THE RETURN HOME
A few days after this conversation, a large fox came, in the evening, into Mr. Harvey's barn yard; but as a dog belonging to one of the farmers was near, he was driven off before he could catch any of the chickens. The boys heard the noise, and ran down. They saw the fox running very fast away, while the dog, which could not follow through the hole under the fence, had gone round the barn, to get into the field. Samuel and his cousins chased the fox as far as they could see it, and then returned to the barn yard to hunt for more. But none could be found, and they walked up to the house.
At last the month of August rolled around, and the holidays drew toward a close. I have told you only about a few things that Samuel saw in his walks around the country with his cousins; but you perceive that he enjoyed himself very much. He also learned a great deal. I hope, children, that you have also learned something by reading this book. Samuel tried to remember all that his uncle and cousins told him, and often thought of it when he was by himself. It would be well if you would do the same. Have you a little brother, or sister? See if you can tell it what Mr. Harvey told Samuel about bats, locusts, rivers, the rain, and sloths. You may also tell the story of Alice Gray, and old Jack the Soldier.
You remember that Samuel was to go home at the end of August. Thomas and John looked very sorrowful as the time drew near; for they loved their cousin very much, and wished that he could stay with them altogether. On the last evening, Mr. Harvey took all the boys to a branch of the river about seven miles off, to enjoy a sail in a boat, on the water. It was a beautiful moonlight evening, and they rode to the place in a carriage. Samuel thought that the sight of the water, sparkling in the moon-beams, and stretching away so wide and still, with the dark bushes on each side, was the finest thing he had yet seen. When they were in the middle of the stream, and gliding slowly down it, Mr. Harvey and his sons joined in singing some simple song; and as they had brought plenty of food with them, they stayed on the water until midnight.
Next morning, Samuel started for town, at nine o'clock. He had received many beautiful and useful things from his cousins, and as he pressed their hands, and again and again, bade them good bye, he felt how much he would miss their company when he would be in the city. But they promised to write to each other, and as often as they could, send presents from one to another. Then the horses trotted rapidly down the road, and Mr. Harvey, with his boys, returned to the house.