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that these women are the great vice of Paris; that one man will keep one, two, three, four.
I do not like to close my chapter and division with such a subject. We will now pass to the scenes of rural France, which, as statistics quoted show, is of a different character from the great metropolis.
Tuesday, July 2d.-Last evening I left Paris for the south, but not the south of Marseilles or Nice: the farm that I visit is in the latitude of Lyons. Great is the press at Paris as we approach the Lyons station, and the detention is considerable; but, as I have no baggage but what I can manage to carry, I am not detained to register it, and I get through. I ride all night in a third-class car. The peasant-women who, for a part of the way at least, are with me I suppose to be returning from the Exposition or the fête. How blackened one of them looks! We are in a division for women only,-dames seules. Once, when there seemed to be a little unpleasant familiarity, it subsided on my taking out my note-book and writing in it. I have spoken of my fears before starting upon this journey, and now I feel unpleasantly impressed by hearing towns named for saints. About five in the morning we change cars at St. Germain des Fossés, and here I get bread and wine. Locust-trees by the roadside look familiar. The view is extensive, the country green. "What are those plants?" I ask, and immediately perceive that they are vines. The vineyards are very pretty now, the plants being of a tender, yellowish green. The morning is quite cool. The houses of yellowish stone
and roofs of red tiles, the cut hay, the standing wheat, altogether look as if I might be happy; and that line of Addison occurs to me,—
"How has kind Heaven adorned the happy land.”
How laborious, too, man has been!
Another station is St. Germain l'Espinasse. Here tidylooking women get into my division, wearing caps instead of bonnets; and two of them have market-baskets. One has butter at twenty-five sous, which would be about twenty-two and a half cents for our pound. She has eggs at sixteen sous the dozen, and nice cherries at four sous the pound. I buy some, which help out my early lunch. Women in the cars are eating apricots from Paris. How apricots abound in this country! They also have some green things that look like walnuts for pickling, but they cut them open and eat the well-grown almonds from within. I leave the train at R., whence I am to go by another conveyance to my destination. I will call the village Boissière. There is quite a kissing-time at the station; from two to five kisses, always on both cheeks. Women kiss women; men kiss men; men and women kiss; women shed tears; men are not always ashamed to have moisture. in their eyes. R., where I leave the railway, is a town of about twenty-four thousand people, having eighteen cottonfactories. Formerly cotton was manufactured here by hand, but within about six years steam has been introduced. Very many cottons are still, however, made by hand. The place has an octroi,—that peculiar tax of French towns. On the street I meet a fine pair of fragrant oxen drawing a wagon, and hear a hoarse voice, which proceeds from a donkey who seems to be drawing his cart home from market. Towards noon I breakfast at the Hôtel du,
charge being fifty sous. The staircases here are of stone, and the entries above and below are paved with tiles. The cabinets are disagreeable enough, and one or two men seem to be doing the chamber-work. I have a good breakfast at the common table. There is wine at discretion, and good, cold water. Those who choose can take stone bottles, which probably contain mineral water from some natural spring not far off. Our first course is bits of meat, with potatoes and a few peas, made into a ragout, with one of the best gravies that I ever tasted, for I have an appetite. The next course is fried eggs; the third, little fishes fried; the fourth, little sausages in mashed potatoes; the fifth appears to be mutton-chops with cresses upon them, green and fresh. For dessert there is the smooth, soft cheese of which I have before spoken (some eat it with sugar); also some kind of old cheese; green almonds, such as I just described; filberts; very good cherries; macaroons; and biscuits or small sponge-cakes. Awhile after breakfast I seek the station of the omnibus or stage. This is a more humble public-house. The landlord is an ardent republican; he becomes heated in talking, but wine probably has helped. I converse with a young man, who tells me that we have had a great defender, George Vas-ington (with the accent carried through in the French manner). I mention Lafayette, and he adds Rochambeau ; but he becomes confused in geography, and, like the rest of the world in France, South America has a greater relative importance in his eyes than it has in ours. At length the stage starts for our village. The distance is marked by stones; and I am told that at every hectometre there is a little stone, and at every kilometre a great one. (A metre is about one yard three inches; a hectometre is a hundred metres; a kilometre a thousand metres, or about three
thousand two hundred and eighty feet,-near three-fifths of a mile.) We pass a building with round towers and battlements, and I ask what it is. It is a chateau. "Is it old?" I ask. "Yes, yes!" replies a young woman; "that belonged to a seigneur in '93." This allusion to their great Revolution strikes me. The Revolution which began in 1789 came to a crisis in '93. I repeatedly hear this year mentioned in this part of France, but I do not remember its being especially spoken of in Paris and the north.
Arrived at Boissières, I am quite alone,—perhaps the only Protestant and the only English-speaking person in the Mr. Chevalier, who has been in Philadelphia, is still at the Exposition, and madame is also absent. At their house, however, which is in the village, the servant consents to conduct me to that of Madame Lesmontagnes, where I am to board, and we go across lots and up-hill for about a mile. It is not, however, strictly correct to speak of going across lots where there are no fences, only sometimes stone walls to hold up the soil of the vineyards.
Madame Lesmontagnes has been expecting me, and all goes well. The house has very large rooms for a farmhouse; the ceiling of the room where I sit is said to be over twelve feet in height, and the floor is composed of large square tiles, the sound of wooden shoes being heard on the paved floors. The house is thought to be at least two hundred and fifty years old, and is said to have belonged to the Marquis de B.
Wednesday, July 3d.-At breakfast this morning we sit down to a clean table of heavy cherry-wood at about seven o'clock. Madame gives me a bowl of hot milk, and pours coffee into it. She has toasted for me two slices of bread made from dark flour, and she also gives me a boiled egg;