JEEMS AS AN OPTIMIST "A CONTENTED mind is a continual feast," says Solomon, "Contentment is great gain," says some ither body, an’ so it is; if we hiv’ a contented mind we hae everything. There’s naethin’ I’m mair profoundly thankfu’ for than the fact that Providence has placed me jist where I am, haein’ neither too much nor too little. Of course it widna be pleesant tae be in want, bit, tae my min’, it’s nearly as bad—maybe not quite—tae hae ower much. At least, I ken if I wis wealthy I wid jist aye be in hot water aboot investments, an’ banks failin’, an’ shares gaun up an’ doon. As it is, I hae everything I want, an’ a trifle ower, so my min's easy an’ that’s the greatest blessing o’ a'. I often read, BAILIE, aboot the Prince o’ Wales; he canna go oot but there’s a crood after him,, bowing to him, an’ hurrahing, an’ rinning after his carriage. Noo, I can go oot an’ walk ony place, an’ naebody ever bothers their heid aboot me. In that respect I’m better aff than him, an’ in ither respects I’m quite as weel aff. Can I tak' ony mair than one breakfast, one dinner, an' one tea each day, or wear mair than one suit at a time, an’ can the Prince o’ Wales dae mair than this? When I hear a man talking aboot his carriage an' his horse, I think I’m quite as weel aff as him—an’ better—for I can hurl in a carriage an’ pair ony day for a penny or tippence, an’ it’s aye waiting on me withoot orders, an’ I can hae my pick an’ wale o’ horses. If I fancy greys I can jump intae a carriage wi’ greys; or blacks, intae a carriage wi’ twa blacks or twa chestnuts either. Then, if I’m fastidious, I can sit behin’ twa big mules, or three wee anes an’ I hiv not only a driver, but a footman tae open an’ shut the door, an’ keep the laddies frae jumpin’ on behin’. Nae need there tae cry "wheep behind," my footman looks after that. My carriage, moreover, runs smoothly on rails, laid doon expressly for my convenience. The yachting season’s on the noo, BAILIE, an’ my rich freens tell me aboot being awa’ cruising in the chops o’ the Channel, wi’ a wet sheet an’ a flowing sail; them hauding the tiller an’ reefing the spanker boom a’ the time. Weel, when I hear this I hae a bit laugh. Ony day I can step doon tae the Broomielaw, an’ on board the "Columba" or "Lord of the Isles," or tak’ my pick of lots o’ ithers, an’ be received wi’ polite attendants wi’ gold bands an brass buttons, an’ my carpet bag ta’en care o’. Then for twa-three shillings I can get a langer sail in one day than I can get in a yacht in a week, an’ nae need tae be bothered either helping the owner tae haud the tiller or reef the jib-boom. Neither am I bothered wi’ the captain coming an’ telling me that the breeze is freshening, or that the wind is changing, or speerin’ where we wad like tae anchor. No, I pay my fare an’ licht a ceegaur, an’, feeling a’ responsibility aff my mind, I walk aboot or sit doon just as I like, an’ that in a vessel faur steadier, an’ faster, an’ mair sumptuous than ony yacht, an’ I can sing— The sea was calm, and the bark rode well. Sometimes when I pass a rich man’s estate I hear folk envying him his fine policies; keekin’ thro’ the railings an’ wishing they were him. But why should we envy him? Jist across the road frae my coal ree you an’ me hae a park kept better than ony nobleman’s, wi’ a’ sorts a’ flooers, an’ shrubs, an’ walks, an’ flag-poles, an’ polismen, an' a' thegither, an’ often bands playing. Some are aye grumblin’ aboot our "wretched climate," an sighing for a trip tae the Mediterranean. Bit oor minister wis telling us the ither day we ocht tae be thankfu’ that Providence had planted us where we were, an’ that’s jist my feelings. There’s no a climate like oors in the hale worl’. The one day it’s wat and the next day dry. One day you feel a caul’ east win’, like tae tak’ your nose aff, an’ the next ye’re groanin’ below a sweltering sun. By this means, ye see, everybody in their turn gets jist what they want. Indeed, if we had the sun in the one haun an’ a watering can in the ither we couldna mak’ it mair diversified. There’s a silver lining tae every cloud. We should be thankful for oor privileges.