chapter  VI
5 Pages

Two Families—Four Friendships

The next morning we were the talk of the village. The grownups went about their business. The children had only one pair of boots among them, and the right to wear the boots belonged to the one who was doing something useful for the household, such as hauling water on the hand sled to which a barrel was fastened, or bringing in wood for the stove, or running to the neighbors to borrow or return something. That day there was a struggle over the pair of boots, everyone wanted to haul water, everyone wanted to bring in wood or run an errand, everyone wanted to do everything. Everyone wanted to get out of the close, stuffy room as fast as possible that day, out into the ice-cold air; everyone wanted to see friends and to coast and slide, and hear the news, and above all to tell our sensation.