A Close Call

They were talking over the days that will never return, so they asserted; the days when there was no thirst in the land. But they had particular reference to the old state militia camp of long ago. For be it known, there was much taken to camp in those days that had little to do with military training, and it was carried in capacious jugs and big bottles. Everybody expected his city friends to run down to the camp, and be called upon to act as an assuager of thirst. "The year I have reference to," said one of the old-timers, "was a notably wet one. The first night in camp everybody seemed to be bent on sampling what everybody else had brought down from the city. The result was that when the company of which I was a member was ordered to fall in the next morning to answer the roll-call there was a pretty wobbly line-up. We had a new sergeant—new to the routine of a camp, and after he had checked up he should have reported, 'Sir, the company is present and accounted for.' Instead he got rattled and said, 'Sir, the company is full.' Our captain, looking us over, sarcastically remarked, 'I should say as much, full as a tick.'"


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