Chapter 47: Hard Times
"Then he must just go to the dogs," said Skinner. "I have no meadows
to nurse sick horses in -- he might get well or he might not;
that sort of thing don't suit my business; my plan is to work 'em
as long as they'll go, and then sell 'em for what they'll fetch,
at the knacker's or elsewhere."
"If he was broken-winded," said the farrier, "you had better have him
killed out of hand, but he is not; there is a sale of horses coming off
in about ten days; if you rest him and feed him up he may pick up,
and you may get more than his skin is worth, at any rate."
Upon this advice Skinner, rather unwillingly, I think, gave orders
that I should be well fed and cared for, and the stable man, happily for me,
carried out the orders with a much better will than his master had
in giving them. Ten days of perfect rest, plenty of good oats,
hay, bran mashes, with boiled linseed mixed in them,
did more to get up my condition than anything else could have done;
those linseed mashes were delicious, and I began to think, after all,
it might be better to live than go to the dogs. When the twelfth day
after the accident came, I was taken to the sale, a few miles out of London.
I felt that any change from my present place must be an improvement,
so I held up my head, and hoped for the best.