Page images

three o's winfree'd the wife, an' gat her out.

Fan we wis a' out, the vile tarveal fleeth o a coach-man began to yark the peer beasts fae, that you would hae hard the sough o’ilka thudd afore it came down: bạt a' this wou'd na? dec; sometimes the breast-woddies, an' sometimes the

theets brak, and the swingle-trees flew in finders, as gin they had been as freugh as kail-castacks; fyne ilka thing gaed widdersins about wi'us. At lait we, like fierdy follows, flew to't flaught-bred, thinkin to raise it in a widden-dream; bat faul we wis mistane, for we cou'd na budge it., At the last an' the lang, came up twa-three swankies ridin at the hand-gallop, garrin the dubs flee about them like speen-drift; an’they feein us tawin an' workin fae eident, fpeird fat wis the matter wi' us; for fan they faw us a'in a bourach they had fome allagust that some mishanter, had befa'n us. However they wou'd na take ony fittinniment wi' our business, till we speerd gin they wou'd lend us a hand to winfree our coach ; faul the lads wis nae vera driech a-drawin, bat lap in amo' the dubs in a hand-clap. I'm feer fome, o' them wat the sma end otheir moggan: fyne we laid our heads together, an'at it wi' virr; at lal, wi' great pechin an' granin, we gat it up with a pingle.

[ocr errors]

By this time it wis growin mark, an' about the time o' night that the boodies begin to gang, an' as I was in a swidder fat to dee, I wou'd na' gang into the coach agen, far fear I shou'd hae gotten my harns kleikit out, or some o' my banes broken or dung a smash; on the tither hand I did na’care to stilo upo my queets, far fear o'the briganers, an' mair attour, I did na’ care to bachle my new sheen. However the leiftenant an' I ventured on the rod : for ye ken well enough, we, bein wet, wou'd soon grow davert to stand or sit either in the cauld that time o’night : an’ we coud na’get a chiel to shaw us the gate, apuist we had kreilh'd his liv wi a fhillin. Bat be guid luck we antered browlies upo the rod, an' left the auld gabhy carly, an' the hudderen wife, to help the leeth. fu' leepit fleeth o'a coach-man to yoke his horse; for mony a time did he bid diel confound him frae neck to heel, or else sheet him fyth that he might na’ dee o' dwinin. O man, an ye had seen how laggert the auld-farren body wis afore he gat the runk carlen hame to our lodgin ; wae worth me bat ye wou'd hae hard the peer bursen belchs whoslin like a horse i' the strangle, a rigglenth e'er you came neer them; an'fyne the auld wife complain'd fae upon her banes, that you wou'd hae thought she had been in the dead-thraw


in a weaven after she came in. Guid feggs I wis Hey'd that the had taen the wytenon-fa, an'inlaķit afore sipper, far she shuddered a’ like a klippert in a cauld day.

There happen'd to be i’ the house we came to, lodge in, three young giglet hissies, an’they war like to pifh their houghs, fan they saw how blub, ber'd an' droukit the peer wary-draggels war, fan they came in; far ye wou'd hae thought that the yerd-meel had been upo' their face. There wis ane o' the queans, I believe, had casten a lagen; : gird. The tither wis a haave colour'd smeerless tapie, wi' a great haffick o' hair, hingin in twa. pennerts about her haffats; she looked fae alla, grugous, that a bodie wou'd nae card to meddle wi' her, apuist they had been hir’d to do't. Bat the thrid wis a cauller, fwack bit o' beef, as mirkie as maukin at the start, an'as wanto: as a (penin lamb. I believe she was a leel maiden, an' I can: na say bạt I had a kirnen wi' her, an'a kine oʻa harlin favour for her ; bat did na’ care for bein aur brouden'd upon her at first, for fear she shou'd fay that I was new-fangle. However I took her by the bought o'the gardy, an'gar'd her fit down by me; bat she bad me had aff my hands, far ! misgrugled a' her apron, an' isinaggld a' her cocker-nony. I canna say bat I wou'd hae been

[ocr errors]

content to hae a night o' her i' the kill-hole, altho I hae nae mair claise bat a spraing'd faikie, or a riach plaidie to hap our hurdies. Bat I had not set her well down by me, till in came sik a ran. gel o’gentles, an'a liethry o'hanziel flyps at their tail, that in a weaven the house wis gain like Lowren-fair; for you wou'd na' hard day nar door; fyne the queans 'vis in sik a firry-farry, that they began to misca ane anither like kailwives, an' you wou'd hae thought that they wou'd hae flown in ither's witters in a hand-clap. I wis anes gain to speer fat wis the matter, bat I saw a curn o'camla-like follows wi' them, an' I thought they war a fremt to me, an’fae they might aet ither, as Towy's hawks did, far ony thing that I car'd; far thinks I, an' I shou'd be sae gnib as middle wi' the thing that did nae brak my teas, fome o' the chiels might let a raught at me, an' gi’ me a clamehewit to snib me frae comin that gate agen. At last ane o' the hissies came an' Speerd at me, gin I wou'd hae a bit o’a roasted grycie, or a bit o' a bacon haam, (that is the hinder hurdies o' an auld fwine) for fipper; bat ye ken well enough that I wis never very brouden'd upo' swine's flesh, sin my mither gae me a forlethie o't, 'at maist hae gi'en me the gulfach; an’ sae I tauld her I rather hae the leomen of an auld ew, or a bit o’a dead nout. By this time,

it wis time to mak the meel-an-bree, an' deel about the castocks; bat diel a word o' that cou'd I hear i' this house. Well thinks I, an' this be the gate o't, I'll better gang to my bed as i'm bodden. Fan they saw that, they sent in some smachry or ither to me, an' a pint of their feuds, as sowr as ony bladoch, or wigg that comes out o' the reem-kirn; far they thou't ony thing inight fair a peer body like me: bat the leave o' the gentles wis drinkin wine a fouth, tho' I might nae fa that. Bat to mak an end o'a lang story, I made shift to mak a sipper o't, an' gaed to my bed like a guid bairn; an' the neist mornin they

afore the sky, an' I believe afore the levrick or yern-bliter began to sing, an' hurlid me awa to Portsmouth.

had me up

Gin ye like this piece o’my journal, I care nae by to sen you a weekly journal, in case I binna thrang; bat my fingers are fae davert wi' the cauld, that I canna write langer at this time; bat fan this comes to hand, I hope you'll be sae kine as let us hear frae you. Adieu dryly, we fall drink fan we meet.


« PreviousContinue »