Among our first clients there was a very serious Englishman who drank a lot and
spoke little, perhaps because he stuttered fearfully. He was staying at a hotel
nearby, moved with prim step, climbed up onto one of the stools in front of the
counter and drank three or four martinis in tiny sips.
I didn't know what his business was, and I didn't care. All I knew was his name:
Colin Hawks, which he had told me himself once with enormous difficulty.
One day he walked into Harry's Bar with his suitcase and asked me, between
various bouts of stammering, how to reach Piazzale Roma by foot. I immediately
volunteered to accompany him and gave him a bit of a guided tour along the way.
A few weeks later, a regular customer burst through the doors waving a copy of
the Daily Mail in his hand and shouting:
"Cipriani, they've written about you!"
In the words of the Daily Mail: "If you go to Venice and care to learn anything about
the city, skip the travel agents and tourist guides and head straight to Harry's Bar.
Ask for Giuseppe Cipriani. He'll greet you with arms opened wide."
The article was signed by Colin Hawks.
What a splendid way the journalist had chosen to thank me for my small favor.