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This blog makes liberal use of AB's journals, letters, travel notes, and other sources.

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Thursday, 26 September 2013

Streets of Glasgow

Sunday, September 26th., Glasgow.

We drove in Richmond's open car yesterday up W. side of Loch Lomond and past Lochearnhead and home by Stirling. About 135 miles. Driving rain and mist nearly all day, so that we saw Scotland in a characteristic aspect. 

After dinner at the hotel, 10 p.m., we went out to view the streets. Renfield Street and Sauchiehall Street crowded with people, largely young. many picture palaces. In quiet side streets off Renfield Street and Sauchiehall Street I noticed large knots of men. It took me some time to find out what they were doing. The largest group was a thick ring; in the middle a man about 32 was quickly selling tracts. His speech was finished. He had some scrap with a man in the crowd, but apologised and said he had no intention of being discourteous. At last I discovered that he was an advocate of birth control. He must have been doing pretty well out of it.

In a smaller group a man was advocating something about franchise. He argued with his little audience whose nearest faces were within a foot of his own. A few others craned their necks to listen. The social tone of the argument was admirable. These street phenomena seemed to show how Scotchmen like argument. Not one woman in these little crowds. Presently two pairs of tall policemen from different directions converged on the two groups and very quickly and persuasively broke them up. 

Waiter in coffee room at hotel didn't know that riz de veau meant sweetbread; in fact asserted that it didn't. It often happens that waiters don't know at all what they are selling. They ought to be told in detail every day.

Additionally for September 26th., see 'Returning home' - http://earnoldbennett.blogspot.co.uk/2012/09/returning-home.html

Ever since I left Paris I have wanted to come back, and now I have!

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