Sunday, April 17, 2005

Everywhere in life, whether among its coarse, rough, poor and untidy mouldering lower orders or among its monotonously frigid and tediously tidy higher orders, everywhere a man will be sure to meet at least once in his life something that is unlike anything he had happened to see before, something that for once will awaken in him a feeling that is unlike any feeling he is destined to experience for the rest of his life. Everywhere across whatever sorrows of which our life is woven, some radiant joy will gaily flash past, just as sometimes a magnificent carriage with golden harness, gorgeous steeds, and brilliantly sparkling windows suddenly flashes by unheralded past some poor village in the wilds of the country, a village which till then has seen nothing but country carts.

Nikolai Gogol, from 'Dead Souls', 1842