Thursday, August 16, 2012

Graham Greene's Waiter

Graham Greene, Yours etc. Letters to the Press, Christopher Hawtree, ed. (London: Reinhardt Books, 1989), p. 8.

News Chronicle/15 March 1948

Incident in Prague

-- I have received a press cutting of 'John Bouverie's Journal'
for 27 February and for pure curiosity I should like to know
whether this Journal comes under the heading of fiction [the
story also appeared in the Daily Herald's 'Chanticleer'
column]. Under the heading Czech-mate there is a paragraph
dealing with me of which the only accurate statement is that
I happened to be staying in the Alcron Hotel. As far as I know
the Alcron did not pass from private into public ownership, I
am certainly unaware of ever having been served by a
Communist waiter who had been appointed national
administrator, and I was not lecturing for the British Council.
Do satisfy my curiosity about this Journal.

Bouverie had written, 'A guest in Prague's most ambitious hotel, the Alcron, when it passed yesterday from private into public ownership, was novelist Graham Greene, who is in Prague at the moment to lecture for the British Council. He looked for  his Communist waiter. He had been appointed national administrator.'