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“ Look at the rainbow yonder! is not that a sign of clearing up ?”
Anthony, on being consulted, shook his head, drew up his shoulders, and told us we must prepare for disappointment; for that there was every indication of a settled rainy day. He pointed to the morning clouds, which, instead of being chased away by the rising sun, and fleeing in a westerly direction, returned and gathered round, as if to dispute the sovereignty of the firmament. We still hoped that it might clear at six o'clock. Even my uncle seemed to think there was a chance of this. Six was the hour appointed for starting, and we were to breakfast on board. It was now resolved to breakfast at home; and we hoped that after that the aspect of the weather might be more encouraging. But at six o'clock the sky was completely covered with blackness, the rain descended in torrents, yet so steadily as clearly to indicate the continuance of wet weather. The expedition was set aside, to the great disappointment of all parties, each of whom imagined that there was some circumstance of peculiar aggravation in his own case. Some of the party had come from a considerable distance, on purpose for the day's pleasure. Some had a particular desire to visit the spot, having never seen it; and others from its being delightfully associated with their childish reminiscences. There was some talk of transferring the excursion to another day; but then Frank and myself were to return to school the next day : so we could not enjoy it. Mrs. Rogers bewailed the useless display of her culinary skill in
profusion of pigeon pies, custards, jellies, etc., which she was sure would not be fit for company
another day. And Anthony regretted that he had stripped his greenhouse in vain, to form decorations which nobody would enjoy, and which would have lost their beauty and fragrance before another day, even if the weather should be favourable so soon, which he very much doubted. But, correcting himself, he said to us boys, “Yet, let us not complain. You know, masters, the world was not made for us, nor the weather either. Let us endeavour to feel as the pious shepherd felt, who replied, when asked what weather it was likely to be, ' It will be such weather as pleases me; for it will be such as God appoints ; and what pleases Him ought to please me.' Remember, dear young gentlemen, that the weather which has proved such a disappointment to you, will prove a great blessing to many; for rain was much wanted.”
We were reminded of Anthony's remark, when, in the course of the morning, a farmer called to pay
his rent. “Merciful weather, sir,” remarked the honest farmer, with evident feelings of satisfaction and gratitude ; “the rain has come just in time to save the turnips, and fill out the peas,
and do a world of good to the grain. In my little farm, sir, this day's rain makes more odds than the value of my rent; and it is not to me alone; it is a general good. We may well say, the skies shower down blessings, and the earth is greatly enriched with the river of God.”
My uncle was not backward in taking up the note of pious gratitude thus struck by his worthy tenant; and their conversation tended much to soften down the disappointment which Frank and myself had so bitterly bewailed.
Arthur was once in a violent passion with his tailor, and threatened to turn him off, because he could not get some articles of dress finished, which were required at an unreasonably short notice. It was Saturday when they were ordered, and he must have them to wear at a party on Monday evening. It was in vain that the man, with the utmost humility, assured Arthur that he should have been happy to meet his wishes; but that not only were all his hands busily engaged on work already promised, and which could not be set aside, as it was for a funeral, but some of the materials which Mr. Longley required could only be obtained in London; and as no post went out on Saturday night, it would be impossible to get them down before Monday night or Tuesday morning. If he had but received the order the day before, he could have had down the goods on Saturday, and would then have put his best hands to work on them the first thing on Monday, and would have spared nio pains to accomplish them in time. Arthur would hear no reason, admit of no excuse.
The things he must and would have, or he would never again employ the offender. “My dear fellow," said my uncle, who happened to hear of the altercation,
will not, surely, lose your temper, and break your peace, for a fancy waistcoat; to say nothing of wreaking your resentment on the poor tailor, for not doing what is out of the power of man to do. Your wardrobe is not so scanty as to fail of affording you a suitable supply for the occasion. Besides, if the matter is of such urgent consequence, you really should reflect upon yourself, not upon your tailor, for you have known of the engagement nearly a week. You seem to have
forgotten old Anthony's saying, that the world was not made for you :' and also the self-evident truth, that no man can do impossibilities, even to please you. How can you blame him for not attempting it, without exposing your own weakness, in a way much more injurious to yourself, than the loss of your custom can be to him ? When a boy, I learned a sentiment expressed in doggrel rhymes, which has helped me over many a trouble, as great as a disappointment about a satin waistcoat; let me recommend them to your consideration.
“For every evil under the sun,
If there be none, then never mind it.'' I remember this phrase, “ The world was not made for you,” being used in reference to a person who was the torment of the family and neighbourhood. He set at nought all rules, in the smallest matters and in the greatest. Irregular people are invariably plagues to society, as well as torments to themselves. They keep a home always in confusion, and defeat all the best laid plans of the presiding genius to secure economy, order, and comfort. And then they are most unreasonable in their requirements and expectations from others. They keep no appointment, observe no regularity, yet expect their meals to be always ready and well dressed, whenever their caprice may chance to dictate, though it be hours before, or hours after the understood family arrangements. Everybody, both in the house and out of it, must be always at leisure to obey their summons and gratify their whims; and the convenience and claims of every
other person must be made to bend to them. Poor, selfish, irritable mortals! They forget that “the world was not made for them.”
There was another person, a man of some note and influence in the little sphere in which he moved. Several circumstances concurred to bestow upon him this distinction, which certainly was not claimed by superiority either of mind or manners. Mr. W. was possessed of some property, and was supposed to exercise considerable influence over a rich old aunt, who was in general very penurious ; but was now and then induced to part with money freely, generally at the suggestion of her favourite nephew. To obtain his favour was considered the way to her purse: and hence the managers of charitable institutions, and public undertakings, took care, if possible, to interest him in the cause, well knowing that his guinea, or five guineas, was a pledge for her five, or twenty. Control, it is admitted, follows contribution, as the shadow follows the substance. So thought Mr. W.; and, moreover, he reckoned his share of contribution as composed of what he gave, and what he induced or permitted his aunt to give, and claimed his portion of control in that ratio. Not only so : he fell into the most ridiculous, but not uncommon mistake, of imagining that his intellectual superiority advanced in equal proportion with his money. Thus, if seven men each contributed their guinea, while he
gave his two, and obtained five from his aunt, he was, in his own estimation, as wise as, or wiser than, seven men, who could render a reason, Prov. xxvi. 16.
Mr. W., too, was a great talker, and fond of tremendously long words. These, without being