Page:Hopkinson Smith--In Dickens's London.djvu/39

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White Hart, although he called it the White Hart. And he showed my father the very room where the Jingle event took place. Mr. Dickens lived over here in the Borough, and if you look through his books you'll find more than half of them have something to say about Southwark. He knew every inn within a mile of here. The 'Ship and Shovel,' for one, back of Guy's Hospital. Excuse my crowding in, but I know Blodgers and what harm he can do once he gets loose."

"They've been coming here for years," whispered the land- lady, "and I never saw any two of 'em agree on anything, and you couldn't pull 'em apart with a bootjack, they're so fond of one another."

With the gooseberry tarts (it was the gooseberry-tart season) the coffee was brought in, and then a round jar of "Special Mixture," and some long pipes, and last the backgammon-board—all helps to digestion.

It was past two o'clock and my sketch finished, when they separated, and even then, three or four dropped into the snuggery and had a word and a nip with the barmaid.

"No wonder," I said to myself, remembering the rush hour at Delmonico's, within a stone's throw of where I now sit and write, "no wonder that these Englishmen ride to hounds at eighty years of age."