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I've been rereading Janet Flanners "Paris was Yesterday," which is a series of letters (or columns) written by Janet Flanner between 1925 and 1939 that were originally published in The New Yorker. And one entry caught my eye. It was about Henry Lehr, who had been a very famous member of New York society, and who had spent his last twenty years or so in Paris. He went out every day for a drive in the park, he ate lunch at the Ritz, and he was an amusing and gracious gentleman.

The time came when, due to expenses and so on, it was determined that he could no longer afford to lunch at the Ritz. Someone was delegated to go to the Ritz and explain to the maitre d' that Mr. Lehr would no longer require his regular table.

This was the response. "Mr. Lehr will continue to be, as he has always been, welcome at the Ritz, where I shall be honored, in the future, if he would consider himself as my guest. Please inform Mr. Lehr that his favorite table by the window will be reserved for him tomorrow, as usual."

Lehr died not too long after this. But what a gentle and generous gift he was given.

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