" Grandfather, now I must really go; the grandmother is expecting me."
On the fourth day, when the cold was so bitter that it cracked and creaked with every footstep outdoors, and the whole covering of snow was frozen hard all about, and yet the beautiful sun looked in at the window, Heidi, as she sat on her high stool eating her dinner, began her little speech again : —
" To-day I must really go to the grandmother's ; she will be tired of waiting for me."
Then the grandfather rose from the dinner table, went up to the hayloft, brought down the thick bag that served as Heidi's bed covering, and said: —
"Well, come along ! "
The child was greatly delighted and skipped after him out into the glistening world of snow. In the old fir trees it was now quite still; the white snow lay on every bough, and the trees sparkled and shone all over in the sunshine so gloriously that Heidi jumped up and down with delight and kept exclaiming: —
" Come out, grandfather! come out! The fir trees are all covered with real silver and gold!"
The grandfather had gone into the shop and now came out with a wide sled. It had a handle fastened to the side, and from the low seat one could hold the feet out in front against the snowy ground and steer with one or the other in the required direction.
After the grandfather had first looked all around the fir trees with Heidi, he seated himself on the sled, took the child in his lap, wrapped her up in the bag, so that