"Beyond Latour, the boat ran close to the bank as it headed up towards Pauillac. Ribbed vineyards ran away from them like green corduroy. A broken-down pier came into sight, followed by a patch of corduroy stained half-black. Then, a little higher up, a flat facade made biscuity by the sun, with a brief terrace half-obscuring the ground-floor windows. After a nudge of focusing, Emily detected that several balusters were missing from the balcony of the terrace, and others badly askew. Florence took the glasses. The facade had large holes gouged into it, there were some broken upper window-panes, while the roof appeared to have been given over to experimental agriculture.

'Not exactly our hermitage,' she commented.

'So we shall visit tomorrow?' "

2 'Hermitage' a new story by Julian Barnes