Idiot!” shouted Maria again. She got so excited that she began to dance about until I thought her sabots would go through the floor, “Idiot! T’ES FOU! T’ES FOU! What have you got to do but take it back to the shop and get your deposit back? Starving, with three francs fifty staring you in the face! Imbecile!” ‘I can hardly believe now that in all those five days I had never once thought of taking the BIDON back to the shop. As good as three francs fifty in hard cash, and it had never occurred to me! I sat up in bed. “Quick!” I shouted to Maria, “you take it for me. Take it to the grocer’s at the corner — run like the devil. And bring back food!” ‘Maria didn’t need to be told. She grabbed the BIDON and went clattering down the stairs like a herd of elephants and in three minutes she was back with two pounds of bread under one arm and a half-litre bottle of wine under the other. I didn’t stop to thank her; I just seized the bread and sank my teeth in it. Have you noticed how bread tastes when you have been hungry for a long time? Cold, wet, doughy — like putty almost. But, Jesus Christ, how good it was! As for the wine, I sucked it all down in one draught, and it seemed to go straight into my veins and flow round my body like new blood. Ah, that made a difference!.