It Was Several Days Before I Got Over That
Pain In My Shoulder.
Later on there was a period of trouble and scarcity in the land.
was war, and the city from which we obtained our supplies was besieged
by an army from the "upper provinces" which had come down to break the
power and humble the pride of Buenos Ayres. Our elders missed their
tea and coffee most, but our anxiety was that we should soon be
without powder and shot. My brother constantly warned me not to be so
wasteful, although he fired half a dozen shots to my one without
getting more birds for the table. At length there came a day when
there was little shot left - just about enough to fill one shot-pouch -
and knowing it was his intention to have a day out, I sneaked into the
gun-room and loaded my fowling-piece just to have one shot more. He
was going to try for upland geese that day, and, as I had expected,
carried off all the shot.
After he had gone I took my gun, and being determined to make the most
of my one shot, refused to be tempted by any of the small parties of
duck I found in the pools near home, even when they appeared quite
tame. At length I encountered a good-sized flock of rosy-bills by the
side of a marshy stream about two miles from home. It was a still,
warm day in mid-winter, and the ducks were dozing on the green bank in
a beautiful crowd, and as the land near them was covered with long
grass, I saw it would be possible to get quite close to them.
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