MARRY, COME UP!
OR, WHAT HAVE WE DONE?
He paddled up and down."
WORDSWORTH.AUGUST 24, 1873. - Started at 9 A. M. Meant to start at 4. Companion, - athletic Freshman. Equipment, - old hats, flannel shirts, double-decked boots, six-foot staves, knapsacks (twenty pounds each), one saucepan, and two tin cups. (We had a little brandy, three pints.) Destination, - unknown. Walked twenty miles before dinner. Weather rather debilitating. Took a little brandy. At 12 M. saw pretty girl blowing dinner-horn at door of farm-house. Stopped for dinner. Dinner bad. Girl pleasant. Freshman asked for lock of her hair. Started again at 1.30. Walked twenty miles. Startled female peasant takes us for brigands. Soothed by sight of Freshman's pocket-Bible. Enter a lovely village. Setting sun, lowing herds, etc. Both of us a little tired. People stare. Freshman sings Fair Harvard for a bluff. Prohibitory law. No tavern. Ask aged farmer for night's lodging in his hay-loft. Freshman fool enough not to put out his pipe. Blows smoke in farmer's face. Farmer says "nix"; backed up by bull-dog. Bivouac in pasture. Loaded bushes, complaisant cow. Supper on berries and milk. Heavy dew. One blanket, monopolized by Freshman. More brandy. Midnight attack by enraged bull. Retreat in bad order to opposite side of stone wall. Watch bull gore forty pounds of baggage, assisted by cow. Sleep up a tree. Freshman's bough breaks. Bruised ankle. Brandy instead of arnica.
Aug. 25. - Wake early, but not bright. Drizzling rain. Suggest to Freshman that we take it easy. Freshman acquiesces with ill-concealed delight. Says he has rich uncle (who dotes on him) living three miles ahead. Time to uncle's gate, two hours. Servant won't let us in; has orders to keep out tramps. Freshman implores and raves, but with no avail. Finally sends in pocket-Bible in lieu of card, and is admitted. Uncle cordial; cousins, Sophs at Vassar. Welcome breakfast. Rain increases; have to spend the day. Luncheon. Dinner. Bezique and forfeits in the sitting-room. Rain ceases. Cousins excuse themselves to study Hebrew in the library. Uncle takes us out to see prize swine. Freshman detects latent ring-bone in blue-ribbon hog. Uncle turns pale. Freshman advises daily gallop and a mild blister. Uncle retires to library and adds codicil to his will. More forfeits. Freshman sues prettier cousin for twining tress. Enter uncle.
Aug. 26 - Late breakfast; pangs at parting. Country rolling, possibly mountainous. Shady dell, with gypsy camp. Venerable boss gypsy wants to buy Freshman's watch-chain. Offers his note at three months and a mustang stallion in payment. Negotiations terminated by mustang stallion eating a considerable portion of the chain. Gypsy damsels, varying in age from one hundred and two, to seven, desire to tell our fortunes. Freshman selects prettiest; her opposite fastens on to us. While our particular hag prates about "the dark young woman who is coming across the water," Freshman attempts to teach the pretty Zuleka to smoke a cigarette. Zuleka coy, but asks Freshman for a chew. All waltz. Knapsacks not so heavy as they were. Take greased-lightning express at next village. Find ourselves going the wrong way. Don't care. Arrive home 11.30. Mangled by pet bull-dog. Four hundred and fifty miles in three days, not so bad! Mean to walk to Cuba next summer!
[To be continued.]