.
A fine carriage drawn by eight horses, followed by many servants; the carriage stops; The King and The Princess step out.
I am somewhat curious to see this Count.
So am I, my dear. — Good day, my friend! To whom do these villages here belong?
He asks as if he wanted to have me hanged on the spot. — They belong to the Count of Carabas, your majesty.
What a beautiful country! — I always thought that the countryside would look very different on the other side of the border, judging from the maps. — Give me a hand.
He quickly climbs up a tree.
What are you doing, my royal father?
I love the beauties of Nature, especially her panoramic views.
Can you see far?
Oh, yes, and if those blasted mountains weren't stuck there right in front of my nose, I would be able to see even further. — Arggh! This tree is full of caterpillars!
He climbs down again.
That's because it's a part of nature which has not yet been idealized; imagination must first ennoble it.
I wish your imagination could get rid of these caterpillars for me. — But get in, we must be on our way.
Farewell, you kind and simple peasant.
They get in; the carriage drives off.
How the world has been turned upside down! — From what I've read in old books or heard old folk say, anyone who spoke to a king or a prince always got gold coins or precious objects for his trouble. But now! How is one to get rich quick if unexpected fortunes are no longer to made out of passing monarchs? If I were a king, I wouldn't dream of opening my mouth to anyone without first putting some money in his hand. — Simple peasant! Would to God it were a simple matter to pay off all my debts. — But that's what comes of these modern sentimental depictions of country life. Even a powerful king like that is jealous of our sort. — I suppose I should be thankful he didn't hang me. The foreign hunter must have been the Bugbear himself after all. — Oh well, at least it will be reported in the newspapers that his majesty condescended to speak with me.