quotes_june4.htm

(June 4th to 10th)



Format: Triple

…I went in and saw the most villainous loafer that I ever set eyes on. His boots and breeches were plastered with mud and beer-stains. He wore a muddy-white dunghill sort of thing on his head, and it hung down in slips on his shoulders which were a good deal scratched…

  

This is from ‘The Arrest of Lieutenant Golightly’ in ‘Plain Tales from the Hills.’
Lieutenant Golightly, a smart young officer who prides himself on his appearance, rides down from the Hills at the end of his leave, and gets caught in a heavy downpour, which ruins his clothing. His servants are drunk and have deserted him, and he has no money in his pockets. When he tries to negotiate a first class rail ticket, he is taken for a deserter, and arrested.


… “I’d give you my card if I had it, but I’m so damned drunk I hardly know my own Club. Oh yes! It’s the Travellers. If ever we meet in town, remember me…”

   

This is from ‘Judson and the Empire’ in ‘Many Inventions’. There is a minor republican rebellion in a Portuguese colony, and Lieutenant Judson, the commander of a British naval gunboat, has been sent by his Admiral to keep the peace. By ingenious and witty stratagems, Judson has disarmed the local navy, made friends with the Governor, and rescued some British Pioneers who have been under attack. All is finally amicably resolved over two or three bottles of Vanderhum, and they go their separate ways.


… He was a wanderer and vagabond like myself, but with an educated taste for whisky. He told of tales of things he had seen and done, of out-of-the-way corners of the Empire into which he had penetrated, and of adventures in which he risked his life for a few day’s food…

   

This is from The Man who would be King in ‘Wee Willie Winkie’. The storyteller, a journalist (like Kipling), meets a ‘big black-browed gentleman in shirt-sleeves’ on a rail journey, and they while away the time reminiscing of strange adventures in out-of-the-way places. Later, the vagabond and his friend are to make their way up into Kafiristan, and take command of a mountain kingdom. For a time they are kings, but when they are found to be ordinary mortal men, the tale ends in tragedy.

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