“All right, you can do as you choose,” said Pee-wee; “only I’m just telling you. There’s always better fishing on the east side of an island because that’s what Uncle Jeb up at Temple Camp said and he knows—he knows—”
“He knows all the fish personally,” said Charlie Norris.
“You think you’re smart, don’t you?” thundered Pee-wee. “There’s a better spring over there than there is here and then besides, the rain will drain out better on account of the ground being higher, because I know all about camping, you can ask my scoutmaster. It won’t be so cold over there at night, either; you see. You move the tents over there, gee whiz, Arabs move their tents every day, and look at gypsies, they keep moving all the time.”
“It will be a scout movement,” said Scoutmaster Safety First, rather impressed with Pee-wee’s arguments.
“I’m game for anything,” said Scoutmaster Ned. “Variety is the spice of life. The housing situation—”
“I know all about the housing situation,” said Pee-wee; “my father owns a house and the water’s calmer on the east side of an island, because I can prove it by the Pacific Ocean.”
“The Pacific Ocean is west of here,” said Scoutmaster Ned. “At least it was when I went to school. I dare say it’s there yet. Put another log on the fire, Nick. How about it, Pete? Where’s the Pacific Ocean? I’ll leave it to Pete.”
“It’s in the school geography,” Pee-wee shouted from the other side of the camp-fire, “and it’s on the east of China. You have to know where you’re at before you can tell where it is and there’s better fishing in China than there is here, because in Japan they catch sardines! Temple Camp is on the east side of Black Lake, and anyway there’s a dandy place over there for tents and there are a lot of birds’ nests and there’s a better spring and you don’t have to carry water so far and you always spill a lot of it and there are a couple of pine trees and the leaves don’t fall off them, because there aren’t any leaves and leaves keep the rain and wind off but not if there aren’t any and these trees are getting bare—”
“Enough! Enough!” said Scoutmaster Ned, rising, and sticking his fingers into his ears. “We ask for an armistice. All we ask for is three hours’ time in which to move—”
“I’ll fix it,” vociferated Pee-wee.
“We surrender to the world’s greatest fixer,” said Scoutmaster Ned. “The high authority from Temple Camp—”
“He isn’t so high!”
“Size don’t count,” roared Pee-wee.
“Shall be followed,” said Scoutmaster Ned. “To-morrow morning we’ll move to the east side of the island in view of the thriving metropolis of East Ketchem. Its four lights will cheer us at night. This spilling of water must be stopped. Pretty soon the island will be under water and then where will we be?”