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WATERBURY EVENING DEMOCRAT, FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 20. 1908.
ILady Across the Water By CN. 6A.M, WILLIAMSON Cmpyrijkl. 1906. hy MeClmr. . Tblllln "3X C. I couldn't think what either of tbem meant, though at Drat I was afraid niy man intended the other to understand that the live minutes would be devoted to knocking him down, or something else violent, as a punishment for Im pertinence to a defenseless foreigner. But my mind was almost Instantly re lieved, for the two men walked oil to gether quite amicably and stood talk ing at a distance, A- moment later one of my boxes went by, looking very fat and friendly, on the shoulders of a porter who ap parently had no head. I rushed out end seized lt-not the bead, but the li t; so there was something encour K Ing, but I had two pieces of luggage wait for still. , dost of the other "B's" were more tunate about getting their things; vertbeless they seemed far from ay in their minds, and, though they wotested almost tearfully that they'd nj thing whatever to declare, stern per ns la uniform stirred up their boxes as I used to do with the nursery pud ding when all the plums had sunk to the bottom. I was very tired and very hot, hotter than I'd supposed people could be, ex cept In a Turkish bath, and I was be ginning to be hungry, too, for I'd lunch ed principally off the statue of Liber ty and skyscrapers, which were more tilling than lasting as a meal. I fanned myself with my handker chief as well as I could and felt sure I was slowly getting appendicitis, be cause whenever Americans feel uncom fortable in any way it seems almost certain to turn eventually into that, probably on account of the climate. Would my other boxes never come? I thought. Most of the "B's" were going home. They had homes, lucky people, and if they liked they could presently have tea. World without tea. Ah me! When I was small and my nurse talked on Sundays about heaven and hell, making the one sound Incredibly dull, the other incredibly painful, I used to think that I'd rather go to neither, but Just be stuffed, like moth er's Blenheim, Beau Brummel, whose soul I fancied had leave to stop in his body so long as moth and rust did not corrupt. ; He seemed rather out of things, though, poor dear, standing for ever In the same position in a glass case, with one paw up begging for something which nobody gave, while the years dragged on, and I'd begun to feel as If I were falling Into his state when I was roused from a stupid dream by the man of the steerage sud denly looming over me. "I beg your pardon," said he, taking eff his hat and 'speaking in a nice American voice, aa nice for a mas as Bally Woodburn's is for a woman. "Please don't suppose I mean to be hide or Intrusive, but I wanted to ten rou that I think you won't be annoyed igatn, and just one thing more. May I thank you for your goodness on ship yard? It brightened what would therwlse have been a grim ezperl mce." ' Blind Mrs. Ess Kay to pronounce this man not a gentleman Just because mme strange circumstances had forced aim to travel lh the steerage! I did wish that, without his knowing It, I rould nave slipped Into his pocket my BO. "Oh, I did nothing.- I answered. "It was the other people who did every thing the little that was done. It's who have to thank you for taking that person away. He and the other who came Just before were so rude." "They didn't mean to be rude," he aid. "They wanted you to tell them something which they could put Into their papers, and tbey live by doing that kind of thing. I did the best I rould with them, but I wish I could lave saved you from being annoyed In the beginning. I hesitated at first (or fear you might misunderstand and think me as bad as they were, but I ish I hadnt now." "After what I saw you do at sea I wuhln't possibly have misunderstood,' t said. "Thank you for saying that," he re turned, "though for what I did then don't deserve any praise. It was lone on the Impulse, and I'm uaed to alt water. As a child I lived close It for a time In California and swim ming came almost as natural as walk ing. But I'm not here to talk about myself.. It was only to tell you how grateful I was and am and shall con tinue to be for your kindness on the ihip. I couldn't go wltbont speaking f this, and there's something now I'd Uke to ask, Ton won't be offended?' "If it's something you want to tell tie. I know it Isn't the sort of thing which could offend," I said, but I Jldn't say It as calmly as It looks when written. I stammered a little ind got the words tangled hp, and I felt my face growing hotter then ever. "I thank yon again. It's only this. If, while you're over on this side the water, there's ever any way In which t man a man who'd be as respectful as your footman, and loyal as your , friend could possibly serve you, I wish you would let me be that man. I know It seems now aa.if snch a thing couldn't happen, but. nothing's quite Impossible In this qneer world, and ' and anyhow I shall always be ready. You could trust me" ' "I know that!" I conldn't resist breaking in. - 'Tm-mpIoyed for the present at a elub In New York. If you'd send word to Jim Brett at the Manhattan club, there's nothing under the sun that Jim Brett wouldn't do for yon, from find ing a lost dog to taking a message across the world." ' . "first !nst eatch my Aug before I etty can lose him," 1 answered, laughing. "But if I do, or-or there's anything else, I shan't forget." "That's a true promise, then, and I have to thank you for the third time. Now, I'm not going to trouble you any longer. Goodby." Without stopping to think who he was, or who I was, I held out . my band, aud his good looking brown face grew red. , He took the hnnd, pressed it hard once, dropped - it abruptly, turned on his heel and walked away without looking back. . I was so Interested In g;-ng over the conversation in my mind that I forgot to feel like Beau Brummel with one paw up In his glass case, nud though I dare say ten minutes had passed, It hardly seemed two, when a wonderful little black Image In the shape of a boy came sidling up to me, all rolling white eyes and red grin, like a nice New- foundland puppy. He had some news papers tucked under his arm, but In his hand was a small basket of peaches almost too beautiful to be real. But then, weren't they and wasn't be part of my dream? He grinned so much more that I was afraid his round black face would break Into two separate halves,' and looking at me with his woolly head on one side, he thrust out the basket "Fur you, missy," said he, with a funny little accent, for all the world like Sally Woodburn's. "They can't be for me. There nlust bo a mistake," said I, wishing there wasn't, for the peaches did look de-. Ilcious, and there were two rosebuds lying on top of the basket, one pink, the other white. "I don't know any one who could have sent them." "The gent knows you, you bet, missy," replied the image. "He guv me a quarter and axed if I know'd my alphabet 'nuf to find letter 'B' an' tote dese yere to the prettiest young lady I'd ever seed. Most wite ladies dey looks all jes'- alike to me, but you's different, missy, an I reckon de tings must be fur you." i I had a horrible vision of this com pliment proceeding from the Flash light or the Evening Bat "What was the gentleman like?" I asked. ' "Like 'mos' any gent, missy, .'cept that he was powerful tall, an' I reckon if be keeps right on like he's doin' now be 11 get mos as Drown as me some day." t Then I knew that I was safe in tak ing the present, so I did and gave the comical black Image two'or three lit tle round white metal things I'd got from the purser when I changed some English money., . I didn't . know., bow much they were, and they looked ridic ulously small, but he seemed pleased. When he had run off I turned my at tention to the peaches. They were so big that there was room only for four in. the basket, and they seemed dreadfully pathetic considering from whom they had come. . That poor fellow must be almost penniless.or he wouldn't have been in the steerage, yet he had bought peaches for me and given a "quarter"'-what-rrtr that was to his quaint black doll f a messenger. I could have cried., S'evertbeless I ate two of the peaches ind reluctantly presented the other :wo, which I couldn't possibly eat, to i gloomy "B" child sitting on a shawl itrap. As If for a reward of virtue, Just as had disposed of my leavings aud tuck the roses into my belt, the last f the luggage arrived.'- There were two custom bouse men nenr to choose from, and, as I've heard, in choosing Mtween two evils it's better to choose the less, I smiled beseechingly at the imaller man, who bad Just crammed 1 pile of lace blouses into the box of a tody with nervous prostration. Whether be was sated with cruelty, r whether he was naturally of an an gelic disposition, I shall probably never know now, but the fact remains that Instead of turning out the tieud I'd been led to expect, he was one of the most considerate men I've ever met. He wouldn't even let me unlock my own boxes, but took the keys and opened them for me himself. (Didn't an ex- scutloner braid the hair of some queen whose bead be was going to chop off? t must look the incident up when I have time.) Anyway, I thought of it when the custom bouse man was being to polite, but the analogy didn't go niy farther, for my head never came off at oil, nd two of the boxes re mained unopened. "You're English, aren't you?" he isked, and when I said yes, and that ( was only on a short visit, he treated my belongings as if they were sacred. If be disturbed anything, be laid it back nicely, keeping up a running con versation as he went on. I told him that English women might bring home all tho pretty clothes they liked from other conntrias, and that I con sidered It most uugallant in such a chivalrous nation as America to deny ladies a few Paris dresses. "Do you happen to know, miss, what's the Income tax in your coun try T' he asked, tenderly putting back some yellow hairpins which had fallen out of a box of mine. "Dear me, no." I exclaimed. "But I think It's sometimes more than a shill ing In the pound. I've heard my brother say so. and as for the -death duties. It's more than your life's worth to die." "A-ahr said the nice man. "Wa haven't got any Income tax on this aide, and folks can die In peace when ever they please, fgiiess that kind of evens things up, don't It?" I didn't knew what to answer, so 1 thanked him for his kindness, and we parted the best of friends. Mrs. Ess Ksy appeared so quickly afterward that It almost seemed as It the must have been lying tn wait. Bbe was looking pale and shattered, and Louise, following close behind, was positively haggard. Only Bully bad weathered the storm without being outwardly the worse for woar, but veu she didn't took as good natured is usual. ' . . "How have you got along, you poor, deserted darling?" affectionately In- A little black image in Vie shape of a ' . boy. quired Mrs. Ess Kay, undismayed 'by a fixed gaze from Sally, which appar ently signified reproach. "It wasn't very bad, and I've Quite enjoyed myself," I replied, forgetting some tedious moments tn the light of others not tedious and hoping that the roses in my belt might pass unnoticed. Fortunately they did. otherwise I should have been In a difficulty, for I Bhould have hated to vulgarize the lit tlo episode by putting it into story form for Mrs. Ess Kay. and presum ably roses have not been taught to grow wild on the New York docks, al though .they say Americans are so very luxurious in their tastes one would hardly be surprised at anything. A beautiful electric carriage, bigger than a brougham, was waiting for ns, and we left Louise, with a butler or some other manservant out of livery, to wrestle with the luggage and bring It In cabs (which they called "hacks") up to Mrs. Ess Kay's house in New York, where I knew she meant to stop for a few days before going1 on to New port. The minute we drove away from the docks I began to notice dozens of things which made me tremendously conscious that I was in a foreign coun try. One would think, as so many of these people were English, or, anyway. British, before they were Americans that their buildings and everything' else would be enough like to reminds one of borne. But each street we turned into showed uie that this Isn't at all true In New York. There are bits like Taris at least you think so on a su perficial glance but nothing lu the faintest degree like London. Something In the air,, too, made me feel excited, as it does la Paris. Spai". 3 of electricity snapped in my veins, and I had a presentiment of Interesting things that must surely happen. I've always been very sensitive to smells, which can make me Joyful or miserable, Just as music does. Vic says I oughtn't to tell people this, as it signifies I'm still in close touch with brute creation. But I don't much mind If I am, for so many animals are nicer than we are dogs and horses, for Instance; and then one has to ncknowl-, lge, whether one likes or not, thnt a monkey Is a kind of poor relation. Each, place I've ever visited has Jts own smell for me and even houses and people. I would know the smell' of Battlcmead Towers, if I were taken there by winding ways, with my eyes blindfolded, it's the smell of old oak and potpourri, aud books and chintz, and autumn leaves and pine trees, mixed together. Mother smells like a tea rose aud Vic like a wax dull. London has a rich, heavy scent, which makes you feel as If you bad a great deal of money and wanted to spend It, but not in a hurry. The smell of Paris makes you want to laugh and clup your hands and go to the theater. The smell of Borne mukes you feel as if you wished to be very beautiful and move to the slow accompaniment of a maguifleent church organ, with the vox humana stop drawn out. But New York the smell of New York! How shall I describe the sensation It gave me, as Mrs. Ess Kay's electric carriage smoothly spun me up town? The heavy feeling of homesickness which I bad had on the ship for the last few days was gone, aud instead I felt a wild sense of exhilaration, as If I'd come dashing home after a glori ous run with the hounds and plunged into, a cold bath with two bottles of" eau de cologne poured into the water. It was amazingly hot, but the breeze gave a bint of the sea, and every shop and house we passed seemed to keep spices stored away, for the breeze to blow over. Eveu the old fashioned houses, no higher thau those In. London, were as different from ours as possible, and it was extraordinary to see people nicely dressed women and pretty girls perch ed on the front steps under awnings without so mnch as a pocket bandker chief lawn between tbem and the street. Persons of that class at home would be far too shy to lounge about and be stared at not only by the neigh bora, bnt by twenty strangers a mln Ote, yet here they sat on nigs and read or did embroidery or swung back and forth In chairs that rocked like cradles, paying no-more attention to the passers than if they bad been files. By and by we came out of the quiet streets walled lu with - monotonous rows of red brick or brown stous houses Into a scene of terror. It was a street, too, but what a street! I thought that I'd grown accustomed to motor ing: through traffic, for once Stan took me in Ms car all the way from Battle mead to Pall. Mall, where be stood me a very Jolly luncheon at the Carlton hotel,' bnt that experience was nothing to this. I felt a little Jumpy with Stan if Men's Suits In all the latest shades, Stone Smoke, Brown and Black, up to date in every particular. LOWEST PRICES. 53 and 55 Center Street, ' ' Waterbury, Conn. when we shot between "omnibuses in a space which looked twice too narrow, and once when I thought a frightfully tall horse was goins to bite off my hat, but I soon got used to it If I were driven every day of my life for a year through this terrible street lu New York, though, I should be no more used to it on the last day than. on the first. The only change in me at the end of that time would be in my hair, which would have turned snow white and be standing up permanently all over my head like Strumpel-Peter's, only worse. London roars, a monotonous, canuon- balls-in-the-cellar roar, with Just a light tinkle of bansom cabs sprinkled over the top of the uolid sound, but that great straight Blreet luto which we suddenly flushed had no solid sound. It shrieked lu short, sharp yells, made up of a dozen distinct noises, each one louder and more insistent than the other. ' There were trams and tram bells and motors aud carriages and over all an appalling thunder , of trains rush ing to and fro above our heads on lines roofing the entire street built upon Iron stilts. Every minute they swoop ed by, running north and south, and I trembled lest they should leap their tracks and crush us into powder. 'It's only the clevnted, deah," said Sally, pitying my agitation, "and It's never fallen down yet, so I don t be lieve it will today. You shall take a ride with me if Cousin Katherlne will let you, which she probably won't You can't think what fun It Is shoot ing past the wlndowa of the houses; Just like glancing into an exciting story book you know you'U never have a chance to finish. You do get a peep Into tragedies aud comedies some times." "Mr aoodness:" I exclaimed. "I'm thankful I don't have to live in one of j those houses. It must be impossible ever to take a bath or to get engaged properly." Fortunately for my iaoe of mind we didn't stop very long in that fierce street, but cut across again aud came out in Fifth avenue, of which one seems to be born knowing a little more than of other streets in America. Just as almost every one in English novels lives tn Park lane, so all the New Yorkers you read of live In Fifth avenue, aud 1 should have been dis appointed if Mrs. Ess Ksy hadn't, be cause lu that case I should eventually have to go home without studying home life in the States from the right standpoint. . To B Continued. Worm you" imeas eat f towa of the 4ola le Waterbury Tit tending theas lh lwmocrat: S.1 yer, 42 ceatt nwsta. Men's Overcoats $15, $18, $25 We especially want you to see our coats at these prices. You will then agree with us that there isn't another collection to be com pared with ours. There is such a great variety of styles, and so many new effects, all practical and the prices reasonable, that we are bound to satisfy you. All on credit, $1.00 a week. 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