SOCIETY'S NEW PASTIME.

A TEA PARTY IN A SWIMMING BATH.

"Tea in a tank" is the newest diversion.  It hails from New York, where
members of the smart circles are always searching around for novelties.  The
origin of it all is supposed to be the approval that aristocratic London
gives to the swimming-bath, but the elaboration of the idea is owned to be
the brilliant conception of a well-known woman belonging to the "Four
hundred" of New York.

This lady proposes to engage the best swimming bath in New York for one
afternoon, and her particular friends, and those of her husband, are to be
invited.  A most select number will be summoned, and even of these, only
those who are eager to enter into the spirit of the affair are asked to
accept

Each of the guests is to don a bathing dress if they accept the invitation,
which many unbidden would do much to possess.  Tea is to be served while the
guests are in the water, standing to chat with each other as if they were in
a drawing-room.  The bath is said to be just deep enough to walk about in at
the two ends, becoming deeper towards the middle.  A change of water
constantly takes place by a permanent stream of fresh water and overflow.
The bath is to be well heated and decorated, and everything is being done to
make
                                The Novel Function
one of the successes of the season.  The afternoon arriving for the tea
party, all the dressing-rooms soon fill.  Finally the hostess, a picture in
a black silk bathing costume, with scarlet cap and belt and long black
stockings, collects her guest together.

Amid shrieks of laughter and excitement, as can be imagined, the party
splash into the water.  As to another interesting feature of the afternoon -
the tea-and-toast part of the programme.  Around the shallow ends of the
great bath will be arranged floating trays like those used at the famous
German baths, and on each of these trays will repose a dainty tea service a
deux.

After this novel manner the tea will be partaken of with decorations
galore - flowers and seaweeds in white porcelain swans, and Japanese fantail
goldfish in crystal spheres.

Whether this party will prove as interesting and enjoyable as it is hoped
remains to be proved.  It is decidedly American, and the English custom from
which it is supposed to be derived is quite tame in comparison.  In fact at
the Bath Club itself, though ladies and gentlemen in the smartest of eveinng
dress crowd the galleries on those evenings, when a swimming display is
given, none but gentlemen take part in this;  and when the bath is reserved
for lady swimmers, the bath is hermetically sealed against all gentlemen
intruders.

                                ~~~~~~~~~~~~~