Emma Watson Pussy
War And Peace
of fare. And his face expressed serious
hesitation. "Are the oysters good? Mind now."
"Theyre Flensburg, your excellency. Weve no Ostend."
"Flensburg will do, but are they fresh?"
"Only arrived yesterday."
"Well, then, how if we were to begin with oysters, and so change
the whole program? Eh?"
"Its all the same to me. I should like cabbage soup and
porridge better than anything; but of course theres nothing like
"_Porridge a la Russe,_ your honor would like?" said the Tatar,
bending down to Levin, like a nurse speaking to a child.
"No, joking apart, whatever you choose is sure to be good. Ive
been skating, and Im hungry. And dont imagine," he added,
detecting a look of dissatisfaction on Oblonskys face, "that I
shant appreciate your choice. I am fond of good things."
"I should hope so! After all, its one of the pleasures of
life," said Stepan Arkadyevitch. "Well, then, my friend, you
give us two--or better say three--dozen oysters, clear soup
"Printaniere," prompted the Tatar. But Stepan Arkadyevitch
apparently did not care to allow him the satisfaction of giving
the French names of the dishes.
"With vegetables in it, you know. Then turbot with thick sauce,
then...roast beef; and mind its good. Yes, and capons, perhaps,
and then sweets."
The Tatar, recollecting that it was Stepan Arkadyevitchs way not
to call the dishes by the names in the French bill of fare, did
not repeat them after him, but could not resist rehearsing the
whole menu to himself according to the bill:--"_Soupe
printaniere, turbot, sauce Beaumarchais, poulard a lestragon,
macedoine de fruits_...etc.," and then instantly, as though worked
by springs, laying down one bound bill of fare, he took up
another, the list of wines, and submitted it to Stepan
"What shall we drink?"
"What you like, only not too much. Champagne," said Levin.
"What! to start with? Youre right though, I dare say. Do you
like the white seal?"
"_Cachet blanc,_" prompted the Tatar.
"Very well, then, give us that brand with the oysters, and then
"Yes, sir. And what table wine?"
"You can give us Nuits. Oh, no, better the classic Chablis."
"Yes, sir. And _your_ cheese, your excellency?"
"Oh, yes, Parmesan. Or would you like another?"
"No, its all the same to me," said Levin, unable to suppress a
And the Tatar ran off with flying coat-tails, and in five minutes
darted in with a dish of opened oysters on mother-of-pearl
shells, and a bottle between his fingers.
Stepan Arkadyevitch crushed the starchy napkin, tucked it into
his waistcoat, and settling his arms comfortably, started on the
"Not bad," he said, stripping the oysters from the pearly shell
with a silver fork, and swallowing them one after another. "Not
bad," he repeated, turning his dewy, brilliant eyes from Levin to
Levin ate the oysters indeed, though white bread and cheese would
have pleased him better. But he was admiring Oblonsky. Even the
Tatar, uncorking the bottle and pouring the sparkling wine into
the delicate glasses, glanced at Stepan Arkadyevitch, and settled
his white cravat with a perceptible smile of satisfaction.
"You dont care much for oysters, do you?" said Stepan
Arkadyevitch, emptying his wine glass, "or youre worried about
He wanted Levin to be in good spirits. But it was not that Levin
was not in good spirits; he was ill at ease. With what he had in
his soul, he felt sore and uncomfortable in the restaurant, in
the midst of private rooms where men were dining with ladies, in
all this fuss and bustle; the surroundings of bronzes, looking
glasses, gas, and waiters--all of it was offensive to him. He
was afraid of sullying what his soul was brimful of.
"I? Yes, I am; but besides, all this bothers me," he said. "You
cant conceive how queer it all seems to a country person like
me, as queer as that gentlemans nails I saw at your place..."
"Yes, I saw how much interested you were in poor Grinevitchs
nails," said Stepan Arkadyevitch, laughing.
"Its too much for me," responded Levin. "Do try, now, and put
yourself in my place, take the point of view of a country person.
We in the country try to bring our hands into such a state as
will be most convenient for working with. So we cut our nails;
sometimes we turn up our sleeves. And here people purposely let
their nails grow as
Anna Karenina page 19 Anna Karenina page 21