Author: Joseph C. Lincoln
Release Date: January, 2004 [EBook #4905] [Yes, we are more than one year ahead of schedule] [This file was first posted on March 24, 2002]
Character set encoding: ASCII
*** Start of the project gutenberg EBOOK, Galusha the magnificent ***
This etext was produced by Don Lainson.
GALUSHA THE MAGNIFICENT
Mr. Horatio Pulcifer was on his way home. It was half-past five of a foggy, gray afternoon in early October; it had rained the previous day and a part of the day before that and it looked extremely likely to rain again at any moment. The road between Wellmouth Centre, the village in which Mr. Pulcifer had been spending the afternoon, and East Wellmouth, the community which he honored with his residence, was wet and sloppy; there were little puddles in the hollows of the macadam and the ruts and depressions in the sand on either side were miniature lakes. The groves of pitch pines and the bare, brown fields and knolls dimly seen through the fog looked moist and forsaken and dismal. There were no houses in sight; along the East Wellmouth road there are few dwellings, for no one but a misanthrope or a hermit would select that particular section as a place in which to live. Night was coming on and, to accent the loneliness, from somewhere in the dusky dimness a great foghorn groaned at intervals.
It was a sad and deserted outlook, that from the seat of Mr. Pulcifer’s “flivver” as it bounced and squeaked and rattled and splashed its way along. But Mr. Pulcifer himself was not sad, at least his appearance certainly was not. Swinging jauntily, if a trifle ponderously, with the roll of the little car, his clutch upon the steering wheel expressed serene confidence and his manner self-satisfaction quite as serene. His plaid cap was tilted carelessly down toward his right ear, the tilt being balanced by the upward cock of his cigar toward his left ear. The light-colored topcoat with the soiled collar was open sufficiently at the throat to show its wearer’s chins and a tasty section of tie and cameo scarf-pin below them. And from the corner of Mr. Pulcifer’s mouth opposite that occupied by the cigar came the words and some of the tune of a song which had been the hit of a “Follies” show two seasons before. No, there was nothing dismal or gloomy in Mr. Horatio Pulcifer’s appearance as he piloted his automobile toward home at the close of that October afternoon.