Today’s first story is a teaching story. It tells a story of two men who encountered a bear. It’s kind of humorous.
The Two Travellers
“Did you ever see a bear? Do not all speak at once, but let those boys and girls who have seen a bear all hold up their hands.”
This is what Miss Gray said to the pu’pils in her little pri’ma-ry school.
Three boys and two girls held up their hands.
“Can it be that so many of you have seen a bear?” said Miss Gray. “Well, now, I want you to come up to my desk, and tell me the mean’ing of this pict’ure.”
They all came up and looked; but they could not tell what it meant. One boy said that the man was asleep; another, that he was drunk; and another, that he was dead.
“You are all wrong,” said Miss Gray.
Then, one of the girls said, “I think it is a pet bear, and the man is playing with him.”
Then a little girl who sat near on a bench held up her hand.
“What is it, Mary? ” said Miss Gray.
“I have nev’er seen a live bear,” said Mary; “but I have seen many pict’ures of bears, and I think I know what this one means. It tells a story more than two thousand years old.”
“Oh! so old as that? Do tell it to us, Mary,” said Miss Gray.
Then Mary said, “Two men went through a wood, when a bear met them on their path. One of the men climbed up a tree and hid.
“The oth’er man, who could not climb the tree, fell flat on the ground; and when the bear came up, and felt him with his snout, and smelt him all over, the man held his breath, and made be-lieve he was dead.
“Then the bear left him; for it is said that a bear will not touch a dead man. When the bear was quite out of sight, the man who had climbed up the tree came down, and, as a joke, asked the oth’er man what the bear had been whis’pering in his ear?
“‘He gave me this ad-vice,’ said the man on the ground: Nev’er trav’el with a man who deserts you at the first sign of dan’ger.'”
“You are a good little girl, Mary,” said Miss Gray, “and you have told the true mean’ing of the pict’ure.”
I think this next one is really cute. Brownie is a sweet nickname!
In Maine, there lives a little girl who is just sev’en years old; and we call her Brownie. Her true name is Helen Brown; but we call her Brownie for short’ness.
A dear little black-eyed curly-haired girl she is. She has many books, and she likes to read them and look at the pictures; and then some-times her moth’er reads the sto’ries ov’er to her, for it is pret’ty hard for little girls to keep a sto’ry in their minds when they have to stop and spell some of the words.
Mr. Young, who lives near by, had a cat that loves Brownie; and this cat, instead of stay’ing at her own home, stays most of the time at Brownie’s. Brownie knows that cats love milk, and per-haps puss does not get milk at home.
Well, some weeks since, puss came up through the garden with a kit’ten in her mouth. That is the way a cat car’ries her young; and it does not hurt them, though Brownie at first thought that puss had killed the kit’ten.
But, no; the kit’ten was all right. Brownie’s moth’er gave it some milk, and taught it to drink; and then Brownie went in-to the wood-shed, and there was the old cat with six charm’ing kit’tens!
After Brownie’s moth’er had fed them all, she put them in a bas’ket, and sent them home. The old cat seemed to know that were not all want’ed; and, like a mod’est moth’er, she nev’er af’ter-wards brought them all, but was con-tent to bring one or two.
Brownie’s fa’ther keeps hens, and they were quite a-fraid of the old cat. When, af’ter the folks have had their din’ner, Brownie feeds the hens, the cat will pick out the bits of meat; and, if the roost’er tries to get some that puss wants, puss will box his ears and growl. It is fun to see a cat box a roost’er’s ears.
One of the kit’tens loves dearly to be pet’ted, and will rub her sides a-gainst Brownie, and purr quite loud.
The oth’er day, Brownie was not there; and so kitty went up purr’ing to an old hen to get her to pet her. But the old hen did not see it in that light, and be-haved so rude’ly, that kitty ran off.
Have you ever had a kitten that would do anything to be pet? My cat doesn’t mind it, to a point. Then he gets bored, and runs away! Tell us about your pet in the comments!