[Excerpt] by Andrea Vorlaufer, in 'My Other Life' by Paul Theroux
'Lovely,' she said, seeing that I had filled the glasses. 'I won't say no. Is it champers? Crikey!'
Every word of hers was her own and I saw that there was no one like her in the world, and that we had a special language of precious cliches, like trusty artifacts and baggage, a whole culture of two people, with its own rituals and humor and habits, that had taken a whole long marriage to make. Happy people were able to talk this way, in their own private expressions and words, which had a meaning for them alone, and were untranslatable.