HOW A TRIP TO A WATERING-PLACE SAILS THROUGH A CALCULATION
[Elsie and her mother go to spend a week at the Gurnigel, a fashionable resort, leaving a heavenly peace behind them. Elsie attracts extraordinary attention with her clothes, and is too stupid to understand that she is being ridiculed to her face. At the same time her hundred thousand francs dowry are not to be sneezed at, and these lure a bird of prey in the shape of a cotton-dealer, who takes mother and daughter off for a drive, and, making good use of his opportunity, carries his point by storm. Elsie is in the seventh heaven, her mother not quite so overjoyed.]
OF INWARD CONFLICTS, WHICH ARE TO BE ENDED BY AN ENGAGEMENT
[Joggeli will not hear to the affair, fearing to lose Uli. Freneli chides Elsie for breaking her promise to Uli, and the latter is at first completely stunned, overwhelmed with chagrin, rage, and disappointment. He is only saved from some act of rash folly by Freneli, who counsels him to put the mockers off the track by pretending utter indifference. The cotton-dealer loses no time in coming in state to secure his prize; Joggeli is quite overcome by his smooth tongue, but requests a fortnight for deliberation with his son and others.]
OF SUBSEQUENT EMBARRASSMENTS WHICH RESULT FROM THE ENGAGEMENT
[Uli’s behavior staggers the gossips, but his assumed indifference soon becomes genuine; none the less, he is resolved to give up his place at Christmas. Johannes and Trinette are both beside themselves; the reports about the prospective son-in-law are conflicting and doubtful. But Elsie is so wild, and the cotton-dealer so persuasive, that the parents finally give reluctant consent to the marriage. Elsie constantly accuses Freneli of flirting with her husband, who is not insensible to Freneli’s beauty and charm; she resolves to leave Slough Farm also, since Elsie is no longer to be controlled and Freneli is subjected to her unbridled temper. The old mistress is in utter consternation at the imminent loss of her two best helpers, Uli and Freneli; and new sorrow comes to her through the son-in-law, who guts the house of its stores on pretense of putting the money out at interest, and keeps a hawk’s eye on all her housekeeping.]
OF ANOTHER TRIP, WHICH DOES NOT DESTROY A CALCULATION, BUT UNEXPECTEDLY CONCLUDES ONE
ALL this weighed on the good mother’s mind, and when she reflected that Uli and Freneli would both leave besides, that her son-in-law would then get the reins wholly into his hands, that she would have to run the house on nothing, be stingy to the poor, and be held accountable for every cup of flour and for every cake she baked, such a feeling of misery came over her that she had to sit down and cry, shedding tears enough to wash her hands in, until even Joggeli came out and told her not to cry so—that everybody would hear her and would wonder what was the matter.