She has been described as an intensely private person — more private, even, than her husband. She has formidable self-possession, certainly, and would, you feel, be hard on any folly or impertinence on the part of an outsider. As our conversation went on, and remained pretty cautious and general, I felt a mild unease growing in Mrs Nabokov - as if she would inevitably have to repulse some grossly personal query ("Mrs Nabokov, did you ever meet the real Lolita ?"). Eventually, she said :
- These questions you will ask. Where are these questions ?
- Well, there were one or two things, I said. Your husband dedicated all his books to you, every one. That's very unusual, isn't it ?
- Is it ? ... What should I answer ? We had a very unusual relationship. But that you knew before you asked. Anything else ?
- Was he - was he great fun ? I asked helplessly. Were there lots of jokes ? Did you laugh a lot ?
- Oh, yes. His humour was delightful. He was delightful, said Mrs Nabokov. But that you knew too.
[Vladimir Nabokov,† le 2 juillet 1977. Hemingway sinon, ou Ubu tout content clic-clic.]