spoke at first of their poverty, and then one of them said - 'I dare
say you do have to pay ten shillings a week in the hotel?' 'More,'
Then he drew back and did not question me any further, either
thinking that I had lied to check his curiosity, or too awed by my
riches to continue.
Repassing Killeany I was joined by a man who had spent twenty years
in America, where he had lost his health and then returned, so long
ago that he had forgotten English and could hardly make me
understand him. He seemed hopeless, dirty and asthmatic, and after
going with me for a few hundred yards he stopped and asked for
coppers. I had none left, so I gave him a fill of tobacco, and he
went back to his hovel.
When he was gone, two little girls took their place behind me and I
drew them in turn into conversation.
They spoke with a delicate exotic intonation that was full of charm,
and told me with a sort of chant how they guide 'ladies and
gintlemins' in the summer to all that is worth seeing in their
neighbourhood, and sell them pampooties and maidenhair ferns, which
are common among the rocks.