Reading progress update: I've read 47%.

The Man in the Brown Suit - Agatha Christie

I am so very glad that Dame Agatha decided on writing murder mysteries, not travel guides:

"By the way, I should like to make clear here and now that this story will not be a story of South Africa. I guarantee no genuine local colour—you know the sort of thing—half a dozen words in italics on every page. I admire it very much, but I can’t do it. In South Sea Islands, of course, you make an immediate reference to bêche-de-mer. I don’t know what bêche-de-mer is, I have never known, I probably never shall know. I’ve guessed once or twice and guessed wrong. In South Africa I know you at once begin to talk about a stoep—I do know what a stoep is—it’s the thing round a house and you sit on it. In various other parts of the world you call it a veranda, a piazza, and a ha-ha. Then again, there are pawpaws. I had often read of pawpaws. I discovered at once what they were, because I had one plumped down in front of me for breakfast. I thought at first that it was a melon gone bad. The Dutch waitress enlightened me, and persuaded me to use lemon juice and sugar and try again. I was very pleased to meet a pawpaw. I had always vaguely associated it with a hula-hula, which, I believe, though I may be wrong, is a kind of straw skirt that Hawaiian girls dance in. No, I think I am wrong—that is a lava-lava.

At any rate, all these things are very cheering after England. I can’t help thinking that it would brighten our cold Island life if one could have a breakfast of bacon-bacon, and then go out clad in a jumper-jumper to pay the books."