chorus of ‘Five times Five is Twenty-five,’ to the air of Yankee Doodle
French was always spoken at table, therefore, we were not a particularly garrulous crowd, the conversation being limited to asking for the desired articles or requesting to be excused when the dessert was not especially popular.
Then the order went forth that all young ladies who wished to be excused must ask before the dessert was served.
Great consternation arose among the younger ones, until it was discovered that by gaining the good graces of the cook, under a pledge of secrecy, the day's dessert could be foretold.
I have already mentioned that there was a large, wellequipped gymnasium and bowling alley connected with the school, and the suits worn on those occasions were what were known as ‘bloomers,’ although some preferred to call them ‘Turkish costumes.’
I have never visited a modern gymnasium, but the various exercises we had were sufficiently startling, and near neck-breaking among the younger ones if no teacher were near.
Those pupils boarding at Mystic Mansion were obliged to cross the railroad, and then take the wide walk through the field which led to the school.
During the noon hour a long frieght train used to switch off and back down the track opposite the mansion to wait for the Lowell
express to pass.
As there was a stringent rule that the pupils must not leave the seminary grounds without permission, the younger ones used to crawl under the cars, and it was quite a stump (I believe it is called ‘stunt’ now) to crawl under when we could hear the clink as each car began to move.
What saved us from mutilated limbs I do not know, unless it was the same cherub that used to sit up aloft and look out for the life of poor Jack
, said cherub no longer being needed in these days of steam.
When this pleasant pastime of ‘crawling under’ was discovered, and the culprits admonished and told into what depths of sin they had fallen, the excuse was that they were afraid they would be late for lessons.
To acquire a graceful carriage (which as I read you