JAPANESE GRACE AND ART 105
the exterior of trains are like those of France. In fact, if the Japanese lack initiative and originality, as many say, they are remarkable adepts at copying. They appear to me to have examined carefully everything in our Western civilisation and then taken what seemed to them the best, and improved it. What is especially innate in them is their good humour, their politeness and good manners and their exquisite artistic sense. They are Nature's gentlemen and the grace and natural refinement of a Japanese lady is beautiful to witness. How far all this is compatible with sincerity I do not presume to judge. Those who know them well speak of their shiftiness and dishonourable business methods. But for artistic expression they resemble most the ancient Greeks. The sensible sandals they wear render their feet worthy to tread the richest carpets of a palace. But what a pity it is that they have acquired the disgusting habit of tooth-picking at meals!
It was nearly 11 p.m. when I alighted at Sam-momiya, the station beyond Kobe, and " 'rikishaw'd " through the poor, dirty and feebly lighted streets to
Captain P-'s house on the green hills behind
Kobe, whose kind hostess gave me a most hospitable welcome.
Wednesday, November 6.aIt is a fine view of this 'arge busy town with its thronged harbour and roadstead, while this morning's roseate sunlight quivers." Commercially, Kobe is rivalling Yokohama, but I confess the placeawhat little I have seen of itahas disappointed me.Wednesday, November 6.a It is a fine view of this 'arge busy town with its thronged harbour and roadstead, while this morning's roseate sunlight quivers." Commercially, Kobe is rivalling Yokohama, but I confess the placea what little I have seen of ita has disappointed me.