102 -MEMOIRS OF JOSEPH GEIMAiDI.
it. He "was acquainted at that time •with, a very clever and
popular writer, who happened to have occasion to pass through
Gravesend on the same day as Joe had to go there ; and, as they
met shortly before, they agreed to travel in a rpost-chaise and
share the expense hetween them. They arranged to start early
in the morning, as Grrimaldi had to play at Sadler's Wells at
night, and did so.
The journey was very pleasant, and the hours passed quickly
away. His companion, who was a witty and humorous fellow,
was in great force upon the occasion, and, exerting- all his
powers, kept him laughing without intermission. Ahout three
miles on the London side of Dartford, the friend, whose buoyant
and restless spirits prevented his sitting in any one position for
a minute, hegan incessantly poking his head out of one or other
of the chaise windows, and making various remarks on the
landscape, and the persons or vehicles passing to and fro.
"While thus engaged, he happened to catch sight of a man on
horseback, about a quarter of a mile behind, who was travelling
in the same direction with themselves, and was coming up after
the chaise at a rapid pace.
"Look, Joe!" he said; "see that fellow behind! Well
mounted, is he not ?"
Grimaldi looked back, and saw the man coming along at a
fast trot. He was a stout, hearty fellow, dressed like a small
farmer, as he very probably was, and was riding a strong horse,
of superior make, good pace, and altogether an excellent
" Yes, I see him," was his reply. " He's well enough, but I
see noiiing particular about him or the horse either."
" Nor is there anything particular about either of them that
lam aware of," answered his companion; "but wouldn't yoxi
•ffiiA, judging from the appearance of his nag, and the rate at
which he is riding, that he would pass our chaise in a very short
time?" ,e full consent and approbation of the young lady's