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WHEN I married John and went to America I didn't know what I was in for. I am sure I should not have married him if I had known, and that would have been a pity, because John is lovable, and I love him, and no doubt that's the thing that matters most. He seems to get more lovable as we go along, and certainly my worries don't decrease in volume or intensity, so that I need all the compensation I am able to gather from this amiable trait in his character.

Emma has been my latest and most acute worry: at the same time, I have had an immense amount of amusement and ultimate satisfaction out of my dealings with Emma, and now that those dealings with her are completed and her destiny handed over to others, I feel as if I must jot down what Scotch accountants John is Scotch and an accountant would call my "intromissions" with Emma.


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our raiment, brushed John's clothes, housemaided for us, scolded the coloured man into nightly blacking of our boots till they were shinier than the ebony face of that unworthy African himself. She had marketed, catered, cooked, and kept her temper for us for five long years, and at length had accumulated such a satisfactory dowry that the estimable Scotch footman who had emigrated to Canada, after securing Molly's young affections, and there made a home and the elements of a fortune, felt that the time had come to take Molly fully into partnership, and had come down to New York for that purpose.

Molly's tears were not shed on her own account. They were for me and the children. Molly knew what she was abandoning us to she had seen it happen in other families of her acquaintance-and Molly did well to weep for us.

John had work in Boston, and we were going to our usual summer quarters on Lake Champlain in a week, so I decided we would all go to Boston-I and the two little

girls with him. The boys were at school, and were to join us presently. So we shut up our apartment in New York -I had never dared embark on the more extended scale of housekeeping there, involved in having a house to oneself-and we set out.

Now if Molly had been in

valuable to us in one place rather than another, it certainly was in our summer holiday quarters. Here our freedom depended on her doing nearly all our housework and making every preparation for our spending the days, from morning till night, in the open air.

I had to find some one to replace her. New York I had drawn blank, hopelessly and desperately blank. I scarcely expected it would have been otherwise. My hopes centred in Boston. As every English man and woman knows who has ever been to Boston, it is accounted the city of the Union more undeniably like unto England than any other. Does not every American of either sex there residing ask every Briton arriving if he or she is not of that opinion? And if there is hesitation in reply, the inquirer will supply the affirmative answer for you. Then surely in Boston there must be some sympathy for the distracted British female bereft of her Molly and bound for


summer home on Lake Champlain. I felt that there must be. Accordingly, John being gone to his office, I took my two little girls and set out with hopeful steps to the Employment Bureau I had been commended to.

I sat there, and so did the children, from nine o'clock in the morning till the setting of the sun. We had a short interval for luncheon at а neighbouring hotel.

in Massachusetts must have interviewed me. To a woman they declined to enter my service, or else I declined their proffered attentions. I couldn't reconcile myself to anything so deplorably different from Molly as these ladies from the Emerald Isle. Neither could I reconcile myself to the Johannas and Marias and Lottas from Germany and Scandinavia who passed before me in unending lines of ignorance and inexperience. Wellmeaning and anxious to please I am certain many of them were. But I would let them experiment on other vile bodies, not on ours. Then came night, as I have said, and wearily we dragged, or rather I dragged, our jaded persons home home to our hotel. The children wept. They said it was for me, poor dears; it was because they were, like me, worn to the extremity of headache and misery by our dreadful day and by the thought that we had to undergo another such on the morrow.

John was sympathetic and also useful. He telephoned early to the bureau and said that I was "sick": that I must see only such servants as were, from their known virtues, likely to be worth my seeing; and the lady in charge was considerate, and said she had a jewel in the shape of Almira Fox for my inspection -American born-a treasure.

I felt sure Almira would suit. The children had slept I think every Margaret off their headaches; we set Flanagan and Elizabeth out across Boston Common. O'Leary and Bridget Sullivan Almira was awaiting us.


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was not young, and she appeared to be resolute, judging from the expression of her eye. I felt she was critical, and was glad-Molly was critical of everyone but ourselves. She sat down beside me.

I asked Almira all about herself, and she told me. She enjoyed the recitation of her successes. They were evidently numerous and remarkable; and one wondered that any mistress had ever found it in her heart to part with Almira's society. "Boston born and bred" Almira was, and forty dollars a-month was the very least any one had ever ventured to offer for her attentions. This seemed high, but then my need was sore, and Almira's virtues were evidently priceless. She said she was not over strong, "never sick, but sometimes under the weather." I was sympathetic.

She had finished, and I began. I told her at length what her duties would be. I painted an alluring picture of our happy and united household the children were smil ing evidences of it all. Almira listened. Presently she leant forward towards me, laid her hand gently on my knee, and said, "My dear, I'm tired already."

Wearily I rose to go: : I didn't feel I could face anything more that morning. The children's mouths were drooping ominously. Violet took my hand and squeezed it; Janie took the other and held it tight.

At this moment Almira standing with a wicked smile

on her malignant featuresthe book-keeper of the bureau burst into the room. Would I at once see "Emma" before I made any other arrangements. (I have since felt a conviction that Almira's ways were well known in that bureau.) Emma Smith had unexpectedly come in-the very person they had been hoping for on my behalf. Emma was believed to have gone to a family in Vermontbut here was Emma.

Well, Emma was "tired already." Any one could see that: it was written all over her her weary limbs and her withered cheeks. I couldn't find it in my heart to crossexamine Emma about anything.

She was kind and friendly. She wanted kindness and friendliness, and she was English-very English,and seemed rather lost in America. The book-keeper said Emma's references were undeniable, but she was not young-that was the only reason she was out of place. Lake Champlain would revive her rejuvenate her. I said, "Emma, I want a maid. you come and work for me?"


And Emma smiled as she looked from me to the children and back again and said, “Yes, ma'am, I will."

John asked me when we got back if I had had a satisfactory character with the new maid. I said, "Yes-at least, I felt sure it was all right. She looked honest-and tired."

Probably this last word appealed to John, who is generally tactful, and he made no

more inquiries. Emma Smith set out that night for our summer quarters, taking her limited very limited-baggage along with her.

I will admit now that I had some misgivings, but I pondered them in my own heart only, and preserved an outward cheerfulness.

Four days later the children and I followed Emma. Jeremiah Hanscom met us at the railway station. We were hot, dusty, and travel-stained, and the sight of Jerry was refreshing after the train had clanged and roared itself out of sight and hearing, and left us to the blessed peace and loveliness of the hills and woods.

Jeremiah is the chief prop of our existence on Lake Champlain. I cannot possibly imagine how we should ever get there, or exist when we had got there, without him.

To begin with, he is the only person with a cart and horse within possible possible distance of the railway and our house, so he serves as the one link between us and civilisation. Then he is a farmer in a small, but variegated, way of business. We depend on him for meat, vegetables, milk, fruit, poultry, news, newspapers, letters, gossip, carpentry, ironmongery, the weather forecast (for the Weather Bureau doesn't seem to apply to Lake Champlain), locomotion by land or water, and all our chores. Now every American at least will appreciate the value of the last-named service.

And besides all this-or perhaps one should say, in spite

of it-we like Jeremiah exceedingly.

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So the sight of him humped up on the "cushion of his rickety old "carry-all" was refreshing to us. He sat with one leg crossed over the other, his battered old hat cooked over one eye, and his hands and the other eye tenderly busy with the mouth and nerves of a beautiful bay colt harnessed in the shafts.

"I can't git down, but just you make that coloured man thar heist up your suit-cases, and do it quick. Thar, now. And now, Mis' Ogilvie, in yo' git. I'm pleased to see you all. This durned hoss ain't learned sense yet, but I guess he will soon-sure."

The colt plunged and shook the antique harness till one felt something must give way, but nothing did, and away we went, Jerry steadying the horse and steering him beautifully past every obstacle. It was a delight to see him drive. "A new horse, Jerry?" "Yep."

"Where did you get such a beauty?"

Jerry only grinned and spat

I regret to say he chews tobacco, bad tobacco, all the time. He also expectorates in a fearsome fashion when moved by any emotion, but I must admit that his aim is careful and miraculous. I pass from this painful topic.

Well, I saw that Jeremiah Hanscom meant to reserve the story of the acquisition of his horse, so I did not push the inquiry then. The miles flew under us, and we were deposited

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on our own piazza, and the colt was walking quietly and steadily away to the farm on the hill-side.

Emma was smiling in the doorway, and cool things were visible on the dining-room table within.

Emma was almost unrecognisable. Her wizened face seemed broadened and softened already; she had a faint colour in her cheeks, and her shabby black raiment had been replaced by a neat and wellironed print dress and apron. Her scanty hair was as smooth as wax. All my misgivings vanished, and I knew that Emma was going to turn out

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Jeremiah had told me on the way from the railway that his wife was "sick," and I had promised to go up and see her. Sure enough, she was "sick,' and her cough was a thing of dread to listen to. I went up the hill to the farm in the evening, after I had rested a little. The children were helping Emma to get our supper ready. It was easy to see she liked children, and they responded.

Mrs Hanscom lay on a couch -a very hard and comfortless couch it was-near the window

of their living-room. Jeremiah was warming up some milky food for her when I entered.

The poor woman seemed miserable at his having to do it, wretched that she lay helpless while he had to do her work, and it was touching to see her, and pleasant to see good old Jeremiah's kindly ways.

"You don't need to worry, Mis' Hanscom," he was saying. "I'm used to feeding the horses and the cattle and the pigs, and I don't know but I can feed your chickens and you too, all in the day's work. Here's Mis' Ogilvie, she'll see you take it while I git on with the colt. Come right in, Mis' Ogilvie, right here, and take the rocker. Mis' Hanscom will be pleased to have you stay a little."

So I stayed and gossiped to poor Mrs Hanscom. It was borne in on me that Jerry's cares were to thicken, and I couldn't help admiring the order of everything in the humble room.

Mrs Hanscom told me how good he was to her since she had been ill-nearly all winter it seemed, and I think she liked to have someone to confide in about him. She said he had driven thirty miles and back to bring a doctor to see her, who, he thought, might help her back to health. And at night he would be up making her warm drinks to stop her coughing, and always pretending he was awake anyway. Jeremiah evidently was a tender husband, and his wife liked one to know it and understand his virtues. She told me how

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