This morning, as I was sitting on the edge
of my bed cudgelling my brains, I heard without a crackling of whips and pounding
and scraping of horses' feet up the rocky path beyond the courtyard. With joy
I hurried to the window, and saw drive into the yard two great leiter-wagons,
each drawn by eight sturdy horses, and at the head of each pair a Slovak, with
his wide hat, great nail-studded belt, dirty sheepskin, and high boots. They had
also their long staves in hand. I ran to the door, intending to descend and try
and join them through the main hall, as I thought that way might be opened for
them. Again a shock, my door was fastened on the outside.
Then I ran to
the window and cried to them. They looked up at me stupidly and pointed, but just
then the "hetman" of the Szgany came out, and seeing them pointing to
my window, said something, at which they laughed.
Henceforth no effort of
mine, no piteous cry or agonized entreaty, would make them even look at me. They
resolutely turned away. The leiter-wagons contained great, square boxes, with
handles of thick rope. These were evidently empty by the ease with which the Slovaks
handled them, and by their resonance as they were roughly moved.
were all unloaded and packed in a great heap in one corner of the yard, the Slovaks
were given some money by the Szgany, and spitting on it for luck, lazily went
each to his horse's head. Shortly afterwards, I heard the crackling of their whips
die away in the distance.