Elsie at the World's Fair eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 155 pages of information about Elsie at the World's Fair.

The camel paused for a moment, then swayed back and forth sideways; the girl screamed again, but the camel was only untangling his legs, and the next instant settled himself on them in a way that threw his riders backward so that they would have fallen off behind but for their firm grasp of the ropes.

But now the camel was fairly upon his four feet, and slowly turning round with a wobbling motion like a boat caught in a trough of waves; the riders had recovered from their fright, and were both laughing.  All this time the crowd had been standing round watching the two, and laughing and tittering, for, risky as the whole proceeding looked, there was really very little, if any, danger.

CHAPTER XIII.

“Let us go now to the Guatemala Building,” said Harold as they left Cairo Street.  “I should like you all to see the grotto with its specimens of the fauna of the country, among which is a remarkable bird called the gavila, which sings the half-hours with unvarying regularity, showing itself as correct as a sundial, and almost as useful as a government observatory.”

“Is it sure to wake and sing every half-hour in the night, uncle?” asked little Elsie.

“Oh, no!  It is only a day clock; stops attending to the business at sundown and begins again in the morning.”

They were interested in the strange bird; the older people in a map also, showing the locations of the principal towns and railways, and in the exhibit, in an open court and about a fountain, of the flora of the country; also some pictures hung about the balcony, showing the principal places in the city of Guatemala and other large towns.

“I feel a particular interest in Korea just at present,” remarked Grandma Elsie as they left the Guatemalan Building, “and if entirely agreeable to the rest of you, I should like, now, to look at their exhibit in the Manufacturers’ Building.”

“Yes, mother; it is in the southwestern part,” returned Harold, leading the way.  “The booth is small, but crowded with exhibits.  The Korean Royal Commissioner—­with the singular name of Jeung Kiung Wow—­has charge of it.

“That is a funny name, uncle,” laughed Ned.

“And yet our names may have just as funny a sound to him,” Violet said, smiling down at her little son.

When they reached the Korean booth the first thing that attracted their attention was the flag hanging from it.  The captain was able to explain its design, and did so, the others listening with interest.

“It represents the male and female elements of nature,” he said.  “You see it is blue and yellow:  the blue represents the heavenly, or male element, the yellow the earthly, or female.  You see the heavens across the eastern sea and they seem to lap over and embrace the earth, while the earth to landward rises in lofty mountains and folds the heavens in its embrace, so making a harmonious whole.  The four characters around the central figure represent the four points of the compass.”

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Elsie at the World's Fair from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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