Murray Bail

(Geb. 1941 in Adelaide)

It had been a difficult day for Delage, although he ended up liking the music critic, who gave the impression, without coming out and saying it, not in so many words, they could meet up again, perhaps at the Café Bräunerhof, the homeliest of the cafés, where, he said, the most irritable men in Vienna sat and read their newspapers, the world after all consisted of hundreds of constantly shifting irritations, which was why the Bräunerhof had become his second home, the world was composed of nothing but irritations, he touched Delage’s elbow, we can only do our best, it was a comfort to be surrounded at the Café Bräunerhof by others who either openly expressed their irritation at the world around them, or allowed unspoken irritation to develop in their faces, irritation being a sign of intelligence, there nevertheless was always a quiet corner, they could have their coffee and pastries, while he asked for more details of the deadly insects, reptiles and fish of Australia.

Murray Bail: The Voyage, London: Quercus 2013, S. 107f.