His gaze returned perplexed to her face.Why do you call it a funny libraryWell, it’s not exactly up-to-date. I suppose it’s a fairly good specimen of what used to be called a ‘gentleman’s library’ in my great-grandfather’s time. With additions, naturally, from air jordan 13 high heels each generation. Cousin Elinor must have bought a good many books herself.” She looked about her critically.After all,” she concluded with a smile,the Willows is getting to have an atmosphere.” Vance listened, still perplexed. Her allusions escaped him — her smile was unintelligible — but he gathered that she attached no very great importance to the house, or to the books, and he dimly resented this air of taking for granted what to him was the revelation of an unknown world. Involuntarily he lowered his voice.It’s the first time I’ve ever been in a very old house,” he said, as if announcing something of importanceA very old house? The Willows The idea seemed a new one to her.Well — after all, everything is relative, as what’s-his-name saidDon’t you call it a very old house She wrinkled her dark eyebrows in an effort of memory.Let me see. Father’s great-uncle Ambrose Lorburn built it, I believe. When would that be She began to count on her fingers.Say about 1830. Well, that DOES make it very nearly an old house for America, doesn’t it? Almost a hundred years!” And the same folks always lived in itOh, of course.” She seemed surprised at the question.The present owner is the first absentee — poor Cousin Tom! He thinks he ought to live here, but he says he can’t come up to scratch. So he makes up for it by keeping everything unchanged.” Again she surveyed the plaintive shadowy room.I suppose,” she mused,the house will be getting to have an archaeological interest of its own before long. It must be one of the best specimens of Hudson River Bracketed that are left, even in our ultra-conservative neighbourhood.” To Vance she seemed still to be speaking another language, air jordan 12 high heels of which he caught only an occasional phrase, and even that but half comprehensibleHudson River Bracketed he echoed.What’s thatWhy, didn’t you know it was our indigenous style of architecture in this part of the world Her smile of mockery had returned, but he did not mind for he saw it was not directed against himself.I perceive,” she continued,that you are not familiar with the epoch~making work of A. J. Downing Esq. on Landscape Gardening in America.” She turned to the bookcases, ran her hand along a shelf, and took down a volume bound in black cloth with the title in gilt Gothic lettering. Her fingers flew from page to page, her short~sighted eyes following as swiftly.Here — here’s the place. It’s too long to read aloud; but the point is that Mr. Downing, who was the great authority of the period, sums up the principal architectural styles as the Grecian, the Chinese, the Gothic, the Tuscan or Italian villa, and — Hudson River Bracketed. Unless I’m mistaken, he cites the Willows as one of the most perfect examples of Hudson River Bracketed (this was in 1842), and — yes, here’s the place: ‘The seat of Ambrose Lorburn Esq., the Willows, near Paul’s Landing, Dutchess County, N.Y., is one of the most successful instances of etc., etc. . . . architectural elements ingeniously combined from the Chinese and the Tuscan.’ And so they were! What an eye the man had. And here’s the picture, willows and all! How lovely these old steel engravings were . . . and look at my great~uncle and aunt on the lawn, pointing out to each other with pride and admiration their fairly obvious copper beech . . . ‘one of the first ever planted in a gentleman’s grounds in the United States.’” They bent their heads together over the engraving, which, as she said, reproduced the house exactly as Vance had just beheld it, except that the willows were then slender young trees, and the lawns mown, that striped awnings shaded the lower windows, and that a gentleman in a tall hat and a stock was calling the attention of a lady in bonnet and cashmere shawl to the celebrated copper beech. From Miss Spear’s tone Vance could not tell whether pride or mockery was uppermost in her comments on her ancestor’s achievement. But he dimly guessed that, though she might laugh at the Willows, and at what Mr. Downing said of it, she was not sorry that the house figured so honourably in his bookThere,” she concluded with a laugh,now you know what the Hudson River Bracketed style was like, and why Uncle Ambrose Lorburn was cheap nike heels uk so proud of his specimen of it.” She handed him the volume, glanced at her wristwatch, and turned to nod to him from the threshold.Gracious, how late it is! I must hunt up the Tracy children, and see how much crockery they’ve smashed.” She disappeared in the spectral shadows of the drawing room, and Vance heard her heels rapping lightly across the hall, and through unknown rooms and passages beyond. He sat motionless where she had left him, his elbows propped on the table, the book still open before him, his head pressed between his hands, letting the strangeness of the place and the hour envelop him like the falling light. It was dusk in the book-lined room when he was roused by Upton’s hobbledehoy tread and a tap on the shoulder.What’s become of you? I guess you’ve been sound asleep,” his cousin challenged him. Vance sat upright with a start.No, I haven’t been asleep.” He got to his feet and looked about him.Where’s Miss SpearMiss Halo? Oh, did you see her? She’s gone long ago. A gentleman friend called for her in his car. I don’t know where they went. She never stays anywhere more than five minutes.” Vance was silent, and Upton added:Say, come along; Laura Lou’s waiting. Time to lock up.” Vance reluctantly followed his cousin. As they left the house he realized that, instead of seizing the opportunity to explore every nook of it, he had sat all the afternoon in one room, and merely dreamed of what he might have seen in the others. But that was always his way: the least little fragment of fact was enough for him to transform into a palace of dreams, whereas if he tried to grasp more of it at a time it remained on his hands as so much unusable reality.Three men and two ladies were sitting on the shabby paintless verandah at Eaglewood at the end of a summer afternoon. The place was full of the signs of comfortable but disorderly use. A low table was spread with tea things, a teapot of one make, cups of another, plates with fragments of stale-looking cake and cold toast. There were willow armchairs, some disabled and mended with string, but all provided with gaily striped cushions which had visibly suffered from sun and rain; there were also long deck chairs with tattered plaids or Indian blankets on them, and more cushions strewn on the floor, among a litter of magazines and newspapers. In one corner stood a tall earthen jar with branches of blossoming plum and shadbush, in another an nike heels uk easel with a study blocked out in charcoal, and everywhere were trails of ashes, and little accumulations of cigar and cigarette ends. The low-studded old house of gray stone was throned on the mountainside so high above Paul’s Landing that those who sat on the verandah missed the dispiriting sight of the town and of the cement works below, and saw only, beyond the precipitate plunge of many~tinted forest, the great sweep of the Hudson, and the cliffs on its other shore. The view from Eaglewood was famous — yet visible, Hélo?se Spear reflected, to none of those who habitually lived with it except herself. Her mother, she thought, had probably seen it for a while, years ago, in her first eager youth; then it had been lost in a mist of multiple preoccupations, literary, humanitarian, and domestic, from which it emerged only when visitors were led out on the verandah for the first time.Ah, our view — YES,” Mrs. Spear would then murmur, closing her handsome eyes as if to shut herself in with the unutterable, away from the importunities of spoken praise. And her guests would remain silent, too much impressed by her attitude to find the superlatives expected of them  
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