"My, what a beauty! as white as sugar," said one, admiring
Tanitchka, and shaking her head; "but thin..."
"Yes, she has been ill."
"And so they've been bathing you too," said another to the baby.
"No; he's only three months old," answered Darya Alexandrovna
"You don't say so!"
"And have you any children?"
"I've had four; I've two living--a boy and a girl. I weaned her
"How old is she?"
"Why, two years old."
"Why did you nurse her so long?"
"It's our custom; for three fasts..."
And the conversation became most interesting to Darya
Alexandrovna. What sort of time did she have? What was the
matter with the boy? Where was her husband? Did it often
Darya Alexandrovna felt disinclined to leave the peasant women,
so interesting to her was their conversation, so completely
identical were all their interests. What pleased her most of all
was that she saw clearly what all the women admired more than
anything was her having so many children, and such fine ones.
The peasant women even made Darya Alexandrovna laugh, and
offended the English governess, because she was the cause of the
laughter she did not understand. One of the younger women kept
staring at the Englishwoman, who was dressing after all the rest,
and when she put on her third petticoat she could not refrain
from the remark, "My, she keeps putting on and putting on, and
she'll never have done!" she said, and they all went off into