The closest we got to any literary memorabilia was the Swan Hotel, right on the river’s edge. Pubs called ‘the Swan’ abound in this part of the world, but the one in Pangbourne is mentioned in Jerome K. Jerome’s Three Men in a Boat. Appropriately, the pub was like a big old boat house, complete with an ancient wood rowing boat suspended to the ceiling. Outside the pub, beyond the run-down landing dock, was a rather impressive horseshoe-shaped weir cascading noisy water. The weir sounded like the shushing interference on our old television at home in Dagenham. So instead of musing about Ratty and Mole, I was again thinking about Jessie and Lew. Oh, well.
“So, have you—” Frances did not know how to phrase her question.
“Got my literary fill? Well, yes, I suppose I have.”
“I was going to say, ‘Seen all you want to see?’”
“Yes!” I had.
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