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“ [318] home besides! Put it somewhere where the girls can't find it!”

She nodded. “There is a corner in my closet, which even Maud dare not explore!”

The fruitcake was duly packed, transported, and eaten — we are bound to say without ill effect.

This recalls the day when, leaving Gardiner, she was presented with a packet of sandwiches, and charged to have the Pullman porter bring her a cup of bouillon. The next day Laura received a postal card.

“Lunched at Portland on mince pie, which agreed with me excellently, thank you!”

Her postal cards were better than most people's letters. You could almost see them sparkle. The signature would be “Town Pump” or something equally luminous. In fact, she so rarely signed her own name in writing to us that when asked for autographs we were posed. “Town Pump” was no autograph for the author of the “Battle Hymn” !

There was another mince pie, a little, pretty one, which she saw at a Papeterie meeting, the last summer of her life; saw, coveted, secreted, with her hostess's aid, and smuggled home. Always a moderate eater, she never could be made to see that age demanded a careful diet. “I have eaten sausages all my life,” she would say. “They have always agreed with me perfectly!” Indeed, till the very latest years, her digestion had never failed her. It was in the eighties that she said to one of us, “I have a singular sensation that I have never felt before. Do you think it might possibly be indigestion?” She described it, and it was indigestion.

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