Five weary days, each of them containing a month of torturing suspense, have since passed. Our lodging-place grew so unpleasant that we preferred wandering all day through the misty, muddy, smoky streets, taking refuge in the covered bazaars when it rained heavily. The gloom of every thing around us, entirely smothered down the lightness of heart which made us laugh over our embarrassments at Vienna. When at evening, the dull, leaden hue of the clouds seemed to make the air dark and cold and heavy, we walked beside the swollen and turbid Rhone, under an avenue of leafless trees, the damp soil chilling our feet and striking a numbness through our frames, and then I knew what those must feel who have no hope in their destitution, and not a friend in all the great world, who is not wretched as themselves. I prize the lesson, though the price of it is hard.
“This morning,” I said to B——, “will terminate our suspense.” I felt cheerful in spite of myself; and this was like a presentiment of coming good luck. To pass the time till the mail arrived we climbed to the chapel of Fourvieres, whose walls are covered with votive offerings to a miraculous picture of the Virgin. But at the precise hour we were at the Post Office. What an intensity of suspense can be felt in that minute, while the clerk is looking over the letters! And what a lightning-like shock of joy when it did come, and was opened with eager, trembling hands, revealing the relief we had almost despaired of! The city did not seem less gloomy, for that was impossible, but the faces of the crowd which had appeared cold and suspicious, were now kind and cheerful. we came home to our lodgings with changed feelings, and Madame Ferrand must have seen the joy in our faces, for she greeted us with an unusual smile.
We leave to-morrow morning for Chalons. I do not feel disposed to describe Lyons particularly, although I have become intimately acquainted with every part of it, from Presqu’ isle Perrache to Croix Rousse. I know the contents of every shop in the Bazaar, and the passage of the Hotel Dieu—the title of every volume in the bookstores in the Place Belcour—and the countenance of every boot-block and apple-woman on the Quais on both sides of the river. I have walked up the Saone to Pierre Seise—down the Rhone to his muddy marriage—climbed the Heights of Fourvieres, and promenaded in the Cours Napoleon! Why, men have been presented with the freedom of cities, when they have had far less cause for such an honor than this!
TRAVELING IN BURGUNDY—THE MISERIES OF A COUNTRY DILIGENCE.