p, and to send us off for Figuera, next day, with a foul wind.
Sailing at the rate of one mile in two hours, we reached Figuera's Bay at the end of eight days, and were welcomed by about a hundred hideous looking Portuguese women, whose joy was so excessive that they waded up to their arm-pits through a heavy surf, and insisted on carrying us on shore on their backs! I never clearly ascertained whether they had been actuated by the purity of love or gold.
Our men were lodged for the night in a large barn, and the officers billetted in town. Mine chanced to be on the house of a mad-woman, whose extraordinary appearance I never shall forget. Her petticoats scarcely reached to the knee, and all above the lower part of the bosom was bare; and though she looked not more than middle aged, her skin seemed as if it had been regularly prepared to receive the impression of her last will and testament; her head was defended by a chevaux-de-frise of black wiry hair, which pointed fiercely in every direction