category:Leisure puzzle


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    那个捕鱼最好In the following section I shall give some of the general impressions which this excursion has left in my memory, and a few suggestions derived from them.


    It was the dead season of Paris, and everything had the air of suspended animation. The solitude of the Place Vendome was something oppressive; I felt, as I trod its lonely sidewalk, as if I were wandering through Tadmor in the Desert. We were indeed as remote, as unfriended,--I will not say as melancholy or as slow,--as Goldsmith by the side of the lazy Scheldt or the wandering Po. Not a soul did either of us know in that great city. Our most intimate relations were with the people of the hotel and with the drivers of the fiacres. These last were a singular looking race of beings. Many of them had a dull red complexion, almost brick color, which must have some general cause. I questioned whether the red wine could have something to do with it. They wore glazed hats, and drove shabby vehicles for the most part; their horses would not compare with those of the London hansom drivers, and they themselves were not generally inviting in aspect, though we met with no incivility from any of them. One, I remember, was very voluble, and over-explained everything, so that we became afraid to ask him a question. They were fellow-creatures with whom one did not naturally enter into active sympathy, and the principal point of interest about the fiacre and its arrangements was whether the horse was fondest of trotting or of walking. In one of our drives we made it a point to call upon our Minister, Mr. McLane, but he was out of town. We did not bring a single letter, but set off exactly as if we were on a picnic.
    The most remarkable piece of European handiwork I remember was the steel chair at Longford Castle. The most startling and frightful work of man I ever saw or expect to see was another specimen of work in steel, said to have been taken from one of the infernal chambers of the Spanish Inquisition. It was a complex mechanism, which grasped the body and the head of the heretic or other victim, and by means of many ingeniously arranged screws and levers was capable of pressing, stretching, piercing, rending, crushing, all the most sensitive portions of the human body, one at a time or many at once. The famous Virgin, whose embrace drove a hundred knives into the body of the poor wretch she took in her arms, was an angel of mercy compared to this masterpiece of devilish enginery.


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