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[醫療及藥物] a sweet-faced

a sweet-faced

I rather imagine that they are the loneliest people in the world, those score of men and women—English, French, and German—who constitute the entire white population of the islands. That is why they are so pathetically eager to welcome the rare visitors who come their way. Indeed, until I went to Mahé I never knew what hospitality really meant. When our anchor rumbled down under the shadow of the Morne Seychellois, and the police boat—its crew of negroes, with their flashing teeth and big, good-humoured faces, their trim, blue sailor suits and broad-brimmed straw wide-awakes, looking like overgrown children—had [Pg 250] taken me ashore, I promptly found myself surrounded by the entire European population.

“I am the wife of the legal adviser to the Crown,” said
little Irishwoman. “My husband and I would be so pleased if you would come up to our bungalow for dinner. You can have no idea how good it seems to see a white face again.”

“Oh, I say, then you must promise to breakfast with me,” urged a tall young Englishman in immaculate white linen, who, it proved, was the superior judge of the colony. “You won't disappoint me, will you, old chap? I'm dying to hear what's going on in the world. And if you should have any magazines or newspapers that you could spare  the scene of a violent and murderous attack.——”

But the government chaplain, wasting no time in words, fairly hustled me into a diminutive dog-cart and, amid the reproaches of his fellow-exiles, off we rattled behind the only horse on the island. The padre was not to monopolise me for long, however, for the little group of homesick exiles pursued us to his bungalow, where they settled me in a long cane chair, thrust upon me cheroots and whiskey-and-sodas, and listened breathlessly to the bits of world gossip for which I ransacked the pigeon-holes of my memory for their benefit. The newest songs, the most recent plays, the latest fashions, all the gossip of Broadway and Oxford Street and the Avenue de l'Opéra—they hung on my words with an eagerness that was pathetic.

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