Sorry, Don. TT 15 notes I sent lacks most
page/line numbers (sorry again!) and includes a couple of typos.
52.08: as if by a Flemish master's hand: Cf.
"To leap, or try to lower oneself on knotted ledgelinen (the knotting was
being demonstrated by a medievalish, sort of Flemish, long-necked shopgirl
in a speculum at the back of his dream), seemed to him madness, . . ." (Ch.
52.14: "*godilles*" and "*wedeln*" (rom?):
An ascillating movement of the body in skiing that involves short quick
turns straight down the fall line. The technique, developed in Austria in
the 1950s, was just filtering into English dictionaries in the 1960s, hence
the "rom?" (a proofreader's query: roman, or italics?) (Brian Boyd's note
to the LoA TT).
52.15-17: the painted little people skimming
along, losing a ski here, a pole there, or victoriously veering in a spray
of silver powder: We were advised to learn to "skim" in the beginning of
the novel: "Novices must learn to skim over matter if they want to stay
all the exact level of the moment" (Ch. 1). HP does not follow Armande's
advice to learn to ski, i.e., to skim. Cf. Don Barton Johnson, "Transparent
Things" in *The Garland Companion,* pp. 729-730.
53.03-09:He never could pinpoint, with
his dazzled and watery eyes, Armande's silhouette among the skiers. Once,
however, he was sure he had caught her, floating and flashing, red-anoraked,
. . . and abruptly changing into a goggled stranger: The theme of the elusive in spacetime. Hugh also takes
Mr. R's secretary for Julia: "when she put back the receiver and turned
out to be a totally different girl" (Ch. 18).
53.10-12: Presently she appeared from another
side of the terrace, in glossy green nylon, carrying her skis, but with
her formidable boots still on: Hugh was following a skier in a red anorak
believing she was Armande, but actually she was skiing in green. He is again deceived
by the red-green "mnemoptical" trick. This time he remembers green as red.
But is there anything that could make him remember the color as red instead
53.11: in glossy green nylon: Armande of
the scene was previewed in Ch. 5 and will be appearing in Ch. 26 as a green
figurine of a female skier.
53.14-15: "You look like the first girl
on the moon": Apollo 11 landed on the moon on July 20, 1969, three months
before VN set about TT. Neil A. Armstrong and Michael Collins on the moon
were repeatedly reported and broadcasted over the world. I have no idea
whether or not VN had a special interest in the project, but he must have
seen the news.
"The moon" also connects with the tradename
of her boots.
53.20: Mondstein Sexy: As Brian Boyd notes,
Mondstein is Moonstone.
The tradename alludes to the moon, stones,
Wittgenstein, and the gay sexual party because of which Armande has left
53.31-33: Jacques had demanded her presence
at the onanistic sessions . . . Jacques had now presented her with an ultimatum--either
she join them in their nasty games or he would cease being her lover: reminds
us of the promiscuity which Quilty demanded Lolita to take part in.
53.25: the heavenly cable car; 54.01-02:
The gondola would have gone on gliding forever in a blue haze sufficient
for paradise: VN also liked the cableway: "My favorite method of locomotion,
though, is the cable way, and especially the chairlift. I find enchanting
and dreamy in the best sense of the word to glide in the morning sun from
valley to timberline in that magic seat, and watch from above my own shadow--with
the ghost of a butterfly net in the ghost of a fist--as it keeps gently
ascending in sitting profile along the flowery slope below, among dancing
Ringlets and skimming Fritillaries (Interviewed by Simona Morini in 1972,
*SO* 200). Cf. "Or else, at a ski lodge,
I would see her floating away from me, celestial and solitary in an ethereal
chairlift, up and up, to a glittering summit where laughing athletes stripped
to the waist were waiting for her, for her" (*Lolita* II.2).
54.08: buvette: Refreshment room (Brain
Boyd's note to the LoA TT).
54.29-30: She consented to pull them down
only just as far as necessary. Nor did she let him kiss her, or caress her
thighs: preludes her unnatural sexual demands in their married life.
55.19-20: with its sense of "all-is-well"
despite her worst moods, her silliest caprices, her harshest demands: Cf.
"Despite our tiffs, despite her nastiness, despite all the fuss and faces
she made, and the vulgarity, and the danger, and the horrible hopelessness
of it all, I still dwelled deep in my elected paradise . . ." (*Lolita*
II.3). I feel *Lolita* lingering around this chapter.
54.23-24: A long file of little boys followed
by a scout master climbed toward them: HP cannot find the unforgettable
place in his pilgrim: "He had not even found the spot in the woods where
gay band of little hikers had interrupted an unforgettable kiss" (Ch. 25).
54.27: "Gruss Gott,": Greetings (Brain
Boyd's note to the LoA TT).