They Come, Singly And In Batches, And Soon Make Olevano Uninhabitable To
Men Of The Potter And Browne Type.
They keep the taverns open all night,
sing boisterous choruses, kiss each other in the street "as if they
in their bedrooms," organise picnics in the woods, sketch old women
sitting in old doorways, start a Verschoenerungsverein and indulge in a
number of other antics which, from the local point of view, are held to
be either coarse or childish. The natives, after watching their doings
with critical interest, presently pronounce a verdict - a verdict to
which the brightest spirits of the place give their assent - a verdict
which, by the way, I have myself heard uttered.
"Those Englishmen" - thus it runs - "were at least assassins. These people
are merely fools."
POSTSCRIPT - One thing has occurred of late which would hardly have
happened were the Germans still in occupation of Olevano. At the central
piazza is a fountain where the cattle drink and where, formerly, you
could rest and glance down upon the country lying below - upon a piece of
green landscape peering in upon the street. This little view was like a
window, it gave an aerial charm to the place. They have now blocked it
up with an ugly house. The beauty of the site is gone. It is surprising
that local municipalities; however stupid, however corrupt, should not
be aware of the damage done to their own interests when they permit such
outrages. The Germans - were any of them still here - would doubtless have
interfered en masse and stopped the building.
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