Notebook

“That’s very true,” said Michael, thoughtfully. “By Jove! how fast things move, except in politics, and fog.”

Their cab had come to a standstill. Michael let down the window again.

“I’m fair lost, sir,” said the driver’s hoarse voice. “Ought to be near the Embankment, but for the life of me I can’t find the turning.” Michael buttoned his coat, put up the window again, and got out on the near side.

The night was smothered, alive only with the continual hootings of creeping cars. The black vapour, acrid and cold, surged into Michael’s lungs.

“I’ll walk beside you; we’re against the kerb; creep on till we strike the river, or a bobby.”

The cab crept on, and Michael walked beside it, feeling with his foot for the kerb.

The refined voice of an invisible man said: “This is sanguinary!”

“It is,” said Michael. “Where are we?”

“In the twentieth century, and the heart of civilization.”

Michael laughed, and regretted it; the fog tasted of filth.

John Galsworthy, “The Silver Spoon”.

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