The Vagabond has reason to regret many of the grand old customs that have departed, but there are few which bring more sickness to the heart than the passing of Mead. Life today has become an eternal procession of gin bottles and whiskey sours. The decanter has been swept from the side board and the flagon from the wine closet. Men no longer love the good things, they follow after the bitter.
If the world must drink, and it is becoming apparent that it must, the Vagabond would have them drink a rarer vintage than that washed up on Portsmouth beach, the solitary epitaph of a rum runner. Mead was the drink of the gods upon Olympus long years ago; if it is good enough for them it is good enough for Harvard. In the far off days when Romans were like brothers Mead ran like water. Pliny has passed on to us the doubtful praise that "it had all the bad qualities of wine and none of the good"; but the Vagabond has always believed this an error in translation. And in Biblical times there were the laws of the Medes and Persians.
The Vagabond, hearkening to the past, set about his brewing. The honey stuck up the kitchen a good deal, and the bruised ginger root gave off an aroma that corroborated the statement of the Latin ponies. And there was another difficulty, the directions said to boil the concoction for a half hour stirring the while. The Vagabond had conjured up lovely visions of leaning over a gurgling caldron, much as Merlin might have done. But as the minutes passed failure dwelt hard upon their tracks. No while arose.