Page:Notes and Queries - Series 12 - Volume 6.djvu/374

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NOTES AND QUERIES. 112 s. vi. JUNE 19, 1920.


of my kind Canadian friends, I find myself established in a small bedroom at the great Tremont Hotel. The waiter assigned to me was a Cavan lad with whom I at once established a friendship by talking of Farnham, Castle Coote, &c. The dinner was fair, the wine cruelly dear, but the attendance such as we never find else- where. We were five and we each had a waiter. After dinner we all went to the theatre, a very handsome one with immense depth of stage and lobbies, and long corridors, &c., on a scale pro- portionate to the Continent.* The acting not over fair. After this, supper, and at last bed in which it seemed too much happiness to be able to turn round.

Saturday [Oct. 11]. I forgot to mention that two young men, the precise counterpart of Jefferson Brick, were introduced to me last night. This morning, though I got up at seven, five cards were sent to me before I was out of bed, and when I went downstairs I had to undergo introductions from four strangers to all of whom I had to speak in the style of measured compli- ment which they all adopt. Two more came during breakfast and I had much ado to get to the bank for my money before driving out to Mount Auburn, in which trip Filmore, Davis and Jefferson Brick accompanied. It was a most lovely day and I never saw such a drive. The trees were some crimson, some scarlet, some only yellow and some still green, and when one looked down on them frcm an eminence the effect of so very beautiful and freshly painted houses from among the trees and so much brilliant water was wonderful. Back to Boston by Brookline and Koxbury for dinner at 2.30, most sumptuous fare although included in the two dollars a day. After dinner, a long walk through the park or common which some bene- ficent Mayor has stocked with grey squirrels and round which all the houses are covered with Virginia creeper, and then to a very bad concert where Parodi sang the ' Star Spangled Banner.' And so to bed.

Sunday [Oct.] 12. More introductions and letters of ditto. To Church to hear Theodore Parker who delivered the most brilliant address on the politics of the day illustrated from Scrip- ture I ever heard. It was just what I have always said our clergy should do and what I believe Latimer and the men of his time always did. Then with Mr. Andrews in a carriage to Bunker's Hill which all Americans seem surprised to find ice can bear to visit ; then to Cambridge to call on Professors Felton and Agassiz, and then back to dine with the English Consul who gave a party in my honour.

Monday, 13 : Albany. Left Boston with Davis at 8.30, and came with him in an excellently managed railway 200 miles for 1 as far as Springfield. He thence branched off to N.Y., and I came on here with Theodore Parker whom 1 had heard preach so well yesterday, and who proved a most instructive companion. I had meant to go on to Whitehall, but it set in to rain and I " concluded " to stop here though it felt rather dull and lonely. However, on going down to dinner, I met Mr. Peabody who went into raptures on seeing me and we passed the butter- beat backwards and forwards during the two hours the dinner lasted. He wants me to stop


and see Van Buren tomorrow and go to a very grand wedding of the " patron " in the evening: but I don't feel much inclined to do so. At the dinner given to him the other day was a flag r " The Lord loveth the cheerful giver." So also- doth the " receiver." And a ladder was carried in procession with the word " Peabody " at the- top to signify that he had reached the highest point. The thing which has hitherto struck me most is the extreme kindness and friendliness of the people. Everybody wants me to do every- thing, to come and stay with them, to dine with> them, to drive out, &c. Then the wretchedly clumsy carriages which seem at least a hundred years old. The horses are fair and well kept.- The women yesterday were well but rather over smartly dressed, with a fair show of pretty faces.. All this district professes to be ultra-English and certainly the English type is prevalent.

Tuesday [Oct.] 14. I fear it was laziness- rather than design which kept me at Albany to-day, for at 5 1 felt very little inclined to ge't up and certainly I had no reason to regret the/ result. At breakfast, old Peabody began by introducing me to one Van Rensselaer who did the same to half-a-dozen more and I received an. invitation in form to the wedding. Besides this- they sent a carriage to drive me round the town and we went also to see the house and grounds- which were like a good English country house ra- the half French half Dutch style. Then came- more introductions, everybody civil to excess. Happily I at last escaped and had a good long walk after dinner (3 o'clock) and saw a great deal, that was new to me. At 7.30 we started in full> fig for the wedding and found a string of carriages- that reminded one of London and about a hundred people, the elite of the party, already assembled. In the shortest possible .time I was introduced to 28 of these and the process went on all night, but I could not keep count. All this- while things wore the appearance of an ordinary evening party, but at 9 a new drawing-room wa thrown open, one of my friends dragged me into it, and there I saw the bride and bridegroomi, neither over handsome, surrounded by an equal number of bridesmen and bridesmaids at the other end of the room. A kind of ring was formed and then a parson in a black frock coat began a very short address and ended by telling, the bridegroom to put on the ring and asking the ordinary questions. .All was then legally over r but there was a wish for a little more ceremony and so the two knelt down and the parson- blessed them. Then everybody shook hands with them, the family first, and for four hours did they stand up and shake hands and accept' congratulations. All this while fresh guests were coming until at last there were about 500 no really good looks, a few good dresses fresh from Paris, the rest ill made and ill matched in colour. As to me, I bad to talk until about 1 o'clock with- out intermission and to shake hands with fresh* batches of friends until at last supper came, very handsome but a crush, then more talk in the midst of which I received an intimation that there would be a second supper when the public had gone. This came about 3 accompanied by wonderful Madeira of fabulous antiquity (quite wasted on me) and at 4 I took leave of these truly kind and hospitable people with invitations-