“Indeed I shall put things in it,” said Patty. “I’m a great believer in putting things in their right places, and I shall think of you, Lorraine, whenever I’m trying to get the things out of these dinky little pockets, and probably not succeeding very well.”
“This is my gift,” said Adelaide Hart; “it isn’t very elaborate, but I made it all myself, and that means a good deal from me.”
Patty opened the parcel and found a piece of cretonne about a yard square, neatly hemmed along each of the four sides, and having a tape loop sewed on each corner.
“It’s perfectly beautiful,” said Patty, “and I never saw more exquisite needlework; but would you mind telling me what it is for? It can’t be a handkerchief, but I don’t know of anything else that’s exactly square.”
“How ignorant you are,” said Adelaide with pretended superiority. “That, my inexperienced friend, is a wrap for your best hat.”
“Oh,” said Patty, not much enlightened.
“You see,” Adelaide kindly went on to explain, “as soon as you get on board your steamer you take off your best hat and put it exactly in the middle of this square, having first spread the square out smoothly on the bed or somewhere. Then you take up these four corners by the loops and hang the whole thing on the highest hook in your stateroom. Thus, you see, your best hat is carried safely across; it is not jammed or crushed, and it is protected from dust.”
“I see,” said Patty gravely; “and I suppose the dust is something awful on an ocean steamer.”
The laugh seemed to be on Adelaide at this, but she joined in it and prophesied that when Patty returned she would confess that that gift had proved the most useful of all.
Clementine Morse brought a large post-card album which she had filled with views of New York City.
“I know you will be homesick before you’re out of sight of land,” she said; “but if you’re not you ought to be, and I hope these pictures will make you so. When you look at this highly colored representation of Grant’s tomb and realise that it is but a few miles from your own long-lost hearthstone, I’m sure you will feel qualms of patriotism—or something.”
“I think very likely,” said Patty, laughing. “But, Clementine, how many trunks do you suppose I shall need to hold my farewell gifts? This album will take up considerable space.”
“I know it,” said Clementine, “but you needn’t put it in your trunk. You can carry it on board in your hand, and then when you go ashore you can carry it in your hand. I don’t believe they will charge you duty on it, especially as it will probably be nearly worn out by that time.”
“I’m sure it will,” said Patty, “not only from my own constant use of it, but I know everybody on board will want to borrow it and enjoy these works of art.”
“Yes,” agreed Clementine; “and then, Patty, when you’re in Paris you can throw away all these New York cards and fill it up with Paris views and bring it home and give it back to me.”