Support the Monkey! Tell All your Friends and Teachers
through my unfortunate head, in at one ear and out at the other!
What yawns and dozes I lapsed into, in spite of all my care; what
starts I came out of concealed sleeps with; what answers I never
got, to little observations that I rarely made; what a blank space
I seemed, which everybody overlooked, and yet was in everybody's
way; what a heavy relief it was to hear Miss Murdstone hail the
first stroke of nine at night, and order me to bed!
Thus the holidays lagged away, until the morning came when Miss
Murdstone said: 'Here's the last day off!' and gave me the closing
cup of tea of the vacation.
I was not sorry to go. I had lapsed into a stupid state; but I was
recovering a little and looking forward to Steerforth, albeit Mr.
Creakle loomed behind him. Again Mr. Barkis appeared at the gate,
and again Miss Murdstone in her warning voice, said: 'Clara!' when
my mother bent over me, to bid me farewell.
I kissed her, and my baby brother, and was very sorry then; but not
sorry to go away, for the gulf between us was there, and the
parting was there, every day. And it is not so much the embrace
she gave me, that lives in my mind, though it was as fervent as
could be, as what followed the embrace.
I was in the carrier's cart when I heard her calling to me. I
looked out, and she stood at the garden-gate alone, holding her
baby up in her arms for me to see. It was cold still weather; and
not a hair of her head, nor a fold of her dress, was stirred, as
she looked intently at me, holding up her child.
So I lost her. So I saw her afterwards, in my sleep at school - a
silent presence near my bed - looking at me with the same intent
face - holding up her baby in her arms.
I HAVE A MEMORABLE BIRTHDAY
I PASS over all that happened at school, until the anniversary of
my birthday came round in March. Except that Steerforth was more
to be admired than ever, I remember nothing. He was going away at
the end of the half-year, if not sooner, and was more spirited and
independent than before in my eyes, and therefore more engaging