LIFE AMONG THE LOWLY 267
was a-savin' for dis yer very stew. I 'd forgot they was in dat ar old flannel."
Miss Ophelia lifted out the sifting papers of sweet herbs.
" I wish Missis would n't touch dem ar. I likes to keep my things where I knows whar to go to 'em," said Dinah, rather decidedly.
" But you don't want these holes in the papers."
" Them 's handy for siftin' on 't out," said Dinah.
" But you see it spills all over the drawer."
" Laws, yes ! if Missis will go a-tumblin' things all up so, it will. Missis has spilt lots dat ar way," said Dinah, coming uneasily to the drawers. " If Missis only will go up-sta'rs till my clarin' up time comes, I '11 have everything right; but I can't do nothin' when ladies is round, a-henderin'. You, Sam, don't you gib the baby dat ar sugar-bowl! I '11 crack ye over, if ye don't mind !'
" I 'm going through the kitchen, and going to put everything in order, once, Dinah; and then I '11 expect you to keep it so."
" Lor, now ! Miss Phelia; dat ar an't no way for ladies to do. I never did see ladies doin' no sich ; my old Missis nor Miss Marie never did, and I don't see no kinder need on 't; " and Dinah stalked indignantly about, while Miss Ophelia piled and sorted dishes, emptied dozens of scattering" bowls of sugar into one receptacle, sorted napkins, table-cloths, and towels, for washing; washing, wiping, and arranging with her own hands, and with a speed and alacrity which perfectly amazed Dinah.
"Lor, now! if dat ar de way dem Northern ladies do, dey an't ladies, nohow," she said to some of her satellites, when at a safe hearing distance. " I has things as straight as anybody, when my clarin' up time comes ; but I don't want ladies round, a-henderin', and getting my things all where I can't find 'em."
To do Dinah justice, she had, at irregular periods, paroxysms of reformation and arrangement, which she called " clarin' up times," when she would begin with great zeal,