knees of my trousers with spittle to try and make them look a little respectable, left the parcel behind me in a dark corner at the back of a chest, and entered the little shop.
A man is standing pasting together bags made of old newspaper.
"I would like to see Mr Christie," I said.
"That's me!" replied the man.
"Indeed!" Well my name was so-and-so. I had taken the liberty of sending him an application. I did not know if it had been of any use.
He repeated my name a couple of times and commenced to laugh.
"Well now, you shall see," he said, taking my letter out of his breast-pocket, "if you will just be good enough to see how you deal with dates, sir. You dated your letter 1848," and the man roared with laughter.
"Yes, that was rather a mistake," I said abashed—a distraction, a want of thought; I admitted it.
"You see I must have a man who, as a matter of fact, makes no mistakes in figures," said he. "I regret it, your handwriting is clear, and I like your letter, too, but——"
I waited a while; this could not possibly