February 5, 1931
The mother-in-law of Davidson (who is making a bust of me and at whose house I lunch today), a charming old lady of eighty-four, when – on the point of lighting a cigarette after the meal – I ask her if smoking bothers her, tells us that similar question was put to her, before 1870, by Bismarck, in a train between Paris and Saint-Germain in which she happened to be alone with him. To which she replied at once:
‘Sir, I do not know. No one has ever smoked in my presence.’
Bismark immediately had the train stopped so that he could change to another compartment.
Andre Gide (I&AT)