Title: Our Chum Patience (also known as Friend Patience/em>)
Date Read: 15th March 2010
Available Online?: YES (although read for this review was the David Coward translation of the story in A Day in the Country and Other Stories (Oxford University Press)).
Briefly: Government official Gontran Lardois is in an unfamiliar bar in an unfamiliar town when in walks a brash and cocksure fellow. Sitting down close to Lardois, it soon becomes clear that the new arrival sees something familiar in him.
Afterthoughts: I’m sorry to say that I really didn’t like this story. I found it to be weak, uninteresting and without anything close to a satisfying ending. There is one moment of salvation – a paragraph in which Maupassant beautifully describes a character’s over confidence (see below) – but other than that, a wholly forgettable story.
Notable Quote: The my of the summons exploded like a shot from a cannon. I could tell at once that everything in life was his, indisputably his and not somebody else’s; that his character, by God, his name, his appetite, his trousers, his anything, was his in the most utter and absolute way – and more so than with any other man.
*Story read as part of my Devouring De Maupassant reading challenge.