TO understand this story you will have to believe in the Greater Gods—Love and Youth, for example, and Adventure and Coincidence; also in the trusting heart of woman and the deceitful spirit of man. You will have to reconcile yourself to the fact that though daily you go to London by the nine–seven, returning by the five–fifteen, and have your accustomed meals at eight, one, and half–past six, there are those who take neither trains nor meals regularly. That, while nothing on earth ever happens to you, there really are on earth people to whom things do happen. Nor is the possibility of such happenings wholly a matter of the independent income—the income for which you do not work. It is a matter of the individual soul. I knew a man whose parents had placed him in that paralyzing sort of situation which is symbolized by the regular trains and the regular meals. It was quite a nice situation for some people, a situation, too, in which one was certain to "get on." But the man I knew had other dreams. He chucked his job, one fine Saturday morning in May, went for a long walk, met a tinker and bought his outfit—a wheel on wheels, a sort of barrow with a grindstone on it, and a pot for putting fire in dangling underneath. This he wheeled profitably through rural districts—so profitably that he was presently able to buy a donkey and a cart, and to sell kettles as well as mend them. He has since bought a gipsy tent; with these impediments—or helps—he travels through the pleasant country. Things are always happening to him. He has found a buried treasure; frustrated a burglary; once he rescued a lady in distress; and another time he killed a man. The background to these dramatic incidents is always the pleasant background of quiet road, blossoming hedgerows and orchards, corn–fields and meadows and lanes. He says this is the way to live. I will write down his story some day, but this is not it. I only bring him in to illustrate my point, which is that adventures do happen—to the adventurous.
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