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I delight to dive down down; to plunge after the startled trout, as an otter does; and then to get amongst those cool, fragrant reeds and bulrushes, or that forest of emerald weed which one sometimes finds waving under clear rivers. Man! man! could you live but an hour of my life you would know how horrible a thing it is to die!"

And the little children loved Pan for that was his name because he told them such beautiful stories and played on a set of pipes which he had made from the reeds which grew by the river. Every evening, when it was time for the sun to go to sleep and all the little stars to wake up, Pan would take his pipes, go down to the river side, and play all the songs he knew.

"Poor souls, their saints may save them from suffocation; and as for me, on my faith, if it were not that Dame Joanna was the very best creature on two legs, and if I had not promised her to stick to the master, I would jump into the water and try the hospitality of the flamingoes and storks in the reeds! We must learn to condescend!"

"Look out 'ware heads!" our leader would call back at every turn, as our way shrank to a black passage under a house bestriding the street, or a caravan of donkeys laden with obstructive reeds or branches of dates made the passers-by flatten themselves against the walls.

Thus, the double series of reeds with their shafts crossing on the walls will prevent any chipping or cracking from taking place. Having spoken of the method by which stucco work should be done in dry situations, I shall next explain how the polished finish is to be accomplished in places that are damp, in such a way that it can last without defects.

"I happened to be travelling alone for reasons on the northern frontier. I crossed the River Yaguaron into Brazilian territory, and for a whole day rode through a great marshy plain, where the reeds were dead and yellow, and the water shrunk into muddy pools. It was a place to make a man grow weary of life.

After an hour or so, we turned off the path and trod down a road for ourselves through the reeds, and came to jungle of trees and undergrowth, with heavy foliaged creepers growing up the trees and from branch to branch, and air roots hanging from aloft, straight as bell ropes up and down into creeks, below undergrowth and out into the open again; the elephant being judge of where the ground would bear us, gingerly putting out its great tender feet, sinking deep into mud, making us cling on to the back stays of the pad, then dragging its feet out of the soft mud with a loud sucking sound, leaving great holes slowly filling up with black water.

Here they reared immense herds of cattle, which subsisted exclusively upon the coarse grass and reeds which grew abundantly among the tall, long-leafed pine, and along the small creeks and branches numerous in this section. Through these almost interminable pine-forests the deer were abundant, and the canebrakes full of bears.

Oblonsky aimed deliberately at another, still flying low in the reeds, and together with the report of the shot, that snipe too fell, and it could be seen fluttering out where the sedge had been cut, its unhurt wing showing white beneath.

He rose to the surface and tried to grasp the reeds and the rushes that grew along the water's edge close under the bank, but the stream was so strong that it tore them out of his hands. 'O my! gasped poor Toad, 'if ever I steal a motor-car again! If ever I sing another conceited song' then down he went, and came up breathless and spluttering.