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The World As I Have Found It / Sequel to Incidents in the Life of a Blind Girl By Mary L. Day Characters: 3864

Updated: 2017-12-01 00:03

"Thus, with delight, we linger to survey

The promised joys of life's unmeasured way;

Thus, from afar, each dim discovered scene

More pleasing seems than all the rest hath been;

And every form that fancy can repair

From dark oblivion, glows divinely there."

My nature, in its first struggle with the world, shrank, like Mimosa, from every human touch; but the kind words of love and gentle acts of kindness already received transformed and ripened within me a more trusting and hopeful character, and I almost unconsciously accepted as immutable and inevitable the great law of compensation.

It is well that it was in the season of youth that my career began, that season which Jean Paul so poetically designates as "The Festival Day of Life," in which period friendship dwells as yet in a serenely open Grecian Temple, not, as in later years, in a narrow Gothic Chapel.

My heart accepting as genuine these pure expressions of friendship, I turned from Washington toward Virginia, and after a visit at Leesburg, in which I had good success, I wrote to Mr. Taylor, the friend I have before mentioned, asking him to meet me at Hamilton, which point was reached by the old-time stage-route. Some doubt may have entered my mind as to his remembrance of the promise to meet me, all of which must have been dispelled when, upon the arrival of the stage, a cheery, gentle voice, in a tone which would have filled the darkest moment of doubt with the sun-ray of trust, exclaimed: "How does thee do, Mary?" Miss Rachel Weaver, my companion, was a bright-eyed, sunny-hearted, English girl, whose presence irradiated the atmosphere around her. She was presented to him, and received the same quiet yet cordial greeting. His carriage was in waiting for us, and a refreshing drive of three miles brought us to his cozy home. The reception given us by his excellent wife was characterized by all the depth and warmth of her

expanded and exalted nature, and we were at once domiciled as truly "at home."

The next day was the beginning of their Quarterly Meeting, and the impressions of a life-time can never efface the varied pictures stamped upon memory by each phase of that religious gathering. Not in a gorgeous chapel of Gothic architecture, frescoed nave and highly wrought transept; no stained glass windows of rainbow hue; no gorgeously draped altar or elaborate organ; but in a simple wooden meeting-house, upon a gently sloping grassy seclusion, came the feet of those "who went up to the worship of God." No robed priest with consecrated head was there, but all were privileged to express with the lips the heart's devotion.

Mr. Taylor carried to this meeting a number of my little books, and I am safe in saying that each member of that community bought one of them.

At noon we partook of a collation upon the lovely green sward, where sweet words solaced and kind hands tendered me hospitality. Prominent among the guests was Mrs. Hoag, a lady of lovely character and cultured mind, who insisted upon having us accompany her to her home, a mansion rich and elegant in its appointments, and, above all, its halls resounding with the music of innocent mirth, and hung with the "golden tapestry" of love.

We remained in this community four weeks, a sweet "season of refreshment," which so gently glided away that we awoke, like those aroused from peaceful sleep and dear dreams of pleasure, renewed and buoyant.

Our farewell was not unmingled with sad regret at parting, but upon my return to Baltimore my friends failed not to note the favorable change in my physical and mental condition. So talismanic is the touch of love, so inspiring and life giving! and 'tis to this dear community of Louden county, Virginia, I shall ever trace the first impetus which has given momentum to all the subsequent movements of my life.

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