A BIT OF SUNSHINE.
"Mam-ma," said Kate, as she stood at the door, which she had o-pened to let puss in, "may I not go out and play? the clouds are all gone and the sun shines bright and warm."
"But the grass must be quite soaked af-ter all the rain," said mam-ma. "I will tell you what to do; run to pa-pa, and ask him if he will not take us to drive."
Pa-pa was just go-ing out, and had his hat in his hand, but he sat down at once to hear what Kate had to say, and prom-ised that he would take them in half an hour, and so Kate ran up-stairs to ask nurse to put her wraps on. By the time the hors-es were at the door she was all read-y, and took her place with great glee.
What a bright af-ter-noon it was; the long rain had made all the grass and leaves look bright and green, and they were rust-ling in the fresh breeze. A-way out at sea the ships were fly-ing be-fore the wind, look-ing like great white birds. Kate's home was at the sea-side, and their drive this af-ter-noon would take them for a time on the beach.
The waves, pa-pa said, would be ve-ry wild, for the wind was just right to make a heav-y surf. Soon they be-gan to come to the fish-ing vil-lage. The hous-es were small, and on the beach close to each was drawn up a fish-ing boat. On one of these a man was hard at work. He was down on his knees in his shirt-sleeves, with some sort of a tool in his hands, and was so in-tent on what he was do-ing that he did not raise his head as they passed.
In the boat it-self was a boy. He was lean-ing o-ver the side and look-ing down at his fa-ther. His hat had blown off, and he looked like such a nice boy that Kate smiled at him as they went by. He laughed back and made her a lit-tle bow, but the hors-es went by so fast that she saw him for a min-ute on-ly.
"What was the name of that boat, pa-pa?" she asked.
"Phil-lis," said pa-pa.
"Why, that's a girl's name," said Kate.
Just at that mo-ment they passed by a small house. The door stood wide o-pen, and in it sat a young girl. She had a pil-low in her lap and was work-ing o-ver it, Kate thought, with a nee-dle. "She is mak-ing lace," said mam-ma. "It is hard work, be-cause one has to sit still bent o-ver. I sup-pose she is glad to have the bright sun-shine to sit in, for no doubt she has been kept in the house by the rain. I won-der if that is her lit-tle broth-er who is lean-ing a-gainst the side of the house whit-tling."
Kate stretched her head out to look, and cried, "Why, he is mak-ing a boat; what a clev-er boy! See, the hull is done, and two masts are in place. What fun it would be to have a boat to sail on our lit-tle pond."
"Our pond is too deep for it to be safe for you to play a-bout it," said pa-pa; "but when you are old-er you shall have a boat with-out fail."
The road now left the vil-lage be-hind and ran a-long the top of some high cliffs. At their feet the sea came in in great waves that were topped with foam, and that broke in a mass of spray. There were two or three per-sons on the beach, and they were walk-ing a-bout and hold-ing up their skirts to keep them from get-ting wet....