Example in this ebookIAunt Cal“But this aunt of yours, Sandy, what’s she like?” Eve asked. She was parked on the couch in my room. Hattie May Lewis, my roommate, stood before the mirror, trying to arrange her straight, straw-colored hair into aMoreExample in this ebookIAunt Cal“But this aunt of yours, Sandy, what’s she like?” Eve asked.
She was parked on the couch in my room. Hattie May Lewis, my roommate, stood before the mirror, trying to arrange her straight, straw-colored hair into a windblown bob. It was the week before the closing of school for the summer vacation and we were all looking ahead, in one way or another, to what the next three months held in store for us.“Well,” I considered, “I don’t honestly know much about Aunt Cal except the little Dad has told me.
She’s an aunt by marriage, you know. She married my mother’s brother, my Uncle Tom Poole, he was. They went West to live for a time, but after Uncle Tom died she came back to Fishers Haven. She’s lived alone there ever since.”“Narrow!” ejaculated Hattie May, “and very likely queer besides! You can depend upon it. I know how old women get who live alone in the country.” Saying what she thought about people, whether they were present or not, was part of what Hattie May called her code of speaking the truth.“Well, perhaps,” I admitted. “But she’s not so very old.” I felt slightly annoyed with Hattie May and wished she would go downstairs.
I was anxious for a very special reason to make Aunt Cal seem attractive to the girl on the couch. For though Hattie May had been my roommate this first year at school, it was Eve Fordyce’s opinions on most subjects which had come to matter.But Hattie May showed no inclination to depart, so I went on. “Perhaps you’d like to hear what Dad says about her,” I suggested. I reached into a pigeon-hole in my desk and took out a thin paper envelope with a foreign stamp.
My father is a missionary in China, you see, and that’s why the long vacation didn’t mean to me quite what it did to the other girls. It meant a summer spent with some one of a rather scattered collection of relatives, none of whom I remembered in the least. This summer it was to mean Aunt Cal.“Oh, yes- let’s hear it.” Eve smiled encouragingly from the cushions.
I suppose she saw how in earnest I was.“Your Aunt Calliope,” Dad wrote, “is in many ways a remarkable woman and I feel that you cannot but profit by her acquaintance. It is, however, not entirely on your own account that I have suggested this visit. I am hoping that she in turn may reap some benefit from your stay with her. I must confess that the occasional letters which we have had from her within the last few years have reflected a certain melancholy trend of thought which has given me some concern.
So I am hoping, my dear daughter, that you will bring her something of your own happy——”“Well, that’s about all,” I broke off because of that sudden chokiness that comes over me still at times, even though ten whole months have gone by since I said good-bye to Mother and Dad on the dock at Shanghai.“What’d I tell you!” exclaimed Hattie May triumphantly. “Queer! Queer and brooding! Honest, Sandy, I can’t say I envy you your summer.”“Oh, I don’t know,” Eve drawled.
“I think she sounds rather interesting. And I don’t think she necessarily has to be narrow because she’s lived in a New England village most of her life. As for being queer—well, everybody is a little, aren’t they?”I threw her a grateful glance. “Maybe you’d like to hear her letter, too,” I said on a sudden impulse. “It just came today. Of course it doesn’t say much,” I added, a little doubtful, on second thought, of the wisdom of revealing Aunt Cal any further with Hattie May in the room.