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man with a broken ankle who, though almost fainting
with the pain of his boot being pulled off, was able
to gasp out: "Don't cut it; they're the best pair
Craxwell's ever made for me.") But the Ashbridge
boots, when I started for Finchurst Green, hung spur-
less on each side of Harkaway, stiff, ill-shaped, and
palpably provincial in origin. And for some reason
known only to their anonymous maker, they per-
sistently refused to "take a polish". Their com-
plexion was lustreless and clammy, although Aunt
Evelyn's odd man had given them all the energy of
his elbow. But it wasn't until 1 had surreptitiously
compared them with other boots that I realized their
shortcomings (one of the worst of which was their
lack of length in the leg). A boot can look just as silly
as a human being.

However, I had other anxieties as I rode to the
meet, for T was no l<\ss shy and apprehensive than I had
been on my way to the same place ten years earlier.
At the meet I knew no oue except Mr. Gaffikin, who
came oscillating up to me, resplendent in his pink coat
and wearing a low-crowned "coachy" hat cocked
jauntily over his right ear. After greeting me with
the utmost geniality and good-fellowship, he fell into
a portentous silence; bunching up his moustache
under his fleshy nose with an air of profound cogita-
tion and knowiugncss, he cast his eye over Harkaway.
When he had concluded this scrutiny he looked up
and unforeseeably ejaculated, "Is that a Sowter?"
This incomprehensible question left me mute. He
leant forward and lifted the flap of my saddle which
enabled me to blurt out, "I got it from Campion and
Wobble." (Sowter, as I afterwards discovered, is a
saddle-maker long established and highly esteemed.)
Mr. Gaffikin then gratified me greatly by his approval