Dear children of America:
     All too quickly did I pass through your country! It was like a dream which flashed into my life, and was gone.
     But not out of my mind, nor out of my heart! And I remember your faces—your many eager, healthy, happy faces, so full of life, of interest, of hope for all that is still to be.
     I could speak to so few of you, I had no time to enter your homes, nor to sit at your tables and listen to your talk. But for all that, I have the happy feeling that we could have been friends.
     But what could I do for all of you, when I was passing by so swiftly, leaving nothing behind me but a memory which—all too soon—will fade and be gone?
     None of us like to be forgotten, and I am no exception to this rule. So I began to wonder what I could do in order that you should remember me. And so it was that I decided to write this story for you—a simple story, with songs and verses in it, which I hope all of you will enjoy.
     And because I am Queen of a far-away country which I know will interest you—a country full of poetry and pictures, of old customs and quaint habits handed down through long generations from father to son, from mother to daughter—I have placed my story in Roumania and among the peasants, for it is they who guard the past.
     I have said that mine is a story in which "East and West do meet," because I bring a small American girl—little Nancy—with me over the seas. I hope that she will become your friend, as she is mine.
     May Nancy's wanderings from plain to mountain, from mountain to sea, become a pleasant wandering to you also.
     The songs and verses are my own, but they are inspired by the songs of my country. They are not stately poetry, but they may give you a better idea of the people of this poetical realm. So take them with the rest, for what they are worth!
     And you, child of America, in whose home this book has found a place, remember that I have written it with warm love and with a sincere desire that if East and West cannot really meet, they shall at least become acquainted with each other, and grow to become friends—brought closer together by the pen of one who knows how to love and appreciate both.
     Therefore, with all of my best wishes, with my blessings also, I send this little book to you. Receive it kindly, and let it keep the memory of my friendship always fresh in your heart.