"We will now bathe," said a voice at the back of my neck. I gave a grunt and went on with my dream. It was a jolly dream, and nobody got up early in it. "We will now bathe," repeated Archie. "Go away," I said distinctly. Archie sat down on my knees and put his damp towel on my face. "When my wife and I took this commodious residence for six weeks," he said, "and engaged the sea at great expense to come up to its doors twice a day, it was on the distinct understanding that our guests should plunge into it punctually at seven o'clock every morning." "Don't be silly, it's about three now. And I wish you'd get off my knees." "It's a quarter-past seven." "Then there you are, we've missed it. Well, we must see what we can do for you to-morrow. Good-night." Archie pulled all the clothes off me and walked with them to the window. "Jove, what a day!" he said. "And can't you smell the sea?" "I can. Let that suffice. I say, what's happened to my blanket? I must have swallowed it in my sleep." "Where's his sponge?" I heard him murmuring to himself as he came away from the window.
Sir Timothy Coghlan (1855-1926) was the statistician for New South Wales from 1886. He produced the world's first example of national financial accounts, and is regarded as Australia's first 'mandarin'. His advice was sought by state and federal governments on matters as diverse as tax, public sanitation and infant mortality. In 1905 he took up an appointment as a New South Wales government agent in London, remaining there for the rest of his life. First published in 1918, this monumental book is Coghlan's very personal history of Australia, embracing materials, population growth, trade and land. It combines his long interest in literature, socio-political issues, statistics and finance with his professional interest in demography and fiscal policy. It offers an authoritative and balanced view of both the specific events and general developments in which he was intimately involved.
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