By George Orwell
George Bowling, the hero of this comedian novel, is a middle-aged assurance salesman who lives in a normal English suburban row apartment with a spouse and kids. someday, after successful a few cash from a big gamble, he is going again to the village the place he grew up, to fish for carp in a pool he recollects from thirty years sooner than. The pool, lamentably, is long past, the village has replaced past acceptance, and the valuable occasion of his vacation is an unintended bombing via the RAF.
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Extra info for Coming Up for Air (Harvest Book)
Well now! Listed for a soldier! Just think of it! ' It just shocked them. Listing for a soldier, in their eyes, was the exact equivalent of a girl's going on the streets. Their attitude to the war, and to the Army, was very curious. They had the good old English notions that the red-coats are the scum of the earth and anyone who joins the Army will die of drink and go straight to hell, but at the same time they were good patriots, stuck Union Jacks in their windows, and held it as an article of faith that the English had never been beaten in battle and never could be.
The usual crowd that you can hardly fight your way through was streaming up the pavement, all of them with that insane fixed expression on their faces that people have in London streets, and there was the usual jam of traffic with the great red buses nosing their way between the cars, and the engines roaring and horns tooting. Enough noise to waken the dead, but not to waken this lot, I thought. I felt as if I was the only person awake in a city of sleep-walkers. That's an illusion, of course. When you walk through a crowd of strangers it's next door to impossible not to imagine that they're all waxworks, but probably they're thinking just the same about you.
For a moment I didn't merely remember it, I was IN it. Of course such impressions don't last more than a few seconds. A moment later it was as though I'd opened my eyes again, and I was forty-five and there was a traffic jam in the Strand. But it had left a kind of after-effect behind. Sometimes when you come out of a train of thought you feel as if you were coming up from deep water, but this time it was the other way about, it was as though it was back in 1900 that I'd been breathing real air.
Coming Up for Air (Harvest Book) by George Orwell