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A. V. Laider - Max Beerbohm

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A. V. Laider

By MAX BEERBOHM


I UNPACKED my things and went down to await luncheon.

It was good to be here again in this little old sleepy hostel by the
sea.  Hostel I say, though it spelt itself without an "s" and even placed a
circumflex above the "o."  It made no other pretension.  It was very cozy
indeed.

I had been here just a year before, in mid-February, after an attack
of influenza.  And now I had returned, after an attack of influenza.
Nothing was changed.  It had been raining when I left, and the waiter--
there was but a single, a very old waiter--had told me it was only a 
shower.  That waiter was still here, not a day older.  And the shower had
not ceased.

Steadfastly it fell on to the sands, steadfastly into the iron-gray sea.
I stood looking out at it from the windows of the hall, admiring it very
much.  There seemed to be little else to do.  What little there was I did.  I
mastered the contents of a blue hand-bill which, pinned to the wall just
beneath the framed engraving of Queen Victoria's Coronation, gave
token of a concert that was to be held--or, rather, was to have been held 
some weeks ago--in the town hall for the benefit of the Life-Boat Fund.  I
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