She had saved his honour, with my poor help, and having saved it, was quit of us both. I pray the foreign earth may rest lightly on her. The walls, originally of rough granite, have had their asperities smoothed down by many layers of whitewash. The floor is of lime-ash, nicely sanded.
At the end of two minutes he rose, and was about to dust his knees, after his usual custom, but, becoming suddenly aware of the difference in cleanliness between Naomi's lime-ash and the floors of the various meeting-houses of his acquaintance, refrained. This little piece of delicacy did not escape Naomi, though her shoulders were still bent over the tub, to all seeming as resolutely as ever.
She wore no shoes inside her cottage, but went about in a pair of coarse worsted stockings on all days except the very rawest, when the chill of the lime-ash floor struck into her bones. "May I wait a few minutes till the weather lifts?" I asked. She smiled and seemed almost grateful. "You'm kindly welcome, be sure: that's if you don't mind the Vaccination."
Her sigh over this plethora of good fortune was interrupted by a knocking at the door, and the mothers trooped in, their clothes dripping pools of water on the sanded lime-ash. One or two of them, after exchanging greetings with their hostess, bade me Good-morning: others eyed me in silence as they took their seats round the wall.
A crazy, rusty blunderbuss hung over the fireplace. This, with a couple of rough chairs, a broken bacon-rack, and a small side-table, completed the furniture of the place. No; for as I sat down to make a meal off the remnants of supper, something lying on the lime-ash floor beneath this side-table caught my eye. I stepped forward and picked it up. It was a barrister's wig.
There's a hole in the roof of that new cottage of his that a man may put his Sunday hat dro'; and as for his old Woman, she'll do nought but sit 'pon the lime-ash floor wi' her tout-serve over her head, an' call en ivery name but what he was chris'ened." "Nothin' but neck-an'-crop would do for Tresidder, I'm told," said Old Zeb.
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