As I look back now I can see that I was a perfect little aristocrat.
My mother rarely went to anyone’s house, but she did sewing, and there were a great many ladies coming to our cottage.
My mother dressed me very neatly, and I developed that pride which well-dressed boys generally have.
She was careful about my associates, and I myself was quite particular.
I have worn that gold piece around my neck the greater part of my life, and still possess it, but more than once I have wished that some other way had been found of attaching it to me besides putting a hole through it.
On the day after the coin was put around my neck my mother and I started on what seemed to me an endless journey.
I know, too, that at least once each month she received a letter; I used to watch for the postman, get the letter, and run to her with it; whether she was busy or not she would take it and instantly thrust it into her bosom. I knew later that these letters contained money and, what was to her, more than money.
As busy as she generally was she, however, found time to teach me my letters and figures and how to spell a number of easy words.
I can see in this half vision a little house,—I am quite sure it was not a large one;—I can remember that flowers grew in the front yard, and that around each bed of flowers was a hedge of vari-colored glass bottles stuck in the ground neck down.
I remember that once, while playing around in the sand, I became curious to know whether or not the bottles grew as the flowers did, and I proceeded to dig them up to find out; the investigation brought me a terrific spanking which indelibly fixed the incident in my mind.