The Rudder Grangers Abroad and Other Stories HTML version

The Rudder Grangers In England
It was mainly due to Pomona that we went to Europe at all. For years Euphemia and I had
been anxious to visit the enchanted lands on the other side of the Atlantic, but the
obstacles had always been very great, and the matter had been indefinitely postponed.
Pomona and Jonas were still living with us, and their little girl was about two years old.
Pomona continued to read a great deal, but her husband's influence had diverted her mind
toward works of history and travel, and these she devoured with eager interest. But she
had not given up her old fancy for romance. Nearly everything she read was mingled in
her mind with Middle Age legends and tales of strange adventure. Euphemia's frequent
reference to a trip to Europe had fired Pomona's mind, and she was now more wildly
anxious for the journey than any of us. She believed that it would entirely free Jonas from
the chills and fever that still seemed to permeate his being. And besides this, what
unutterable joy to tread the sounding pavements of those old castles of which she had so
often read! Pomona further perceived that my mental and physical systems required the
rest and change of scene which could be given only by a trip to Europe. When this
impression had been produced upon Euphemia's mind, the matter, to all intents and
purposes, was settled. A tenant, who I suspect was discovered and urged forward by the
indefatigable Pomona, made an application for a year's lease of our house and farm. In a
business view I found I could make the journey profitable, and there seemed to be no
reason why we should not go, and go now.
It appeared to be accepted as a foregone conclusion by Euphemia and Pomona that the
latter, with her husband and child, should accompany us; but of this I could not, at first,
see the propriety.
"We shall not want servants on a trip like that," I said; "and although I like Jonas and
Pomona very much, they are not exactly the people I should prefer as travelling
"If you think you are going to leave Pomona behind," said Euphemia, "you are vastly
mistaken. Oceans and continents are free to her, and she will follow us at a distance if we
don't let her go with us. She was quite content not to go with us to Florida, but she is just
one tingle from head to foot to go to Europe. We have talked the whole thing over, and I
know that she will be of the greatest possible use and comfort to me in ever so many
ways; and Jonas will be needed to take care of the baby. Jonas has money, and they will
pay a great part of their own expenses, and will not cost us much, and you needn't be
afraid that Pomona will make us ashamed of ourselves, if we happen to be talking to the
Dean of Westminster or the Archbishop of Canterbury, by pushing herself into the
"Indeed," said I, "if we ever happen to be inveigled into a confab with those dignitaries, I
hope Pomona will come to the front and take my place."
The only person not entirely satisfied with the proposed journey was Jonas.