What Shall We Do Now? 29
Aunt Penelope down with a flourish. " Proud to see you, sir," he said to Mr. Burly. "It is seldom enough that folks travel nowadays in an old Family Coach. I wish there were more of them."
After lunch we went along in the same splendid way until suddenly round a corner came a donkey-cart with the donkey braying at the top of his voice. John pulled the horses well over to the side, but the braying was too much for them, and they rolled into the ditch. In a moment the old Family Coach was overturned. Mr. Burly was shot into the field across the hedge, Uncle /oshua, grasping the horn, landed in a pond, John and Aunt Penelope, Mrs. Burly and the grooms all stuck in the hedge. No one was hurt, but two oi the wheels were broken to pieces and one axle was bent, and that was therefore the last of the old Family Coach. So we never got to London in the old way after alL
If this story is not long enough, it can be lengthened. The words in italics are those to be distributed among the company, each player taking more than one if necessary. When the accident comes they might all fall down as they are mentioned. In the case of the wheels and the horses, these may either be taken all four by one player, or eight players may share them. Thus, when the wheels are mentioned, all four players who have taken the wheels would stand up and turn round, and four others when the horses were alluded to.
" The Traveller " was, many years ago, a favourite variety of the " Family Coach." In this game a player with a ready tongue was chosen as traveller, and the others were given such names as landlord, boots, ostler, waiter, chambermaid, candle, oats, horse, supper, paper, private room, bedroom, warming-pan, slippers, and so on. The traveller was then supposed to arrive and give his orders. " Here, landlord, can I have a bed to-night ? Good. And how soon will supper be ready ? Tell the ostler to give my horse a good feed of oats. Show me to a private room and send up the papers!' And so on, each person named having to stand up or be booked for a forfeit.
This game lends itself to various new forms. One might be called "The Bicyclist" and run thus: — A player having been
traveller, and the bicyclist.