Part 8 of 9
One day of this kind will take the sting from" many days of seclusion, counteract the effects of confinement, give new life to the delicate, and drive away the cares and troubles of business, or make them seem lighter when renewed. The gentleman of position in financial or mercantile circles may, in a moment of leisure, cast his eye over some enthusiastic recital of archery doings in the field or at the target, with perhaps a contemptuous smile, as he thinks "there's nothing in it." Eminently correct, good sir, from your standpoint. The long-bow would hardly seem fitting in the bank president's luxurious office or the merchant's counting-room—hardly suited to the broker's office. There is very little of the dollars-and-cents connected with its use. You have no occasion for its services to aid in the acquisition of wealth in your business routine, directly; but indirectly you may have, and remain in profound ignorance of the fact. You, Mr. President, for instance, need some recreation. The gun has lost its charms; you cannot stand the hard work necessary to any degree of success with pleasure to yourself. You cannot shoot or fish at your homes; you can easily find room and space for target-shooting with the long-bow, however, and have never once thought of it. "Pshaw! that will do for children." That's so, and for grown-up children, too; and bear in mind there are hundreds of them practicing archery to-day all over this broad country. Gentlemen of your persuasion beyond the Sierra are indulging in the sport and never tiring— are finding in it a delightful relaxation from business cares. You won't think of your offices in bending the bow. There's too much else to occupy your mind then, and this very forgetting for the time being serves only to bring you to your work with more willingness—more capacity to handle it. This archery which causes you amusement when seen in others will cause you another sort of amusement when you once become its votary. It will never lose its charm, and in place of ridicule you will have only praise. Once you are drawn into its power, you are helpless. There is no other modern pastime that will fill its place. Age is nothing, dignity is nothing, position is nothing in archery. It is a solace for all, a most delightful relief and relaxation, and can be enjoyed alone as well as in company. Go and buy a bow, arrows, and target, and go at it. On the start you probably could hardly hit "the broadside of a barn;" but before very long you will be surprised to find what an interest you are taking in your improvement, and then will the "fascination of the long-bow" begin to exercise its power over you. From the contemptuous idea you will go to the other extreme, and wonder why you never discovered it before, why you could believe it so much nonsense, and why you considered it too ridiculous for a second thought. That will follow as sure as ever you attempt archery.