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Full text of "Laughing Torso"

THE    SOUTH    OF    FRANCE
Under each of the houses in the street were large
cellars in which they packed the fish. The women
dressed in black with black handkerchiefs over their
heads. Our landlady's sister kept a little shop. She
sold everything, including tobacco. She had one
of the most beautiful faces that I have ever seen.
She must have been nearly fifty and wore the black
dress that all the women wore; she moved her
hands most gracefully. She had a beautiful voice
and looked like the Virgin Mary. I asked the land-
lady if there were not any photographs of her when
she was young. She said that they never troubled
about anything like that, and that the people for
miles around came to Collioure to look at her and
admire her.
The evening of our arrival Foujita and his wife
asked us to dinner. Foujita was a marvellous cook,
and we all went to the kitchen and helped. It ended
by us all being chased out, as Foujita explained in
Japanese, rather forcibly, that " too many cooks
spoilt the broth." We had breakfast in. a cafe the
next morning, and afterwards I wandered round the
town with a string bag to visit the shops. I bought
some meat, and some potatoes and onions, and the
Pole and I cooked it. He cooked very well indeed,
and I knew how to do several things quite well. We
had lunch and then went out to view the landscape
to see what we could paint. I was frightened of be-
ginning anything, as he painted much better than I
did, but he was very kind and sympathetic, and said
that it did not matter much what I painted, but " II
faut travailler" He had been a great friend of
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