Gycklarnas afton




- You see the wife and kids tomorrow.

- It's been three years.

Did you ever hear about Frost the clown

and his wife Alma?

- Was that in this town?

- Yes, I was there. A nasty business.

- Tell me about it.

- Poor old Frost.

It was a hot day, seven years ago.

The regiment had firing practice.

The officers lay on the grass, hot and bored.

They were drinking.

The soldiers in the quarry were cursing

because of the awful heat.

Then, along came Alma.

She was a handsome woman,

though a bit past her prime.

- The captain sends his greetings.

- What's his message?

- Your wife Alma...

- My wife Alma! bathing naked with the regiment!

- Show you're a man, Theodore!

- We'll help you to give her a dressing-down!

Man the cannons!

Alma accused us

of destroying her husband.

We got angry and told her

it was her own fault.

We picked him up

and carried him back.

There's women for you.

Are you crazy?

Come here.

None of us have been paid,

and we have nothing to eat.

We had to leave the costumes.

Now we have nothing to perform in.

We know how hard it is for you.

You can't help the weather.

The Ekbergs, Asta

and all the kids have worms.

And there are fleas in the wagons.

I could start my own menagerie!

Bear steak is a delicacy.

Let's kill the bear before it starves to death.

We'd kill you before we'd do that!

Well, what do you think, Albert?

You haven't said a word.

You try hard to do the right thing.

Then it turns out to be foolish.

- But in America...

- This isn't America, it's Sweden.

In America circus folk ride through town,

bands play, elephants trumpet.

Everyone is merry, people cheer

and line the streets.

Then someone announces the programme.

Why don't we take the wagon,

dress up in our best costumes...

- The ones we left behind?

- Those we have.

The Ekbergs play,

and Anton does the announcing!

Not a bad idea!

- I'll wear my green costume!

- I'll not stand beside the dwarf!

I'll shout,

"Here comes the Alberti Circus!"

I have another idea.

Sjuberg's theatre company is in town.

I'll ask them to lend us costumes.

There'll be a grand gala tonight!

Then we'll throw a supper party -

schnapps, chateaubriand, caviar!

It's clearing up!

Dress up, curl your hair and put on make-up.

- We're going to pay Sjuberg a visit.

- The theatre director? You're mad.

Look what I've found.

You'd better wash behind your ears.

You won't leave me, will you?

- What do you mean?

- If the circus goes bust.

Then you make a plan.

- You won't leave me? You promised!

- Don't worry, Anne.

- You're going to see your wife.

- And my boys. It's been three years.

I'm scared you'll go back to them.

Don't worry.

May I shave now?

- Our luck will change.

- You think so?

Some circus owners are very rich.

They have houses, diamonds, cars.

That's in America, of course.

- That costume wasn't left behind!

- Nor was the parasol!

- What's wrong?

- Nothing.

- You seem worried.

- Me? Remember, I'll do the talking.

You just sit and smile.

Sjuberg fancies pretty girls.

Breathe deep to enhance your bosom

and show him your legs if he asks.

I won't abandon you.

If he tries it on, I'll slug him.



A pure heart

is a woman's dearest possession.

It withstands all temptation.

Your words of warning, Father,

will bear fruit in my heart.

Your mother, lady,

would speak with you.

- My lord!

- Madame?

Leave us alone...

- Mr Fallander!

- Sir?

Please repeat from page 36.

- With pleasure, sir.

- Who do you want?

- The director.

- We're rehearsing! He's busy.

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Submitted on August 05, 2018


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