Some of us were sent to the end of Long Island, some to Florida to haul crackers and northern tourists, some, like myself, to the uttermost ends of the earth. But the worst fate was that of those who stayed. They were sold to a department store, and kept to run between its door and a Third Avenue El. station, to be packed to bursting with fat women and squalling children from the Bronx.
There were about seventy-five tourists at the hotel mainly ladies and little children and they gave us an admiring welcome which paid us for all our privations and sufferings. The ascent had been made, and the names and dates now stand recorded on a stone monument there to prove it to all future tourists.
Meanwhile Cigarette was feasting with the officers of the regiment. The dinner was the best that the camp-scullions could furnish in honor of the two or three illustrious tourists who were on a visit to the headquarters of the Algerian Army; and the Little One, the heroine of Zaraila, and the toast of every mess throughout Algeria, was as indispensable as the champagnes.
Probably most people would blame me for not taking you to Windsor or Hampton Court, on your first trip out of town. Both those places are charming, but I wanted to show you, first of all, this dear little corner of Kent. All tourists flock to Windsor and Hampton Court, but a great many do not know about this tiny, out-of-the-way village, with which I fell in love years ago.
At the little town of Vevey, in Switzerland, there is a particularly comfortable hotel. There are, indeed, many hotels, for the entertainment of tourists is the business of the place, which, as many travelers will remember, is seated upon the edge of a remarkably blue lake a lake that it behooves every tourist to visit.
The centipede region cleared, however, some finer branches were reached, and perched on them, the tourists waited for a high wind, which swung them up and down for a time, and then they were suddenly jerked in to the heavens. Some curious stories are told about the sun. A woman called Mangamangai became pregnant by looking at the rising sun. Her son grew and was named "Child of the Sun."
She went on to explain, whilst the doctors occupied themselves with their gruesome task, and Vivie was being persuaded to take some nourishment, that her great grandfather had been a soldier servant who had married a Belgian woman and settled down on the site of this very shop a hundred years ago. He and his wife had even then made a specialty of tea for English tourists.
They did not go high up, for they wanted to be near earth when an avalanche would occur, so that near-view pictures could be secured. Occasionally they saw parties of mountain climbers ascending some celebrated peak, and for want of something better to photograph, Tom "snapped" the tourists.
This region, so largely of American manufacture, like other sections of San Francisco's Chinatown, was displayed, by means of Chinatown guides for pay to tourists, who were led to believe that they were looking upon Chinese views of life. The truth is, as we have shown in previous chapters, a display of vice is practically unknown in regions of China uninfluenced by Western civilization.
And most interesting to us paleface women what of their love affairs? Most of you have seen the stolid squaw, wrapped in a soiled blanket, silently offering her wares to tourists throughout the Southwest. Does it seem strange to you that this same stoical creature is just bubbling over with femininity?