Dinner with Rex (BR, p. 156)

If I had to spend an evening with him, it should, at any rate, be in my own way. I remember the dinner well — soup of oseille, a sole quite simply cooked in a white wine sauce, a caneton a la presse, a lemon soufflé. At the last minute, fearing that the whole thing was too simple for Rex, I added caviar aux blinis. And for wine I let him give me a bottle of 1906 Montrachet, then at its prime, and, with the duck, a Clos de Beze of 1904.

Living was easy in France then; with the exchange as it was, my allowance went a long way and I did not live frugally.

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The Christmas Present from Rex (BR, p. 149)

It was a small tortoise with Julia’s initials set in diamonds in the living shell, and this slightly obscene object, now slipping impotently on the polished boards, now striding across the card-table, now lumbering over a rug, now withdrawn at a touch, now stretching its neck and swaying its withered, antideluvian head, became a memorable part of the evening, one of those needle-hooks of experience which catch the attention when large matters are at stake.

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