The Full Cupboard of Life (No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency, Book 5)
Alexander McCall Smith
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THE NO. 1 LADIES’ DETECTIVE AGENCY - Book 5
Fans around the world adore the best-selling No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series and its proprietor, Precious Ramotswe, Botswana’s premier lady detective. In this charming series, Mma Ramotswe—with help from her loyal associate, Grace Makutsi—navigates her cases and her personal life with wisdom, good humor, and the occasional cup of tea.
Still engaged to the estimable Mr J.L.B. Matekoni, Mma Ramotswe understands that she should not put too much pressure on him, as he has other concerns, especially a hair-raising request from the ever persuasive Mma Potokwane, matron of the orphan farm. Besides Mma Ramotswe herself has weighty matters on her mind. She has been approached by a wealthy lady to check up on several suitors. Are these men interested in the lady or just her money? This may be a difficult case, but it's just the kind of problem Mma Ramotswe likes and she is, as we know, a very intuitive lady.
chair and closed her eyes. 14 From the other side of the desk, Mma Ramotswe watched her 15 client. She had observed that some people found it easier to tell a 16 story if they shut their eyes, or if they looked down, or focused on 17 something in the distance—something that was there but not 18 there. It did not matter to her; the important thing was that 19 clients should feel comfortable and that they should be able to 20 talk without embarrassment. It might not be easy for Mma 21
ill-informed way in which the apprentices, 24 and so many young men like them, viewed the world. It was aston-25 ishing to think that they had been to school, and yet there they 26 were, with a good Cambridge Certificate. As Mma Ramotswe 27 pointed out, it must be very difficult being the Minister of Educa-28 tion and having to deal with raw material like this. 29 “But he would never be able to hear them,” said Mma 30 Makutsi. “They were wasting their breath.” 31 S “Yes,” said the
that one,” Mma Makutsi had replied. 18 “I have seen her picture many times. She knows where there are 19 cameras and she stands in front of them, like a pig trying to get to 20 the food. She is a very fashionable lady over in Johannesburg.” 21 “And what is she famous for?” 22 “The magazine has never explained that,” Mma Makutsi had 23 said. “Maybe they do not know either.” 24 This had made Mma Ramotswe laugh. “And then that 25 woman there, that one in the middle, standing next to
unconcerned about it, 22 and said that his customers had always paid in all sorts of ways 23 and money had never been lost. 24 “One man used to pay his bills with bags of coins,” he said. 25 “Sometimes he would drive past, throw out one of those old 26 white Standard Bank bags, wave, and drive off. That is how he 27 settled his bills.” 28 “That’s all very well,” Mma Makutsi had said. “But that would 29 never have been recommended to us at the Botswana Secretarial 30 College. They
fields, and productive 20 fields meant large, ripened pumpkins of the sort that traditionally 21 built ladies like Mma Ramotswe so enjoyed eating. The yellow 22 flesh of a pumpkin or a squash, boiled and then softened with a 23 lump of butter (if one’s budget stretched to that), was one of 24 God’s greatest gifts to Botswana. And it tasted so good, too, with a 25 slice of fine Botswana beef, dripping in gravy. 26 Oh yes, God had given a great deal to Botswana, as she had 27 been told