- Project Runeberg -  The story of San Michele /
404

(1929) [MARC] Author: Axel Munthe - Tema: Medicine
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ungrateful I was in return for all she did for me.
Considering her limited means of communication
—Miss Hall was not allowed to ask me any
questions—she succeeded somehow in finding out
a good deal of what was going on in the house
and what people I saw. She kept a vigilant eye
on all my lady patients, she used to patrol the
Piazza for hours to see them coming in and out
during my consultations. With the opening of
the Grand Hôtel, Ritz had dealt a final blow
to the vanishing simplicity of Roman life. The
last invasion of the barbarians had begun, the
Eternal City had become fashionable. The huge
hotel was crammed with the smart set from
London and Paris, American millionaires and
leading rastaqouères from the Riviera. Miss
Hall knew all these people by name, she had
watched them for years through the society
columns of the ‘Morning Post.’ As to the
English nobility Miss Hall was a perfect
encyclopedia. She knew by heart the birth and the
coming of age of their sons and heirs, the
betrothal and the marriage of their daughters, the
dresses they had worn when presented at Court,
their dances, their dinner-parties, their journeys
abroad. Many of these smart people ended by
becoming my patients whether they wanted it
or not, to the huge delight of Miss Hall. Others,
unable to be alone a single moment, invited me
to lunch or dinner. Others called at Piazza di
Spagna to see the room Keats had died in.
Others stopped their carriages in the Villa
Borghese to pat my dogs with some
complimentary words to Miss Hall how well they were

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