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exceptions, good men and true; every farthing honestly and fairly earned by sheer hard work of a trying, unhealthy character, A study of their selfdenying lives is far more edifying and wholesome than those of the aimless pleasure-seekers you have seen but yesterday, believe me. Do you not think so ?”
Trixie could not be quite certain about it.
“They did not look nearly so well or happy," showing how very much more she had yet to learn before she could with safety go down below again.
Dot, on the other hand, looked very earnest, and said thoughtfully,
" True, true. It is well indeed to see this contrast, and to be reminded thereby of serious matters ;" for which she was rewarded by a caress from Great-heart.
It would be wearisome, perhaps, to follow these three step by step over ground so many of you know, no doubt, by heart, or try to record all they saw on that memorable day. Suffice to say, that the mentor forgot to show his little ones nothing he thought would be of service in furthering his object of healthy comment and instruction. very careful to impress upon them that there was much they did not see hidden away in the background. To illustrate this they went up several
quaint courts and alleys, stumbling across many odd things, which indeed Great-heart, although he said he must have passed them by scores of times, had failed to notice.
About two o'clock they had their lunch, quite an orthodox city one, at the funniest chop-house you ever saw, up an alley, where everything that was eaten came from off the gridiron, presided over by a bustling, red-faced man "cook," with a tall, white, clown-like hat, made of linen, his coat and apron being of the same material. He was evidently quite a well-known personage, as the diners there who streamed in or out, and appeared mostly “regulars,” had all a friendly word for him, especially the sporting ones, in white hats with black bands, who tried to coax him into confidence respecting the latest “tip ;” but he was, as a rule, too busy to part with much information. Surely he made quite a little fortune that morning, as nearly everybody gave him a copper or two at parting. They were all dropped down into a capacious side-pocket of his coat. He must have felt quite top-heavy by the time the evening came round, and he put on his less theatrical attire, and went home to his supper in Mile End or Stratford. Every now and then he raked the fire below with a long iron spike, when the flames leapt up with a lurid glare, and made the chops and steaks cooking above frizzle and spit more than ever. Trixie and Dot were much amused with all this, as well as at the clever way the man managed his little army of dinners, always turning each over in due order and regularity, so that all were done to a nicety, and nobody grumbled. When ready, the waiters, men in evening costume, with spotless white ties and shirt-fronts, were called up. They carried the meat off on tin plates, all hot and inviting, to the hungry customers, who sat in the wooden pens or boxes.
But in the case of our party, cook actually “served up" himself, a thing he had not been known to do for years ; but he rarely had dear little maidens to dine with him in that essentially business quarter. It is needless to say that Great-heart liberally rewarded him for his gallantry.
Thus refreshed, they turned out of the alley into a street almost entirely devoted to banking, where there were very few shops. Here Great-heart noted many old faces he had not seen for years, but which he said looked little altered. They belonged mostly to the poorest classes, who plied a variety of trades for bread. There was a man up a court who had a portable stock of goods, that he carried away every evening, strapped up in boxes,—razors, scissors, carving-knives, and other steel goods, all ranged out on a railing,— quite an attractive display. (Perhaps, however, he was hardly one of the class mentioned, being quite a “swell” in his way.) But the same old lady sat outside the offices of an insurance company, and sold envelope and paper cases, and wash-leather bags to put money into. The same old man perambulated the pavement with reiterated cry of "wice and hanvil, a shillin,' a shillin'!” Further down, another, who had for years been recognised as a vendor of “a set of ivory cribbage pegs, tuppence a set,” was still calling out the old familiar strain. The withered old party in white apron, whose “beat” lay between a famous gunpowder maker's office and an equally renowned banking house, was there, as he had been since Great-heart could bear in his mind, ready to call you a cab, or, if trade were dull, to sit down upon his wooden stool, his back against the wall, and rest. The crafty costermonger, with his barrow-load of foreign fruit (all the bad parts done up in pink paper), was still attempting to elude the vigilance of the policeman on duty by stopping in the roadway and not "moving on,” as so often reminded it was his province to do. The people on the paths, too, had the same "cut” about them, as they hurried by in all directions after business : eager, earnest faces, that paid little heed to the familiar sights around. Great-heart saw many
them last, in that long, endless struggle after money. He told the little ones to bear in mind that what had brought the sharp, hungry look into so many of them, had been that restless craving after more. Had they been satisfied with what they had got, they might have looked young and happy still. But no; they could not ; they knew not the blessed solace of content.
The same scene further on, along another narrow street they crossed over to an endless stream of rushing humanity, of all degrees and forms of business society, all busy and eager. Then they got to a famous lane leading from the right, and which Great-heart wished them to turn down.
It was a nest of merchants' and brokers' offices, the proprietors thereof standing about it in knots, or hurrying swiftly along, saluting friends as they passed. This was the place where a simple conversation in the street, or a small “sample” of something displayed in the palm of the hand, led to the transfer from one to another of hundreds, nay thousands of tons of every describable species of merchandise, chiefly such things as tea, coffee, sugar, rice, spices of all descriptions, ivory, hemp, flax, cotton, with endless others. Most of those forming the groups held something in their hands, papers, or catalogues of sales ; and many quite smart people were so