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MALLOCK W.
In an enchanted island
page 181

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slow laborious jolting, or else, where the sand was, a kind of muffled crunching and plunging that was slower and more laborious still. Then it was that thoughts of our old-fashioned English travelling came crowding into my mind ; and I had the satisfaction of feeling that, so far as travelling went, I was living in the England of eighty or a hundred years ago. I asked myself how this affected the aspect of daily life. Did it make me conscious of any want—of the loss of any ordinary convenience ? Not in the least. The very idea of railways had almost faded from my mind, and without any regret, or comparison, or sense of irksomeness, I had come to regard post-chaises as the most natural means of travelling. And how did this affect my conception of distance ? Did it make near places seem remote and remote places inaccessible? No—not in the sense of producing any feeling of practical helplessness. I felt as able as if Γ were in England to get from one place to another. The only difference was that it seemed to me as if the landscape were larger and all its far perspectives were softly and indefinitely deepened. Eailways and steamers may perhaps widen the mind, but they do so at the cost of making the world smaller. This train of reflection was in due time interrupted by our arrival at a village, where the horses stopped to rest themselves ; and in place of reflecting I now began to observe. All the boys and the dogs assembled to stare and bark at me ; and presently 178 IN AN ENCHANTED ISLAND

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