I don’t know.
I’ll consult my note-book. Is there a child here choking with a sore throat?
Is there a man here who suddenly went insane from poverty and attacked his wife and two children with a hatchet? Four patients in all, I suppose.
Is there a girl here whose heart stopped beating? Don’t lie, old woman, I think she is here.
Well, I believe you. You seem to speak the truth. Is there a young man here whose head was broken by a stone and who is dying?
Yes. Go through that door on the left, but don’t go any farther. The rats will eat you up!
Very well. They keep ringing, ringing all the time, day and night. Here it is, late at night. All the lights in the street are out, and I am still on the run. Often I make a mistake and enter the wrong house. Yes, old woman, I do. (Exit through the door leading inside)
One doctor has already treated him, but didn’t cure him. Now there’s another, and I guess he won’t cure him either. Well! Then their son will die, and we’ll remain alone in the house. I’ll sit in the kitchen and talk to myself, and they’ll sit in there keeping quiet and thinking. Another room vacated, another room for the rats to scuffle in. Let them squeak and scuffle. It’s all the same to me. It’s all the same to me. You ask me why that bad fellow threw the stone at our young gentleman. I don’t know—how could I know why people want to kill each other? One threw a stone from behind a corner and ran away; the other one fell in a heap and is now dying—that’s all I know. They say that our young gentleman was a fine chap, very brave, and very kind to poor people. I don’t know anything about it—it is all the same to me. Whether they are good or bad, young or old, quick or dead, it is all the same to me. It is all the same to me.
As long as they pay, I’ll stay with them; and when they stop paying, I’ll go to other people to do their housework, and finally I shall stop altogether—when I get old, and my eyesight gets poor, so that I can’t tell salt from sugar. Then they’ll turn me out and say: “Go where you please. We’ll hire another one.” What of it? I’ll go. It’s all the same to me. Here, there, or nowhere, it’s all the same to me. It’s all the same to me.