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It was the very point of perfection in the heart of an English May&#8211day. The unseen tides of the air had turned, and all nature was setting its face with the shadows of the horse-chestnuts towards the peace of the coming night … And the joy was that it was all mine inalienably&#8212groomed hedgerow, spotless road, decent greystone cottage, serried spinney, tasselled copse, apple&#8211bellied hawthorn, and well&#8211grown tree … I knew that the golden gorse was in bloom somewhere out of sight.


This is from “My Sunday at Home” in The Day's Work.

The narrator has been travelling across the West Country by train chatting to a chance-met American doctor. They stop at a small station, where the doctor – thinking the man has been poisoned – administers a powerful emetic to a gigantic navvy. In this quiet peaceful lonely, beautiful setting, chaos is about to break out …