I always blow my horn at the door, so as to tell my wife I am back. She gets nervous when I am out after lighting-up time; the dykes and drains make these roads so very awkward, and I am not as young as I was.
I fear I am already a little late. Agnes, my dear, I am sorry to be a little behind time, but I have brought a guest back with me. He has had an accident with his car and will stay the night with us. The rug! Allow me!
I fear that seat is something of a res angusta. Pray be careful of your head. My dear—Lord Peter Wimsey. Venables, a plump and placid figure in the lamplight from the open door, received the invasion with competent tranquillity. How fortunate that my husband should have met you. An accident? I do hope you are not hurt. I always say these roads are perfect death-traps.
Thank you, said Wimsey.
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There is no harm done. Do come in and sit down and get yourselves warm. Your man? First thing tomorrow morning. Wilderspin is the blacksmith—an excellent fellow. He will see to the matter most competently. Dear me, yes!
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And now, come in, come in! We want our tea.
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Agnes, my dear, have you explained to Emily that Lord Peter will be staying the night? That will be all right, said Mrs. Venables, soothingly. I do hope, Theodore, you have not caught cold. Sit down, sit down and make a good meal. I have seldom known such bitter weather. Would you prefer a whisky-and-soda, perhaps? Tea for me, said Wimsey. How jolly all this looks! Really, Mrs. Venables, smiling cheerfully. It is indeed. Wimsey gratefully took in the cosy sitting-room, with its little tables crowded with ornaments, its fire roaring behind a chaste canopy of velvet overmantel, and the silver tea-vessel winking upon the polished tray.
I feel like Ulysses, come to port after much storm and peril. Tom Tebbutt seems a good deal better today, observed the Rector. Very unfortunate that he should be laid up just now, but we must be thankful that it is no worse.
I only hope there are no further casualties. Young Pratt will manage very well, I think; he went through two long touches; this morning without a single mistake, and he is extremely keen. By the way, we ought, perhaps, to warn our visitor——. My husband has asked you to stay the night, Lord Peter, but he ought to have mentioned that you will probably get very little sleep, being so close to the church. But perhaps you do not mind the sound of bells.
My husband is a very keen change-ringer, pursued Mrs. We hope to accomplish a real feat tonight, he said, or rather, I should say, tomorrow morning. We intend to ring the New Year in with—you are not, perhaps, aware that we possess here one of the finest rings in the country? There are, perhaps, a few heavier rings, said the Rector, but I hardly know where you would rival us for fullness and sweetness of tone. Oh, yes. If you are interested, I should like to show you a very charming little book, written by my predecessor, giving the whole history of the bells.
The tenor, Tailor Paul, was actually cast in a field next the churchyard in the year You can still see the depression in the earth where the mould was made, and the field itself is called the bell-field to this day. Very good indeed. Excellent fellows and most enthusiastic. That reminds me. I was about to say that we have arranged to ring the New Year in tonight with no less, said the Rector, emphatically, no less than fifteen thousand, eight hundred and forty Kent Treble Bob Majors. What do you think of that?
Not bad, eh? Well done, sir, said Wimsey.
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In , agreed the Rector. That is what we aim to emulate. We had hoped to have twelve, but unhappily, four of our best men have been laid low by this terrible influenza, and we can get no help from Fenchurch St. Stephen which has a ring of bells, though not equal to ours because there they have no Treble Bob ringers and confine themselves to Grandsire Triples.
Grandsire Triples are most venerable, he said solemnly, but you can never get the same music——. But for interest and variety and for sweetness in the peal, give me Kent Treble Bob every time. You will never beat it, said Mr. Venables, soaring away happily to the heights of the belfry, and waving his muffin in the air, so that the butter ran down his cuff.
Take even Grandsire Major—I cannot help feeling it as a defect that the blows come behind so monotonously at the bobs and singles—particularly at the singles, and the fact that the treble and second are confined to a plain hunting course——.
wordpress-11600-25562-61098.cloudwaysapps.com/2-peter-bible-commentary-from-matthew.php Why, certainly, of course. Put him in the study, Emily, and I will come in a moment. The Rector was not long gone, and when he returned his face was as long as a fiddle. He let himself drop into his chair in an attitude of utter discouragement. William Thoday! Of all nights in the year! Poor fellow, I ought not to think of myself, but it is a bitter disappointment—a bitter disappointment. Struck down, said the Rector, struck down by this wretched scourge of influenza.
Quite helpless. They have sent for Dr. It appears, went on the Rector, that he felt unwell this morning, but insisted—most unwisely, poor man—on driving in to Walbeach on some business or other.