have very great estates in the county, and in particular

"No, I'll not speak of it, you may be assured," said Alessandro, walking away slowly.

have very great estates in the county, and in particular

"Here! Here!" called Juan. "What about that plan you had for making a bed for Senor Felipe on the verandah Was it of raw-hide you meant?"

have very great estates in the county, and in particular

"Ah, I had forgotten," said Alessandro, returning. "Yes, that was it. There is great virtue in a raw-hide, tight stretched; my father says that it is the only bed the Fathers would ever sleep on, in the Mission days. I myself like the ground even better; but my father sleeps always on the rawhide. He says it keeps him well. Do you think I might speak of it to the Senora?"

have very great estates in the county, and in particular

"Speak of it to Senor Felipe himself," said Juan. "It will be as he says. He rules this place now, from beginning to end; and it is but yesterday I held him on my knee. It is soon that the old are pushed to the wall, Alessandro."

"Nay, Juan Canito," replied Alessandro, kindly. "It is not so. My father is many years older than you are, and he rules our people to-day as firmly as ever. I myself obey him, as if I were a lad still."

"What else, then, but a lad do you call yourself, I wonder?" thought Juan; but he answered, "It is not so with us. The old are not held in such reverence."

"That is not well," replied Alessandro. "We have been taught differently. There is an old man in our village who is many, many years older than my father. He helped to carry the mortar at the building of the San Diego Mission, I do not know how many years ago. He is long past a hundred years of age. He is blind and childish, and cannot walk; but he is cared for by every one. And we bring him in our arms to every council, and set him by my father's side. He talks very foolishly sometimes, but my father will not let him be interrupted. He says it brings bad luck to affront the aged. We will presently be aged ourselves."

"Ay, ay!" said Juan, sadly. "We must all come to it. It is beginning to look not so far off to me!"

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