436 The Book of Indoor and Outdoor Games
a large section of the lawn covered with fallen leaves, in the midst of stretches of green from which every leaf had been removed with the usual care.
Upon entering the drawing-room, they found it a bower of leaves of all sorts, and carpeted as well with the scarlet, green and gold of maples—each leaf of which seemed to be a gem of its kind.
The young men were asked to go into an adjoining room, the young women to another, where they found numerous wooden rakes tied with bright ribbons which they were evidently expected to appropriate. Upon emerging from the rooms, rakes in hand, it was explained to them that the matching ribbons determined who should be partners in a raking-match out of doors. Each pair, man and maid, was requested to make the largest pile of leaves that they could in half an hour— the successful pair to receive prizes for their industry.
They worked merrily and with a will, and the half-hour seemed all too short. The fortunate pair whose pile overtopped the rest were crowned with leaves, their rakes wreathed with garlands, and they led the procession back to the house, where each received from the hostess a four-leaved-clover pin, enamelled in green.
While resting, after the vigorous exercise, on the piazza, in hammocks, on steps, cushions, and hassocks, they were entertained by a Leaf Contest. An immense basket of leaves, tied up with bright ribbons, was brought, which it was found contained thirty-four varieties of leaves—no two alike. Cards and pencils were distributed and the leaves one by one passed around, and each person wrote on his or her card opposite the number corresponding to that attached to the leaf what the kind of leaf it was thought to be. Strange to say.