2021-04-17 02:08:33

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ENGLISH

Our camp was in the heart of Copiah County, Mississippi, a mile or so west of Gallatin and about six miles east of that once robber-haunted road, the Natchez Trace. Austin's brigade, we were, a detached body of mixed Louisiana and Mississippi cavalry, getting our breath again after two weeks' hard fighting of Grant. Grierson's raid had lately gone the entire length of the State, and we had had a hard, vain chase after him, also."His captain asked him what he had to say for himself to escape punishment, and the man replied that it was unreasonable to expect all the cardinal virtues for thirteen dollars a month. The captain told him the excuse was sufficient for that time, but would not do for a repetition of the offence.""We shall have to get Ned Ferry back here," the Major was saying as I entered, "to make you boys let Scott Gholson alone."

CHAPTER XIV."No-o!" he said, as if nobody but a gaping idiot would expect anybody not a gaping idiot to notice a leather-curtained spring-wagon. "No-o! did you notice the brown horse that man was riding who just now passed you as you turned off the road?"

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"What for you go top-side look-see?"

"They take the moxa for nearly everything, real or imaginary. Sometimes they have the advice of a doctor, but oftener they go to a priest, who makes a mark on them where the burn is to be applied; then they go to a man who sells the burning material, and he puts it on as a druggist with us would fill up a prescription."A MANDARIN JUDGE DELIVERING SENTENCE. A MANDARIN JUDGE DELIVERING SENTENCE.

You turn he top-side downey,"And yet," answered the stranger, "all the Japanese have discovered it. They knew me at a glance as a native of Ohio, as every one of them invariably said 'Ohio' when I met them. And I must give them the credit to say that they always did it very politely."

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Hong-kong is a rocky island on the coast of China, and has an excellent harbor, sheltered from most of the winds that blow. The town of Victoria is built at the edge of this harbor, and the streets that lead back from the water are so steep that the effort of climbing them is liable to throw a stranger from the North into a violent perspiration. Fortunately, there is an abundance of sedan-chairs, and any one who wishes to take a promenade may do his walking by hiring a couple of chair-coolies to do it for him. The chairs are everywhere, and it is generally desirable to hire one in order to be rid of the continual applications from those that are unemployed. At the wharf where they landed the Doctor[Pg 402] engaged porters to carry the baggage to the hotel, and then took chairs for the transportation of himself and the boys. As they had the afternoon before them, the chairs were kept for making the ascent of the mountain just back of the town, and as soon as the rooms were secured, and a slight lunch had been served, they started on their excursion.

The boys had expected to find the boats in China small and inconvenient. What was their astonishment to find them like the great steamers that ply on the North River, or from New York to Fall River or Providence. They found the cabins were large and comfortable, though they were not so numerous as on the American waters, for the reason that there were rarely many passengers to be carried. The captain, pilots, engineers, and other officers were Americans, while the crew were Chinese. The managers of the company were Chinese, but they left the control of the boats entirely in the hands of their respective captains. One boat had a Chinese captain and officers, but she was a small affair, and, from all that could be learned, the managers did not find their experiment of running with their own countrymen a successful one."The man who brought the bundles of grain to the thresher had them slung over his shoulder, as they carry everything in this country; two bundles made a load for him, and they were not large bundles either. Such a thing as a farm-wagon is as unknown as a threshing-machine, and would not be useful, as the paths among the fields are very narrow, and a wagon couldn't run on them at all. Land is very valuable in the neighborhood of the towns, and they would consider it wasteful to have a wide strip of it taken up for a road. And, as I have just said, labor is very cheap, especially the labor of the coolies who carry burdens. All the men I saw at work in the field were barefooted, and probably[Pg 334] the wages they receive do not leave them much to spend on boots, after they have supported their families and paid their taxes. They must have a hard time to get along, but they appear perfectly cheerful and contented."

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Apr-17 02:08:33