I recently listened to Huge Laurie reading an abridged version of Jerome K. Jerome‘s Three Men and a Boat (To Say Nothing of the Dog).
Before you ask, Channing Channing of the Chesterfield Channings came into being in my head long before I had even heard of Jerome K. Jerome. However, listening to the book yielded up the following passage that I enjoyed so much I had to immediately look it up on the interwebs.
The order of the procession was as follows:
Montmorency, carrying a stick.
Two disreputable-looking curs, friends of Montmorency’s.
George, carrying coats and rugs, and smoking a short pipe.
Harris, trying to walk with easy grace, while carrying a bulged-out Gladstone bag in one hand and a bottle of lime-juice in the other.
Greengrocer’s boy and baker’s boy, with baskets.
Boots from the hotel, carrying hamper.
Confectioner’s boy, with basket.
Grocer’s boy, with basket.
Cheesemonger’s boy, with basket.
Odd man carrying a bag.
Bosom companion of odd man, with his hands in his pockets, smoking a short clay.
Fruiterer’s boy, with basket.
Myself, carrying three hats and a pair of boots, and trying to look as if I didn’t know it.
Six small boys, and four stray dogs.
When we got down to the landing-stage, the boatman said: “Let me see, sir; was yours a steam-launch or a house-boat?”
On our informing him it was a double-sculling skiff, he seemed surprised.
~ Jerome K. Jerome, Three Men and a Boat (To Say Nothing of the Dog), 1889
The marvelous thing about the above excerpt, is the window it gives into country village life in the late 1800s. I was so charmed by it that I was derailed for hours investigating the different mongers and their produce. Look for a tiny ode to the cheesmonger’s boy to show up in the last scene of the first book of the new series, the Finishing School Book the First: Etiquette & Espionage.
Q&A over on Bookaholics Anonymous, long but fun.
Quote of the Day:
“I like work; it fascinates me. I can sit and look at it for hours.”
~ Jerome K. Jerome