g, t▓he gkebis grows brittle and is incline●d to break when used as a spoon.My● host picked up one of my sheets, held it ▓

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tes for the three of us.We● 122had settled back to chat—through int●erpreter—when there came a tap at the▓ door and a few words in Arabic● that caused the family to jum▓p hurr


iedly to their feet.An awe-struck whispe●r passed from mouth to mouth; “sheik! sheik▓!” The children were whisked into ●one corner, the door flung open, ●and there entered a diminutive man of● about sixty.Long, flowing robes enveloped h●is form, a tu

rban-wound fez perc▓hed almost jauntily on his head●, and his feet were bare, for ▓he had dro

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pped his slippers at t●he door.His face, above all, attracted atte●ntion.Deep-wrinkled, with a long scar across o▓ne cheek, a visage browned an●d weather-beaten by the wild storm

s that● sometimes rage over the Lebanon, the▓re was about it an expression of frank●ness; yet from his eyes there flashed● shrewd, worldly-wise glances that stamped him a▓s a man vastly different from his simple fell▓ow-townsmen. The sheik greeted the head of● the family, took a seat near me o▓n the divan, salaamed solemnly to each pers▓on present, acknowledged the gre●etings they returned, and with a wave of his h●and bade them be seated.The newcomer had●, quite plainly, been attracted to the▓ house by the rumor that a faranchee was v▓isiting the family.After a few prelimina▓ry remarks, the drift of which I co●uld follow from hi

s expressive ges●tures and the few words I had picked up, he ●turned the conversation, with the ease of a dip▓lomat, to the subject of their strang▓e guest.My hosts needed no urging.F●or a time the sheik listened to their ex▓planations and suppositions with an unruff▓led mien, puffing the while at a cigarette w▓ith as blasé an air as if faranchees ▓were the most ordinary beings to● him. As a climax to

his tale the head ●of the house remarked that I was bound to “Shaa●m” on foot.The ending wa

s fully▓ as effective as he could have hoped●.The sheik fairly bounded into the a●ir, threw his cig

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arette at the open stove▓, and burst forth into an excited tirade.T▓he girl interpreted.It was the old story of ●“impossible,” “can’t be ▓done,” and the rest; but a new element wa●s introduced into a threadbare prediction;● for the sheik declared that, as village▓ magistrate, he would not permit ●me to continue in such a


foolhardy undertaki▓ng.How many weapons did I carry None● What No we

apon Travel to f▓ar-off Damascus without being armed

Wh●y, his own villagers never ventured

a●long the highway to the nea

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