alliance with an old man,—how many of us are destined to ill-luck, swept away in the great whirlwind of poverty? After all, I had no choice, and this is better than nothing.
This is not the first time that I have had a place in the country. Four years ago I had one. Oh! not for long, and in really exceptional circumstances. I remember this adventure as if it had occurred yesterday. Although the details are slightly indecorous, and even horrible, I wish to relate it. Moreover, I charitably warn my readers that it is my intention, in writing this diary, to keep nothing back, in relation either to myself or to others. On the contrary, I intend to put into all the frankness that is in me, and, when necessary, all the brutality that is in life. It is not my fault if the souls from which we tear the veils, and which then appear in all their nakedness, exhale so strong an odor of rottenness.
Well, here it is.
I was engaged in an employment-bureau, by a sort of fat governess, to be a chambermaid in the house of a certain M. Rabour, in Touraine. The conditions accepted, it was agreed that I should take the train on such a day, at such an hour, for such a station; which was done, according to the programme.
As soon as I had given up my ticket at the exit,