But the small string of tiny fish wuz all he ketched out of the deep waters, he didn’t ketch any cheerfulness or happiness for himself or me, only disappintment and shagrin for I felt if I didn’t use all my tack mebby the meetin’ house would try to set down on him. Two deacons! the very idee on’t!
But I kep’ mum and dressed the fish myself and fried ’em in butter, only hopin’ I wouldn’t lose ’em in the fryin’ pan, but Josiah didn’t seem to relish ’em no better than he would side pork, and agin I felt baffled, and rememberin’ the fruit can, a element of guilt also mingled with the baffle. Biled vittles with a bag puddin’ which he loved almost to idolatry I put before him in vain; I petted him; I called him “dear Josiah” repeatedly; I fairly pompeyed him, but no change could I see, I felt turrible.
He still kep’ a runnin’ down and I didn’t know when he would stop runnin’ and I shuddered to think where he might run to. At last in spite of Josiah’s onwillingness I sent for Doctor Bombus. He come and took his wrist in hisen and Josiah sez kinder mad actin’: “What do you want to feel of my polt for? My polt beats all right!”
He looked at his tongue, Josiah stickin’ it out as if he wuz makin’ a face at him. He inquired about symptoms, all of which Josiah answered snappishly, the examination over, the doctor walked the floor back and forth with one hand under his coat tail and the other in his breast in deep thought and then said:
“My diagnosis denotes no diametrical and insurmountable difficulties but I would recommend a temporary transition or in other words a change of climate.”
“Change of climate!” muttered Josiah, “I guess anybody that lives in this state gits changes enough, from torrid to zero in twenty-four hours lots of times—I’d like to know where you wintered!”
“Nevertheless and notwithstanding,” sez Doctor Bombus, blandly ignoring Josiah’s muttering impatience, “I can but recapitulate my former prescription, a temporary translation from surrounding environment.”
And he gathered up his saddle bags and went out, bagoning me out into the hall as he did so. And then he advised me to take him to the St. Louis Exposition.
But I sez, “I dassent, I’m afraid it would open his woonds afresh, he knowed all the circumstances that had caused his sickness.” But he wuz a Homeopath and believed in takin’ the same kind of medicine backward and forward as it were, sunthin’ as the poem runs:
Tobacco hic when you’re well will make you sick,
Tobacco hic will make you well when you’re sick.
I told him I thought it wuz a hazardous undertakin’, and I hardly dast, but he informed me in words more’n two inches long that he could do nothing more for him, and if I didn’t foller his advice it would be at my own peril.
I felt turrible. What wuz I to do to do right? How wuz I to handle this enormous prescription, St. Louis Exposition, and give it in proper doses to the beloved patient? I knowed the size of the mind I had to deal with, I knowed the size of the medicine I wuz told to deal out to that mind.