Nectar in a Sieve
To the children I handed out two annas apiece, to be spent on fireworks. I had never been able to do so before -- in previous years we had contented ourselves with watching other people's fireworks, or with going down to the bonfire in the village, and even now I felt qualms about wasting money on such quickly spent pleasures; but their rapturous faces overcame my misgivings. It is only once, I thought, a memory. (10.1.)
"What is it that calls you?" I said. "Is it gold? Although we have none, remember that money isn’t everything."
"It is an important part of living," he answered me patiently, "and work is another. There is nothing for us here, for we have neither the means to buy land nor to rent it." (12.50)
At one time there had been kingfishers here, flashing between the young shoots for our fish; and paddy birds; and sometimes, in the shallower reaches of the river, flamingoes, striding with ungainly precision among the water reeds, with plumage of a glory not of this earth. Now birds came no more, for the tannery lay close—except crows and kites and such scavenging birds, eager for the town’s offal… (12.63)