Note: The following story has been translated from my Greek book ‘From Cape Town to Alexandria’ narrating an overland trip from side to side of the African Continent.
Another man who caused me a particular impression in that place was the afflicted, aged, scrawny, eyeless doorman of the inn. I do not know it positively, but he was probably mute, too. I never heard him uttering, not a word, but any sound whatsoever coming from his oral cavity. Certainly, at least, he wasn’t deaf withal.
He was only appearing late in the evenings when the people had thinned out. He was then coming out of the shanty where he lived, in the yard by the door, and he was slowly coming groping the way with his walking stick. He would then sit discreetly in a corner by himself, where he seemed to be tuning himself in and attending with great interest to the various discussions.
He always gave me the impression – by twitches of his body parts and other reactions – that he was comprehending what was said very well. That amazed me; for even among the younger generations, very few in this city knew even the most basic English.
Some nights again, when we were staying up playing music until late, he was getting closer standing right opposite us, listening to the music with a deep emotion painted on his face which showed that if he had eyes they would have been tearing.