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Think us no churls, nor measure our good minds
The sun had just set when we stopped at the tavern, and I then read the cause of my companion's quizzical look. My Hotel was a log-house of diminutive size, with corresponding appurtenances; and from the moment we entered its door I was in a fidget to know where we could possibly sleep. I was then new in Michigan. Our good hostess rose at once with a nod of welcome.
“ Well! is this Miss Clavers ?” (my husband had been there before,) “well! I want to know! why do tell if you've been upsot in the mash? why, I want to know !—and didn't ye hurt ye none ? Come, gals ! fly round, and let's git some supper.”
“But you 'll not be able to lodge us, Mrs. Danforth,” said I, glancing at three young men and some boys, who appeared to have come in from their work, and who were lounging on one side of the immense open chimney.
“ Why, bless your heart ! yes I shall; don't you fret yourself: I'll give you as good a bed as any-body need want."
I cast an exploring look, and now discovered a door opposite the fire.
“Jist step in here," said Mrs. Danforth, opening this door, “ jist come in, and take off your things, and lop down, if you're a mind to, while we're a getting supper.”
I followed her into the room, if room it might be called, a strip partitioned off, just six feet wide, so that a bed was accurately fitted in at each end, and a square space remained vacant between the two.
“We've been getting this room made lately, and I tell you it's real nice, so private, like !” said our hostess, with a complacent air. “ Here," she con. tinued, " in this bed the gals sleeps, and that's my
bed and the old man's; and then here's a trundle-bed for Sally and Jane," and suiting the action to the word, she drew out the trundle-bed as far as our standing. place would allow, to show me how convenient it was.
Here was my grand problem still unsolved! If “me and the old man,” and the girls, and Sally and Jane, slept in this strip, there certainly could be no room for more, and I thought with dismay of the low-browed roof, which had seemed to me to rest on the tops of the window.frames. And, to make a long story short, though manifold were the runnings up and down, and close the whisperings before all was ready, I was at length ushered up a steep and narrow stick-ladder, into the sleeping apartment. Here, surrounded by beds of all sizes spread on the floor, was a bedstead, placed under the peak of the roof, in order to gain space for its height, and round this state-bed, for such it evidently was, although not supplied with pillows at each end, all the
men and boys I had seen below stairs, were to repose. Sundry old quilts were fastened by forks to the rafters in such a way as to serve as a partial screen, and with this I was obliged to be content. Excessive fatigue is not fastidious. I called to mind some canal-boat expe. riences, and resigned myself to the “ honey-heavy dew of slumber.”
I awoke with a sense of suffocation-started up-all was dark as the Hall of Eblis. I called—no answer came; I shrieked! and up ran one of the “ gals.”
“What on airth 's the matter?”
“Where am I? What ails me ?” said I, beginning to feel a little awkward when I heard the damsel's voice.
“Why, I guess you was scairt, wa' n't ye?” “Why am I in the dark? Is it morning ?”
Morning ? why, the boys has been gone away this hour, and, you see, there ain't no winder up here, but I'll take down this here quilt, and then I guess you 'll be able to see some.
She did so, and I began to discern
“A faint shadow of uncertain light,”
which, after my eyes had become somewhat accustomed to it, served very well to dress by.
Upon descending the ladder, I found our breakfast prepared on a very neat-looking table, and Mrs. Danforth with her clean apron on, ready to do the honours.
Seeing me looking round with inquiring eye, she said, “Oh! you 'm lookin' for a wasb-dish, a’n’t ye!” and forthwith put some water into a little iron skillet,
and carried it out to a bench which stood under the eaves, where I performed my very limited ablutions al fresco, not at all pleased with this part of country habits.
I bethought me of a story I had heard before we crossed the line, of a gentleman travelling in Michigan, who instead of a 6 wash-dish” was directed to the spring, and when he requested a towel received for an. swer: Why, I should think you had a hankercher !”
After breakfast, I expressed a wish to accompany Mr. Clavers to the village tract; but he thought a very bad marsh would make the ride unpleasant.
“Lord bless ye!” said Mr. Danforth, “that mash has got a real handsome bridge over it since you was here last.”
So we set out in the buggy and rode several miles through an alternation of open glades with fine walnut trees scattered over them, and “
" bosky dells fra. grant as “ Araby the blest” at that delicious hour, when the dews filled the air with the scent of the bursting leaves.
By and bye, we came to the “ beautiful bridge,” a newly-laid causeway of large round logs, with a slough of despond to be crossed in order to reach it. I would not consent to turn back, however, and in we went, the buggy standing it most commendably.
When we reached the first log our poor Rozinante stopped in utter despair, and some persuasion was necessary to induce him to rear high enough to place his fore feet upon the bridge, and when he accomplished this feat, and after a rest essayed to make the buggy rear too, it was neck or nothing. Yet up we went, and then came the severe part of the achievement, a “beautiful bridge” half a mile long !