Studio: international art — 1.1893

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1 cm
Sketching Grounds. No. III.—Holland

the Dutch, and there is no doubt about it; they life's journey will be, for sure enough the greater

are quite mad on the subject of keeping their part of it will be spent in scrubbing, cleaning, and

houses and all their belongings spic and span. A polishing." In spite of all this these worthy people

perpetual " spring cleaning " is going on here. I are not nearly so particular or clean in their actual

am daily expecting to see a strapping red-armed persons as we are. I have never seen a bath for


young girl go out and scrub the trunks of the trees
growing in front of the hotel.

They tell me that the reason why the Dutch
woman wears sleeves that only just cover the
shoulder is because she has her arms always in the
water. I expect there is good reason for all this
excessive cleanliness, for without it, living as the
Hollanders do, below the sea level, they might be
visited by even more fevers and epidemics than
they are subject to now. I remember, when I
went overland to Holland from France, that
immediately I had crossed the frontier I was
made conscious of this deep-seated characteristic
of the Dutch by an old woman and a very small
child sitting down opposite me in the railway
carriage, both looking so clean and tidy that I,
who had been travelling all day, felt quite ashamed
of the appearance I presented. Directly the little
girl was seated she took out of her pocket a toy
saucepan and a small piece of rag and amused
herself with polishing away at her little pan for the
whole of the journey. I thought to myself, " Ah,
my little maiden, this is an epitome of what your

sale in any shop, and I believe many a Dutchman
has never seen one much less made use of it.
Here is a sample of the sort of thing a peasant,
who probably lives in a home that is a pattern of
neatness and cleanliness, will do. Near the hotel
there is a horribly dirty canal, which has an odour
about it that is something more than unpleasant.
A man in a boat on this canal took off his boots
and washed them in the filthy water, then, after
having satisfied himself that his boots were per-
fectly clean and having given an additional flavour
of leather to the water, he leant over the side of the
boat and refreshed himself with a drink.

My colour box was a cause of great distress to
the little girls here. They longed to clean it, and
one day a pretty little child did get hold of it.
Never did it have such a scrubbing before, and when
she had finished I could see her casting longing
eyes at my coat which had got marks of paint on it.

Walcheren is, or rather used to be, an island, for
it is now joined to the mainland of Holland by
a railway running over an embankment. After
making the communication the Dutchman seems

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