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George

On a cargo-boat to Africa I once made friends with a little boy named George, who was travelling out with his mother and his young aunt. One day, on the deck, he detached himself from his women and, followed by their eyes, walked up to me. He announced that it was his birthday next day, he would be six years old, and his mother was going to ask the English passengers for tea, would I come? he said.

But I am not English, George, said I.

What are you? he asked, in great surprise.

I am a Hottentot, I said.

He stood up straight, and looked at me very gravely. Never mind, he said, I hope you will come.

He walked back to his mother and aunt and announced to them in a nonchalant way, but with so much firmness that it cut short any objection: She is a Hottentot. But I want her.


The Earthquake | Out of Africa | Kejiko