This Business of Staring
As children we were told not to stare; it was held an unpardonable sin or almost. Don_t act, says my mother, as if you had never seen anybody. Now as a fact we children had never seen anybody and there is nothing we loved more to do than just to stare, to stare for one_s heart_s content, to stare unaffectedly and continuously, to stare without interruption and without distraction, to stare without anyone around, any grown-up to say, _Don_t stare,_ or what was worse, _quit staring,_ just where one had found a perfectly fine objective for staring. To be sure there was some chance to stare in church _ but church-goers had by this become dull and uninteresting.
-Grandpa Scoggins was quite a
(cont. p. 182)
The Blue Gum Epidemic
In the late seventies every one that could planted Blue Gum seedlings
-everywhere over the country-especially on poor lands. There was not much planting in the upper valley. The Williams grove (see p. 110 ante) which caught fire in the summer, made says Frank Dickie, a column of fire half-a-mile high. Probably the flames did not go more than 1/4 mile high, but doubtless it was a fire-column a half-mile high. The day was calm and the air rushed in equally from every side. The litter, thins, Dickie, had never been cleared out in his memory and possibly not for forty years. The trees themselves were near 100 feet high and the conditions of summer dryness were just right for a real bonfire. Fire was scattered on neighbor_s