Her dear old friend, Manuela visits on Tuesdays and Thursdays for tea. She is a refined lady, archetype, as well as a housekeeper or as the rich put it "a dust stalker."
One thing the rich share with the poor are "nauseating intestines."
"What is an aristocrat? A women who is never sullied by vulgarity, although she may be surrounded by it."
They talk about little Pallieres boy reading Marx. Politics is not the only thing he is reading.
Monsieur Arthens, food critic, worthy wordsmith, comes to the door requesting her to be on the look out for a package then requests she immediately deliver it to him. He reminds her of Legrandin from Proust's Remembrance of Things Past- Swann's Way. He is described as "one of that class of men who, apart from a scientific career in which they may well have proved brilliantly successful, have acquired an entirely different kind of culture, literary or artistic, of which they make no use in the specialised work of their profession, but by which their conversation profits."
Barbery uses this illusion to strengthen her point.
He is waiting for an incunabulum, for those who don't know, it is a book printed before 1501 in Europe.
She is insulted and slams the door in his face and wonders later which one is more of a fool.
I'm an expert amateur or maybe an amateur expert.