The past is a foreign country; they do things differently there.
"But men still shoot each other, don't they?" I asked hopefully.
"They shot me," he answered, with what I took to be a smile.
"Yes, but that was in a war. Do they still shoot each other over ladies?" I imagined a carpet of prostrate women, over whom shots rang out.
"I might go for a walk." Even to me this sounded a pedestrian thing to do.
I caught glimpses of white-clad figures striding purposefully to and fro, heard men's voices calling each other in tones of authority and urgency, as if life had suddenly become more serious, as if battle were in prospect.
I remember walking to the cricket ground with the team, sometimes trying to feel, and sometimes trying not to feel, that I was one of them; and the conviction I had, which comes so quickly to a boy, that nothing in the world mattered except that we should win.