Travels and Adventures in Kamchatka, Siberia, China, Mongolia, Chinese Tartary, and European Russia, with Full Accounts of the Siberian Exiles, Their Treatment, Condition, and Mode of Life; a Description of the Amoor River, and the Siberian Shores of the Frozen Ocean.
hopping sea like a pea on a hot shovel. Captain Lund descended first, followed by Anossoff. Then I made my effort, and behind me was a grim Cossack. Just as I reached the lowest step a wave swung the boat from the ship and left me hanging over the water. The Cossack, unmindful of things below, was backing steadily toward my head. I could not think of the Russian phrase for the occasion and was in some dilemma how to act. I shouted 'Look out' with such emphasis that the man understood me and halted with his heavy boots about two inches above my face. Clinging to the side ropes and watching my opportunity, I jumped at the right moment and happily hit the boat. The Cossack jumped into the lap of a sailor and received a variety of epithets for his carelessness. There are fourteen ways in the Russian language of calling a man a ---- fool, and I think all of them were used.
[Illustration: ASCENDING THE BAY.]
Wind and tide opposed each other and tossed us rather uncomfortably. The waves breaking over the bow saturated the Cossack and sprinkled some of the sailors. At the stern we managed to protect ourselves, though we caught occasionally a few drops of spray. Wrapped in my overcoat and holding a bear-skin on my knees, I studied the summer night in that high northern latitude. At midnight it seemed like day break, and I half imagined we had wrongly calculated the hours and were later than we supposed. Between sunset and sunrise the twilight crept along the horizon from Occident