A Wood-Chopper

Home for Good—Talk with his Mother—Wish to be Somebody—Tells Mother of the Sea—Getting a Job—Bargains to Chop a Hundred Cords of Wood—Boards with his Sister—Fair View of Lake Erie —The German Chopping—Lessons of Application and Perseverance— Talk with Sister about Going to Sea—Two Cords Cut every Day—Books at Home—Reads Evenings—Completes Job, and goes Home—Works Four Months for a Farmer—Haying and Harvesting— Discussion on Baptism—Talk with Farmer about Going to Sea—Forty-eight Dollars Pay

“Home for good!” said James to his mother, on entering the house. “Got enough of saltering.”

“I am glad to see you, James; but what’s the matter now?” his mother replied.

“Matter enough. I’ve come home to stay.”

“I’m glad of that.”

“I can be somebody if I try, instead of a ‘hired servant,’” continued James, speaking the last two words contemptuously.

“What now? Have you had any trouble with Mr. Barton?”

“None at all; he is one of the kindest men in the world. I shouldn’t want to work for a better man.”

“What, then, is to pay?” urged the mother, earnestly.

James rehearsed to her the experience of the previous evening, and his determination to quit the business, together with Mr. Barton’s disappointment at his leaving, and his entreaties for him to stay. Mrs. Garfield listened attentively to the recital, which closed by his saying:

“There are fifty-six dollars for you, mother.”

“You are indeed thoughtful of your mother, and the money will add many comforts to our home,” replied Mrs. Garfield; “but did you not act rather hastily?”

“Hastily or not, I’ve acted, and that is the end of it,” replied James. “I didn’t exactly want to give up the job, on account of the pay, but I have.”

“I should think much of Mr. Barton’s kindness and his disappointment,” suggested his mother.

“And minded nothing about the insulting girl, I s’pose?”

“I shouldn’t care for her. I don’t suppose she meant any evil by her remark. Besides, it is not dishonourable to be a hired servant, especially if you are a good one,” added his mother.

“That is not the thing, mother. I don’t think it is dishonourable to be a ‘hired servant.’ It was the girl’s insulting way of saying it, and it stirred me up to want to be somebody in the world, and I mean to be.”

“I hope it will all turn out for the best, my son; and I believe that Providence will overrule it for good.”

“I must look out for another job now,” remarked James.

“And not stay at home?”

“No; I can earn more for you away.”

“Well, as you think best,” said his mother. “I dare say you will have plenty of chances.”

“I would like to go to sea, mother,” added James, hesitatingly.

  By PanEris using Melati.

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