I have had pleasure in editing this little book, not only because it is the work of my youngest son, but also because it contains the results of a good deal of experience of life under novel aspects, as seen by young, fresh, and observant eyes.How the book came to be written is as follows: The boy, whose two years' narrative forms the subject of these pages, was at the age of sixteen seized with inflammation of the lungs, from which he was recovering so slowly and unsatisfactorily, that I was advised by London physicians to take him from the business he was then learning in Yorkshire, and send him on a long sea voyage. Australia was recommended, because of the considerable time occupied in making the voyage by sailing ship, and also because of the comparatively genial and uniform temperature while at sea.
ain come driving down. Everything is raw and cold; everybody wet or damp. The passengers in wet mackintoshes, and the seamen in wet tarpaulins; Gravesend, with its dirty side to the river, and its dreary mud-bank exposed to sight; the alternate drizzle and down-pour; the muddle and confusion of the deck;--all this presented anything but an agreeable picture to look at. So I speedily leave the deck, in order to make a better acquaintance with what is to be my home for the next three months.
First, there is the saloon--long and narrow--surrounded by the cabins. It is our dining-room, drawing-room, and parlour, all in one. A long table occupies the centre, fitted all round with fixed seats and reversible backs. At one end of the table is the captain's chair, over which hangs a clock and a barometer. Near the after end of the saloon is the mizen-mast, which passes through into the hole below, and rests on the keelson.
The cabins, which surround the saloon, are separated from it by open woodwork, for