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together some things for our water-side laundry, went to inspect the fish-pot, in which I found three fine fish. I threw two of them into the conservatory, reserving the other for the day's table; and when my dear wife and Mira came on shore, we breakfasted immediately, to give more time for business; and after the meal, my Eliza named "Rota" and " Hachinta," pointing to Mira to go for them. She went, and in a short time returned with them. My wife then gave each of the women a second suit of clothes, and making them bundle up the linen to be washed, directed them to carry it before her to the streamlet, while she took the two washing mallets in her own hand, and a piece of soap; part of my good aunt's supply, which, after our first essay, we had found necessary to the perfect cleansing of our linens, notwithstanding the unparalleled cleverness of my two wooden-headed damsels in the washing department. When arrived there, she set her laundresses to work in the water, without any trouble or difficulty. When they were fairly engaged, we walked away, followed by Mira, to the plantation, to see what the men were about, and to give our attentive little maid an opportunity of explaining to them how the women were employed. We found both men busy in erecting the uprights, six of which Xavier had sawn out; and both, now active workmen, appeared quite happy, and perfectly recovered from the exhaustion occasioned by their fatigue in escaping from the shipwreck.
My dear wife and I had determined, when speaking to them, not to repeat any of their words,
excepting their own proper names; hoping by this to compel them to learn our language. On this principle I began to school Xavier, by pointing to the several instruments he used, at the same time calling them respectively by their names; by which process he and his companions, male and female, soon acquired a very competent knowledge of our terms for all the common articles of life; we always remaining silent when through any forgetfulness they named them in Spanish. Mira had told them about her mistake in addressing my wife; after which both the men, when naming her in any way, called her "La Señora;" and so did the two women on coming over with Mira in the morning.
While the men were at work we sat down under the shade of our noble tree; a place always agreeable and interesting to us, but now doubly so, since from it we had first descried our great and present help. "This indulgence wont do, Edward!” suddenly exclaimed my Eliza, sweetly smiling; “I must mind my own duties, and go to superintend our domestic concerns: the women are with the linen at the brook; and dinner must be got for the whole party." She went, while I continued for an hour looking over the men, and was much pleased with the progress they made in the construction of the hut, and particularly with the scientific way in which Xavier went to work. When finished, each of these habitations would be at least twice as commodious as the plank house; and seeing that he perfectly understood what he was about, I made up my mind not to interfere, but to leave him at once to the completion of the whole. In my walk home,
as I passed the Indian corn, I pulled some of the full heads called cobs, and took them with me to roast; for in that green state they taste something like young pease. On my arrival I found the cooking business in high order. My dear helpmate had taken Mira, with her basket, to the pumpkin beds near the cave-spring; where we had planted that useful vegetable on our first landing, and where it now grew in abundance. A great stew of salt pork, with a due proportion of vegetables and pepper pods, was going forward. At noon Mira was sent over to the cotton tree for the men, and, when they arrived, they and their wives found their dinner spread on the duck-hatch, near our pleasant fountain. They all seemed delighted with the Yankee stew, and the cool place we had chosen for them to eat it in. After dinner the men returned to the plantation, and the women to their task at the streamlet: the latter being only a few yards distant from their shady dining-room.
My dear Eliza and myself had agreed to dine later than usual: our labour being now little, our appetites were less importunate; and besides, we felt it would be well to attend to the wants of our people first. It was therefore time enough to raise the fish-pot after they had returned to their work; which I did, and with great success, finding in it no less than five fine groopers: I threw four of them into the conservatory; and calling our maid, gave her the remaining one to prepare for dressing, and then take to her mistress. Having baited and replaced the fish-pot in the sea, while our repast was getting ready I walked into our pumpkin and melon
ground, between the rocky point and rivulet, and was gratified on observing how the whole plantation was coming on, many of all sorts being already fit to eat; a matter of greater gratulation because of our increased party; as our original store of fruits and vegetables was quite exhausted, excepting a few yams and coccos. However, as I found by the present crop before me that there was no reason why we should be stingy of them, having plenty of seeds for more, I cut a couple of the melons, and took them home to my wife; one of which we eat after dinner, dividing it with the armadillo, who was now brought out for the first time, and seemed not at all disposed to run away, though still something afraid of Fidele; rolling itself up every time the little dog attempted to play with it.
While eating our fruit I remarked to my wife that I thought it would be prudent to remove the bag of doubloons from the shelf to my trunk in the vessel, lest curiosity might induce Mira some day or other to pry into its contents, and inform her friends of our riches. Eliza saw the propriety of the measure, which in the course of the afternoon I carried into effect. The women finished their task before sunset; when Mira went for the men, and brought them to regale, with their wives, on coffee and flour cakes, where they had dined. After that favourite beverage, they came up of themselves to the plank house, and in their grateful delight danced before us while we sate at tea: we could have dispensed with this mark of their satisfaction, but, for the sake of the feelings that dictated it, we showed nothing like disapproval. After they had finished, Diego,
who appeared quite a courtier in his way, bowed several times to the señora and myself; and looking archly at me, with a smile, said, "Don Edvardo! cigarro ?" putting his finger to his mouth, and puffing from the lips as if he were smoking. I took the hint, and presented him with one cigar, and Xavier with another; then pointing in the direction of the cotton-tree plantation, they took their leave. I could not afford to smoke regularly myself and to supply them also; I therefore did not indulge myself this night so after my dear wife and Mira had attended to the security and comfort of our live stock, I fastened our door as usual, and retired early with my household to our marine lodgings.
Thursday, 18th.-On this day and the two following, the men continued steadily at work upon the first hut; Diego, meanwhile, employing Hachinta with the hoe among the corn, and other plants in the neighbourhood of their occupation. Rota was chiefly at the plank house with Mira and her mistress, assisting in smoothing the clean clothes, and in cooking provisions. I found sufficient to do on board, looking over the bills of lading to refresh my memory, and in selecting out such things as might be required for coming events.
Sunday, 21st. We arose as usual with the dawn. I took my bath, dressed for the Sabbath, and went on shore, leaving my wife with Mira to go through the same ceremony. I hastened to the plantation to prevent the men working, and arrived just as they were about to commence. I stopped them, but felt much embarrassed how to explain my motive, and what I meant to inculcate. The poor