Late One Night The Boat Was Approaching Helena, Arkansas; The
Water Was Low, And The Crossing Above The Town In A Very Blind And
X. had seen the crossing since Ealer had, and as the
night was particularly drizzly, sullen, and dark, Ealer was considering
whether he had not better have X. called to assist in running the place,
when the door opened and X. walked in.
Now on very dark nights, light is
a deadly enemy to piloting; you are aware that if you stand in a lighted
room, on such a night, you cannot see things in the street to any
purpose; but if you put out the lights and stand in the gloom you can
make out objects in the street pretty well. So, on very dark nights,
pilots do not smoke; they allow no fire in the pilot-house stove if
there is a crack which can allow the least ray to escape; they order the
furnaces to be curtained with huge tarpaulins and the sky-lights to be
closely blinded. Then no light whatever issues from the boat. The
undefinable shape that now entered the pilot-house had Mr. X.'s voice.
This said -
'Let me take her, George; I've seen this place since you have, and it is
so crooked that I reckon I can run it myself easier than I could tell
you how to do it.'
'It is kind of you, and I swear _I_ am willing. I haven't got another
drop of perspiration left in me.
Enter page number
Page 100 of 539
Words from 27616 to 27873