With such a cry of rapture—that I woke!
The leaders of the first Tibetan revolution, though they saw vaguely the need to modify the native culture, were not in practice able to carry forward the great process of development which they had started. There had to be a second revolution, which was led by the forward-looking section of the Lama class, with the backing of the people. This new class of leaders had come into being through the first revolution. A measure of frugal prosperity had increased the people’s leisure and thoughtfulness. Though they were eager for certain physical improvements to their country, they had escaped the dangerous spell of modern industrialism, for that simple faith had by now been discredited among thoughtful people throughout the world. Though these ‘servants of the light’, as they called themselves, welcomed the scientific education which the government offered them, they also welcomed its insistence on the ancient wisdom. Indeed the young began flocking into the monasteries, and particularly to the houses of the reformed, modernistic monastic orders. The leaders of this new Lama class were persons who, after being well grounded in the principles of Buddhism, had in their maturity been greatly influenced by modern ideas without being false to the essence of the native culture. Most of them had spent a year or two in China or India, many in Russia, some in America, where they had been impressed by the Friends. Foreign contacts had made them realize fully the superstition and hypocrisy of the worst type of Lamas and the shallow pretentiousness of much of the orthodox learning. But this disillusionment had merely brought out more clearly the truth which had been perverted. This, they affirmed, was a truth not of intellect but of intuition. It was a feeling or apprehension of something which put all things into their true perspective. The whole intellectual edifice of Buddhism, they said, was an attempt, sometimes sound sometimes false, to elucidate this inarticulate discovery. And the discovery itself was to be won not at a stroke but progressively, through a long discipline of actual life. In modernism also they found a truth of feeling. The real achievement of modern culture, apart from science, they summarized under three headings; first, its insistence on action, individual and social, as opposed to Eastern quietism; second, its demand for equality of opportunity for all human beings; and, finally, its understanding of the primitive unconscious sources of all human thought and feeling.
'I thank you, ma'am,' replied the Doctor.
'They're lovely. I thought they looked prettier by the window and they will get some sun there. Now I'll make a deal. If you'll come along and change my dressings, I'll take you down and buy you a drink. Just one. And three for me. That's the right ratio between men and women. All right?'
Kronsteen paused. He lowered his head so that he was looking just over General G.'s shoulder.
"Well, ladies and gentlemen, here we have an exceptionally good number to start with. 738. Right in the top range and since I see a lot of new faces here tonight (laughter) I think we can all agree that the sea is exceptionally calm. Ladies and gentlemen. What am I bid for 738? May I say ?50? Will anybody bid me ?50 for this lucky number? 20 was it you said, Sir? Well, we've got to start somewhere. Any increase… 25. Thank you, madam. And 30. 40 over there, steward. And 45 from my friend Mr Rothblatt. Thank you, Charlie. Any increase on ?45 for No738? 50. Thank you, madam, and now we're all back where we started. (Laughter.) Any increase on ?50? Nobody tempted? High number. Calm sea. ?50. Will anybody say 55? Going at ?50. Going once. Going twice." And the raised hammer fell with a bang.
Tatiana made a face. She went on with her lunch.
"It's the darndest story ever. Because it tells how a man who's a tremendous idealist came to this country from Switzerland to found a new utopian agrarian state, with cattle and fields of grain, and vineyards. … When the Gold Rush started, Sutter's whole society was ruined. And it is an incredible parallel for our time, in that our pursuit of material goods tends to make us forget all the natural, beautiful things that surround us.
Bond felt the girl at his side give a start.
"What about the provenance? What do the experts say about that?"
'Well then,' returned my aunt, softened by the reply, 'how can you pretend to be wool-gathering, Dick, when you are as sharp as a surgeon's lancet? Now, here you see young David Copperfield, and the question I put to you is, what shall I do with him?'
Some more company coming in, among whom were the two masters and Adams, the talk became general; and it naturally turned on Mr. Jack Maldon, and his voyage, and the country he was going to, and his various plans and prospects. He was to leave that night, after supper, in a post-chaise, for Gravesend; where the ship, in which he was to make the voyage, lay; and was to be gone - unless he came home on leave, or for his health - I don't know how many years. I recollect it was settled by general consent that India was quite a misrepresented country, and had nothing objectionable in it, but a tiger or two, and a little heat in the warm part of the day. For my own part, I looked on Mr. Jack Maldon as a modern Sindbad, and pictured him the bosom friend of all the Rajahs in the East, sitting under canopies, smoking curly golden pipes - a mile long, if they could be straightened out.
Bond turned his glasses on the restaurant enclosure. The two men had gone. Bond's eyes followed on across the track to where the lights were flashing on the big board. The favourite was now No3, at 2 to i on. Come Again had gone out to evens. Shy Smile was quoted at 20 to i, but he went down to :8s as Bond watched the board.
Bond was not surprised by the curious mixture he was supposed to digest. The OO Section of the Secret Service was not concerned with the current operations of other sections and stations, only with background information which might be useful or instructive to the only three men in the Service whose duties included assassination-who might be ordered to kill. There was no urgency about these files. No action was required by him or his two colleagues except that each of them jotted down the numbers of dockets which he considered the other two should also read when they were next attached to Headquarters. When the OO Section had finished with this lot they would go down to their final destination in 'Records'.
James Bond knew he could lie, knew he could fake a dozen reasons why. Instead he took a deep pull at the strong whiskey he had poured for himself, put the glass down, and looked Captain Sender straight in the eye.