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pulled up and got out, and the Princess went for a walk with Agenoria and her husband, while the whole troupe of ladies waddled after her.
Another day the Naughty Princess came to call on Agenoria. It is not etiquette to admit anybody else when a Princess is calling-especially no man. They were seated in one of the drawing-rooms, the Princess, Agenoria, and her niece Elaine, chattering sixty miles an hour, when they heard a man's footstep coming towards the door which led from another room. But it was only Sæur Véronique, a naughty old Belgian nun.
So Agenoria asked the Princess if she might come in. The Princess knew her, and said "Certainly." The nun was one of those who add to the gaiety of nations. Suddenly Sæur Véronique, feeling that she ought to act up to her reputation, said to the niece Elaine : “You dress up in my things," and slipped them off. She then went into the hall and seized the Princess's yashmak and brocade mantle. They were an extraordinary blend with the thick hob-nailed boots which had made the ladies think a man was coming into the room, and the round bullet-head, like a man's, with the hair cropped short. The Princess went off into peals and shrieks of laughter ; she was positively rolling with laughter, when suddenly a very sedate lady well known in Cairo society appeared at the door. “Go back, go back," shouted Agenoria ; " go away, take her away.” It was not until the mystified lady was out on the front-door step that she realised that a Princess was calling. It sounded more like a pillow-fight.
The same Sæur Véronique was a very capable old lady ; even the wily Egyptian was no match for her. She used to go round all the Government offices, making collections for the fund for a Franciscan school. The pasha at the Board of Works sternly refused, so she made him an indirect contributor. She gave him an order to erect a good workshop and a very fine fence for the school; she allowed him to quote a high price for it and left him in high spirits. She never meant to pay him, and she never did. It was part of her fun ; she was bubbling over with sheer frolicking fun, and spent a good deal of her time in trying to arrange matches for Elaine.
In Paris the Naughty Princess, dressed as a European and without any veil, came rushing over to Agenoria at her hotel one day. She could not get into her house ; she was locked out, and could not find her husband, and did not know what to do. “You'd better stay here and have some lunch with us," said Agenoria, "and we'll take you back later." They did some shopping. The Princess had no money, but they gave her some to shop with.
When they got to her house she saw her husband, the Pasha, and four not at all nice-looking men, driving in a common cab. She at once left Agenoria and jumped in with the five, and drove off to some awful place to dinner ; and that was the last Agenoria ever saw of the Naughty Princess.
Chips from the Court
GENORIA had an extensive acquaintance among the
Khedivial ladies. It all came through a princess who lived near her, falling in love with her beauty, and inviting her and her friends to come and see the rejoicings, when the chief eunuch returned from the Mecca pilgrimage. It was rather a gruesome entertainment, for a sheep had been killed in front of the threshold, and all the guests were expected to walk through its blood. Before they went into the Princess's apartments, Agenoria and her friend went and were entertained with the pilgrim in the selamlik, which was much more entertaining. When they had had enough of this, they went on to the harem, where the Princess gave them afternoon tea out of a gold teapot at two in the afternoon. She could not converse with them at all, for she spoke only Turkish.
A few days later she made a fresh advance; she wanted Agenoria to go to a wedding with her. Two huge eunuchs came up to Agenoria's front door, and escorted her down her own avenue to the royal carriage. To her horror, she found that there were two fat attendants in it besides the Princess and herself. It was of course a closed carriage, very much closed, and they drove all round the town in state, in that stale, awful atmosphere.
When they got to the house there were all sorts of Africans and Asiatics of the right sex flying up and down stairs in rags, diamonds, and brocades, some in rich dresses and some in flannel dressing-gowns; the poor little bride was on duty all day long. All the presents were brought in plush