Dick and I, Chapter 6, 19th Century Unpublished Book by S. B. McKenney

Dick and I

Dick and I by Samuel Bartow McKenney

This manuscript was written before 1881 by Samuel Bartow McKenney. In the transcription I’ve not changed spellings or punctuation unless I absolutely must for coherence. There were no periods in the manuscript and I have added those. My thanks to Allan McKenney for sending this along.

Chapter VI

No breath of air to make the wave
The Giaour

“The sky’s changed! And such a change! oh night
storm and darkness ye are wonderous strong”

Childe Harole

By Helle’s stream there is a voice of wail
womans eyes wet – Mans check is (frate?)

Bride of Abydos

The next wednesday morning dawned bright and glorious and just as
the sunbeams were first kissing the rippling waters of the lake
Rashboy and I hoisted the sail on the “Waterwitch” and started on
our way to E —-. There was a fresh cool breeze blowing from the
eastward and my little yacht went rippling and sizzing through the
water with a speed that promised to soon bring us to the village.
I know of no exercise that creates within me such a feeling of
exultation and pleasure as that of rapid sailing my little craft
which I had of cleped the water which was one that I had purchased
that summer and although it was not intended to carry over six
persons she was one of the fastest sailers on the lake.

Mr Blanchard had requested us to join them in an excursion that
was going up the lake to Crane Island a distance of about twelve
miles on that day and we were then on our way to E—– for the
purpose of taking him and family up in our boat.

“By the way, Dick, I suppose your old friend the parson will be
one of the party today.”

“lndeed! I was not aware that he cared for such frivolus company
as will be likely to for the excursion today.”

“Oh there will be some solid ones among the giddy throng. Mr
Phineas Smythe will probably be of the party.”

“Mr Nathan has as little relish for Smythes twaddle as you or I
Con. Indeed he is no fool. His mind is really a strong and powerful
one. The trouble is that it is chained and dwarfed by prejudice
and the stubborn dogmas of his creed that it has not room to’
expand and flourish as it might otherwise have done. It is a great

– 30 –

pity that such a noble intelect should have been so preverted. The
Catholics are right when they claim that the pripcipals instilled
into the mind in youth have a fermer hold than any that are
incalcated afterward.

“It is very apt to be the case,” I replied, “yet there are
exceptions. You yourself Dick I believe were educated as a
Methodist.”

“Very true Etheridge. I do not speak of individual cases but of
mankind in general. For instance the children raised in Arabia are
Mohamidens. Those in China grew up deciples of Confucias while
those of this country and Europe are princepally Christians. Had
Mr Nathan been born and raised in India he would doubtless have
been as zealous a supporter of the Bagave.Geeta as he now is of
the bible.”

“By the way Dick, what do you think of Mr Alvan Adams?”

“I do not like him Con. There is something about him very repelling
to me and because I do not like him I had rather not express an
opinion concerning him.”

“I will tell you Dick who then is in E —- that I do like.”

“Really,” replied he smiling, “I do not think it would be difficult
to guess.”

“I am speaking of friendship Dick.”

“Well who is it Con that you have concieved such a sudden
friendship for?”

“Mrs Charity McDonald,” I replied.

“I quite agree with you Etheridge,” he replied seriously. “I think
she is a nice old land and one that posses a really good heart
would that there were more like her.”

“Well here we are,” I exclaimed as we approached the villae.

“Please stand by the halyards Dick. Now – lower away Let her
drift in under the jib all right — thank you.”

Some of the excursionists were were already on the wharf when we
reached there and were engaged in stowing away baskets of
provisions fishing rods fowling pieces shawls and all the phara-
phenlia of the expedition into a neat little schooner -. () cleped the
Black Crook that lay mowered along side of the pier Ladies and
gentlemen were standing in little groups and chatting and laughing
and were apparently in the best of spirits at the prospect of
pleasure which the day promised to afford. All were attired in
neat and tasteful costumes suitable for the day and the occasion.
If except one perhaps whom I distinguished from the others by
the brilliancy of his plumage. He was a slight and slender young
man about two and twenty with light flaxen hair and side whiskers
whose small light blue eyes squinted at you through a pair of gold
rimmed eye glasses that were secured by a pink ribbon to the
button hole of a bright blue clost cvat of very fine texture. His
nether limbs were encased in a pair of very light button down
colonial pantaloons. A vest of purple velvet was adorned by a very

– 31 –

flashy gold watch chain to which were attached several seals
of considerable size. A very red necktie gleamed above an
immaculate shirt front that was adorned by three green turtles
about the size of a quarter of a dollar each said turtles being
made of vegetable ivory and used for shirt studs. This individual
slipped forward raised a very fine plus two with a hand on which
gleamed an exceedingly large seal ring and accusted us.

“Aw —really—good mawnin.”

“Good morning Mr Smythe,” I replied for it was he. “We have a fine
morning for our excursion.”

“Delightful –and Mr Etheridge pawdon me but when did you hiah
that supurb boat?”

“lt is not a hire one Mr Smythe. It is mine. May I ask what lady
you intend to make happy for the day by taking her under your
special care and protection?”

“Aw thank you–Miss Blanchard I believe.”

“The Devil!” I exclaimed.

“No rather an angel” said Dick laughing, “but,” he continued
turning to Smythe, “which one of the Misses Blanchard have you
selected.”

“Aw Miss Hope Blanchard of course.”

“0h!—Certainly Miss Hope of course. Mr Smythe will you and Miss
Blanchard honor us with your company in the Water witch.”

“Be delighted Im suah — Aw thank you Mr Etheridge but.” and he
stopped short. “is she safe?”

“Perfectly.”

“Aw.” And Mr Smyth started up to the hotel.

“Con,” said Dick taking me aside, “go up and get your lady and let
us be off while the breeze lasts.”

“But Dick – I thought-”

“Huh! Never mind what you thought. You were mistaken but make haste.
See. The others are embarking.”

“I walked up to the hotel and found the rector and his daughter, Mr
Blanchard and his daughters, Mrs Whipple, Mrs McDonald, and Smyth in
the parlor ready to start. As soon as I entered little Bertie came
running up to me.”

“Wheres Uncle Dick at?”

“At the pier,” I answered smiling at the eagerness of her question.

“Oh I’se so glad,” said she clapping her little dimpled hands and
the next moment she darted out of the open door and ran down to
the shore.

– 32 –

“Well I dew declare,” said Mrs Whipple with a sniff but what she
was intending to disclose I did not hear nor care for at that
moment I was listening to a voice that had more interest in it for
me than Gabriels trumpet would have had.

We all returned to the pier and found that Mr Adams had arrived
during my absence with a yacht from W —- somewhat lower than mine.

“Mr Blanchard will you accept a seat in my little craft?”

“Thank you Mr Etheridge. I am really sorry that my poor health will
not permit me to accept your offer. I shall be obliged to go in
the schooner where I can lie down when I am wearied,” he added
turning to a gentleman who stood near. “You will be kind enough to
give me passage Mr Fay?”

“Certainly Sir,” replied Fay. “We will try and make you as
comfortable as possible.”

It was arranged that Hope who had excused herself from Smythe
should go in the schooner and take care of her fathers comfort who
was still an invalid while Inez and Bertie should go with me in
the Water Witch. Indeed the latter small personage had very
complacently esconsed herself beside Dick at the tiller and
absolutely refused to be coaxed away.

There were five passengers in my boat besides Dick and I. Mrs
McDonald, Viva, Joyce, Inez, Bertie, and Mr Smythe.
Adams’ yacht the Lady of the Lake was already started and contained
besides Adams, Miss Mayer, Irene, Nathan, Emily, Burriette, and Harry
Barton.

At length when all were ready on board the Water Witch we cut
loose from the pier and started after the other two boats who
about a furlong ahead of us. The wind was light and baffling
coming in little puffs and flaws no two seeming to come from
same direction. After half an hour however a light but steady
breeze sprung up from the northeast. It struck the other two
vessils some little time before it reached us as they were in the
advance and we were staying to the southward and the distance
between us was rather increased than desired by the time we
reached Hulls Creek distant about ten miles form E—. This we
found was a narrow deep creek about half a mile in length, which
connects the upper lakes with the lower. There was no current
scarcely yet it was so narrow and crooked that we found it very
tedious ascending it. Rashboy had the tiller and I saw by the way
he handled the boat that he was an experienced sailor.

While we were working our way up through the serpentine windings
of the stream the breeze freshend and by the time we came out in
the open lake above we had stiff breeze blowing. Our course now
lay west by northwest so that we had the wind partialy on the
quarter, the other two vessels were plowing merrily along and
although we had gained on them coming up the creek, the increased
breeze had carried them a quarter of a mile ahead of us by the
time we got in the open lake. They were waving us signaling us
goodbye and their voices and laughter could be faintly heard
coming over the water.

– 33 –

“Aw – I feah we will be left dont you think so Miss Vi – Oh!” This
last exclamation was caused by the boat having rounded a small
wooded headland at the mouth of the creek which had heretofore
screened us from the breeze. The sails filled suddenly the vessel
carrened over on one side and parcepetated Smythe to leeward with
a crash.

“Windward All!” exclaimed Rashboy.

We changed our seats to the windward side and the little water witch went
sailing through the water dashing the waves and spray from her sharp prow
and leaving a track of foam and bubbles on the long swells over
which we had passed.

“We will soon overtake them at this rate,”said Inez.

“I think we will reach there as soon as they will.” I
replied wrapping a shawl round her shoulders to protect her from
the spray. “If they do not make more sail.”

“Oh! I hope we will beat them,” exclaimed Viva Joyce. “I never
could endure to have that Adam sneer at us I’d wither on the
spot.”

“Aw — really,” exclaimed Smythe as about a hat full of spray
struck him in the face.

“You had better wrap a shawl round you Mr Smythe or you will take
your death of cold,” said Mrs McDonald handing him her shawl. “It
is old and faded but it will keep you from getting wet.”

Smythe wrapped the shawl around his shoulders and as his silk hat
was nearly spoiled by the spray he sat it in the fore locker and
tied a red silk handkerchief around his head.

When we passed Lithcoe’s Point we were up with the other two boats
Adam‘s vessel being on our right and a little ahead of the
schooner on our left. As we drew a little ahead of them the
schooner ran up her gaff topsails and Adams hoisted another jib on
the Lady of the Lake. Under the increased canvass the two vessels
began to gain slowly on us and finally passed us with shouts and
cheers and even Mr Blanchard and the pastor raised their voices to
the others in a long cheer as they drew ahead of us. We carried no
topsail and our misen sail had a small reef in it. I glanced at
Rashboy his face was flushed but he shook his head slightly in
answer to my unspoken question which he read in my face as to
whether we should make more sail.

“Mr Etheridge make mor sale please,” exclaimed Viva who had risen.

“Yes please do,” said Inez.

“Mr Rashboy is sailing master ladies You must appeal to him,” I
replied and then continued in a low tone to my companion. “My
little vessel carries too precious a cargo to admit of me
incurring any risks whatever.”

“Yes,” she replied. “Each one on board is precious to some one.”

“To whom is my life and I precious,” I asked.

“To your parents.”

“Alas I have none.”

“To your brothers and sisters.”

“They too are all dead.”

– 34 –

“Then to your friends.”

“There is the only one I have on earth,” I replied pointing to
Rashboy, “and I have only known him two weeks.”

“I have often heard it remarked that those who have no friends
have no one to blame for the lack but themselves.”

I made no answer and so I ( —- ) at this is the light in which I
am regarded. Because I have no friends she considers, is because I
do not deserve any ( —- —- ). I hope she may never know what it
is to feel as I have felt, to be surrounded by scens who were loud
in their protestations of friendship but who all vanished at the
first breath of advirsity and this dark eyed beauty by my side is
doubtless one of the same kind with the exception that she never
even profered friendship for me and I have been born idiot enough
to imagine at times that she loved me.

“Mr Rashboy can’t we put on more sail,” said Viva. “I do so want
our boat to beat.”

“I think we had better not try to carry any more sail while the
breeze remains so strong,” he replied.

“Let us put it to vote,” exclaimed Viva who had a yankees panchant
for every thing being carried vox populi. “I move,” she continued
rising with mock gravity and steading herself by the shrouds,
“that Mr Rashboy, sailing master of the water Witch be
respectfully requested to make more sail in order that we may
overtake the Philistines.”

“I second the motion,” said Inez smiling, “although my father and
sister are classed among the Philistines.”,

“I beg pardon I was thinking of Adams when I spoke of the
Philistines. I will accept of the amendment and say the Philistine
Ladies and Gentlemen,” she continued rising her voice. “It is moved
and seconded that Captain Rashboy be respectfully requested to
crowd on more sail in order that we may overhaul the Philistine
all that wish the motion to prevail please say Ay.”

Inez, Mrs McDonald, Viva and Smythe voted ay.

“Contrary minded say No.”

“No,” I replied.

Rashboy did not vote.

“Carried,” she exclaimed triumphantly. “Now Mr Rashboy you
gallantry will not allow you to refuse the unanumous request of
your lady passengers.”

“Is Smythe included in the list,” I asked.

“I – aw – I always like to be included with the ladies,” said that
gentleman answering for himself and ducking his head, which was
still ornamented with the red silk hankerchief, in acknowledgment
to Miss Joyce.

“I am sorry to refuse your request,” said Dick seriously, “but it is
unsafe for us to carry more sail. The wind is increasing and

– 35 –

should it continue to do so we will be obliged to take in some
soon.”

Viva, face flushed and an angry sparkle appeared in her eyes as
she replied, “I did not think you so unkind Mr Rashboy. lf there is
danger we take the risk upon our own shoulders unless,” she added
“you have some apprehensions for yourself.”

“There would be no kindness,” he replied quietly, “in subjecting you
to danger even though you were generous enough to wish to
exonerate me from blame. Should anything happen I should be to
blame just the same not withstanding your kind offer and I could
never forgive myself.”

“Mr Rashboy is more cautious than I thought him,” said Inez laying
a strong emphasis on the word.

“Indeed you wrong him,” I replied, “when no others are concerned but
himself he is brave even to recklessness.”

“Pray do not seek to excuse your timidity by a show of solicitude
for us,” said Viva Joyce. “We are not children and are able to
judge for ourselves.”

In her excitement she had sprang to her feet and stood on the lee
side of the vessel confronting Rashboy. A large wave struck the
boat causing it to give a sudden lurch. There was a horror
stricken scream a heavy plunge and the next moment Viva Joyce was
struggling amid the foaming seething water of the lake.

“Take the helm Con,” said Dick, “and the next instant he leaped over the
side of the vessel into the lake.”

Little Bertie uttered one wild scream after and I verily believe
would have sprung overboard after Rashboy had 1 not held her
forcibly. The passingers in their excitement all made a rush to
leeward to look after Dick and Viva and it baw by the merest
possible chance that I prevented the little vessel from capsizing
by throwing her head suddenly in the wind.

“Take your seats and keep them,” I called out calmly and somewhat
sternly. “I can do nothing to save our friends so long as you
oblige me to do my utmost to keep us out of the lake. Mr
Smythe,” I added to that gentleman who stood swaying about ahold of
the lee stays white with terror. “If you do not sit down I shall
be compelled to pitch you into the lake.” He let go his hold and
fell sprawling in the bottom of the boat.

l put the vessel about and beat back into the wind after Viva and
Dick. I could only get an occasional glimpse of them as they rose
on the top of some mammoth wave when they could be seen for an
instant only. I finally lost sight of them altogether and with a
heart heavy as lead was about to give them up in despair when I
saw them only a few fathoms off and dead ahead of the boat. Never
in my life had I felt a keener thrill of joy at my heart than that
brief glimps of my friend afforded me with all my strength I
brought the helm hard alee and brought the boats head up in the
wind. She came running with a graceful curve and brought us along
side of our friends.

“Well done Con,” exclaimed Dick with a smile, “throw me the end of

– 36 –

the mainsheet.”

He gave the sheet a dexterous turn round Miss Viva Joyces waist
and we hoisted her in while Dick clambered up himself a moment
afterward.

Viva was unconscious more through fright than aught else for her
clothing had boyed her up until Dick had reached her.

“Take charge of her Con. You are a doctor and give me the tiller.
I am not in a condition to crowd round among ladies.” said he
(exfeing?) his dripping garments ruefully. He seated himself at
the tiller and the next moment a pair of dimpled arms were around
his neck and a little voice trembling with emotion piped out, “Oh
Uncle Dick I’s mighty glad you didn’t geg dwonded aint you.”

“Yes if you are darling but you must not sit against my wet
clothes you will get wet and it will make you sick.”

“Will it make you sick too to be wet Uncle Dick?”

“I guess not pet I am old and tough.”

When I turned to Viva I found she had recovered her consciousness
but was shivering badly from the combined effect of her cold bath
and the nervous excitment it had produced. Having no better remedy
present I gave her a swallow of brandy.

“Uh you horid man! I am a good Templar and that was some sort of
liquor. They will turn me out of lodge sure!”

“I cant help it and unless that shivering ceases soon I shall be
obliged to give you another dram.”

She looked at me in dismay. “You are excusable Miss Joyce,” said
dick smiling. “Mr Etheridge is a physician and you are justifiable
in taking whatever he prescribes.”

She turned suddenly toward the speaker and regarded him for a
moment her lips quivered and her eyes filled with tears and the
next instant the impulsive creature glided forward and caught his
hand in both of hers and said with a voice trembling with emotion,
“Mr Rashboy if my worthless life is worth thanking you for until
my dying day l shall never forget your bravery nor your kindness
in risking so much to save a worthless girl and that too just
after I —–Oh Mr Rashboy please do not remember my unkind words
against me. I would give anything to recall them.”

“Do not distress yourself little friend,” said dick kindly, “with
any such foolish fancies. My rememberance of you will always be
one of one good tru hearted little lady. Impulsive perhaps a
little hasty at times never willfully unkind. And now allow Mrs
McDonald to wrap that shawl that I see she has confured forth from
some hidden receptacle, around you and keep you out of the wind
until we reach the Island which will be in a few minutes.”

Not withstanding the short delay caused by our mishap we reached
Crane Island but a few minutes after the other two vessels. A fire
was kindled immediately at which our friends dried themselves
while the others bussied themselves in preparing dinner. We had

– 37-

run under the lee of a small point and moured our boats where the
water was perfectly calm. Mr Nathan, Mr Blanchard and Harry
Barton prepared their fishing tackle and soon forgot every thing
else in the pleasure they experienced in pulling in the fine bass
and pickerel that are so plentiful. Then Fay, Adams and Smythe
assisted the ladies in preparing dinner and many a merry peal of
laughter resounded through the old woods at their blunders. Some
frying pans and coffee kettles had been brought along for the
purpose of frying fish and making coffee and while the others were
busy I took a light fowling piece and started off for a look at
the island. In area it did not contain more than seven or eight
acres and except the lowland at the base of the point where we
were camped it consisted of a table land perfect level on top and
elevated about twenty feet above the level of the lake. It was
covered with a growth of remarkably large and tall elms in which
hundreds of herons (called these blue cranes) came regularly every
summer to hatch and rear their young. There was no underbrush nor
small timber but in many places there was a dense growth of wild
touch-me-not or pale jewel weed (Impatiens Palida) which often
attained a height of seven and eight feet. The soil was remarkable
rich, the guano of the herons having accumulated there for
thousands of years. The island was surrounded on all sides, save
the small stretch of beach where our boats lay moored, by a rocky
coast; the rocks being large round boulders against which the
waves were thundering with a dull roar on the windward side of the
island. I shot a partridge that was strutting along through the
yellow leaved sarsaparilla, but had I known that a chorus of
discordant cries and unearthly squalls my shot would have raised I
think I should have let the partridge strut unmolested to its
hearts content. Hundreds of herons came down from the tree tops as
if to see what was disturbing the peace in their domain. A score
or more allighted in a circle around me while others kept circling
about my head and all stretched out their long necks and joined in
uttering such a series of hidious discordant screams as if bent on
driving me from the spot by their unearthly clammer. If such was
their design it succeeded for I hurridely slung my gun over my
back thrust my fingers into my ears and went tearing off through
the tangled beds of touch-me-nots without even waiting to pick up
my partridge. They followed me for some distance but fineally,
with an infernal screech of victory, gave up the chase. They
should be heard to be rightelly appreciated and so far as my
experience goes they are only equaled by a white concert in the
pine woods country of Mississippi. I came tearing into the
encampment just as they were sitting down to dinner and was
welcomed by a burst of laughter from the whole company.

“It appears I am destined to be applauded where ever I go. Hark! Do
you hear that?” I exclaimed pointing back to where the herons
shrill cries were still resounding. “The music which marks my
exodus from the stage mingles with that which welcomes my entrance
on another. How the two orchestras chord? Where shall I run next?”

“Here right between Miss Inez and I. Theres a place for you,” said
Mrs McDonald, “and dinner is all ready.”

The dinner was one that the most fastidious would have rellished
could they have had their appetites whetted as were ours by the
cool invigorating air and a sail over the pure waters of the lake.
There was beautiful snowy head and sweet golden butter made by Mrs
McDonalds own motherly hands. There was cold boild (—– ) and

– 38 –

roast chicken, a huge dish of speckled pickerel piping hot that
one of the gentlemen had caught that Miss Burdette and Viva Joyce
had fried for us. The aroma of coffee informed us that Hope
Blanchard had not been idle but had made for us some of that
beverage as only a southern woman can make it. Everyone was at his
ease and each seemed to be enjoying himself. Even the Rev Faster
seemed to almost forget for the time the stern dogmas of his creed
and allowed his features to relax something of their wonted
grimness as he watched others enjoy themselves.

“I like Mr Hughes better as the man than as the divine,” said Dick
in an aside to me.

“I quite agree with you,” I replied, “I never could see any
reason why Christians should look more grim and solemn than other
people or that Minesters should look as stern and grim as some old
Roman Warrior.”

“Tis fitting I suppose,” said he, “that they should pattern after
their master the God of the Bible who by his own word appears to
have been a bloodier old warrior than either Roman or Spartan.”

“Why bloodier or more cruel?” I asked.

“Because he kills his own children and is not content with killing
them but damns them afterward to a perpetual death. But let us
change the subject,” said he, “or I may lose your friendship as I
have that of every other person with whom I have conversed on
religious subjects.”

“Mr Etheridge – aw – will you help me to some of fish if you plan
– aw – thank you.”

“Who has ever feasted in a more sumptious hall than we,” exclaimed
Irene Hughes, “what gorgeous ( —- ) surround us what canopy more
lofty or beautiful tinted ever stretched over the heads of kings
or what perfumed air sweeter than this cool breeze laden with the
breath of autumn flowers?”

“Or what board,” said Adams, “has ever been graced by the presence
of fairer ladies.”

“Yew are very perlite tew say so I’m sure,” said Mrs whipple.
“That’s what poor dear Whipple used to say to me afore he died of
softening of the brain.”

“Aw really!” exclaimed Smythe the tears springing to his eyes
caused by a fish bone getting crosswise in his throat.

“Swallow a mouthful of bread,” said I devining the cause of his
grief.

“Aw thank you,” said he wiping his eyes as the obstruction was
removed.

“Dew tell. What a tender hearted critter Mr Smythe is to be sure,”
said Mrs Whipple.

“I do not like the appearance of that thick edged cloud off there
in the north west,” remarked Rashboy. “I have been watching it for

– 39 –

some time and I fear it is the harbringer of bad weather.”

“I have been watching it also for some time,” said Mr Blanchard,
“and I think we need be in no haste to return as it seems to be at
a stand still.”

“I quite agree with you,” said Adams, “and besides I do not believe
it is coming this way.”

“You will believe that is before you get home,” said Fay.

Considerable discussion arose as to whether we should return or
remain and hour or two longer as it was but a little after three
o’clock.

Fay however was obstinate and declared his intention of going back
to E— immediately. “l have lived here nearly all my life,” he
remarked, “and I think I know the indications of the weather pretty
well. As I have some lady passengers aboard I do not care to have
them out in a storm if I can get back before it overtakes us which
I think very doubtful.”

“Shall we not return also Con?” asked Dick

“If you think it best.”

“I think as Fay that we have not a moment to lose.”

“What say you ladies are you willing to return not Mrs McDonald?”

“Yes let us go.”

“Miss Joyce?”

“Go.”

“Miss Blanchard?”

“Go I suppose since all the others wish it but I do hate to leave
this beautiful little island.”

Adams being urged by his lady passengers to return with the others
set about his preperations in a very leisurly manner. The ladies
commenced gathering up their dishes and in a few minutes all was
bustle and confusion where but a short time before all had been
peace and quietude.

The rattling of the plates and knives and forks gave the alarm to
the herons who mingled their shrill cries with the base tones of
the men and the din already created and until the time of our
departure we had a babel in minature.

The passengers of the Water Witch were soon aboard and we lay
waiting for the other boats and watching their passengers as they
hurried to and fro and called to each other in the vain effort to
make themselves heard above the outcry of the herons and their own
noise. At length all were ready on Adams boat and the skiff from
the schooner was putting off with the last load of her passengers
when one of their number whom we perceived to be Mrs Whipple was
observed to be gesticulating wildly and by her purple face and

– 40 –

expanded mouth we judged her to be screaming something
vociferously but what it was exactly we could not tell as only
detached words and broken sentences came to us mingled with the
cries of the herons.

“Shore — well I never –back –tew shelling – out – dew—”

At length the boat put back to the shore and she sprang out
scrambled up the bank and disappeared for a few minutes. Presently
she came back with the cause of her trouble which proved to be a
pan of cold baked beans in one hand and a huge copperas colored
umbrella in the other. In her haste to get aboard she caught her
foot in some grape vine and fell headlong into the boat. Her
umbrella and teeth went into the lake and her pan of beans was
emptied into the immaculate shirt bosom of the minester.

“Now really,” exclaimed Smythe who had witnessed the mishap with
much interest.

Her umbrella was fished out but her teeth were gone forever.

Near half an hour was consumed altogether by the time all were
aboard and ready to start.

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