Autumn, And The Plain As Far As One Could See On Every Side A Moist
Brilliant Green, With A Crystal Blue Sky Above, Over Which Floated
Shining White Clouds.
The healthy glad feeling lasted through my ride
and for a day or two after, during which I revisited my favourite
haunts in the grounds, rejoicing to be with my beloved birds and trees
Then the hateful town feeling of lassitude returned on me and all my
vigour was gone, all pleasure in life ended. Thereafter for a
fortnight I spent the time moping about the house; then there was a
spell of frosty weather with a bleak cutting wind to tell us that it
was winter, which even in those latitudes can be very cold. One day
after early dinner my mother and sisters went in the carriage to pay a
visit to a neighbouring estancia, and my brothers being out or absent
from home I was left alone. The verandah appeared to me the warmest
place I could find, as the sun shone on it warm and bright, and there
I settled down on a chair placed against the wall at the side of a
heap of sacks of meal or something which had been left there, and
formed a nice shelter from the wind.
The house was strangely quiet, and the westering sun shining full on
me made me feel quite comfortable, and in a little while I fell
asleep. The sun set and it grew bitterly cold, but I did not wake, and
when my mother returned and inquired for me I could not be found.
Finally the whole household turned out with lanterns and searched for
me up and down through the plantation, and the hunt was still going on
when, about ten o'clock at night, some one hurrying along the verandah
stumbled on me in my sheltered corner by the sacks, still in my chair
but unconscious and in a burning fever.
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