Stealing is of course a crime, yet no Chinese magistrate would dream of punishing a hungry man for simple theft of food, even if such a case were ever brought into court. Cake-sellers keep a sharp eye on their wares; farmers and market-gardeners form associates for mutual protection, and woe to the thief who gets caught his punishment is short and sharp.
From Babylon one can go to Bulak; and on to Bab Zouweleh, with its crying children, its veiled women, its cake-sellers, its fruiterers, its turbaned Ethiopians, its black Nubians, and almost fair Egyptians; one can visit the bazaars, or on a market morning spend an hour at Shareh-el-Gamaleyeh, watching the disdainful camels pass, soft-footed, along the shadowy streets, and the flat-nosed African negroes, with their almost purple-black skins, their bulging eyes, in which yellow lights are caught, and their huge hands with turned-back thumbs, count their gains, or yell their disappointment over a bargain from which they have come out not victors, but vanquished.
After the dense atmosphere of the clothes-market, it is a relief to emerge upon the Boulevart du Temple the noisy, feverish, crowded Boulevart du Temple, with its half dozen theatres, its glare of gas, its cake-sellers, bill-sellers, lemonade-sellers, cabs, cafés, gendarmes, tumblers, grisettes, and pleasure-seekers of both sexes.
She is filling the whole quay with her smell of cakes phew! up with the windows! I accosted a gentleman sitting at my side, and represented forcibly to him the nuisance of having cake-sellers here, cake-sellers there.... Eh? Yes; but he must really admit that.... But the good man smelt a rat, and did not give me time to finish speaking, for he got up and left.