Page:A Thousand-Mile Walk To The Gulf.djvu/34

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Introduction

go into Louisiana at all, either because he learned that no south-bound ship was available at the mouth of the Mississippi, or because the unexpected appearance of the Island Belle in the harbor of Cedar Keys caused him to change his plans.

In later years Mr. Muir himself strongly disparaged the wisdom of his plans with respect to South America, as may be seen in the chapter that deals with his Cuban sojourn. The judgment there expressed was lead-penciled into his journal during a reading of it long afterwards. Nevertheless the Andes and the South American forests continued to fascinate his imagination, as his letters show, for many years after he came to California. When the long deferred journey to South America was finally made in 1911, forty-four years after the first attempt, he whimsically spoke of it as the fulfillment of those youthful dreams that moved him to undertake his thousand-mile walk to the Gulf.

Mr. Muir always recalled with gratitude the

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