University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
Link to University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
Link to University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
The State of Wisconsin Collection

Page View

Holand, Hjalmar Rued, 1872-1963 / Wisconsin's Belgian community : an account of the early events in the Belgian settlement in northeastern Wisconsin with particular reference to the Belgians in Door County
(1933)

Chapter VII: Belgian characteristics and customs,   pp. [81]-97 PDF (2.5 MB)


Page 86


      WISCONSIN'S BELGIAN COMMUNITY
west through the dense forest-the forerunner of
the road his grandson snappily describes as
"County C".
    The baying of a dog broke the stillness of the
evening and a gruff voice admonished, "Allez,
Shep !"
    "Good, the old man is home," said Amia to
himself.
    Any lingering doubt he may have had was dis-
pelled a moment later by the loud, "Bein voila,
Amia!" bellowed in Macceaux's jovial voice. "Is
it really you, my friend, or do I dream? Quelles
nouvelles?" Then without waiting for an answer,
"Sacre bleu, but you are welcome." He came for-
ward in greeting and now with a friendly slap
on the back, he invited "Venons, Amia, un petit
gouter-que? Then we will visit-that bench out-
side-a pipe-a friend- it is a different evening
already. But, Amia, you look tired, you drive your-
self too-"
    'No, no, Baptiste, it is not the work that
wearies me. That is why I have come to ask your
counsel-but let us drink first to our health-my
trouble will wait."
    "You see, Baptiste," he concluded later as they
sat together on the bench in the darkness, "I come
to you with his problem because I know you can
help me.   You have been married these many
years, you. To myself I have said, "He has a wife
and five daughters surely such a one will under-
stand women."
    "Mais, Amia," rejoined Baptiste sadly, "you
do not comprehend. A wife and five daughters,
true and that makes six reasons why I cannot help
you. Me understand women? No, no. Amia I
am too honest to accept the compliment. At first
I had thought to do so, but now - truly I do not
expect to live that long. Let me call my Odile.
Possibly she can describe the malady.  Odile!
Odile! Venez ici !"
     Obedient to his summons came "la femme
 Macceaux" from her kitchen to listen in turn, to
 Amia's recital of his domestic difficulties.
     When he had finished, she said sadly, "Me,
86


Go up to Top of Page