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A TRIP ROUND THE WORLD., Issue 10470, 13 November 1897, Supplement
A TRIP ROUND THE WORLD.
-'" MELBOURNE TO COLOMBO.
-[Specially WRirrKK ton the-Evexlvg Stab ] ■'-■'■■■' •"- ■;- n6;'-i. • 7"".' '■ ■"' -'/';■ It had been iny original intention to write the narration of my experiences as a greenhorn on the voyage from Dunedin to London. Fate has willed it otherwise. In the six days of a stormy passage • from Port Chak mors to .Melbourne I verified the truth of the" ol i description of Beasickrieps—at first afraid I wa? going to die, and then afraid I was notj going to .die. Seasickness,' together with" that arch-fiend homesickness, reduced me to airamepf mind whereof the tale would jirove but sorry reading.* With your permission, then, I shall start from Melbonrhe. On the 14th of September I left Porfi'Meltiourrie in the b.s. Gera, 5.319 tons, i Captain ■ W. Meissel, for Southampton'!: and B're'mah. Even jin these days the departure of an ocearKliner evokes some little interest— In ourease this interest was heightened by .the fact that we had on board somevthirtyfour missionaries, who, under the direction of Mr Reeve, are enroute for Poona, India. For an hour or two previous to sailing continuous meetings had been held' oii board for prayer and hymns, and as the boat cast off the friends of the mission broke out as lustily as possible with 'Far, far away.' The Gera's band of eight pen' formers struck up a lively dance, to which, the band of the sister ship, the Darmstadt, resDonded with an rqually spiriting march,; and amidst cries of: farewell and bon voyage, and bewildering flutterings of handkerchiefs, we glided rapidly away. Adieu to Melbourne, with her marvellous trams, her lofty and massive buildings, her broad audT bustling streets. No sooner are wefairly afloat than is heard the welcome, if unmusical, clangj of the lunch bell. This afforcs ari opportunity of seeing who are to bs our fellow-voyagers for the next six weeks. first 'glance reveals a striking absence of prettyigirls; a more careful inspection but conflrjnsthe melancholy facT.-'Six weeks on board-arid no one to nVrS with.:. Truly are the auspices unlucky. But it is too early to form judgments. People are thrown so much together on a long voyage that it takes but a short time to become really well acquainted with one another.
Coming on deck after lunch I find my deck chair, cushion, and rug all cheerfully monopolised by a Victorian youth of some seventeen summers. I compliment him on his. cpmfortablfl posture. He looks up unabashed and says : " \ siy, these are your things; but if you go and get that chair over there we can sit together and share the rug." When I recover my breath I gratefully decline. Unfortunately this young gentleman travelled with us only as far as Adelaide.;
■..The women "missionaries are with us in the second saloon; the men. go steerage. .There is an absence of cheerfulness about them, and they keep rigidly together, mindful of th&good old adage that evil communications, etc. A small concert is organised on the first night out—it is baautifully calm, and no one U sick—which displays no extraordinary ability, musical or histrionic. There is one exo?ption. A gentleman who had visibly been frequently toasted before departure volunteers to recite. 4le selects Hamlet's soliloquy,." To be or not to be " ; he giveß it with great dramatic effect and original gesture. It is very entertaining, hut it becomss a little tedious when he insists on repeating it after every convivial gathering. Finally, re ort wa3 had to strong measures to prevent further repetitions of this great metaphysical problem, and Whisky Jimmy, as some of the unregenerate'tenned him, followed no longer in the steps of Irving and Garrick. My cabin fellows are somewhat of a surprise. Travelling by the German line offers great facili i s for acqu'ring a conversational knowledge of a foreign language, but it is apt to take one's breath away to find in one's cabin a German that speaks a mysterious dialect of that mysterious language, and whose English vocabulary is painfully limited, and also an Italian who speaks bad' French very fluently and even less Eoglish than- the German. Both are loquacious and dogmatic, and I made a most unlucky move when I rashly confessed to a trifling knowledge of both French and German. They hail my advent with delight. Here is one who is to translate andinterpret. Out rushes a torrent of Trilby French from Gsrolomo, coupled ; '"ith a request, to turn it into German for Hans; "simultaneously a hailstorm of Teutonic gutturals pelts down from Hans, coupled with a request to turn it into French for Gerolomo. I fail to understand either, and sheepishly shake my head. Another avalanche of foreign diction and I flee out of the cabin, hearing as parting shots the disgusted " Sie sprechm Deuttch I Yons parkz Franpais t However, matters have mended muoh since then, and though the position of double interpreter is somewhat laborious ..any simple taot oar* generally be comprobended by the three of us after about threequarters of an hour's hard work. German conversation is a most difficult thing to maßter. It matters little though one can read ordinary German with ease. The conversation sounds as strange as Hindustani. It consists only of one tremendous polysyllable that hisses and gurgles to various lengths. Like the sea serpent, it is of all dimensions. It sounds like a vast imprecation, scolding, and cur3e in one. It makes you feel very shame-faced, wicked, and ulteTly degenerate. A man that can listen to a German addressing him in his own idiom for ten minute* without feeling an absolute black sheep may congratulate himself on the possession of an extraordinarily guiltless conscience. But I don't believe such a man exits.
The Gera is a splendid sea boat, steady and fairly fast. She is comfortable and well fitted up, more practically than anthctically. The first saloon accommodation is amidships, and boa3ts a roomy promenade deck. The second saloon is placed aft over the stern. The motion of the vessel is somewhat more marked herr, especially the vibration of the-screw. The deck accommodation is not large enough for the full complement of passengers on board. Neither deck chairs nor rugs are provided, and both are indispensable if you wish to be comfortable. Beyond this there is nothing to blame and much to commend. The cabins and saloon are fair and the smoking room very comfortable. I shall speak of the stewards and of the food later on. The steerage passengers are packed in the bowa— as a matter of fact the boat has only one bow. They are allowed to ute the whole of the lower deck—a wise provision, seeing th*t of the 189 passengers on board 103 are steerage. The live stock, cattle, sheep, poultry, etc., are carried in unpleasant proximity to their cabins. Nor is this all. A.week after leaving Albany we met a very heavy sea, which" swept the whole lower deck time and again, and at times dashed up on the hurricane deck. This rendered matters distinctly damp for the steerage. The whole staff of the ship are Germans. The captain, offbers, chief engineer, and steward speak good English ; the sailors and crew, as a rule," know only their native tongue. Everyone takes a fatherly interest in you on board the Gera. Everything is done for you. This is well illustrated in their bath arrangements. A steward sprcially in charge of this department come 3 to you with a list, and yon select your hour for bathing. He calh you daily at that time, leads you to the Bad (a3 the Germans call it), fills the bath, and heats it to whatever temperature you like. He will not allow you to heat the bath yourself, for "you will ga. yourself burn.". Many queer luxuries are provided ; one has to be a little ciref al. The second night out from Melbourne it was pretty rough, and I felt somewhat squeamish. About ten o'clock the steward appeared with a plate of sandwiches. He offered them with his perennial smile, saying: "Vety goot." I took one; alas ! it was a German luxury, made of raw, smoked ham. The result was simultaneously elevating and depressing. The same afternoon witnessed an amusing incident. Mo3t of. the missionaries and others were sick. However, seme of the former, with commendable courage, resolved to sing a hymn. Their choice was unfortunate. .L ; ke .the Vest of the passengers, their hue was a pallid green, and with the greater part of them hanging despairingly on to the taffrail it did sound incongruous : when the refrain of their singing was heard in the line "And now we are happy all day long."
Melbourne and Adelaide we had the good .fortune to pass two other large ocean The Armand Eehlo, of the MesgagerWsMaritimer, passed almost within a stone a; throw. Outwardly she appears a large blaok ugly boat, built for speed, not appearance.- These French: liners are the fastest -boatß that visit -Australia,-and according: to report afford luxurious travellingr: The Oriept; of the Orient line, crossed us -at a considerable distance. It: is a splendid eight to meet another ooean steamer, and ic relieves the monotony of the day.. ■;.,.:,,;.:;' ; ,/„.;;, ..."
; From Melbourne to Adelaide on th 9 Gera is of thirty-six hours. Steamers of any.size .have to anchor in the roadstead, largs Bay being very shallow. Cargo is transported by lighters. JL tender visits ocean steamers hourly for the convenience of.passengers.who wish to land. We cast anchor about 3 a.m. on Thursday, and most of us went ashore immediately; after breakfast. ToOreacli' th,e town, of Adelaide one must take the train from Lirgs Biy,- whence a hot and somewhat jolting ride of an hour lands you at Adelaide; Adelaide is one of the most regularly laidout cities in the world. It is a perfect square, a mile each way, the suburbs lying outside. Beautiful | park lands and squares lie all round the t>wn ; .besides, their grateful shade, they afford a refreshing rest to the eyes from the glare of the streets., The Btreets are wide and dusty arid of a dazzling whiteness; and a planted down each side. Taken altogether the town is very pretty. After Melbourne, at first sight it is disappointing, its comparative absence of striking buildings giving it almost a shabby appearance. Government House is an old place of nondescript exterior, and the Parliamentary Buildings have a disappointing look that springs from their unfinished state. However, we saw Adelaide under an unfavorable aspect: a hot dry wind was driving hurricanes of dust in, every quarter. It is when one gets above the town that its beauty is ; seen to advantage. In population Adelaide is about equal to Dunedin, Christchurch, and Wellington taken together. The' Torrens rnns th rough the city. The river >. itself is - muddy,.! though clean in comparison with the much smaller Yarra: Dispite its dirty color, the river appears delightful, mainly owing to the profusion of wild flowers growing on its bankp. A pretty variety of the Cape weed with its starry petals, delicate waving grasses, the white iris nodding to the graceful black swans gliding over the surface of the water, and an occasional boating party —all blend to produce a fascinating study of the picturesque. Among the public buildings of AdelaideI may note a well-stocked publio library, which makes one feel ashamed of Dunedin ; a 'small but interesting picture gallery ; a university, also small, but whose lofty porticos and peculiar architecture give it quite an academical appearance. The latter grants degrees to bo'h men and. women in arts, medicine, and law, the professor'of the last-named subject being a distinguished graduate of New Zealand, Mr J. W. Salmond. The Zoological Gardens excel even those of Melbourne, and the Botanical Gardens are also very fine. On the run down to Adelaide from the port we had a curious medley in the train. The missionaries, strengthened by two or three additional recruits, sang hymns continuously, to a running fire of criticism from the occupants of the adjoining carriage, who were mainly "bookies" and other irreligious scamp 3 on their way to some local races. They freely predicted, that with so many sky pilots aboard we were certain to go to the bottom before reaching Albany. On arriving at the pier a stiffish breeze was blowing, and the little tender bobbed up and down like a cork in a method most distressing to those of us with weak stomachs. Several /Afghans came aboard here as steerage passengers, looking picturesque in their Oriental garb. It was evident that they felt the pang of departure j keenly, and their fellow-countrymen who who had come to see them off broke down as the tender cast off and wept profusely. It was a strangely pathetic Bight. Stepping on to the Gsra was like putting foot on terra jmrn again ; alas ! that so soon , we should change our opinions. We had to .wait an hour for the arrival of the Melbourne mail by the overland express, then the anchor was weighed, the bind struck up, ! the tenders tossed shoreward, and off we steamed for the three and a-half days' ruo to Albany. The different nations now represented on boird amount to six—English, GermaD, luliau, Afghan, Chinese, and Indian. Conversation between various pas sengers is consequently difficult, and the forecastle resounds with a very Babel of foreign tongues. One of the Italians solved this difficulty rather neatly. After vainly striving to make himself understood by an Eoglish maiden he suddenly kissed her, stammering to the effeot that at least lhey both knew that much Yolapuk. This international language Boems to serve them admirably.
The Graa't 'Australian Bight has a good reputation for stormy weather, and we did not macs with more than a due share of rough eaag. The first two days a fairly heavy swell kept the dinner table from being overcrowded. Oa the third day matters became more lively, and caused the vessel to depart from its customary sedate manner of progress and indulge in disconcerting acrobatic feats. Albany was reached shortly after midnight. On complaining of the weather we found that, as a matter of fact, we ought rather to congratulate ourselves, inasmuch as we had only caught the tail end of a storm that the Orient Orizaba and French Polynesien, which had left a couple of days before us, had encountered at its height. Of the township, with its thousand inhabitants, we saw nothing, as we sailed again before daylight. From the deck, as we lay at anchor, a curious sight presented itself. The lights of the town lying away to the right, the lighters gliding mysteriously up out of the darkness beside us, the cries of the sailors hurriedly taking on the additional cargo, one or two new passengers coming oh tired and sleepy, others of us standing around in pyjamas and rugs, bunches of beautiful Australian wild flowers and lilies—altogether a weird and seemingly unreal sight.
The more seasick of us felt aggrieved at having no chance to land at Albany and recover somewhat, more especially as there is now an eleven days' run before us to Colombo, and the dreaded Cape Leeuwin meets us at the outset. Between King George Saund and Cape Leeuwin lie 158 miles of barren, rugged, and picturesque coast line. Ac intervals along the suore'the sea breaks into deep caverns, und the waves spout up like some great whale. The name of the cape signifies Lioness in Dutch, and was so called after . his ship by a Dutch captain in 1622. Fortunately the tempestuous seas and mountainous waves for which the south-west point of Australia is famed were nowhere to be seen, and' we passed round in comparatively smooth water. From Cape Leeuwin to Colombo is a distance of 3,197 miles, and is known as the "long stretch." Here true ship life is experienced. Day after day not a glimpse of land is to be seen, only sea and sky, and the passengers are thrown on their own resources for amusement. The heat increases steadily. Boxing has to be given up a couple of days after leaving Albany, and even quoits and, shovel board a day later. We fall, back on reading, gossiping, cards, and lager beer. The consumption of lager is tremeudous. In every cabin you see the tall glass mug; a continual group surrounds the bar ; the smoking room is never without its quota; no meal i 3 complete without a glass. And what splendid.lager it is. .Barrels are broached daily.; barrels'are emptied daily. The English passengers, as becomes their nationalty, do thtir duty, but they nevercome within cable distance of the Germans. From careful observation, I should reckon the average carrying capacity of the latter to be eighty-four-- glasses daily. A lager costs 31; from this unit the sailors compute their money—one lager, two lagers, thise' lagers, four lagers, or one mark. In addition to the beer, draught and bottled, firstclass wines are obtainable on board at ridiculously moderate prices. It is strange to watch the sun gradually getting higher and higher in the sky until it is right over the masthead. It is getting too hot to do anything but seek a shady nook and vegetate on a deck chair. The evenings as yet are delightfujly cool and freßh, and the firmament offers nightly a magnificent sight. There is generally to be
found someone on board who will explain tho. mystery of the ohangtog obnstellationg, and their bUz; is beyond detoription.
-...., ..... How the floor of Heaven ■ Is thick inlaid, with patlnes of bright gold.--The b ueaess of. the.sky is eclipsed only by that of the sea.; To Colombo Is usually a. fair-weather run, and our vtyage is no xx--osp.ion. the .tiniest- breath of dlr, foituuately converted into a slight breeza by the rapid motion of the thip. And who shall describe •the ocean's color? For hours together we have stood watching, the depths of sapphire, thre*del.wi.tKhssingsilver, tnd Teiied with a haz> &f exquisite gioe:?; To see this sight alone were worth 1 the voyage. And at night to stand at the stern to, Witch the turmoil of the receding foam lib up"by brill ant phosphorescent lights! Dazzling points of starlike fire vie with broad sheets of blaze.
The waves ~.'; , spangled with phosphoric fire, As though, the lightnings there had spent their shafts. ■'• •■. ■.:?■;:...• : ■■':■ And left thef ragments glittering in the field. \;-'' Albat: ones d<:at rted us soon after leaving the .Australian cb>s\ ' Acro-is the b:ght we had them, circling round U3 in large numbers, but after passing Cape Lseuwin they quickly disappeared. A few cape p<gcons,aud Mother Carey's chiokens occajionally follow us, but d*ya pass in whith hardly a bird is seen. A welcome diversion- for the first week is found in the mystery of computing. time. There are always seven" or eight on board who understand the vagaries of the ship's clock, and why we should always be fated to wait an extra twenty minutes whenever we are really hungry for a meal. Unfortunately there arc generally as mauy explanations as there are explainers, and each insists on giving his d-monstration of the truth at the same lime. The embarrassment caused by the situation is heightened by the incessant questions of a gentleman who wants to know what he has done to lose forty minutes every day, and when he is going to get it back again, as lie is not returning to the colonies. . However, he rests satisfied for the moment when the paradox is pointed out that when the dock' loses forty, miuutes he really gains .it. He then thinks .he is unfairly.treated in becoming so much older "in' a week than other people. Our friend is a bit of an antiquary, and u great believer in the historical method of inquiry. After meditating on the seven different explanations given him of the varying time, and grasping the fact that by going round the world in a certain way a day is gained, he intends to construct a aballoon that will take him round the world in twelve houre, since by so doing ha will arrive at his starting point twelve hours before he left there. By keeping this ; up for some time he hoprs to arrive in time for the £*ttle of Waterloo.
A good deal of music is fouud on board. The stewards of the second saloon comprise the ship's band, and, though they are probably chosen primarily on account of their musical abilities, it would be difficult to find a more willing or efficient lot cf men. Every evening they play during dinner for the first cabin, on.mornings for the benefit of the ship generally, and often in the evening. Before coming into the tropics a small dance was organised and. proved a success, despite the fewness of the dancers. An Italian steerage passenger plays the violin fairly well, and is always willing to offer his services in return for a bottle of baer. Besides a piano out of tuue, a mandoline and abandurria make up the complement of the musical instruments on board.
The smoking room ia the home of the storytelling faculty. Some of our passengers aire much travelled, and as the lovely tropical nights wear on we greenhorcs listen to their extraordinary adventiue3 in all quarters of the globe. We have also on board Diver Brigga, who recovered the gold from the sunken Citterthun last year, and his re'miniscei.ces are in the highest degree interesting. Tho smoking room ako lends itself admirably to a sleeping cabin in the hot weather, and several of us now sleep up above instead of perspiring all night in a temperature of over 90Jeg. However, the heat as yet has not proved oppressive owing to the grateful bretzs caused by the motion of the vessel. Five day 3 before reaching Colombo the punkahs were put up. They are of great service in ridding the dining saloon of its stifling atmosphere. There is only one objection to them : they have an unexpected method of cracking you over the eyebrow unless you are very wary in getting up from a meal. Everybody on board ransacks boxes to unearth the lightest and coolest clothing possible. The officers are all arrayed in spotless ducks, and look most enviably cool. Ice is in large request. No less than thirty tons of it were Bhipped at Melbourne for the hot weather. As I write now the temperature stands at 86. The smoothness of tho sea is remarkable; the greatest attempt of tho surface to break into ripples results only in a kind of crinklo. The effect of the setting tun on such a sea is indescribably fine; equally perfect is the pale beauty of the moon. For hours in the ocol of th 9 evening we alt and watoh the play of the mocn on tho water's surface. To sit and watch is really almost all we do in the intervals between, meals. It is too hot to road comfortably, at least for those of us who are unused to the tropios, and the climate, is not adapted to energetic action, although in tho evening wo sometimes indulge in gymnastics. But for the moat part we are satisfied with absolute and unbroken indolence; and, roader, before you chide, try it yourself. It has, uncler such circumstances, an exquisite charm.
A few days afler leaving Albany we met a rough sea for a day. However, most cf U3 had by this time conquered our Bea-3ickaess, and how delightful it was for ua bad Bailors to be able to stand on deck and see our boat rolling from side to side, while every now and then an extra large wave would sweep over her main deck with irresistible force. One unfortunate sailor, while tying a tarpaulin, was caught by a wave and dashed against the hatchway with such force that his arm was broken. Io auch weather deck chairs become quite unmanageable. If unoccupied they parade up and down the deck unaided, and, unless you are pretty quick, are apt to give you a nasty blow'on the shins. Aud if you sit in your chair you find yourself every now and then either hurled into the scuppers with your chiir in full pursuit, or else the chair overtakes you after upsetting you and imprisons you in a kind of figure four trap. In addition to the vessels mentioned above, we have passed the P. and 0. China, the Orient Oruba—both at a distance—and the Nord-Deutscher Lloyd Prinz Regent. The advent of this last caused a great flutter among the patriotic Germans. She appeared in sight about eight o'clock in the evening, and rapidly drew near. Finally, she passed very olose, and afforded a magnificent sight in the darkness in the midst of the ocean. Both vessels reduced speed, the Gera gave furious blasts of her whistle, the band cime up on deck and blew aud thumped with patriotic frenzy, red and green fires and colored lights shone out from both as the two great boats passed away in opposite directions.
The missionaries on board hold a religious meeting every morning, and on Sundays the Rev. A. C. Yorke, at one time minister of St. Matthew's in Dunedin, who is en route, for England to fill a similar position, conducts an Anglican service. Nature continues to afford wonderful sights. One evening there was a magnificent display of tropical sheet lightning. For hours halfway round the horizin the sky would open in blazing rifts. A novel sight was afforded to many of us by seeing flying fish. One calm morning shoals of them were seen close to the ship,, and two of them flew right on to the lower deck. They are of a bright silver color; in length, about a foot, and their so-called wings are greatly enlarged pectoral fins. It is astonishing to see the distance they can travel out of the water. They often retouch the water without entering it, and in so doing change their direction, so that at first sight they look like birds skimming over the surface. On the ninth day after leaving Albany we crowed the Equator. The captain objects to any olfj-fashioned arrival of Neptune with hi 3 wooden razor and bilge water, but the occasion was not allowed to pass unnoticed. A large Bail was rigged np on the first class deck as a bathing pool, and two large hoses led into it. In this artificial swimming hole the children of the first and second saloons to the number of a dozen disported themselves with much gusto as soon as a prolonged blast of the steamer's whistle announced that we were crossing the line. Our captain is very jolly and a typical
tailor. He makes an offiotal round of the ship every morning at eleven o'clock, and cracks hia little joke with each in turn and chuckles infectiously thereover.:, The many daigera that await the con< soientidua blue-ribbohite flock thick in a German steamer. ...We have bad two oapital instances of it» Most of the missionaries are of course Good .Templars, and many of them nave pfejumablyVnever .tasted .wine. /: At least, one day we had some enjoyable cold wine sonp, and. the majority of the aries, not having :read.the menu and not recognising the flavor of St. Julien, attacked the course with vigor, and declared it unanimously excellent. Then some of us wicked oneß began to remark loudly on the inebriating aha degenerate effcot of v such soup. Oar unfortunate fellow-passengers were on the boms of a dilemma. Were we speaking the truth, or had they unwittingly partaken of the forbidden dish? A glance of the menu .sufficed to convince them of their wickedness. Much the same thing happened with some pastry. Who would suspect the presence of curacoa in a harmlesslooking pieca of pastry ? Yet so it was, and here again thero was a woful Bliding into sad ways. The Gera is not a fast boat. Her average rate is.l2J knots per hour. Her best run in twenty-four hours between Albany and Colombo was made on September 30,- and amounted to 318 miles. Our rate of progress is computed daily, from mid- lay to mid-day, and a small card is immediately posted at the entrance of the saloon telling the number of miles run iD the last twenty-four hours, the latitude and the longitude, the distance to the next port of call, and the time since leaving the last port. The arrangement, as to letters on board is particularly handy. We do not have to go to the trouble of buying foreign stamps at the various stopping places, but get German 'stamps and post-cards from the purser, who acts as postmaster. The mail closes a few hours before reaching port, they are stamped with the ship's mark, and go as German letters.
Of course everyto jy on board is thoroughly conversant with. Eugliah; you have only to read the advertisements to find out that. However, it is a little embirraesing when you corao to put this knowledge to the test. A few d&yß after leaving Melbourne I was fairly prostrate with seasickness, and the doctor, a very jolly fellow, came round to see me. He is both anxious and willing to speak English, but the effort hardly meets with its due reward. He has a specially constructed medical work in English and German; he .looks .up "Put out your tnngue" in German, and then points to the corresponding English phrase—th?t is to say, if you cannot understand him. We tried this method for a short time, but not very successfully; but as soon as he knew that I could speak a little Gsrman'wo got on like wildfire". I was hardly so fortunate with the barber—for we carry this luxury on board. My hair being long and the weather hot, I thought it judicious to visit this gentleman. I explained in painful German whatl wanted, and was surprised at the fluent reiponse : " Want it cut pretty short, sir?" in perfect Eoglish. Bar, alas ! that seemed the limit of his vocabulary, and I fear that the meaning of " pretty" was somewhat too idiomatic for the foreign mind. Be that as it may, I sat myself down in his chair-it i* an operating chair as regards shaving, as I found later—and chatted unsuspectingly to a friend. Before I knew what had happened I became aware of a huge broad white track down the middle of my head. The barber's idea of pretty short was to get an extra fine pair of horseclippers and fairly shave my noddle all over. I arose iudignaut and flourished my brawny fiats, but all tho wealth of India could not replace tho cropped hair. And then the barbarous operator opened his hands and shrugged hia shoulders, while he wore that eternal benign smile of the Germans with which one cannot possibly get angry. He expressed great repentance in German, bub 1 have a growing suspicion that I noticed a twinkle-in that German's eye too deep for words. . However, like the old nigger in tho song, I have r.o wool on the top of my head, and, like the fox of the fable who lost his tail, I assure everyone that it is delightfully cool and pleasant; and so persistent have my praises been that two other passengers have followed my unintentional example, and we are hailed everywhere by the Germans as JcaMkopf—i.e , baldhead. Theunfortunatc ook also findß some difficnlties in the Eoglish tongue. The menu is written in Gsrman and Eaglish, and some of the translations are decidedly amusing. Sago is invariably turned as tapioca; we are served with 4t pigons oh toast" ; one day wo had "baked farce"—it turned out to be m9at-stuffed farce'; the orowning stroke was " nudelsuppe," translated as " noodle " soup. Probably one of the passengers had taken ft riße out of that poor cook. Taking altogether, however, the Germans seem much better eduoated than the Eoglish of the colonies. Thiß is espaoially noticeable in classics. It seems strange to hear, not only the officers, but even engineer assistants como up to you, when they know you big a student, and rattle off not only Virgil and Horace, but even Ovid. The old sail* maker, indeed, recked the rules for determining the gsnder of Latin nouns. Too much cannot possibly be said for the unfair inn courtesy of all the staff on board. From the stewards to the captain you find everyone affable and desirous of pleasing. They will talk to you in English, if possible, or in German with the patience of Job, and they all seem to be wreathed in perpetual smiles of good humor. But Colombo will bo in sight in an hour ; I must cease writing. '
A TRIP ROUND THE WORLD., Issue 10470, 13 November 1897, Supplement
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