Father is coming to-morrow! I am so excited and happy that to-day, after I was safely out of Twickenham Town and there was no one to see me, I stood up on Skylark’s back and held the bridle with one hand and waved the other in the air; and then I tried standing on one foot with the other one out, but I came near losing my balance and just did catch myself in time. Seeing a woman coming down the road in a buggy, with a baby in her lap, I got back in place before she saw what I was doing, but I needn’t have done it, for it was just Mrs. Pettigrew, and she wouldn’t have cared whether it was my head or my heels which were on the horse. She has eleven children and no husband to speak of, and what people do or don’t do doesn’t bother her. We stopped for a little talk and she told me about the roof leaking and the pig eating the baby’s bonnet which Miss Katie Spain had given it last Christmas, and which was too small for its head, but was all it had; and that a kettle of soft soap had fallen off the stove and burned two toes of Sammy, the next to the youngest boy, and she would still be telling me things, but I told her Father was coming and I had to attend to something, and so she drove on.
I did have something to attend to, but I didn’t attend right away, for the day was so wonderful I couldn’t go in for a long time. The sunshine looked as if it had been washed and ironed, it was so clear and clean and crisp, and the wind in the trees said all sorts of lovely things to me, and I made up my mind that, no matter what happened in life, I was always going to remember that warm and sweet and sunny things are sure to come again, if at times they seem dead and buried, and that I would try not to see the cranks and queernesses of people as much as I was by nature inclined to do; and then I went right back to Miss Susanna’s, and before I knew it I had said something I oughtn’t, and to Mr. Willie Prince.