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Four extremes of passion, three nations

The Finnish ambassador turned to me.

‘It’s not true that Finns have no sense of humour,’ he said.  ‘Or that we lack passion.’

‘For example,’ the ambassador said, ‘there was once a very elderly lady.  One day she turned to her even older husband, and said: “Darling.  Why do you never say you love me any more?”

‘”Well,” said the husband.  “On the day we married, seventy five years ago, I told you I loved you.  If the situation changes, I shall let you know.”‘

George Elliot

George Eliot’s Middlemarch is incisive on relationships: “Poor Mr. Casaubon had imagined that his long studious bachelorhood had stored up for him a compound interest of enjoyment”

I thought of my Finnish friend when I was browsing my post about one of the funniest writers in the English language, the great George Mikes (links in bold italics are to other posts on this site).  I recommend the post if you have not read it.  Mikes said it was the English, rather than the Finns, who were sometimes lacking in passion, as in this example: (more…)

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