Home
  By Author [ A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z |  Other Symbols ]
  By Title [ A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z |  Other Symbols ]
  By Language
all Classics books content using ISYS

Download this book: [ ASCII ]

Look for this book on Amazon


We have new books nearly every day.
If you would like a news letter once a week or once a month
fill out this form and we will give you a summary of the books for that week or month by email.

Title: From Job to Job around the World
Author: Fletcher, Alfred Charles Ben
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "From Job to Job around the World" ***

This book is indexed by ISYS Web Indexing system to allow the reader find any word or number within the document.



produced from images generously made available by The
Internet Archive)



  FROM JOB TO JOB
  AROUND THE WORLD

[Illustration: THE AUTHOR]



  FROM JOB TO JOB
  AROUND _the_ WORLD

  BY
  ALFRED C.B. FLETCHER

  _WITH ILLUSTRATIONS FROM PHOTOGRAPHS
  BY THE AUTHOR_

  [Illustration]

  NEW YORK
  DODD, MEAD & COMPANY
  1917



  COPYRIGHT, 1916,
  BY DODD, MEAD AND COMPANY, INC.



  DEDICATED TO
  RALPH J. RICHARDSON
  A GOOD COMPANION AND AN INTELLIGENT TRAVELLER



FOREWORD


The pages that follow are an account of a three-year trip I made around
the world, starting from San Francisco with only a five-dollar gold
piece and earning my way. My wanderings took me to Hawaii, Japan,
Korea, China, the Philippines, Ceylon, India, Egypt, Palestine, Turkey,
Europe, England, Norway, Spitzbergen, Sweden, and finally across the
Atlantic to America. I think the book covers a new field in travel
narrative in that it shows that it is possible to work one's way around
the world and do so with a considerable degree of comfort. In most
instances I held good positions, met the representative people of each
country and travelled in moderate style. I, of course, had numerous
hardships and adventures, which I relate.

I wish to extend my thanks to Mr. Ralph J. Richardson, my travelling
companion on part of the trip, for the photographs which illustrate the
edition and to Mr. Stanley Richardson for many valuable suggestions in
connection with the manuscript of the volume. I also wish to express my
gratitude to _The Wide World Magazine_ for the courtesy of permitting
me to republish the narrative from its pages.

  A.C.B.F.



CONTENTS


  CHAPTER                                               PAGE

      I TWO WORLD-BEATERS                                 1

     II HAWAII BY STEERAGE                               13

    III GOVERNMENT INSPECTORS AT PEARL
          HARBOR                                         26

     IV LIVING AS JAPANESE IN JAPAN                      42

      V ARRESTED AS SPIES IN JAPAN                       59

     VI A PROFESSOR IN A CHINESE COLLEGE                 74

    VII ADRIFT IN THE CHINESE EMPIRE                     89

   VIII RURAL CHINA BY CART                             109

     IX ASSORTED JOBS IN THE PHILIPPINES                120

      X A PORT-HOLE VIEW OF SOUTHERN ASIA               135

     XI TWO TRAMPS IN INDIA                             150

    XII A SAILOR TO SUEZ                                171

   XIII AN AMERICAN CHRISTMAS IN JERUSALEM              186

    XIV WANDERING IN THE NEAR EAST                      204

     XV GREECE AND ROME FROM A THIRD-CLASS
          COACH                                         218

    XVI EUROPE ON A VANISHING BANK-ROLL                 241

   XVII FROM LUXURY TO HUNGER                           257

  XVIII A RESIDENT OF THE ARCTIC ZONE                   269

    XIX MINING UNDER THE MIDNIGHT SUN                   284

     XX TO AMERICA AS AN IMMIGRANT                      304



ILLUSTRATIONS


    The author                                        _Frontispiece_
                                                              FACING
                                                               PAGE

    On the beach at Waikiki                                        4

    Our Kaneohe cottage                                           10

    "Grub is ready; get your gang together"                       10

    The Steerage Trio                                             18

    The _Gaylord_, the only drag-bucket dredger in existence      30

    A restaurant where nothing but "grub" is served               30

    Bound for Japan                                               48

    Taisuke Murakami, our host at Nagoya                          48

    The picture that caused our arrest                            66

    A group of our Korean friends                                 76

    Every day is wash-day in Korea                                76

    Provincial officials attending China's first track meet       80

    The author in Chinese garb                                    84

    A pagoda bridge in the Forbidden City                         96

    Country boys of North China                                  104

    Sample of an irrigation system                               104

    Crossing a Chinese country bridge                            112

    The inn where Richardson put up for a night                  112

    An old church in Manila                                      122

    The house in which Richardson lived during his employ
        at the prison                                            130

    The foreign business section of Singapore                    142

    The village drummer summoning the people on our
    arrival                                                      142

    A _jutka_ or "jitney" used in Central India                  150

    Washing clothes in the Ganges                                162

    A single tree--a banyan                                      162

    The Sphinx                                                   178

    The Mount of Olives                                          194

    Our start for Nazareth                                       208

    The port of Dedeagatch                                       214

    A market in Constantinople                                   224

    The Temple of Theseus                                        234

    The Roman Forum--a "vacant lot" of Rome                      248

    St. John's Church, Needham Market                            262

    The author's home in Tromso                                  274

    Tromso in summer-time                                        274

    Pack ice in Ice Fjord                                        286

    Twenty miles from land                                       286

    The first load for shore                                     292

    The ice pack from the crow's nest                            300

    The _Munroe_ alongside the ice--60 miles from land           306

    Longyear City, Spitzenbergen--700 miles from the
        North Pole                                               306

    Norwegian wireless station in Ice Fjord                      314



  FROM JOB TO JOB
  AROUND THE WORLD



FROM JOB TO JOB AROUND THE WORLD



CHAPTER I

TWO WORLD-BEATERS


"WHAT'S the trouble? Are you seasick or homesick?" cordially inquired
Richardson, approaching a stranger who was hanging over the side of a
ship bound for Honolulu.

"Neither, my friend," I replied with a smile.

These were the initial sentences of a dialogue which was happily
destined to continue for three years.

It was about an hour after the S.S. _Alameda_ had left San Francisco
for Honolulu, while leaning against the rail of the ship gazing at the
receding city and turning over in my pocket a five-dollar gold piece,
that I was hailed by Richardson. This gold piece was all the money I
had in the world and I soon learned that the few loose coins my new
friend possessed fell a little short of this amount.

After exchanging a few ideas each of us discovered that we were
starting out on a similar expedition--a trip around the world.
Richardson had made arrangements with another fellow for such a
tour and he had backed out. I also had planned for a companion--who
disappointed me at the last moment. With our partners failing us we
both set out alone and by a happy coincidence took the same boat and
met the first morning out of port. We liked one another's looks and
decided to hook up, then and there.

A combined wealth of less than ten dollars and the wide, wide world
in front of us! We agreed not to make any definite plans; we mapped
out no itinerary, except the general one of around the world; we had
no elaborate scheme of travel nor ideas of how we were to make our
way, but decided to resign ourselves to chance and bang around, taking
whatever came along. My idea was to explore the earth before I was
anchored by matrimony, and Richardson wanted to see all of this world
before he went to the next. We set out not as tourists--that familiar
species of humanity--but as two refined American tramps.

As a young boy I had vague notions of how I was some day going to
"beat" my way around the world. I always pictured myself going as a
vagrant. My career as a world-beater had now begun.

To make the break was the difficult thing. To leave a good position
against the advice of friends and start out on an expedition which
seemed the height of folly to many people was not an easy step. I had
heard of men beating their way amid a continual round of hardships. I
thought it possible to travel in such a manner and do so with a fair
degree of comfort. It was our plan to look for good jobs and to get
around in the middle course between the wealthy tourist on one hand and
the ignorant, homeless tramp on the other.

With our fares paid to Honolulu, by money we had saved, we had no
cares, and mingled with the miscellaneous types of passengers on the
ship. Forty school teachers, ranging in age from twenty to sixty,
were returning to their insular positions; pious missionaries were on
their way to their posts after a sojourn in the States; sugar planters
and pineapple growers spent hours on the promenade deck boosting the
islands to the handful of tourists and others on the water for the
first time. Seated at our table in the saloon was a Roman Catholic
priest, a lean, kindly old man who was only able to eat about one meal
in ten. Accompanying him were two monks, a fat one and a thin one,
going to the islands to resume their labours. The amount of food the
fat one could surround was not only a source of amazement and anxiety
to his fellow-eaters but was the cause for great alarm on the part
of the ship's commissary--for fear the supply of provisions would be
exhausted before port was reached. If he had taken vows to deny himself
many of the pleasures of this world he more than squared himself by
the quantity of food he would devour at one sitting.

The six days it takes to go to Honolulu from San Francisco were spent
as such days are usually spent at sea, talking and reading in the
morning, shuffle-board and other games in the afternoon, singing and
spooning in the evening--on the whole a civilised trip. On the morning
of the seventh day we arrived in the harbour of Honolulu. After
being amused by a group of native boys diving for coins thrown by
all passengers except ourselves--who felt inclined to strip and join
the divers--the ship was soon alongside and in a short time we were
mingling with the cosmopolitan inhabitants on the streets of Honolulu.

The next day found each of us enrolled on the teaching staff of two
different schools. We became school teachers! There is something rather
distasteful about a man teaching in the grammar grades. It is too
ladylike. I would rather be caught operating an electric runabout. But
when one realises that his last meal is not far away, any occupation is
acceptable, and school teaching proved to be one of the most attractive
vocations which we pursued during the trip.

Richardson affiliated himself with Mills Institute, a school under the
control of the Hawaiian Board of the Congregational Church Missionary
organisation. The total enrolment of this institution was about two
hundred students, three-fourths of whom were Chinese and the rest
Japanese and Koreans. It graduated pupils of high school standing
and it was in the upper division that Richardson was to work. He was
instructor in algebra, geometry, Latin and English at sixty dollars
a month and board. His work consisted of the routine duties of any
ordinary teacher and, except that the school was quarantined for three
weeks on account of diphtheria, nothing eventful occurred during his
connection with the place.

[Illustration: ON THE BEACH AT WAIKIKI]

I assumed the duties of teacher of the fourth and fifth grades in
Iolani School, a parochial institution connected with Saint Andrew's
Cathedral, at the mere pittance of thirty dollars a month and board.
Hawaiian schools are in many respects similar to those on the mainland
and differ chiefly in the fact that the personnel of the pupils is much
more cosmopolitan. In these two grades there were about sixty boys made
up of Hawaiians, Chinese, Japanese, Koreans, Portuguese and but two
Americans. At the end of two months under my instruction one of the
American boys ran away and the other poor chap went insane--a tough
commentary on the pedagogic ability of their teacher.

One of the masterpieces of literature that came to my attention is
too good to let fade into obscurity. It is a letter from a number
of Chinese and Japanese pupils asking me for their report cards. It
follows:

  "_Dear Mr. A.C.B. Fletcher_:

  Our objection in writing this letter to you that we don't want our
  report cards on last examination and you promise to us that you will
  sent out the cards on Monday, but the cards has not yet reached us.
  We shall be obliged if you will sent us the report cards when you
  have accept this letter.

  Hoping to receive the cards early,

  Your disobedient pupils,
  H. Ah Chau,
  Instead of pupil."

  Mr. Ah Chew
  Mr. Ah Soy
  Mr. Jay Yet
  Mr. Jock Chay
  Mr. T. Murakami
  Mr. Lo Lee

No one could resist this touching plea, so I spent one whole night
correcting papers and had the report cards ready to deliver the
following day.

"The loveliest fleet of islands that lie anchored in any ocean," were
the words in which Mark Twain once described the Hawaiian group, and
the time we spent in the "Paradise of the Pacific" proved to be one of
the most enjoyable periods of the trip.

I have been surprised on many occasions at the ignorance displayed by
people in the United States, and especially in the East, concerning the
Territory of Hawaii. They imagine that the natives are a half-clad race
recently descended from cannibals, that Honolulu is a semi-civilised
village of Hawaiian huts and that modern conveniences have not yet
found their way to the islands. Honolulu is a city of fifty thousand
people, of whom a large number are Orientals and but a few thousand are
Americans. The Americans, although in the minority, dominate the city.
Honolulu is one of the most beautiful and up-to-date cities of its size
under the American flag. It has a good electric car service, hundreds
of paved streets, first-class shops, three modern hotels and countless
beautiful homes. There were one hundred and fifty automobiles lined
up on the water front to meet the S.S. _Cleveland_ when she docked at
Honolulu with seven hundred passengers on her around-the-world trip.
There are hundreds of miles of excellent roads for motoring throughout
the islands and the number of automobiles, per capita of Americans,
greatly exceeds the ratio of any city on the mainland. Honolulu is a
park from one end to the other. It combines all the attractive features
of the tropics with the climate of the temperate zone and possesses a
charm all its own.

It was in this paradise that Richardson and I began our wanderings.
During the recesses we had from our school duties we explored the
island of Oahu, upon which Honolulu is situated, and became as familiar
with it as the average man is with his own back yard. We learned to
ride the surf at Waikiki--the finest bathing beach in all the world. We
climbed all the hills in the vicinity of Honolulu. We visited Diamond
Head and its fortifications. We took a dip in the Kalihi swimming hole,
and we explored the island from one end to the other.

Through the kindness of an American friend, we had at our disposal
a summer cottage at Kaneohe, about twelve miles from Honolulu on
the northern shore of the island. This little house was completely
equipped with cooking and eating appliances, beds and provisions. It
was situated on the beach of Kaneohe Bay. We had the use of a sail
boat, two row boats and fishing tackle. At this ideal spot we spent
many week-ends and, the whole time, we would go about clad in only a
pair of trunks and devote the pleasant hours under the semi-tropical
sun to swimming, boating and fishing. Many a time since, I have longed
for another few days' stay at this little resort--to bathe in its
sunshine and enjoy its outdoor pleasures undisturbed by the noise and
bustle of civilisation.

We concluded that teaching stipends would never get us around the
world. Especially true was this in my case, for I was making an effort
to pay twenty dollars a month to a California real estate firm for
several lots I had purchased some years before. We therefore decided to
give up our schools and to rustle a more remunerative line of labour.
Hearing that the United States Navy Department needed inspectors for
its operations in connection with the construction of the naval base at
Pearl Harbour, about twelve miles from Honolulu, I wandered into the
navy headquarters one morning and bluntly addressed the first man I saw.

"My name is Fletcher and I am looking for a job." The lieutenant in
charge, who was dressed precisely in the white uniform of the tropics,
resenting my abrupt manner, replied by asking sarcastically:

"Have you been to high school?"

"Yes," I said.

"Are you a university graduate?" the officer continued, beginning to
realise that he had somewhat misjudged the applicant.

"I was graduated from the University of California in 1907."

"Well, then," said the lieutenant, assuming a dignified attitude,
"an examination is to be held on Wednesday of next week for several
positions as sub-inspectors of dredging, and if you will fill out
an application you can take it." I filled out the document, which
contained the regular useless and characteristic red tape required to
get within approaching distance of a government position.

"What does the examination cover?" I enquired.

"It is contrary to the rules to answer such a question," was the navy
man's reply.

"But a man ought to have some line on what he is going up against. For
all I know the questions may be on theology," I said with a smile.
"Can't you give me a general idea what the test will cover?"

The officer then informed me that the examination would include several
questions on dredges, blasting and explosives and the use of a sextant
and a protractor, and would test the applicant's knowledge of geometry
and arithmetic. After expressing my gratitude for the information I
wandered out into the street with my hopes somewhat shattered. As
I aimlessly sauntered along the water front leading from the Naval
Station, I began to ponder over the various items to be included in
the examination. The more I reflected the lower my hopes descended. I
couldn't tell a sextant from a churn, a protractor was as strange a
device to me as a doctor's forceps, and I knew no more about a stick of
dynamite than a turtle does about music.

But in spite of this apparently insurmountable wall of ignorance, we
both agreed to take a chance at the examination, and I was designated
to gather the information. I borrowed a sextant from the skipper of
a ship lying in the harbour and practised with the instrument in the
vacant lots of the city. I made several trips to Pearl Harbour and
studied the different types of dredges at work in the channel, drawing
diagrams and taking notes on each. I obtained a book on explosives and
among other volumes I came across a publication entitled "Inspector's
Handbook," which contained most of the information we desired in
concise form.

While I was busy gathering data for the approaching examination,
Richardson was earning two dollars a day on a job he had picked up
from the Honolulu Telephone Company. His tedious duties consisted of
installing a switch-board in the company's new building, and he spent
his ten long hours a day in the monotonous task of connecting an
endless number of small metallic fibres. At the close of his second
day on the job he struck his boss for a lay-off.

[Illustration: _Upper_: OUR KANEOHE COTTAGE]

[Illustration: _Lower_: "GRUB IS READY. GET YOUR GANG TOGETHER"]

"You have only worked two days and now you ask for time off. What do
you want it for?" asked the oily-looking foreman.

"I am scheduled to take a civil service examination to-morrow," was
Richardson's reply.

"A civil service examination! Going to quit me, Eh? Not if I know
anything about it. You're fired. Come and get your time right now,"
exclaimed the enraged telephone boss.

"That suits me all right," said Richardson in an indifferent tone. He
received his four dollars and walked unconcernedly out of the place.

That evening Richardson, four dollars richer, spent several hours
under my instruction, and I made an effort to prime him full of the
information I had collected for the examination. Promptly at nine
o'clock the next morning we were both on hand at the Naval Station,
equipped with a banana each for lunch, to take the six-hour test.
There were seven other aspirants representing seven types of the human
species, from a shabbily dressed stevedore to a foppishly attired bank
clerk, and each had little or no knowledge of the nature of the test
which was about to begin. After the examination had been in progress
about an hour, Richardson and I were the only ones left--the other
poor beggars had given up in despair. With our coats off, we answered
the nine questions in the required time and afterwards retired to the
lawn, where we were asked to demonstrate our practical knowledge of a
sextant. We were instructed to measure off four red flags, which were
so arranged that they formed a circle with the point on which we stood
as a pivot. We were given ten minutes to perform this feat. Richardson
handled the instrument like a veteran. I was unable to locate the final
flag through the lense of the sextant on account of a multitude of red
banners flying from a man-of-war lying alongside of a dock near-by.
After fumbling around in a vain effort to find the right red flag in
the maze of the ship's signals, and realising that my ten minutes were
fast fading away, I decided to take a long shot and do a little guess
work. I took my vernier reading from the biggest flag I could see. It
turned out to be a good guess, for I learned afterwards that my entire
circle read three hundred and sixty degrees, one second.

The next day we were both notified that we had passed the
examination--Richardson, the student, receiving a mark of eighty-six
per cent.--and myself, the instructor, eighty-five per cent. We were
now in line for appointments as sub-inspectors of dredging on the Pearl
Harbour Naval Base, in the employ of the United States Navy Department
at $3.60 a day and board--with double pay on Sunday. This made an
average of one hundred and ten dollars clear money a month.



CHAPTER II

HAWAII BY STEERAGE


PASSING the examination was only part of the procedure through which
we had to go to obtain positions as sub-inspectors of dredging on the
construction of the Pearl Harbour Naval Base. The next step was to get
an appointment from Washington which was not to be had until there was
a vacancy at the harbour. The naval authorities in Honolulu could give
us no assurance when an opening would occur, so we decided to visit
some of the other islands while awaiting developments. We wished to
see Kilauea, the only active volcano in the Hawaiian archipelago, on
the island of Hawaii, about one hundred and twenty-five miles south of
Honolulu. We also wished to see Haleakala, the largest extinct crater
in the world on the island of Maui.

We sailed on the S.S. _Wilhelmina_ for Hawaii, accompanied by a fellow
school teacher by the name of Hammond. Richardson went as a member
of the crew while Hammond and I were steerage passengers at three
dollars a head--as we supposed. No one came to collect our fares, so
I reluctantly offered the money to the purser who refused it--for
he knew we were poor men. We returned under similar good fortune,
making a total of two hundred and fifty miles of travel, including
meals, for nothing. Richardson's duties consisted of bucking around
one-hundred-and-fifty-pound sugar sacks, and he received little
sympathy from his two travelling companions who sat leisurely by and
made fun of him. He proved to be a very poor workman, for after the
ship was well under way he shirked his duties to such an extent that he
enjoyed all the comforts and leisure of steerage travel.

We were the most aristocratic steerage passengers that this ship or
any other ever had. Instead of conducting ourselves like cattle, as
fourth-class passengers sometimes do, we mingled with the pretty
girls of the first-class, took deck chairs which usually retail at a
dollar a trip, explored the boat beyond the steerage line and when
the steward emerged from the lower deck and in the presence of all
the passengers shouted, "Grub is ready, get your gang together," the
three of us dropped down the hole and lined up alongside of the trough
and proceeded to place away the food which was served in wholesale
quantities on tinware. Our iron-piped bunks were free from bed-bugs
and other inhabitants, but the hairy blankets were tormentors all
night long. It was a rough trip and it was fortunate that none of us
was seasick. It would have been extremely awkward, for no provision
was made for receptacles of any kind which are necessary under such
circumstances. Our bunks were ten feet from the port holes, which
were twelve feet from the deck, and in order to do the usual thing
through one of these apertures it would have been necessary to procure
a ladder, and even then we should have run the risk of getting our
heads caught in the port holes and of being unable to draw them out.
One's imagination can picture the steerage steward being greeted in
the morning by three bums hanging lifelessly by their heads from three
successive port holes, with their legs dangling in the air.

Richardson was determined to break in on two attractive girls on the
first-class promenade deck. One of them was seated in front of her
stateroom looking like an unlaundered towel and doing her best to hold
down a recently devoured meal. Richardson prinked before the steerage
mirror and walked briskly along the deck to the point where the young
lady was sitting. He stopped short and bluntly asked,

"Are you seasick?"

"Don't I look it?" she replied with a smile.

This was the entering wedge and soon Richardson introduced his fellow
travellers. The steerage quarters were immediately deserted and we
spent the rest of the trip on the promenade deck with the women. One
of them proved to be the daughter of an high official of the Oceanic
Steamship Company, which at that time was contemplating placing on a
line of steamers from San Francisco to Australia. We met her father
who, on hearing of the plans of our trip, which we enthusiastically
related, said that in the event the new line was put on he would see
that we got to Australia for nothing. Unfortunately for us, our time to
depart came before this line was inaugurated.

We landed at Hilo on the island of Hawaii early in the morning,
and bought a third-class round-trip ticket for $1.60 to Glenwood,
twenty-two miles distant. From Glenwood we walked the remaining nine
miles to the Volcano House in two hours and fifteen minutes, rising two
thousand feet and beating the stage by twenty minutes. The road was a
good thoroughfare through tropical forests of tree ferns, twenty feet
in height; of _ohia lehua_, a tree belonging to the same family as the
eucalyptus; _koa_ or Hawaiian mahogany; wild bananas; papaia, water
lemons, palms and wild roses. On arriving at the Volcano House we had
something to eat and then set out across the lava beds for three miles
to Halemaumau--the active pit of the volcano--where we spent the night
in a shack perched on its edge.

Kilauea is one of the "seven wonders" of America. It is situated on the
slopes of Mauna Loa, a barren mountain rising gradually from the sea to
a height of thirteen thousand five hundred feet. The Volcano House, or
tourist hotel on the hillside, commands an excellent view of the crater
with its desert of lava, of the swirling smoke of the pit and of Mauna
Loa, rising majestically in the distance to its dome-like summit.

Vesuvius is a large broken cone on the top of a mountain. Kilauea is an
enormous cavity about seven miles in circumference and several hundred
feet deep on the side of a mountain. The crater is a large lava bed
cooled in peculiar and fantastic formations and it is about four miles
in diameter. Across this dreary desert is a winding trail which leads
from the Volcano House to the pit. Along this path there are immense
fissures in the lava from which constantly rise volumes of sulphur
smoke oozing out from the very bowels of the earth. As one approaches
the pit the enormous column of smoke, which rises from it, is always
present as a guide to his destination and at night it is a tower of
light which spreads its rays for miles.

Halemaumau, the pit where the molten lava is raging, is about four
hundred feet in diameter and at the time of our visit the level of the
liquid fire was about six hundred feet below the floor of the crater.
There is a pit within a pit, the top of the inner forming a shelf
within the outer; and it was on this ledge that Mark Twain had the
thrilling experience of rescuing a companion who had fallen through
the lava. His account of this adventure is given in "Roughing It," and
he relates in detail the difficulty with which he emerged from his
perilous situation after wandering blindly about amidst the fumes of
sulphur in search of a path to safety. To-day none but the fool-hardy
venture below, as it is very dangerous. Richardson, Hammond and I
explored the whole region, and we sat for hours on the edge of the
precipice and watched this lake of molten lava--splashing, surging,
tossing, gurgling, flowing--ever restless and ever beautiful.

This mass of writhing fluid looks like hell as pictured by the old-time
fire and brimstone preachers. It appears to be flowing in a continuous
current, coming from one side and disappearing at another. As floating
pieces of lava cool and crack, a series of red hot fountains bursts
through them, rising to a height of twenty or thirty feet. In the midst
of this restless mass of Satanic fluid is a large stationary rock which
reposes in its infernal position as peacefully as a cow in a pasture.
Out of this awful chasm there arise clouds of sulphur smoke which
conceal the bed to a great extent, but as there is always a strong
constantly changing wind we were able to get good views of the whole
scene.

It is extremely fascinating to sit on the edge of this pit and watch
the incessant dashing and splashing of the glowing lava. It impressed
even such homeless tramps as ourselves. One's thoughts drift back
to the time, a century ago, when Mrs. Pele--the Hawaiian Goddess of
volcanoes--was misbehaving to her full capacity, when the present
outer crater with its cold and peaceful lava beds was one living mass
of furious fire, when its rays were so brilliant at night that it
illuminated the sky and sea for a radius of four hundred miles and
the lava flowed at will down the mountain-side to the sea and extended
the coast of this volcanic island.

[Illustration: THE STEERAGE TRIO]

An interesting story is told by the natives. Several years ago when
Kilauea was unusually active there was great fear that the lava would
flow down the mountain-side and bury the town of Hilo. The Hawaiians
in their frenzied fright appealed to Princess Ruth for help. She,
accompanied by the ladies and gentlemen of the court, proceeded to the
volcano and with great ceremony, this portly and corpulent woman (it is
said that she weighed three hundred pounds) stood on the edge of the
pit and threw a live and disgusted pig into the midst of the burning
cauldron, whereupon the boiling lava immediately subsided and the
village of Hilo was saved.

The regular tourist rate from Honolulu to Kilauea is $59.50, which
includes round-trip by boat, railroad fare from Hilo to Glenwood, stage
charges to the Volcano House and board and room while there. Admitting
that we missed a considerable degree of comfort, nevertheless, we saw
all that the average tourist sees and at a cash outlay of only $2.10
each.

Huddled in the steerage of the _Mauna Kea_ (one of the small steamers
of the Inter-Island Steam Navigation Company) with a score of Chinese,
Japanese and Hawaiians, we left Honolulu for McGregor's Landing on the
island of Maui to see the extinct volcano Haleakala. The trip was a
night's journey and, as no sleeping accommodations are provided in the
third-class of Hawaiian steamers, we bunked on the soft side of a coil
of rope.

The ship arrived at McGregor's Landing about five o'clock in the
morning and we went ashore feeling anything but rested after a most
wearisome night. We made a bargain with a Chinese hack driver to
carry us to Kahului, eight miles across the island. After breakfast
we boarded a little narrow gauge train for Paia, a sugar plantation
village a short distance up the coast on the slopes of Haleakala. We
purchased a supply of provisions at the plantation store and were soon
started on the twenty-mile climb to the top of the mountain. Haleakala
is just over ten thousand feet in elevation and the trail to the summit
ascends on an average of five hundred feet to the mile. A trip up
Haleakala proved to be far from a pleasure jaunt.

The first part of our walk from Paia past the huge sugar factory lay
through the great cane fields of the Maui Agricultural Company, the
second largest plantation in the Hawaiian Islands. The cane was being
harvested and the Japanese cutters were as busy as bees all about us.

About ten o'clock we reached the four-thousand-foot level. The cane
fields began to disappear and our path wound its way among banana farms
and taro patches. We helped ourselves to mangoes, papaias and guavas
along the way. We ate our lunch at a Chinese store. The real climb
began after midday. We left fertile fields and were soon following the
trail across the middle slopes of the mountain. There were few trees
and the sun shone down from a cloudless sky. Our gait was easily under
the speed limit, only about two miles an hour. It was a hard stony road
over which we had to travel.

As we ascended the view began to widen out on every side. We could look
back over the cane fields to the Pacific and see the breakers rolling
ashore. Above us towered the mountain, the summit now and again lost in
a fleecy cloud. We almost forgot the hardships of the climb with such a
picture before us.

Although the ascent from Paia to the top can be made in a single day,
we decided to break the journey about half way, spend the night and
start out refreshed for the last stretch. We stopped at Idlewilde and
put up in the summer home of a Kahului friend. We made an early start.
The trail was plainly marked with guide posts, each tenth of a mile.
Idlewilde is eight miles by trail from the summit and the ascent from
this point is over five thousand feet--seven hundred to the mile. The
first three or four miles were comparatively easy, for we were fresh
and the footing was good. About the fifth mile the real work began. The
trail became steeper and steeper until it seemed straight up. We began
to strike loose, volcanic dirt and sand. We passed the timber line
and the stubby bushes with which the side of the mountain is covered
afforded no protection from the sun. It was real mountain climbing--or
just plain unadulterated work. The high altitude made frequent stops
necessary for breathing spells. Our progress was slow. The last three
miles took over three hours.

The view was magnificent. Forty miles of the Maui coast were spread out
at our feet. To the south the island of Molokai loomed out of the sea.
Two or three steamers were making their way through the Maui-Molokai
channel towards Honolulu. The air was clear, almost Rocky Mountain
clearness--an unusual condition for Hawaii.

A mile from the top we collected a large bunch of fire wood for use
during the night. The wood probably weighed one hundred pounds--fifty
pounds each. In a half an hour it had increased to four hundred pounds.
We began to lighten our packs. We reached the summit with five pounds
each. The last half mile took one hour. The air was rarefied and we had
to stop every few hundred feet for breath. The trail, beside being much
steeper than heretofore--if such a thing were possible--was covered
with sand, causing us to slip back a foot for nearly every step we took.

Suddenly the view of the great crater burst upon us. It is a sight
I shall never forget. We had reached the top of the trail and were
walking along a low wall of rock towards the mountain house. We came
to a break in the rock and in an instant Haleakala appeared before us.

Imagine a hole in the top of a mountain. Let this hole be twenty-seven
miles around and from two to three thousand feet deep, the sides
abruptly sloping. Scattered over the level floor of this hole, picture
twenty extinct volcanic cones or craters, the smallest forty feet in
height, the largest about a thousand. This, in brief, is Haleakala. The
sight is a grand one to-day, with all the craters extinct. What must it
have been a thousand years ago when, according to geologists, Haleakala
was active and the great crater was one mass of flame and liquid rock?

We spent the night in the mountain rest house. This small stone
cabin is provided for visitors to the summit. We curled up in our
blankets--but not to sleep. The fireplace balked and the smoke went
everywhere but up the chimney. We stood it as long as we could and
then concluded that we would rather freeze than be smoked to death. We
threw the fire outdoors and spent the rest of the night in a cold but
smokeless cabin. A bucket of water in the room was frozen over with ice
a half inch thick. We didn't sleep a wink.

In the morning we saw the greatest of all sunrises--a Haleakala
Sunrise. The great crater had filled with clouds during the night. In
the grey morning light one could imagine that he was looking over an
immense body of water. Clouds had settled around the mountain so that
the view of the ocean was shut off. We seemed to be standing on an
island with clouds all about us. The first rays of the sun were caught
up by the mass of mist in the crater. In an instant the great pit was
turned into a sea of fire. Back and forth flashed the light as it was
reflected through the abyss of fog. In three minutes it was all over.
As the sun rose the clouds began to take flight, like giant birds, and
in a few minutes the crater was empty.

We rolled rocks over the edge and watched them go bounding down the two
thousand foot slope to the floor of the crater. When a boulder in its
flight struck another, imbedded in the side of the mountain, pieces
dashed up like a fountain and the noise was like the muffled discharge
of a cannon.

It only took us a little over four hours to make the twenty miles back
to Paia. We scarcely felt tired that evening, but the following morning
I thought I was a hundred years old. The constant pounding of our heels
on the hard trail affected the muscles in the back of our legs and
for two or three days we could hardly walk. If human beings ever have
springhalt, we surely had it.

We returned to Honolulu by the _Mauna Kea_. All went well in the
steerage and we arrived in the morning. Instead of going to the wharf,
the ship anchored at the quarantine station. We thought this was
something unusual and one of us asked an officer the cause. Bubonic
plague, one of the most feared of all diseases, had appeared on
Maui--only two cases--and all the steerage passengers were to be landed
at quarantine and inspected by the port doctor before being allowed to
go ashore.

We were steerage by environment but not by heredity. Within two minutes
we had business in the engine room. We tarried there a brief moment and
went on deck--the first-class deck. Every one was in a rush and our
appearance was not even noticed. We knew several of the passengers and
at once entered into conversation with them.

Soon the ship's boats were lowered and the first-class passengers--and
two steerage--were landed at the wharf. In ten minutes we were on
shore, two travel-stained, tired and lame, but cheerful looking tramps.
Haleakala was a wonder. It was worth travelling steerage to see--even
worth taking a chance on the plague.



CHAPTER III

GOVERNMENT INSPECTORS AT PEARL HARBOUR


ON our return to Honolulu there still was no word from the Naval
authorities as to appointments at Pearl Harbour. We decided to stand
by a few weeks longer in the hope that an opening would soon occur. As
our money was running low it was necessary for us to obtain temporary
jobs to insure that we would get food each day and have a place to rest
our heads at night. Richardson soon fell into the berth of sales-clerk
in a photograph shop on the main street of Honolulu, selling kodak
supplies and fixtures at twelve dollars a week. I was not so fortunate.
I scoured the town for days for something that paid a living wage.
I applied to the City Health Department, hoping to get a position
as mosquito inspector, ambling about town with a can of oil on my
back, pouring the liquid on the various duck ponds which are operated
by Chinese and Japanese and which are prolific incubators for this
tropical pest. I sought work as a checker of sugar as it is loaded on
ships in the harbour. I made application to the three newspapers in the
hope of being taken on as a reporter and I canvassed all the houses
in the wholesale district. No one would have me. However, I knew one
job I could get but I was standing it off as long as there might be
prospects of obtaining something else. But finally I had to take it.
A re-enforced concrete jail was under construction on the water front
and one afternoon, after several hours of searching in vain for work, I
sauntered around to this structure. I found the Irish foreman, assumed
an empty appearance and said, "I am hungry." The good man immediately
agreed to take me on as a labourer at $1.50 a day.

I appeared the next morning attired in suitable raiment for the work
I was about to take up and was assigned to my post. The building had
been in course of construction several months and had reached the point
where the concrete had set and the forms were ready to be dismantled.
Equipped with a pinch bar, I worked on a scaffolding with a dozen
native Hawaiians and a score of Portuguese, removing the forms from
the walls and ceilings. After several days of this fascinating pastime
I was placed on the end of a shovel mixing concrete on the roof and
propelling a wheelbarrow laden with cement. Pushing two hundred pounds
of concrete in a primitive wheelbarrow on the top of an Hawaiian jail
under the glaring and penetrating rays of the tropical sun with school
teacher's hands was no joke. Blisters the size of nickels arose on my
hands; my back became lame, my feet swollen and every muscle in my body
as tender as a baby's. To reach the apex of misfortune I ran a rusty
nail through the sole of my shoe into my foot. This was a fat load of
discomfort to carry for a meagre $1.50 a day. But I had to eat.

In the meantime a vacancy occurred at Pearl Harbour and Richardson
received an appointment. After swearing that he would support the
Constitution of the United States, the laws of the territory of Hawaii,
the Ten Commandments and what not, he was duly authorised to exercise
the duties of sub-inspector of dredging. Richardson's one per cent.
better mark in the examination put him on the dredging job three weeks
in advance of myself and during this period he earned seventy-five
dollars--a costly one per cent. for me.

After several weeks as a hod-carrier, I also received my Pearl
Harbour appointment, which had been cabled from Washington, and I at
once abandoned the concrete business and--from hard labour--joined
Richardson in a life of leisure as a government inspector.

The United States Government was spending several million dollars in
developing Pearl Harbour, a beautiful land-locked bay on the island
of Oahu about ten miles from Honolulu. Under the supervision of the
United States Navy Department a dry dock was being constructed, a naval
station was to be built with shops, barracks, parade grounds, marine
hospital, etc. In order to make this natural harbour accessible the
government was having the channel dredged to a width of six hundred
feet and to a depth of thirty-five feet. The work was under contract
to the Hawaiian Dredging Company, who employed, at this time, about
six hundred men. The task was being performed by six dredgers, each of
a different type,--a clam-shell, a dipper, a converted schooner, an
electric hydraulic, a steam hydraulic and a drag-bucket. These machines
were superintended by experienced men from America, but the general run
of their crews was recruited from the riff-raff of the earth. Drunken
sailors, bums and tramps, good-for-nothing Europeans, worthless hulks,
swearing Britishers and high sea wanderers blew into the camp and were
taken on--to remain but a few days--when new recruits would come along
or men would be enlisted from the patrons of the waterfront saloons of
Honolulu. As deck hands, launch men and any sort of unskilled labour
they were set to work, only to be replaced in a few days by a bunch
equally as worthless and degraded. It was common occurrence for the
whole outfit on a dredge to quit at midnight and be replaced in a few
hours by a crowd obtained from the drunken ranks of the low-down dives
of Honolulu. They would arrive at the dredge, laden to the shoulders
with booze, howling drunk, some of them fighting mad, and before they
were all landed from the launch it was an unusual thing if two or three
had not fallen overboard and had to be fished out. However, beneath
the uncouth externals of many of these men was a heart as big as a
fortune, an unselfishness one would hardly surmise and a disposition
which it would be difficult to duplicate.

The headquarters for the camp were located in Watertown, a little
settlement at the mouth of the harbour, whose inhabitants, numbering
about five hundred souls, were made up of Hawaiians, Japanese,
Russians, Chinese, Portuguese and a score of Americans. This small camp
contained one store and fifty or more houses where the employés of the
dry-dock, machinists, launch hands, labourers and native fishermen
lived.

According to its regular custom, the Government employed inspectors to
see that the work was done properly. Call them what you will--spies,
loafers or parasites--each name characterises some phase of the job.
Such appellations are no reflection on the personnel of the force,
however. There were fifteen of them and it would be hard to find a
more interesting set of men grouped together in one spot. The several
epithets by which they have just been designated are not due to any
failing of theirs, but to the nature of the job, whose chief demands on
the inspectors were to look intelligent, maintain the dignity of the
Government, and draw pay. There were among these fifteen inspectors
an ex-dentist of Honolulu, one of the finest fellows on this earth;
an ex-lawyer, a brilliant and sterling man; an ex-doctor, whose Irish
wit was of the rare and clever variety; an ex-professor of Whittier
College, California; an ex-sailor and several nondescripts. Besides
upholding the dignity of the Government each inspector was supposed
to have a thorough knowledge of the channel, its width and depth, to
inspect the dredging, to supervise the dumping of the dredged material
and to submit a daily report to the head inspector.

[Illustration: _Upper_: THE _Gaylord_, THE ONLY DRAG-BUCKET DREDGER IN
EXISTENCE]

[Illustration: _Lower_: A RESTAURANT WHERE NOTHING BUT "GRUB" IS SERVED]

This was the lay-out with which Richardson and I had decided to cast
our lot for several months. With our wages averaging one hundred and
ten dollars a month, we figured that in a short time we would have a
fair amount of coin laid aside which would enable us to go on to the
Orient and bring us safely to another point where we could search for
work.

When off duty the inspectors lived at Watertown in quarters provided
for them by the Hawaiian Dredging Company and ate their meals at a
restaurant conducted by Chinese. While on duty they slept and ate on
the dredges which were located from one-half to two miles from shore in
the channel. On each dredge there was set aside a room for inspectors'
quarters. These compartments on most of the dredges were furnished
with two iron bunks for beds, several dynamite boxes for chairs and a
greasy deck of cards for amusement. The occupant was never lonesome nor
idle, for when he had nothing to do, which was most of the time, he
could spend the weary hours reducing the number of rapidly multiplying
bed-bugs. These dredges were literally alive with this human pest
and as soon as we would reduce the flock to the point of comfort a
new bunch of recruits would be ushered in with the arrival of a new
crew of men from the waterfront of Honolulu. The mess rooms with crude
tables covered with oilcloth, with tin ware and lack of service, could
exhibit at meal time the most unappetising display of food ever placed
before any man. Stewed tripe--weeks old--lamb stew, clam-chowder,
bread apparently made of cement, butter with a stench so strong that
it outclassed the odours of the other provisions, fermented tomato
catsup and hot cakes with the consistency of horse pads, greeted the
unwashed eaters three times a day. The eaters themselves were a curious
exhibition of mankind. The men employed on the dredges slept and ate
their meals aboard and when they gathered in the mess room, as well as
at all other times, the language and stories that wafted across the
board were fit to hypnotise the devil.

One morning as Richardson, somewhat late, was seating himself for
breakfast the Chinese waiter, approaching the table, inquired
automatically and in an interrogative tone,

"Mush?"

"Yes," said Richardson.

"No mush," was the Chink's reply.

This is a sample of the mental capacity of the Oriental servants on the
dredges. How could individuals with such brains cook anything fit for
a white man to eat? These Chinese cooks and flunkeys were a greasy,
unsanitary set and always wore aprons which looked more like those of a
blacksmith than those of a kitchen artisan.

The inspectors' time was so arranged that every second day we had
thirty-two hours off and these we used to devote to various forms
of recreation. In addition to renovating an old sail boat which we
resurrected out of the mud flats of the harbour of Honolulu, we went
swimming off the pontoon lines of the dredges, hunted on the Government
reserve or attended native luaus on the beach. The most interesting
diversion was shark fishing. We always had a line out from each dredge
in quest of both the hammer-head and man-eating sharks. On one occasion
one of the crew observing that one of our lines was being jerked
uttered a cry of "shark!" and in a moment we were all on deck pulling
in the rope to land our catch. On the end of the line was a ten-foot
man-eating shark and as we got the monster alongside the dredge one
of the Hawaiians, an expert swimmer, dived off the deck and proceeded
to tie a rope around the body of the fish to enable us to hoist him
aboard. The shark struggled and whipped about with his tail to such an
extent that the native was unable to manipulate the rope with one hand,
his other being employed in an effort to restrain the movements of the
big creature. After several vain attempts to tie on the rope, the
Hawaiian held the tail of the shark between his teeth and thus, with
the use of both hands, placed the line around the shark's belly and he
was raised on deck. We at once set to and stripped the fish of all its
flesh and in the course of a few hours the captain of the dredge was
the proud possessor of a walking stick made from the circular bones of
the spinal column of the shark. Such a cane is a novelty and a beauty.

My roommate was an inspector who had originally come from the back
country of the State of Oregon. Each time as he returned from Honolulu
I observed, as Smith--for that was his name--removed his coat, a
revolver strapped over his left shoulder.

"What is the pistol for?" I asked him one day.

"I need it in my business," was Smith's reply.

"What business are you in?" I enquired, a little curious.

"I am travelling with another man's wife," said Smith.

"That's rather dangerous business, isn't it?" I ventured, refraining
from offering any advice to a man older than myself and one whom I knew
but slightly.

"The man is on my trail and I am ready for him," said Smith. I
dismissed the incident as the boasting prank of a youth. Some months
afterwards, however, the city of Honolulu was awakened from its daily
routine by a shooting scrape which took place on one of the main
streets at nine o'clock in the morning. Smith's talk was not mere
youthful boasting. His assailant fired five shots at him, one catching
him in the hip, and Smith replied with a generous bestowal of lead,
firing several shots, one of which lodged in his opponent's lung. The
first report was that Smith had killed his man. This was not true,
however, and the two were taken to the hospital for treatment.

Sentiment in Honolulu ebbed high against Smith and, when he recovered
sufficiently to leave the hospital, it was impossible for him to obtain
the three thousand dollars' bail for the charge of "assault with a
deadly weapon with the intent to commit murder" which was lodged
against him. He spent one night in jail and his fellow inspectors
finally came to his rescue. Although not approving of his actions,
we felt that now was the time to help the man when he was down and
especially as Smith appeared very regretful. Richardson and I put up
two hundred and fifty dollars each of the bail. The case dragged on for
months and was not settled until after our departure from the Islands.
Sometime later we learned that Smith was fined one thousand dollars and
dismissed from the service of the Government. Such was my roommate. He
may have been foolish, but no one could accuse him of being a coward.
He was a likeable fellow and had a world of good qualities.

After a couple of months on the job as inspectors Richardson and I
had a few dollars in our pockets and, feeling rather reckless one day,
decided to purchase some sugar stock in the hope of making a stake and
thus being enabled to continue the trip in comparative luxury. We each
bought ten shares of the Oahu Sugar Company's stock at thirty dollars
a share. In order to do this we had to borrow one hundred and fifty
dollars each from a Honolulu bank. While we were building castles in
the air concerning the big pile we were going to make, the slump in
the market, usual when amateurs begin meddling with stocks, occurred
and our shares dropped six points. With the drop of our stocks came a
drop in our hopes and we could picture our earnings of the past months
vanishing as we stood helplessly by. We concluded that if there was
no other way out of our financial difficulties we could at least stay
on the job and earn what we had lost. In addition to our bail money
for Smith and our loss on our high finance I had, either out of the
goodness of my heart or because I was an easy mark, loaned out over two
hundred dollars to acquaintances of mine who had put up tales of hard
luck. With our finances in this state our trip for the present began
to look somewhat dubious. However, everything turned out all right and
we climbed out of our financial tangle with profit. The last week of
our stay in Hawaii we were both released from Smith's bail, our sugar
stocks had gradually risen to two points higher than the figure at
which we purchased them and I collected every cent of my loans.

We had now been at Pearl Harbour several months and were anxious to be
moving, so we started a vigorous campaign to make a getaway. Honolulu
is simply a port of call and crews are not made up there and for this
reason it is a poor place in which to be stranded, for it is next to
impossible to sign on as a sailor on any ship. When off duty at Pearl
Harbour we went to Honolulu and canvassed all the likely looking
vessels for passage to either Australia or the Orient. The reception
we received at the hands of the captains and stewards varied from the
painfully courteous to the hardest of treatment. The skipper of a
United States Army transport took us into his cabin, told us stories,
gave us a drink but, true to his duty, refused to give us a lift across
the Pacific. The steward of a Pacific Mail liner, whom we unfortunately
caught ten minutes before the boat sailed--a busy time for a commissary
chief,--disposed of us in short order. Seeing a man who filled the
description given us, I hailed a greasy looking fellow as he was
hurriedly ascending the gangway and asked him,

"Are you the steward?"

"Yep; what do you want?"

"May I have a minute of your time?"

"No, sir, only a half a minute." Our case looked hopeless.

"What are the chances for two of us to get a job?"

"None. I have had enough of fellows like you. Get off the gangway
before I have you kicked off," shouted the chief cook as he beckoned
to several deck hands to enforce his threat. There being nothing else
to do, the two of us withdrew amid the laughter of the people on the
pier who witnessed the dialogue. We retired to the opposite side of the
wharf where we sat down, smoked a cigarette and talked the matter over.
We felt pretty much subdued.

We were novices at the game of procuring maritime jobs and the old sea
dogs with whom we had to deal knew it, but we concluded that the only
way to get experience was to persevere. We started the trip as tramps
and now, for the first time, we realised that we actually were tramps;
but we always clung to the idea that we were of the refined variety.

Our next attempt towards obtaining passage was on a British tramp
coal steamer plying between Honolulu and Australia. I was especially
eager to go to Sydney because a friend of mine, touring the southern
continent, had procured a job for me with a draying company in that
city. The British tramp was to be painted on her return to Australia
and as men were needed Richardson and I were signed on and our duties
outlined. They consisted of knocking off the old paint on the side of
the ship for twenty-one days. The skipper informed us that the boat
was to get under way the following afternoon and that we ought to
report for duty in the morning. We were on hand the next day but only
to be disappointed, for there was no ship to be found. We learned that
it had received orders to sail at once for Seattle and had left at
midnight.

We were now left in the lurch. We had tendered our resignations to the
Secretary of the Navy and had severed our connections with the Pearl
Harbour operations. To diminish our chances for passage to the Orient
there was nothing going our way upon which there was the remotest
chance of getting a job. Although we felt rather opulent after several
months' work as inspectors we were reluctant to look up the rates to
Yokohama on the regular liners--but decided to do so. We found that on
the following day the _Asia_, an intermediate steamer of the Pacific
Mail Steamship Company, was due from San Francisco _en route_ to Japan
and that the fare was seventy-five dollars. This was a huge sum to
part with at one blow, but when compared with the regular first class
fare of one hundred and fifty dollars on the larger boats looked like
a saving. We also figured that by the time we had spent several months
floundering around Australia, in spite of the money saved getting
there, we should arrive in Manila several hundred dollars out. With
these considerations we decided to take the _Asia_ to Yokohama.

We had spent a number of weeks in getting our baggage together and had
reduced it to a scientific minimum. We agreed only to take a suit case
and a small hand bag each. In addition to these Richardson was to bring
his camera. Our baggage consisted of the following wearing apparel
and fixtures: two suits of clothes each (one on our backs), one pair
of heavy shoes, a cap, six soft shirts, two flannel shirts, a pair of
overalls, a dozen socks, six sets of underwear, a dozen handkerchiefs,
a rain coat, a few toilet articles, diaries and some stationery. The
trip was not to be a dress affair and all hard-boiled shirts, linen
collars and evening clothes were dismissed from the start. Even with
our wardrobes reduced to this half civilised minimum, it required
systematic packing and almost superhuman strength to close our suit
cases.

We closed up our affairs in Honolulu, put our money into American
Bankers' Travelers' checks, ate a few farewell meals, drank a few
final toasts and were in readiness to depart. The _Asia_ was scheduled
to leave at five in the afternoon. I was on the pier a few minutes
before the appointed time, but there was no sign of Richardson. Five
minutes to five--and Richardson had not arrived; four, three, two
and one minute to five--and Richardson was nowhere to be found. Five
o'clock--and no Richardson. The lines of the ship were being loosened
from the pier. I was on board; after having made arrangements with some
navy men to have the government launch bring Richardson out to the
_Asia_ while she was turning in the stream or to tell him to meet me
in Yokohama. At two minutes after five o'clock--just as the ship was
getting under way--Richardson came running down the wharf armed with
a suit case, a small leather bag, a camera, a rain coat, a hair brush
extending from one pocket, a bottle of tooth powder from another and
a half a dozen small bundles hanging from any place where they could
stick. The gangplank was lowered and he came aboard, while a handful of
friends placed several Hawaiian leis about his perspiring neck.

The Royal Hawaiian Band played _Aloha Oe_, the ship got under way and
we began the second leg of our trip with seven hundred dollars each in
our pockets.



CHAPTER IV

LIVING AS JAPANESE IN JAPAN


THE _Asia_ proved to be a good ship and lazily ploughed her way across
the Pacific in a manner to indicate that this trip was simply one in
the cycle of many more to come. But this was her last, for on her
return from Manila, she encountered a heavy fog off the coast of China
and went head on into a large rock and anchored herself securely with
her nose in the air and her stern submerged in the sea. Her passengers
and crew were all saved and, after being pillaged by Chinese pirates,
she was whipped off by the waves and sank into the water, a total wreck.

Ten days of ocean travel spent with educated Japanese returning home,
with United States Government employés bound for Manila and other human
beings of assorted sizes and miscellaneous occupations, and we reached
the shores of Japan.

From one of the Japanese on board we obtained a prospective itinerary.
We made arrangements with Mr. A. Miyawaki, a young American-educated
Japanese, who was returning to his native land after an absence of
eight years, to accompany us for ten days. Miyawaki was a charming
little fellow and had been assistant in dairying at the Kansas
State Agricultural Experiment Station. We figured that with him as a
travelling companion we had acquired a valuable guide. Although Japan
was nearly as strange to him as it was to us--for he left when a
boy--he knew the language, the lack of which knowledge we soon found to
be a great obstacle.

There are two ways to travel--one in luxury as a tourist, the other
in discomfort as a tramp. What on earth is there so vulgar as the
affluent, loud-voiced, inquisitive, lazy, coin-displaying American
tourist? He splashes through Europe or the Orient with a Baedeker in
one hand and a ten dollar bill or its equivalent in the other, glances
at the cathedrals and temples, eats a near-native meal especially
arranged by Thomas Cook and Son, puts up at the expensive European or
American hotels and flits from country to country--and imagines that he
has seen all there is to see. Nearly every tourist on arriving in Japan
goes directly to an Occidental hotel where he lives in Western fashion
and luxury at Western prices and seldom, if ever, comes in contact with
the natives.

Richardson and I were not tourists but refined tramps. We decided
to religiously avoid the American and European hotels for two
reasons--first, for economy, and second, for the interesting things
we would see and learn. The man is fortunate who can get off without
paying eight yen (four dollars) a day at the average Western hotel in
an Oriental city, while around the corner at a Japanese inn it is
possible to get a room and two meals for from one to three yen a day.
There is not the same amount of comfort and luxury as is offered by the
Occidental hotel, but there is a thousand times more interest.

The _Asia_ arrived in Tokyo Bay and the city of Yokohama loomed up
before us. After a short customs examination, through which I managed
to smuggle some American tobacco--for I had learned something of the
inferior qualities of this commodity in Japan--we took a rickshaw each,
from among the hundred or more that were waiting at the pier, and were
off up the street.

Miyawaki, our Japanese friend, accompanied us. Our rickshaws drew up
to a Japanese inn and Miyawaki soon made arrangements for our rooms.
We sat down on the little porch and took off our shoes, leaving them
on the sidewalk along with a score of others, and put on a pair of
slippers. After we were robed in kimonos, a dainty little maid pattered
in with a tray load of provisions. She knelt down and spread before us
the evening meal. Rice represented the bulk of the food and there were
raw fish, a bowl of soup with one egg in it, a dish of boiled bamboo
shoots, a plate of sweetened beans and a little receptacle containing
some black flavouring sauce. The meal was concluded with several small
bowls of tea. Richardson and I flew to this assortment almost like
animals, we were so hungry. The little maid was much amused at our
awkward efforts to manipulate the chop sticks. Rice was especially hard
to handle with these two strips of wood.

Richardson and I became so fond of rice before we had lived long on
that staple that we thought we could never again eat a meal without it.
The Japanese understand how to prepare it and cook it in such a way
that each grain is dry and separate from the others. The average dish
of rice in America tastes and looks like a mass of Library paste.

Life in a Japanese hotel is a continual round of novelties and
interesting experiences to the uninitiated Western traveller. Before
entering the guest must remove his shoes--a more sensible custom than
that of the Occident of removing the hat--for which tracks in the
dirt? With a pair of house slippers to replace his shoes, the guest is
ushered into his room, a compartment without any furniture except a
Japanese screen and a picture or two. In winter there may be a stove,
which consists of a small circular receptacle resembling a jardinière
and containing ashes--in the centre of which are a few live pieces of
charcoal. As soon as the guest is in his room the proprietor enters
with a blank form which is to be filled out and which gives a complete
record of the new arrival--his age, occupation, home, reasons for
being away from home, destination, etc. This information is turned
over by the inn-keeper to the chief of police and thus a close tab is
kept on every visitor to a Japanese city. After this formality, the
maid enters the room with a kimono and if you give her a chance will
completely disrobe you. There are no chairs; nothing but a little mat
upon which you coil in tailor fashion. There are no beds; retiring
appliances consisting of a thin mattress and quilts which are spread
out on the floor at bed-time each night and taken up again in the
morning to be placed in compartments in the wall of the room. There is
no dining table but in its place is a little tray, sometimes elevated
on legs, brought in from the kitchen at meal times. There are no
knives, forks and spoons, nor plates. In fact, everything that one
would expect to find in an hotel is missing and some other device is in
its place. Probably the most unusual feature to the western traveller
is the accommodation for taking a bath. This generally consists of a
fair-sized room in which are a dozen or more little round wooden tubs
where men, women and children all gather at the same time and perform
their daily ablutions.

This, briefly, is the lay-out which a traveller finds when he stays at
a Japanese hotel. As much of a novelty as it was for Richardson and
me to experience the sensations of this kind of inn, it was an equal
novelty for the Japanese to have us as guests. We often encountered
considerable difficulty in convincing the proprietor that we really
wished to stay at his hotel. In addition to the handicap of carrying
on a conversation without the use of a language, for we knew nothing of
Japanese, we frequently had to overcome the hotel man's notion that we
were trying to play a joke on him. Once in the hotel we were constantly
the centre of attraction and source of interest not only to those
employed about the place but also to the other guests.

In our first Japanese hotel we acted as awkwardly as a cow on a
polished floor. When it came time to go to bed Richardson became
greatly embarrassed as the pretty little Jap maid in a conscientious
effort to perform her duty began to disrobe him. She first removed his
coat, at which he gave no indications of disapproval. She then began
releasing his shirt and, as she proceeded, Rich's brow began to colour.
He didn't murmur until she commenced to separate him from his trousers,
which so startled the modest young man that he exploded with such a
blast-like tone, "Whoa, Bill," that the poor girl, frightened nearly to
death, took refuge in flight. Richardson continued the remainder of his
disrobing without assistance.

Privacy is unknown in Japan. Everybody knows every other person's
business and little or no attempt is made towards secrecy. The walls
of a Japanese house are built of heavy paper or very thin wood and
the intimate conversation in one room can be heard in the next. From
an American point of view the Japanese are immodest. In some ways
they are more modest than we are. They think no more of exposing their
bodies entirely nude than Europeans do of displaying their ungloved
hands to a crowd. But this is not necessarily immodesty. Modesty is a
mental attitude and not the conforming to a certain code of rules.

The bath-room in a Japanese hotel is often the most public part of the
building. Especially is this the case in the country districts where
western influence has had little or no effect. Although it is now a
national regulation that the opposite sexes are not allowed to bathe
together, this law is not enforced in the country towns and even in
some of the cities. Japan is a nation of bathers. There are said to be
thirty thousand public bath-houses in the city of Tokyo alone and at
five o'clock each evening thousands of people can be seen with towels
over their arms wending their way for their daily wash. It is at this
time that all the guests--men, women and children in the hotel--gather
in the bath-room and splash about like a lot of youngsters, laughing
and enjoying themselves.

If we wanted to be clean we had to cast aside our provincial American
ways and bathe in Japanese fashion. Richardson rather objected to
this. On one occasion he went to the bath-room and returned almost
immediately.

"Have you finished your bath already?" I asked.

"No, there are a lot of women in the tub," he replied, disgusted.

[Illustration: _Left_: BOUND FOR JAPAN

_Right_: TAISUKE MURAKAMI, OUR HOST AT NAGOYA]

"Why let them bother you? If they stand in your way you will not get a
bath as long as you are in Japan. If the women don't object I am sure I
don't," and, saying this, I went down stairs to the bath-room, where I
performed my toilet with half a dozen men and women, in true Japanese
style.

Yokohama is the seaport of Tokyo and possesses little of interest
except the novelty of being the first Japanese city in which the
traveller lands. We spent a day in Kamakura, a sea-side resort about
twenty miles away, where we saw the _Daibutsu_, a bronze statue of the
Great Buddha.

Tokyo is but a few hours' ride from Yokohama. We arrived at the busy
Shimbashi station and in a few moments were lodged in our second
Japanese hotel. It was in this hotel that I upset all the social
regulations by using soap in the bath-tub. As the same tub of water is
often used by all the guests in the hotel, it is considered a great
breach of etiquette to climb into the bath and soap one's body in a
civilised manner. This soaping process is supposed to be carried on
before getting into the tub and the body is to be thoroughly rinsed
off by means of dippers or basins before entering the bath for a
final soak. I was not aware of these minute details of Japanese bath
procedure and went at this cleansing operation in the Saturday night
fashion customary in rural America. The result was that all the
succeeding bathers had to wash in soap-suddy water. I was completely
ostracised.

We were fortunate to visit Japan during the season of the year when
the cherry blossoms were in full bloom. Ueno Park, probably the most
popular resort in Tokyo, was a forest of these trees, laden with
millions of sweet-scented flowers. Thousands of people gathered each
afternoon in this public park to rest and enjoy the beauty of the
blossoms for which Japan is famous.

It was in this park that I decided to give up smoking. I had paused on
one of the walks and was rolling a cigarette with some "Bull Durham"
I had smuggled in the country, when a Japanese policeman came up to
me and, with a few words which I did not understand, unceremoniously
took the "makings" from me. I stood half stunned with surprise. I soon
realised that I had exposed my tobacco to confiscation, disregarding
a warning given me by a Japanese passenger on our steamer across the
Pacific. I had previously tried the cigarettes sold in the native
shops but couldn't become accustomed to them. Relieved of my American
supply I decided to give up smoking altogether--for a time. Tobacco is
a government monopoly in Japan and there is a prohibitive duty on all
foreign importations of it.

One evening we visited the _Yoshiwara_, described in the guide books as
the most famous tenderloin section in the world. It is a considerable
distance from the business portion of the city and consists of about
one hundred houses. There are nearly two thousand women in the
district and during the evening they sit behind iron barred windows,
similar to an American dry goods display window. Seated in a row, in
front of several elaborately decorated screens, eight or more tastily
dressed women of each establishment spend their time smoking or
painting their faces, while the curious crowds flock by and look them
over. What struck me more forcibly than anything else was the character
of the sightseers. I saw a middle-aged man with his eighteen-year-old
daughter leisurely spending an hour in this section. Two mothers with
infants on their backs were interestedly going the rounds and a young
married couple was a pair that came to my notice. Thousands of people
flowed to and fro on the narrow streets and for a moment I thought
the whole of Tokyo had congregated in this place for the evening.
I was told that the _Yoshiwara_ was at one time operated by the
municipal government of Tokyo but that now, due to the influence of the
British and American Salvation Army representatives, it is carried on
independently but is closely watched and regulated by city officials.

Japan is a land of beautiful memorials to her dead heroes. At Nikko to
the north of Tokyo we spent a delightful week, where, resting among the
cryptomeria on the hill side, are the bodies of Ieyasu and Iyemitsu,
two Shoguns of the Tokugawa Dynasty. These two tombs are the objective
points for thousands of pilgrims each year. In addition to the natural
beauty of the spot and the mausoleums of these rulers of mediæval
Japan, there are a dozen or more interesting buildings and temples
dedicated to various saints and containing collections of relics and
Buddhist scriptures. These edifices represent the best in Japanese art.

Richardson and I walked to Lake Chuzenji, which lies in the hills,
about ten miles beyond Nikko. We started early on a bitterly cold
morning and ascended the beautiful mountain side by a wandering and
picturesque path. The lake was nearly entirely frozen over. There was,
however, an open space near the shore and prompted by a notion to do
something to startle the simple people who lived in the village on the
bank of the lake, we disrobed and took a dip in the icy water. It was
impossible for two human beings to take such a cold plunge and do so
in silence. The temperature of the water was indicated by the shrieks
we made as we splashed about. These calls attracted the attention of
the people near-by and in a few moments two score or more of men, women
and children assembled to see two insane foreigners dabbling about like
idiots in water that was several degrees below.

Japanese trains are very similar to those of America. If I were asked
to state the most striking difference between them I would say--the
politeness of the officials and the train crews. We were on our way
from Tokyo to Nagoya and were seated on one of the two long benches
which run lengthwise in the car. I had made the acquaintance of the
native passenger next to me. Presently there appeared at one end of the
coach a man in uniform whom I recognised as the conductor. He called
out and then made three deep bows, at the same time making the sucking
sound of etiquette common in Japan. All the passengers responded to the
conductor's courtesy by bending their heads, and making this peculiar
hissing noise. I thought everybody had suddenly begun to eat soup. This
painful and rather disgusting performance continued for nearly two
minutes. Finally, every one sat at attention. The conductor in a clear
and reverent voice said something, bowed and departed. My curiosity
was aroused and I asked my native acquaintance what had happened. He
informed me that the conductor had announced that the next station was
_Toyohashi_. What a contrast, I thought, to the American brakeman who
brushes his way through a crowded day coach, shoving people aside and
treading on their feet, and with a rasping voice announces the next
station in such a way that no one can understand him.

At first we found the language a big obstacle and it required much
patience and often over an hour to make our hotel arrangements. On
account of our association with the natives, however, we soon picked
up a small vocabulary and this we acquired scientifically. Richardson
had about one hundred words in his head and I had an equal number, and
in neither set were there duplications. This is a case of applying the
principles of efficiency. Richardson learned to count to one hundred
and was the financial conversationalist, while I confined my knowledge
to brief and snappy literary efforts. We would enter a shop and select
an article, and I would then inquire the price of it in Japanese and
Richardson would interpret the shop-keeper's reply. By this team work
we were able to navigate in a language which takes years to master.

A characteristic impracticability of most Oriental languages, and
as much so of the Japanese as any, is the large number of words and
phrases necessary to make a brief statement or convey a simple idea.
There is a great deal of formality, set phrases and polite sayings,
which must be complied with, before the speaker gets down to the
point. What an American can say in half a dozen words will require as
many sentences in Japan. We were continually confronted with this. On
one occasion we wished to ascertain where a certain street was and
Mikawaki inquired of a passer-by. After talking to him for nearly ten
minutes, only stopping when Richardson suggested that he knock off, he
translated the conversation to mean "The next street."

At Nagoya I looked up Taisuke Murakami, a young Japanese who had
been one of my pupils in Iolani School in Honolulu and who had since
returned to Japan. He was attending a military academy in Nagoya.
Richardson and I visited this institution and were received with much
consideration and respect. Through Murakami we were given a good entrée
and were curiously inspected as samples of American pedagogues.

We spent the evening at a motion picture theatre where an American
reel illustrated the uninteresting details of an American love story.
When it came time to settle our hotel bill I found that my friend
Murakami had paid for both Richardson and myself. I didn't like him to
do this, for I knew he couldn't afford it. It was a sample of Japanese
hospitality.

This trait of the Oriental compels me to sermonise. Occidentals, and
especially Americans, consider that they are superior to the rest of
the world. We often feel that our ways are the only ways, that our
customs are right and that those of other peoples are wrong. After
one has visited many Oriental countries and has had time to get their
point of view and to understand their ways he begins to doubt the
reasonableness and feasibility of many of our American customs. He
certainly gets over that feeble notion that our way of doing things is
the only way.

The Japanese have their faults, but no one can accuse them of being
prudes, of having false modesty. They are a more modest race of people
than Americans. They have no foolish notions about concealing the
human body, but their average of morals is every whit as high as that
in America. We talk a great deal among ourselves of our wonderful
hospitality, but when compared to this quality in the Japanese we don't
possess the first principles of this virtue. Our hospitality is of a
collective variety. Our cities will entertain most lavishly and we will
give them our support as long as we don't have to come in contact with
the recipients. In our homes we only entertain our friends or persons
with worthless pedigrees. But the supreme test of hospitality is when
one is willing and glad to take in the total stranger, a foreigner
perhaps, and house and feed him as a member of the family. Imagine an
American family taking into their household a pair of strange Japanese
who were travelling through their city. It is futile to consider it.
But this is exactly what the Japanese did to Richardson and myself in
many instances. Absolute strangers to us--and we to them--they extended
to us the most cordial invitations to come to their homes and enjoy
their hospitality indefinitely. Many of these we accepted and always
departed full of amazement at the wonderful exhibitions of kindness and
hospitality.

Kyoto is the prize of Japan. It is a city of six hundred thousand
inhabitants, only fifty of whom are foreigners and these mostly
missionaries. The result of this small number of Occidentals is that
Kyoto still retains its Japanese charm and has very few of the vulgar
and commercialised features of the West.

The city was celebrating the seven hundredth anniversary of the Jodo
sect of the Buddhist religion and its streets were crowded with
thousands of people from the surrounding small towns and country
districts. All the places of worship were thronged with pilgrims and
the huge Hongwanji Temple, the largest in Kyoto, was a bee-hive of
peasants who flowed in and out to bestow their gifts and offer up a
prayer.

Kissing seems to be largely a western custom, for such a means of
showing affection is not used in the Orient except by a mother to her
child. It was in Kyoto that Richardson and I thought it would be a good
idea to introduce the practice into Japan. While buying provisions each
day in the bakery, grocery and fruit shops, we would slyly creep up and
place our lips to the rosy cheek of the shop-keeper's wife or daughter.
They hardly knew how to take us. None of them was offended. Some looked
at us with pity, thinking that we must have some affliction like the
St. Vitus' dance, which took the form of flying towards women's faces
every few minutes. Even the husbands of these women took our advances
in a matter-of-fact way and considered our osculations simply one of
our many idiosyncrasies.

While in Kyoto Richardson and I put up at the native Y.M.C.A. building
which had just been completed. We occupied an unfurnished room which
was placed at our disposal, free of charge, by the advisory secretary,
an American. We slept on the floor and were well used to the absence of
furniture.

One morning Richardson casually remarked that the American secretary
had offered him a teaching job in China and that he had turned it down.

"Why did you do that?" I enquired.

"Because I did not want to separate from you," was Richardson's reply.

"Nonsense," I said, "we are not married, and if we wait until we
get comfortable berths together in the same town we shall never get
anywhere. Open up the matter again and land the job if you can."

Although we each still had plenty of the money which we had accumulated
in Hawaii, we were willing to stop off and work for a short time and
become better acquainted with a city and its people. So Richardson
took up the matter again with the Y.M. C.A. secretary and received the
position. It was to teach in a middle or high school in Tientsin at a
salary of seventy dollars a month.

I agreed to accompany him to Tientsin and from there go on through
China alone and meet him several months later in Manila. Before leaving
Japan we got into serious trouble.



CHAPTER V

ARRESTED AS SPIES IN JAPAN


FOR two weeks we led an indolent life in Kyoto. Then the craving for
the trail struck us again and with the help of an American, who had
long resided in Japan, we mapped out an itinerary that would carry us
into a remote country, penetrated by less than half a dozen foreigners.
In the early morning we set out from Kyoto on foot, and we did not
know that we were plunging headlong into an adventure which would
reverberate clear into the Department of State at Washington before we
again mingled in the bustling crowds of Kyoto.

On the shore of Lake Biwa we boarded a steamer and sailed fifty miles
to the village of Imasu. A night in a Japanese inn, and we walked
twenty-five miles, the following day, to Obama on the Sea of Japan. We
passed through an endless chain of picturesque villages. Our entrance
to these small towns was a great source of interest to the inhabitants,
who rushed to the doors or windows of their shops and houses, or
poured into the streets to look us over. They scanned our clothes
with the frankest sort of curiosity. They were especially impressed
with our heavy leather shoes which they examined carefully, usually
turning away to hide their smiles. In village after village we caused a
cessation of business and household duties until we were out of sight.
Our advent and departure were probably the main topic of discussion the
rest of the day.

At Obama we devoted a full hour to vigorous gesticulation with
our hands before we could convey the idea into the head of an inn
proprietor that we wanted a bed.

That night we slept on the footstool of adventure.

At dawn we sailed out of the narrow cove into the Sea of Japan. The
coast on this run is a beautiful panorama of bays and inlets supported
in the background by richly wooded hills. Green and pretty villages
stud the shore.

Richardson was taken with the beauty of these villages. He unslung his
camera and snapped a picture of one of them from the steamer deck. The
kodak was barely back in its case before a deck hand skipped to the
captain's cabin and made a report. The captain summoned Richardson
posthaste. The whole ship bristled with excitement.

It developed that we were in Maisuru Bay, the chief naval base of
Japan, and therefore one of the zones in which it is unlawful to take
pictures. Richardson refused to get excited. He gave the captain the
roll of films, together with his Kyoto address, requested him to have
it developed, destroy the illegal picture and return the others. The
captain said he would. We thought the incident was closed.

But it wasn't. It had just begun. In a few minutes our steamer was at
the dock and we went down the gangway to board a train for our return
trip to Kyoto. I had sunk comfortably down into my seat and opened a
book when a Japanese in uniform rushed up waving his hands and shouting
at me in his native language.

"Beat it," I said. I thought he was crazy. The excited officer stood
moving his hands in a manner which would indicate in a western country
that he wanted me to remain where I was. The impatient man finally left
the car. Richardson came in.

"What in blazes is the matter with that Jap? He must be drunk," I said.

"He's a cop. We are both under arrest for that picture," said
Richardson. "The captain reported it to the police."

The officer in uniform came back twisting his hands in the air like an
insane man. I didn't realise that these movements were equivalent to
the American beckoning sign, so I remained seated. He lurched over and
gripped my shoulder. Richardson had gone out. I got up and in three
seconds found myself with him in the midst of two hundred incensed
natives.

Other police and a couple of military officers had come up.
Richardson's camera had been taken from him. We stood in the midst
of this gathering while the uniformed officers held a conference. We
couldn't understand a word. They finally led us away. For an hour
Richardson and I, accompanied by two policemen, marched abreast. We
concluded that they had decided to walk us to death. At last we arrived
at an edifice from which a Japanese flag was flying, and in front
of which two sentinels stood on duty. This was the military police
court and prison. We were ushered in and were greeted by half-a-dozen
officers in uniforms who bowed and bobbed around with as much ceremony
as though we were two caliphs of Bagdad. They were the politest lot of
policemen we ever saw.

The military judge was on the bench and we were taken into his presence
with many smiles and salaams. We tried to tell the judge that we loved
the Japanese people very dearly and we wanted to go back to Kyoto. He
couldn't understand a word. No one else could. We had nothing to do but
wait for an interpreter, whom one of the clerks of the court was sent
out to obtain. The Japanese were very serious. We were not impressed
and made irreverent remarks about the judge and the court officials.

We waited until noon and as we were hungry we made this fact known by
means of writing, for one of the clerks could read English, after a
fashion, but could not speak it. Permission was granted us to dine.
Richardson asked the court to pay the bill. The request, after an
half-hour conference, was refused. We set out with two policemen to a
Japanese hotel where we ate a fifteen-minute meal in an hour and a
half while the two officers remained on guard at the door.

In the afternoon the "interpreter" came. We expected to see an American
or, at least, some one who understood the English language. Instead
there stood before us a little Jap who looked like a miniature pugilist
and knew about as much English as a two-year-old child. He started his
cross-examination by the regular preliminary bows and genuflections and
kept at this performance for so long a time that when he began to speak
we expected a masterpiece. His first utterance was,

"I am sorry the _e_-vent has happened."

"So are we, old top," put in Richardson. "But cut out this nonsense. We
have a date in Kyoto." Richardson might as well have been talking to a
parsnip.

The cross-examination finally got under way and proceeded laboriously.
We were asked every conceivable question,--our names, ages,
nationalities, occupations, parents' names and their occupations, our
reasons for being away from home, the length of time we had been away
from the United States, where were we going and why, had we ever been
convicted of any crime in America, our reason for taking the picture,
our domicile and acquaintances in Kyoto. These and many more questions
were asked us extending over a period of six hours.

Under the heading of occupation, we stated that we were school
teachers, being the first and most harmless vocation we could think
of. Right here, the court found a huge inconsistency. This vocation
did not compare with the records received from the hotel registers.
Every guest, on arrival at an hotel, is required to give his occupation
when registering and this is turned over to the police with the other
information. Richardson and I, not having any definite vocation, signed
up under different callings in each hotel. We dug up all the antiquated
and unusual means of earning a living that our imaginations could
muster. The list included ventriloquist, crutch-maker, chiropodist,
clairvoyant, boilermaker, hypnotist and wig-maker. The judge confronted
us with this array of honourable vocations, which he had obtained from
the police records, and demanded an explanation. Richardson rose to
the occasion. In a short time he had us out of the trap. He explained
that English was very flexible; that it was a language replete with
synonyms; and that it contained numerous words which meant the same
thing. He went into a lengthy dissertation in which he thoroughly
convinced the judge that crutch-maker, chiropodist, etc., all meant
school teacher and that each simply emphasised a different phase of the
vocation.

The questioning convinced the court that it had little hold on me
except as an accomplice of Richardson. The latter was the man caught
in the act. On my suggestion they allowed me to return to Kyoto
accompanied by an officer. Richardson was held all night for further
examination.

I arrived in Kyoto about midnight and immediately retired. In the
morning I met the advisory secretary of the Y.M.C.A. who had heard of
our trouble by telegraph, as the Maisuru authorities had referred our
story to him for verification. The news of the incident had spread
throughout Japan. Great crowds gathered in front of the Kyoto newspaper
offices where bulletins announced that two American spies had been
arrested at Maisuru and that in their possession were found pictures
of battleships, sketches of harbours and plans of forts. The newspaper
accounts described us as poor men, due to the fact that Richardson,
expecting he would have to put up a bond, said he had but twelve yen,
when asked the amount of money he had. The report that we were poverty
stricken was also due to the fact that we wore blue flannel shirts,
the proper attire for walking--but not one in which the Japanese are
accustomed to see Americans. The press reports also referred to us
as suspicious looking characters and stated that we did not take the
matter seriously, as we jested in the courtroom.

The following account under the heading, "The Spy Scare--American
Photographers Arrested," was taken from an English paper in Kobe and is
a translation of an article which appeared in a Japanese journal:

"We learn from a Maisuru despatch to the _Asahi_ that two foreign
passengers of the _Daiichi Hashidate-maru_, which arrived at Maisuru
at 9:20 A.M. on the 21st from Obama, photographed the first section
of the Maisuru Naval Station when the steamer approached the entrance
to the harbour of Shin-Maisuru. They took over ten pictures, which
distinctly showed even the warships in the harbour. The action was
observed by some members of the crew of the steamer and, upon arrival
at Maisuru, they reported the matter to the Maisuru gendarmerie station
through the Maisuru Water Police. Gendarmes immediately appeared on
board the steamer and arrested the foreigners and conducted them to
the gendarmerie station. Upon examination they were found to be two
Americans from California named Richardson (aged 24) and Fletcher
(aged 26). Mr. Richardson, continues the despatch, is the son of a
doctor, and was teaching at a school in Honolulu. In October he left
Honolulu with Mr. Fletcher for a tour around the world, and they
arrived at Yokohama on the 1st instant. Proceeding to Kyoto, they
took up their quarters at the Christian Institute at Sanjo-dori, and
on the 19th instant left Kyoto for a tour in the interior. They took
a steamer at Otsu and proceeded to Imasu and Obama. They spent two
days at the latter place and left there on the morning of the 21st
by the _Hashidate-maru_ for Maisuru. They stated that they had no
ulterior motives in photographing the Naval Station, but, concludes
the despatch, their behaviour when they took the photographs was
suspicious. The fact that the two foreigners were not very well
dressed, and had no more than twelve yen in their possession, appears
to have aroused suspicion. Eventually they were handed over to the
Procurator's office, where they are now being examined by Procurator
Ogata."

[Illustration: THE PICTURE THAT CAUSED OUR ARREST]

On the morning after my arrival in Kyoto I was interviewed by the
Chief of Police of that city, assisted by an interpreter. During the
examination the door opened and outside stood Richardson who had been
escorted from Maisuru by an officer. We, however, were not allowed to
get together and discuss the matter for fear we would frame up a story.
The Chief of Police first finished with me and then called Richardson
in for a session.

We were advised by the American secretary of the Y.M.C.A. not to
volunteer the statement that we had been in the employ of the United
States Navy Department in Hawaii. He said if the Japanese authorities
got this information, it would be very difficult for us to prove that
we were not spies and in that event the case would have to be handled
by the American Embassy. This, he thought, would mean our detention in
the country for a couple of months. Fortunately, a question of this
nature was not asked us.

Accounts of the affair were printed in all the leading papers of the
Far East, including Japan, Korea, China and the Philippines. The
Associated Press obtained the news and the dailies of the Pacific
Coast in America displayed several columns of distorted accounts. A
Honolulu journal considered it of sufficient importance to give it
the following full front page headline: "Honolulu Men Languish in a
Japanese Jail."

This was not all. The news had found its way to Washington, and our
little incident of Maisuru Bay set the wheels of diplomacy of two
nations in motion. My brother, reading the Associated Press reports in
the San Francisco papers and imagining that we were being subjected to
Oriental tortures in a Japanese jail, telegraphed the State Department
at Washington. He received the following reply from Mr. Huntington
Wilson, Acting Secretary of State at that time, under President Taft:
"Department telegraphed Embassy at Tokyo to-day to ascertain facts
and endeavour to secure your brother's release." The ambassador in
Tokyo got in touch with the situation and replied that Richardson and
I were being well treated and that as soon as proved innocent would
be liberated. This information was sent to my brother by the State
Department.

In the meantime we were battling with the Japanese authorities in
Kyoto. We wanted to get back our camera. It was a regulation to
confiscate all cameras which had been used in taking illegal pictures.
We finally convinced the police that we had no ulterior motives and,
after promising to leave Japan at once and giving an itinerary of
our route out of the country, we were released. The Kyoto Chief
of Police returned the camera, with an impressive speech, and the
two of us retired from the courtroom without ceremony, while the
numerous officials nearly broke their backs bowing. By a mistake the
objectionable picture was left in the camera and we departed with the
film of the little Maisuru Bay village in our possession.

Nor did the incident end here. We left immediately for Kobe, and
from there took the Inland Sea trip as far south as Miajima. We had
supposed that all the nonsense over our arrest had ended and that we
were free from the pest of Japanese police. But there was more to come.
We spent a day at Miajima, undisturbed by officials, the first time
in several days, for the reason that we omitted to put this place on
the itinerary. From Miajima we went by train to Chimeneseki and thence
across by boat to Fusan in Korea. Being still in Japanese territory we
were greeted by two policemen, who had received a cable to watch out
for a couple of Americans and keep them moving. After a few hours in
Fusan, under competent guards, we went on to Seoul.

We arrived after dark, and as our train was pulling into the station
we saw two policemen on the right hand side of the track. We stole a
march on these officers of the law by getting out on the left side.
We scrambled around the rear of the train and were soon in rickshaws
and in a few minutes were registered guests of a Japanese hotel. The
proprietor sent the usual records to the police station, but before the
officers were detailed on our trail we were up and out at an early hour
the next morning. We went to the Y.M.C.A. where we were the guests of
two young Koreans.

The police spent the day looking for us and did not locate us until
evening, when they found us dining at an American private home. They
had evidently been given instructions to watch every movement we
made, for during the rest of our week's stay in Seoul we were each
accompanied by an officer.

To add to our reputation as undesirable citizens, a Japanese guide,
travelling with a Thomas Cook and Son party on our train into Seoul,
reported to the police that there were two suspicious looking
characters on board. This information, coupled with our already
unsavoury reputation, made the officers exceptionally vigilant. What
we could do to harm the innocent inhabitants of Seoul or damage their
meagre possessions is a mystery.

Day and night these little fellows kept watch. They marched by our side
as we took in the sights of the city and at night two of them were
stationed on the steps of the Y.M.C.A. building to see that we didn't
make a midnight getaway and shoot up the town. They went so far as to
regulate our engagements. We were invited to be guests of a prominent
Japanese family during our stay in Seoul but the police issued an order
that we could not accept. They gave as their reasons that we were
moving about too much and that it would be embarrassing for a respected
household to entertain two criminals.

I had received an invitation to dine with some English friends and had
accepted, determined to keep this engagement even if doing so caused
international complications. While the policemen were at their posts
on the front steps of the Y.M.C.A. I left the house by the back door,
climbed over the fence, jumped into a rickshaw and was on my way. After
a good meal and a pleasant evening I returned to the Y.M.C.A. about
eleven o'clock and walked up the front steps between the two officers.
From a semi-doze they were instantly transformed into two of the most
excited and enraged men I have ever seen. The characteristic etiquette
of the Far East was forgotten and they bestowed upon me numerous
epithets which, if translated, would probably have taught me all the
profanity in the Japanese language. I left them on the steps and went
to bed.

This incident made the police especially watchful next day, but in
spite of their precautions we played horse with them. We had had enough
of this nonsense and decided to leave Seoul without notifying our
escorts. We framed up a scheme for our escape which we carried out in
such a manner that it appeared as though we were experienced crooks.

Through an American we made arrangements to ship our baggage to
Chemulpo and, relieved of our belongings, we thought we could make
short work of the police. It was about ten o'clock on a dark night. We
were in a native shop buying fruit. The police stood at the entrance
engrossed in conversation.

"Now is the time to make our getaway," I said.

"I am ready," said Richardson. "What's your plan?"

Our train would not leave for an hour. In a few hurried words I
suggested that we slip out the back door, light out separately for the
station and meet as soon as we could.

"All right," said Richardson, "if we can't outrun these short-legged
pests we are no good."

We stole out into the alley and made a dash, each in an opposite
direction. The shop-keeper called to the police but our flight had been
too sudden for them. They stood petrified. The moment's hesitation was
all we needed. By the time they had come to a conclusion that they
should pursue us, we were out of sight. We ran down alleys, hurdling
fences and seeking the dark streets. Richardson plunged through some
one's private yard, mutilating the flower beds, tearing his trousers on
the garden fence and before long was at the station. I completed the
home-stretch of my escape by grabbing a rickshaw, placing the coolie in
the seat, giving him my hat and playing the part of horse myself. It
took ten minutes' persuasion and five yen to induce the man to agree to
such an arrangement. A coolie will do anything for money. In this way
I sauntered down the street, unnoticed, pulling an Oriental overcome
with amazement. Two blocks from the station I discharged the rickshaw
and walked towards the freight yards. In three-quarters of an hour we
found one another and crawled into a box-car to wait for the departure
of our train.

The police had lost the scent and we were free. We spent a few hours
in Chemulpo, the first real freedom we had enjoyed for weeks. From
Chemulpo we took a steamer and after a day at Dairen in Southern
Manchuria, _en route_, we turned our attentions to China and forgot our
Japanese troubles.



CHAPTER VI

A PROFESSOR IN A CHINESE COLLEGE


CHINA proved to be a land of surprise. As we began our travels in
this vast empire we little realised that we were on the eve of an
interesting chain of experiences. I intended to press on and, as a
simple tourist, see the country. I had no idea of searching for a job.
My tentative plans were to be upset and I didn't have the remotest
notion what the next few months had in store for me.

We landed at Taku, a small seacoast town and port of Tientsin. We were
soon passed through the customs officials and started for the railroad
station a half-mile distant.

Several Chinese coolies solicited the job of carrying our two
suitcases. We turned them over to an old fellow who tied them together
with a rope and swung them over his shoulder and walked along a
few paces behind us. When we reached the station we purchased two
third-class tickets to Tientsin. This expenditure took all our loose
money except a small Korean coin, an American ten-dollar gold piece
and our bankers' checks. The coolie turned over our bags with his hand
extended for his compensation. We did the best we could and offered
him the Korean coin, worth about two American cents. He refused it.
The only other coin we had, the American ten-dollar gold piece, was
too much for two tramps to separate themselves from for such a small
service. However, we offered the coolie this money. The coin was
strange to him and he refused it also. We then made an effort to
exchange the gold piece for Chinese currency but there were no money
changers about. Our coolie friend could not understand our failure to
pay our debts. We had done everything we could think of in the line of
money, so we opened our bags and offered him pieces of wearing apparel,
articles from our limited toilet sets and steamship time-tables. He
refused them all. There was nothing for us to do now but to stand by
and wait for our train which was due in about an hour. The patience
of the coolie became exhausted and he exploded in an unintelligible
wrangle of Chinese. We could not understand him nor could we explain
matters to the poor fellow. He finally called a policeman. This
gentleman arrived and began quietly and deliberately pouring out the
musical chatter of his native tongue, and seeing no response from us
in the way of coin he, too, blossomed into an excited oration. The
station master came out and joined the chorus and in a short time we
were surrounded by a score or more celestials whose denunciations
became more and more frantic. We were helpless. The climax was rapidly
approaching when our train pulled into the station. We hurried aboard
our car and started off for Tientsin, leaving the poor coolie unpaid
with his madly shouting compatriots who collectively made such a
disturbance as the little village of Taku has probably never witnessed
before or since.

At Tientsin we went directly to the Y.M.C.A. where Richardson reported
for his school teaching position. We met the man in charge who informed
Richardson of his duties, which were to begin in a few days and which
consisted of teaching physics at seventy dollars a month in a middle or
high school.

While at lunch we met a clean-cut, jovial Chinese by the name of Samuel
Sung Young. He spoke excellent English and I soon learned from him that
he was a graduate of the University of California with the class of
1904, I having graduated in 1907. This placed us on an intimate footing
at once. Young was curious to know what we were doing so far away from
home. I explained that we were out seeing the earth and in a joking
way asked him if he knew of any loose jobs. He replied in the negative
but asked for my address in Peking where I expected to be the next two
weeks. I little thought that my question was the beginning of one of
the most interesting experiences of the trip.

Young was in Tientsin on business from Tangshan, a small town about
two hundred miles to the north, where he was president of the Tangshan
Engineering College, one of the Chinese Imperial Government's Schools.

[Illustration: _Upper_: A GROUP OF OUR KOREAN FRIENDS]

[Illustration: _Lower_: EVERY DAY IS WASH-DAY IN KOREA]

The Tientsin Middle School, in which Richardson was to teach, proved
to be a large modern brick building, its class rooms and laboratories
fairly well equipped with the latest western appliances. One of the
requirements for entrance into this school was a speaking knowledge of
the English language. Otherwise Richardson would have been more useless
than he was. Physics was an almost unknown science to him, but he
concluded that if he could not bluff it out that he was an authority on
the subject he was willing to take the consequences.

During the time that Richardson was connected with this institution the
first annual track meet of the schools of North China was held on its
athletic grounds. The contest was planned and supervised largely by
Americans and the Chinese took a great interest in it. Many schools in
the northern part of the Empire sent teams, and several thousand people
attended the meet. Among the distinguished spectators, who occupied
a box, was the Viceroy of Chili Province with a score of attendants.
Richardson worried the old fellow almost to death by taking several
pictures of him and his cortége. Richardson was ordered to stop. The
Viceroy was more worried, however, by the report of the starter's
pistol and when the first shot was fired all his attendants gathered
closely about him. Even after it had been explained to him that the
cartridges were blank he issued instructions forbidding the use of the
weapon altogether. The poor old gentleman was afraid that some one was
going to take a shot at him. The following week he sent an order to
all the schools in his province prohibiting track meets in the future.
Imagine the Governor of New York issuing such an order. He would be
hooted out of the state.

Richardson's duties started on a Monday and I took my leave, intending
to spend a couple of months travelling through China and meet my
side-partner in Manila. I went to Peking where I put up at the Y.M.C.A.
for one dollar a day. I spent two weeks in this very fascinating city
doing the rounds in a most tourist-like fashion. While sitting one
afternoon on the great altar of the Temple of Heaven, reflecting on
the fact that I was a lonely tramp wandering aimlessly through a land
of strange people, I was approached by a slight male figure with a
missionary caste of countenance. The man sat down and began to talk to
me. He had one of those piping voices which always excite in me the
desire to fight. This person, with the unfortunate and aggravating
voice, was a Baptist preacher of the hardest shell variety. We spent
the rest of the day together sight-seeing and at evening we agreed
to meet the following day. For two weeks the Baptist and I trudged
about the interesting city of Peking, visiting the Temple of Heaven,
the Temple of Confucius, the Legation quarters and all the places of
importance in the Tartar, Imperial and Chinese cities. The old fellow
proved to be an interesting character in spite of his voice and
my inclination to swing on him changed to a feeling of respect and
admiration.

From Peking to Hankow but one fast train runs a week. This train makes
the trip in a day and a half, running both day and night. The other
trains travel only in the daytime, stopping on a siding at night, and
require three days for the journey. I was at the station ready to leave
in a few minutes on the fast train when I heard what I thought was my
name being shouted about the depot. This startled me for, outside of
the Baptist preacher and a few men I met at the Y.M.C.A., I knew no
one. The name was shouted again and, seeing that a Chinese boy was the
source from which it was emerging, I went to the lad to ascertain what
it was all about. The boy handed me a telegram which read, "Chance
for teaching till summer can you stay over wire reply." This message
was from Samuel Sung Young, the President of the Tangshan Engineering
College, whom I had met in Tientsin. The telegram didn't mean very much
and I had only five minutes in which to make up my mind before the
train departed. "Chance for teaching"--teaching what? I came to the
conclusion that if I could not teach Chinese youths Hebrew or anatomy
or anything else, I was no good. "Till summer"--what did that mean?
Summer in China might not begin for six months. I decided to take a
chance on that. The most serious difficulty, however, was that there
was no mention in the telegram about pay. While I was reflecting on
these matters the train whistle blew and it was time to act. I decided
to wait over and investigate the position. I wired Young, "Teach what
and how much?" The next day I received a reply which read, "Taels two
hundred reply." I was as much at sea as ever. How much was two hundred
taels? I soon learned on inquiring that it was the equivalent to one
hundred and twenty-five dollars gold. But was that amount to be paid
monthly or for the period lasting "till summer"? No mention was made
of the subject I was to teach and the whole affair was an uncertain
proposition. I rather liked this uncertain feature, so wired my
acceptance and took the next train for Tangshan.

Shortly after night-fall I swung off my car at Tangshan and was greeted
by President Young and Professor Shen Yen Jee, one of the instructors
in the college. Jee, a Cantonese, was a graduate of the University of
California in my class and we had been good friends. To meet him was a
great surprise. It was nearly like coming home.

The welcome I received was as enthusiastic and cordial as any one ever
had and the hospitality extended has never been surpassed and seldom
equalled on this earth. We hopped into rickshaws and were off to the
college grounds. President Young's mansion was a fine two-story brick
building. I was introduced to Mrs. Young, a charming little Chinese
woman, who spoke good English which she had learned at a Church
of England school in Hongkong. I was also introduced to Miss May Wu,
Mrs. Young's sister and a bright young girl of fifteen. Miss Young,
the president's sister, and a very fine woman, was also present. But
probably the finest of all were Mrs. Young's two dear little boys--one
two years old and the other a three-months' old baby.

[Illustration: PROVINCIAL OFFICIALS ATTENDING CHINA'S FIRST TRACK MEET]

The situation was a great novelty to me and such enjoyable and
interesting things came in such rapid succession that it all seemed
like a beautiful dream. We soon sat down to dinner and the many good
but odd dishes which were served nearly baffled me. The chop-sticks,
the sole appliances for conveying the food to one's mouth, unless one
employed one's hands--which would be a greater breach of etiquette
in China than in America--were handled by me with a certain degree
of facility, for I had acquired considerable dexterity with these
implements in Japan. Jee and I talked of old acquaintances at college
and we all had an enjoyable evening before retiring.

The Tangshan Engineering College is the leading Imperial Government
scientific school in China. Its ten or more buildings are of red
brick and are thoroughly equipped with the latest classroom fixtures
and laboratory supplies. There was an undergraduate enrolment of two
hundred and fifty boys and a cleaner or finer set of young fellows
cannot be found anywhere. The faculty number thirty, one-half of whom
were Chinese and the other English or Scotch. President Young's house,
which was part of the college plan, was enclosed in a compound of its
own. In front were a pretty garden and a first-class tennis court.
The interior was furnished in Chinese fashion with a strong American
tinge to it, for Young had been educated in America. There were a half
dozen servants and the household was conducted in a manner in keeping
with the dignity of the president of a college. My bedroom was a large
well-ventilated apartment containing a Chinese bed, upon which had been
thoughtfully placed a pillow and bed clothes common to the West.

All the members of the household were dressed in Chinese costume.
This Oriental apparel is very picturesque and demands the utmost care
and taste on the part of those who wear it, both men and women, to
be in style. The intricacies of Chinese dress are more complicated
and require more attention, time and skill to be in accordance with
the dictates of fashion than do those of the American woman with her
manifold garments and her ornate headgear.

The meals were purely Chinese and I soon became accustomed to rice as
the main food-stuff and almost forgot that such articles as bread or
butter ever existed. The most monotonous meal of the day was breakfast.
This repast consisted of rice and meat--a sort of stew, one day, and
the next we would sit down to bowls containing endless strings of a
substance somewhat similar to macaroni. This alternating diet was a
poor substitute for the usual fresh eggs, coffee and pancakes of the
day's initial meal in the West. The noon and evening meals furnished
a much larger variety and there was a more favourable chance for an
American to hook nourishing food out of the assortment. Such delicacies
as fish eyes, shark fins, bird's nest soup, lime-cured eggs, finely
chopped and highly-seasoned chicken, vegetables and rice--in numerous
forms--comprised the bulk of the menu. Novel and interesting as all
this was to me, I was quite ready, after a month's stay in Tangshan,
for a porterhouse steak, some bread and butter and a piece of pie.

I learned my duties the day after my arrival. I was to be substitute
professor in English, History and Economics, have charge of the college
gymnasium and assist in the library, in place of one of the regular
teachers who was absent on leave for a month. No new light was thrown
on the subject of salary and this matter remained obscure until the
time came for my departure. The classroom work was interesting and
Chinese pupils are about the same as the general run of such creatures
in any American city. One of the requirements for admission to the
college was that each student should have a speaking knowledge of
English. This knowledge on their part was not very profound, however,
and I would talk along at times with such rapidity that the poor chaps
could not understand a word.

When off duty I spent many an interesting hour talking to Mrs. Young
about (to me) the peculiar ways of the Chinese--their marriage customs,
their family life and social ideas. I frequently made visits to the
village of Tangshan where I wandered in and out of the quaint markets,
ate in Chinese restaurants or attended a religious ceremony at one
of the many temples. I occasionally dropped into a theatre where the
custom prevailed of entering without paying admission, the cost of the
show being collected after one had been present a few minutes making up
his mind whether the performance was worth seeing or not.

A Chinese play sometimes lasts for weeks and its claim to a continuous
performance beats that of the American picture show. Some of the
audience sit on the stage. The orchestra is also on the stage
and produces the most unearthly collection of discordant sounds
conceivable. The actors, dressed in the most hideous combination of
colours, shriek and yelp in tones ranging in variety from the mellow
voice of a female Quaker to the gruesome calls of a coyote. Most
interesting among the features of the theatres were the conveniences
furnished by the proprietors for their patrons. There was a continual
shower of wet towels hurled through the air over the heads of the
people--by a man on the stage--to boys stationed in various parts of
the theatre. One of these moistened rags was passed along each row of
seats and the perspiring occupants swabbed off their faces and naked
bodies. The facility and skill with which these towels were thrown and
caught and the utter disregard of all rules of hygiene on the part of
the crowd in the common use of the fabric were marvellous.

[Illustration: THE AUTHOR IN CHINESE GARB]

Many of the Chinese instructors connected with the college had had
their queues amputated. Mo--one of the proctors, however, took pride
in his greasy pig-tail and refused to part with it. I suggested to
him one time that if he did not cut it off I would do so myself. One
evening when Mo was playing Chinese dominoes at President Young's house
I determined to tie a tin can to his queue. It required some patience
and a little time to carry this out so as not to give Mo any idea as
to what was taking place. The rest of the Chinese were in on the joke
and gave me what assistance they could, while continuing to play their
game. After an hour's work the feat was accomplished and on the end of
a heavy cord attached to the proctor's queue was a rusty old Standard
Oil can. The Chinese usually play at their games until very late and as
I wished to go to bed early I had to hasten the climax. I did this by
having a servant announce a hurry call for Mo. The proctor, thinking
there was trouble in the boys' dormitory, made a dash towards the door
with the oil can dangling behind him. The instant he discovered the can
he realised that the servant's call was a sham and in a rage turned on
me whom he at once suspected of the mischief. I thought my last day
had come and that I was to be mauled to pieces by the frantic handling
of an enraged Oriental. He plunged towards me like a huge tiger.
Fortunately for me the rest of the company appreciated the joke and
came to my rescue. The angry man was calmed and a tragedy was prevented.

It was about this time that I received the following letter from
Richardson in Peking: "The job in Tientsin has gone up in a balloon.
Particulars later. Let it suffice to say that my Honolulu discipline
got the boys on their ear and in the absence of the principal they
struck. To avoid complications I beat it. No tears." This is the only
information that I received concerning Richardson's sudden flight
from Tientsin until I reached Manila some time later. I then forced
him into the admission that he was virtually fired. Chinese students
have the habit, when their teachers do not suit them, of going on
a strike. It seems that Richardson tried to inaugurate a civilised
system of discipline which proved to be such a sudden and revolutionary
change to the laxity that had prevailed in the class room, up to the
time of his advent, that the students rose up in a body and rebelled.
They all went on a strike and proceeded to the acting principal of
the institution and issued an ultimatum that either Richardson had to
leave or they themselves would quit the school. Their decision was
final and the acting head of the school informed Richardson that under
the circumstances he would have to go. Richardson said that such an
arrangement suited him, and that afternoon he resumed his journey.

One of the most delightful Chinese that I met during my stay in
Tangshan was Mr. Sze Ping Tze, who was a graduate of Cornell University
and at this time Locomotive Superintendent of the Imperial Railways of
North China. He was also an high official of the Kaiping Coal Mines.
Several years ago he was private secretary to Yuan Shi-Kai, later
President of the Chinese Republic. I spent many pleasant evenings with
Mr. Sze and became well acquainted with him. On one occasion I said to
him,

"Give me a job as conductor on one of your trains running from Peking
to Hankow."

"Why do you want it?" he asked.

"When I get to Hankow I will quit and I shall then be several hundred
miles farther along on my trip--at your expense," I replied with a
smile.

Sze thought this was a great joke and, laughing, said, "Why, I can do
better than that for you; I will give you a pass."

"All right," I said, "I won't forget that and when the time comes for
me to leave Tangshan I will remind you of it."

"What's more," continued Sze, "I will give you a letter of introduction
to my brother in Hankow. He is vice-president of the Chinese Steamship
and Navigation Company and I am sure he will give you a pass on the
Yangtsze River from Hankow to Shanghai."

"Fine business; and maybe I will be able to get a lift there from some
one that will shoot me through to Manila," I concluded, feeling that
the conversation had been a very profitable one.

When the time came for my departure from Tangshan Sze was true to his
word. President Young gave me a railroad pass from Tangshan to Peking,
distance of two hundred miles; Sze's pass from Peking to Hankow was
over nine hundred miles and the letter to his brother brought the third
pass down the Yangtsze River to Shanghai, a distance of nine hundred
miles more. As a result I obtained free passage for two thousand miles
in China--and all first-class. If all the circumstances were reversed,
what chance would a young Chinese, working his way in America, have of
teaching in the University of California, living with the president
of the college, getting a pass from an high official of the Southern
Pacific from San Francisco to St. Louis and thence down the Mississippi
to New Orleans?

For my services as substitute professor in the college I received one
hundred and twenty-five dollars (gold) plus my room and board and this,
together with the railway and steamship passes I obtained, made the
month I spent in Tangshan a very profitable one. I prized more highly,
however, the unique experience of living with a high-class Chinese
family and the insight I had of Chinese home life. But above all I
value the good and loyal Chinese friends I made.



CHAPTER VII

ADRIFT IN THE CHINESE EMPIRE


PRESIDENT YOUNG accompanied me from Tangshan to Peking, to which latter
city he made frequent trips in connection with his position as member
of the Imperial Government Boards of Education and Transportation. I
had planned to take the slow train from Peking to Hankow, which runs
only in the day time and goes on a siding for the night. This train
would leave at eight the following morning and, as we arrived in Peking
in the afternoon, I had the evening to spend there.

All American-educated Chinese are known as "returned students" and
about a dozen of these fellows were guests of President Young at
dinner at the Wagon Lits Hotel to meet me. As they were all graduates
of American colleges and spoke English they employed this language
exclusively, when they were together, in order to keep in practice and
also to cement this common bond which existed amongst them. Mr. Ponson
Chu, one of the number, displayed a Psi Upsilon Fraternity pin on the
breast of his Oriental costume and this emblem immediately attracted
my attention, for I was a member of the same society. Chu was from the
Yale chapter with the class of 1909 and he and I became brothers at
once.

After dinner we rented rickshaws for the evening and the Chinese
started out to "show me the town." This was a rare opportunity; for
it gave me access to places of which, alone, I should not have known
the existence. We hopped into our rickshaws and were on our way. We
passed the Legation compounds, went through the massive and imposing
Chien-Mien Gate and in a few minutes were lost in the swarms of roving
humanity in the _Chinese City_. We found our way through the narrow
streets crowded with vendors, wrangling merchants, camels and what
not. Finally we came to our first stop, a bohemian café--to describe
the place in western parlance. This café, which represented the best
thing of its kind in the capital, was a quaint old building composed of
several rooms in each of which were a few tables. We seated ourselves
at three of these tables and ordered refreshments--which consisted
of tea and dried watermelon seeds. Shortly, a bevy of young Chinese
girls, employed by the institution, came in and sat with us, partook
of the food and engaged in the conversation so far as their limited
mentalities would permit. These dainty little creatures, ranging
in age from twelve to sixteen years, were neatly dressed in tight
pajama-like garments. Their hair was greased and cut in such fantastic
designs and they were so mentally deficient and so bashful that it
was hard for me to realise they were human beings. One of our number
put in an order for a Chinese orchestra and in a few minutes an old
fellow appeared with an instrument somewhat similar to a violin. This
musical contrivance had but one string. The sounds it emitted, after
its operator got into action, were enough to drive the most placid man
insane. To complete the musical bedlam a confusion of discordant tones
was added by the voices of several female singers who rendered a number
of selections at the request of one of our party.

We visited several establishments of this sort and in one of them I was
treated to the sight of seeing two Manchu Princesses accompanied by
their eunuchs. These women entered with their male attendants, hanging
languidly on their arms. The women were tall, graceful creatures--each
smoking a cigarette, and were dressed in beautiful one-piece robes of
rich blue colour. Their hair was done up in the characteristic Manchu
fashion on a framework extending from the rear of the head. They were
beautiful women.

The following morning I was at the station ready to board the slow
train through China to Hankow. As there were no dining arrangements
on these trains I came fully provided with provisions. Extending from
each coat pocket was a loaf of French bread; canned goods disfigured
the symmetry of my trousers in front and two bottles of beer added to
my unshapely appearance in the rear. Foreigners very seldom take this
slow train and the passenger list consists exclusively of natives who
are making short trips.

I had just seated myself in my compartment when an Englishman entered
and asked if I would mind if a Russian shared quarters with me. I had
no objections and the Russian came in. The train pulled out and as soon
as my new travelling companion had his luggage adjusted I attempted to
engage him in conversation. The man could not speak a word of English
and I knew nothing of Russian. I was in for three days of silence, I
thought. We resorted to gestures and drawing pictures. In this way, I
learned that my new friend was an artist and, I informed him by the
same means, of my purposes in life.

To confine myself to the truth it must be stated that the Russian knew
two words of the English language and these were, "President Taft." I
discovered this when he took from his little travelling trunk two small
glasses and a bottle of Benedictine. He poured out the liquor, handed
a glass to me and, drinking a toast, said, "President Taft." I would
not be outdone so I returned the compliment by toasting a name which I
thought ought to be the Russian for Nicholas. The artist recognised it
and his face was one radiant smile as he drank his glass. These were
the only words which passed between us during our three days together
and they were made coherent with the bottle as a welcome interpreter.

The painter had, among his belongings, a large pamphlet with Russian
phrases on one page and the English equivalent on the other. By means
of this booklet we were able to exchange ideas. Sometimes, however, it
would require almost an hour to put across a simple thought.

The first night we stopped at Tchang Te Fou and I made arrangements
with the station master for the Russian and myself to sleep in the car.
Most of the interior cities of China are surrounded by a wall and the
railway stations are usually outside of this wall and often a couple of
miles away. Before retiring the Russian and I had agreed, by means of
the English-Russian pamphlet, to enter the walls of Tchang Te Fou and
see the town and at the same time get something to drink, as the water
on the train was very poor. We walked the two miles from the station
to the city, entered the big gate and were soon wandering up the main
street. We were at once a source of curiosity as our advent was, no
doubt, the chief event of the year.

This city is seldom, if ever, visited by foreigners and we learned
afterwards that there were only two in residence, these being
missionaries. Consequently we were the main feature of interest to
the simple but treacherous-looking inhabitants. As we proceeded up
the street in the hope of finding a soda fountain or a saloon we
accumulated a long train of curious citizens, beggars, naked children
and nondescripts, who followed us and examined us with child-like
simplicity. We finally came to a shop which had the appearance of a
drug store. We looked over its stock for some thirst-quenching liquid.
By this time our train of natives had increased to two hundred and they
stood at the entrance of the shop while the proprietor restrained them
from coming in. I spied two bottles of some unknown make of American
beer perched on a shelf amidst Chinese medical concoctions and bought
them. The Russian and I then made our way through the crowd at the
door and started down the street to the train. The gang of Chinese
tacked on and a solid procession of half the population of China, so it
seemed to us, marched behind us. It was beginning to get dark and, as
it was no uncommon thing for foreigners to enter some Chinese cities
and never be heard of again, I became somewhat alarmed when several of
the hangers-on began to beg for money and, when none was forthcoming,
to pull at our coats and molest us. Two of the Chinese were especially
persistent, one jerking the Russian's coat and the other making an
effort to get his hands in my pockets. What a situation! It looked as
though two speechless companions in danger would have to clean out the
whole crowd of several hundred Chinese. The Russian gave me a look
which I interpreted to mean that there was nothing to do but fight.
The mere suggestion of such a thing unconsciously made me act and in
a flash I swung on one of my assailants. I connected with his chin and
floored him. Ideas go in and out of a man's brain in rapid succession
in such moments, and I thought that the Russian and I would now have to
fight the whole mob. I was mistaken. I didn't know my men, for the blow
that ruined my opponent dispersed the entire crowd and they fled in all
directions like chaff before the wind. A crisis had been passed and the
Russian and I made haste to the station where we safely spent the night
in the train.

The next day we had more trouble. This time it was with the railway
police. I was showing a number of photographs of Chinese to my Russian
friend when a policeman came along and asked in French if he could see
them. I acquiesced, thinking the officer was simply interested. He
wanted to show them to some of his friends in another car. I gave my
consent with a nod of my head. As he had not returned at the end of
an hour, I went through the train to find him. He was showing them to
a score of his countrymen and said that he would bring them back in
a few minutes. I returned to my car. Shortly the policeman appeared
and gave me all the pictures except two. These he said he wanted to
keep. I protested with him in French, for this was the language used
by the employés of this railroad. He became so angry that he attempted
to take back the photographs he had returned. The Russian came to my
assistance and we threw the policeman out of our compartment into the
aisle of the car. I took his number and told him that I would report
him to Mr. Tze, the official of the railroad company who had given me
my pass. The policeman recognised Tze's name and at once calmed down
and said that he would return the missing pictures immediately. He did
not return and I went after him again only to learn that he had got off
the train at the last station. The man was now beyond reach and I was
out two of my photographs. Why he wanted them, I don't know. It is hard
to diagnose the workings of some people's brains and this policeman was
one of them.

The second night our train went on a siding at Tchu Me Tien, a small
isolated village. The station master would not grant us permission to
sleep in the car, so we had to put up at a Chinese inn. A Japanese
hotel is a model of cleanliness. A Chinese hotel is usually the
reverse. This inn at Tchu Me Tien was the essence of filth, discomfort
and heat. It is a safe statement to make that it was one of the most
unsanitary, dilapidated and uncomfortable domiciles on this earth.
The building was alive with naked and unwashed Chinese; our bedroom
was occupied by a dozen hop-head coolies; the beds were made from
the hardest wood obtainable; the unsanitary toilet was only a few
feet away; the thermometer was hovering about the boiling point; and
mosquitoes were as numerous as raindrops in Oregon and as large as
bats. With all these inconveniences and pests, coupled with the fear of
being robbed during the night by the proprietor of the hotel assisted
by his guests, neither the Russian nor myself--who rested on the same
plank together--got a wink of sleep.

[Illustration: A PAGODA BRIDGE IN THE FORBIDDEN CITY

(_Photograph taken by Mr. Sze Ping Tze_)]

I left the Russian at Hankow and began rambling again by myself. I
found an hotel in the Japanese concession of the city and there I
put up during my week's stay in Hankow. I deteriorated into a simple
tourist. I "did" Hankow, and I "did" Wu-Chang and Han Yang, the cities
on the opposite banks of the Yangtsze River. Before leaving Hankow
I presented my letter of introduction to Mr. Tze and obtained my
steamship passage down the river. I sailed on the steamer _Hsin Chang_.

Three days and three nights on the picturesque Yangtsze as a
first-class passenger, and the _Hsin Chang_ pulled into Nanking.
Although my pass was good to Shanghai I concluded to leave the ship at
Nanking and go on to the coast by train. I therefore landed, hailed a
rickshaw and gave instructions to the coolie to haul me to a Japanese
hotel.

American and European hotels were impossible for me on account of their
high rates and the Chinese hotels were out of the question because of
their filth. There are many Japanese in China and each large city has
at least one of their hotels, which are always clean and cheap.

The Nanking Japanese hotel proved to be a difficult institution to
find for, after dragging me about two-thirds of the streets of the
town, the coolie admitted that he didn't know where it was. At last I
saw the Japanese consul's house and directed my rickshaw man to it.
From the consul I learned where the Japanese hotel was. In five minutes
I was a properly registered guest of the place.

I retained the service of the rickshaw coolie and with a map set out to
see Nanking. I passed through the ruins of the old Imperial City where
a few Manchus still reside and out of the walls to the Ming tombs.
The rickshaw slowly conveyed me along the avenue of hideous monuments
erected over the graves of the late members of the Ming dynasty. When
I came to the end I alighted and ascended to the summit of the huge
structure built over the supposed remains of Woo Hung, the first
emperor of the Ming line, who died some six hundred years ago. I sat
down and gazed over the distant walls to the city of Nanking nestled in
the mist. There I remained in deep reflection. My thoughts had floated
across the Pacific to places where I had friends and relatives. Just at
this lonesome moment a neatly dressed Scotchman came along and sat down
beside me.

"What are you doing, old chap?" he enquired.

"Just knocking about the country," I replied.

"Are you going to Shanghai?"

"Yes, I shall probably go down to-morrow afternoon."

"Where do you intend to stay while there?"

"Oh, I suppose that I shall put up at some hotel."

"I live in Shanghai and am going there in the morning. Can't you come
and stay with me?"

I thanked him but declined, giving as an excuse the fact that I had
some friends whom I expected to meet. The Scotchman persisted.

"I should be very pleased to entertain you. If you are unable to find
your friends be sure and look me up," he said.

I am not of a suspicious nature but, when the Scotchman extended such
an urgent invitation on so short acquaintance, I immediately thought
that he was a bunko man of some sort and that he intended to "shanghai"
me.

"Thanks," I concluded, "if I can't find my friends I shall look you
up." Shanghai is a city of a million and a half people and, as the
Scotchman--who didn't give his name--left, I dismissed the incident
from my mind, never expecting to see him again.

I returned to my rickshaw and was soon again within the city walls
where I spent the remainder of the afternoon visiting the Gung Yuam or
old Examination Hall.

This hall was one of the most interesting institutions in my Chinese
travels. It was the place where the students from many provinces
came to take the government examinations in the Chinese classics.
It consisted of rows of cells where the students were sealed in for
several days to write their essays. There were twenty-five thousand
of these cells, sufficient to accommodate that many students at one
time, and the whole institution covered several acres. In addition to
the cells there were many buildings which were used by the government
officials and examiners. The place was last used in 1904 and since that
time has rapidly decayed and through neglect, characteristic of the
Chinese, was in a poor state of preservation. It was the only one still
remaining in China and it is a pity that it is soon to be destroyed.

My companion on the train to Shanghai was a Japanese. With the
smattering of English he knew, coupled with the fragments of the
Japanese language I had picked up in Japan, we carried on a fairly
intelligent conversation. From him I learned the address of a Japanese
hotel in Shanghai and he kindly offered to accompany me to it. We
arrived in the big city and in a moment were lost in the tremendous
tides of humanity. I thought I had never seen so many people before.
The Japanese conducted me to the hotel. The proprietor consigned us to
the same room. I didn't object. I was only surprised.

Shanghai was in holiday attire and throngs of people were celebrating
the coronation of King George V of Great Britain. I walked the streets
and watched the happy crowds. A feeling came over me that I was out of
it, that my stay in the city would be a wearisome one and that while
every one else would be enjoying the celebration I could not take part
in it. As I was thus musing, I heard a shout from the street.

"Did you find your friends?" It was the Scotchman whom I had met in
Nanking.

"No," I shouted back, at once making up my mind to accept the
stranger's invitation. I concluded that I had never been drugged or
"shanghaied" and I was willing to take the chance. If any one made a
suspicious move I would swing on him first and put up a good fight
while the affair lasted.

"Come on with me, then," said the Scotchman.

"All right," I replied.

I returned to the Japanese hotel, checked out and immediately moved
into the Scotchman's apartments.

This mysterious man whom I held in such suspicion and to whom I
attributed such unworthy motives was Mr. John E. Hall, a prominent
importer of steel rails, and one of the most respected citizens of
Shanghai. I entered Hall's spacious apartments, was introduced to
several of his friends and was soon seated at the dinner table putting
away one of the finest meals any mortal ever ate. Everything in the
line of good food and good liquor graced Hall's table, and every
convenience and comfort from bath-room to billiard table was to be
found in his residence.

I was given a guest card to the Shanghai Club, the finest in the Far
East. I had a ticket to the Coronation service at the Cathedral. I
sat in a reserved seat and viewed the parade. I was taken to all the
points of interest in the city, both by day and by night, and if there
was anything on the map too good for me, I didn't know it. This was a
sample of hospitality hard to beat.

During my wanderings about Shanghai with Hall, I was taken, in the
early hours of the morning, after the electrical parade which took
place as a part of the coronation celebration, to the Carlton Café--a
bohemian resort. As I entered this café, in company with a dozen of
Hall's friends, I was startled to hear my name called out from the
midst of the huge throng of midnight merrymakers. Here I was five
thousand miles from home, and, so far as I was aware, there was not a
soul I knew in the city. My name rang through the air again. I looked
about and at last recognised a woman, who was standing on a table,
as the source of the call. I soon discovered that she was inebriated
and in a second I recalled that I had met her on the steamer _Asia_
crossing the Pacific. I immediately went over to her, shook hands with
her and exchanged the usual platitudes which are employed when people
meet.

My friends wanted to know where I had met the lady, and informed
me that she was one of the most notorious women of the Shanghai
underworld. On the steamer she had given her name as Mrs. Davis and
there was nothing in her demeanour during the voyage to indicate that
she was not a respectable woman. It was on this basis that I had met
her. Presently she came over to our table and asked if I would come
and have _tiffin_ with her the next day. I accepted.

"Where shall I come?" I enquired.

"Sixteen Soo Chow Road," she said. "Are you surprised?"

Either way I might have answered this question would have given
offence, so I evaded it with an assurance that I would be on hand for
_tiffin_ the next day.

Sixteen Soo Chow Road was guarded by two policemen. They took no
notice of me and I walked straight in and asked for Mrs. Davis. No one
in the house knew her by that name. In a few minutes I found her and
was cordially received. The place was in a great state of excitement,
for one of the women had taken four shots at a prominent merchant of
Shanghai early in the morning in one of the city's cafés. The woman
was under arrest and this accounted for the presence of the policemen
at the entrance. I did not like the idea of being about for fear I
would be called as a witness and become mixed up in a nasty scrape
which I knew nothing about. However, I decided to be a man and see the
meal out. _Tiffin_ was brought in and Mrs. Davis, for she was still
Mrs. Davis to me, entertained me as would the hostess of the most
respectable home in the world. After a good meal and a pleasant call I
took my leave. I was somewhat wiser from my study of human nature. I
also had made another friend in this world.

I made arrangements with the skipper of a British tramp steamer to
take me to Hongkong and before long I found myself on the shores of
this beautiful island ready for new experiences. Hongkong proved to be
a poor field for adventure and after seeing the sights I went up the
river to Canton. In both places I put up at Japanese hotels where I
thrived on Japanese diet at Japanese prices. I returned to Hongkong and
after a few days along the waterfront I sailed for Manila on a British
tramp.

Before the ship got under way a United States Quarantine officer made
a cursory examination of the crew before she would be allowed to
leave for the Philippines. As he passed me he said, without stopping,
that I had malaria. This was cheerful news, for a Hankow doctor had
told me that I had a touch of dry pleurisy and a Canton physician
had prescribed a mixture for dysentery. I said to myself when the
American Quarantine doctor made his lightning-speed diagnosis, "That
is a delightful thought; I must have all the diseases under the sun."
I hadn't been feeling very well, which I attributed to the long period
I had lived on Japanese and Chinese food and the irregular life I had
been leading, so I discounted the contradictory statements of all my
physicians and concluded that with good food and regular hours in
Manila I would soon be in normal shape.

[Illustration: _Upper_: COUNTRY BOYS OF NORTH CHINA

_Lower_: SAMPLE OF AN IRRIGATION SYSTEM]

However, I had no time to think of ailments, for the second day out
found the ship in the roughest sea I had ever experienced. The captain
informed me that we were on the outskirts of a typhoon and that he had
changed the course of the ship in order to run away from it. Typhoons,
which are common to the China Sea during the fall of the year, are
tremendous whirlwinds which are often several hundred miles in
circumference and, when the weather prophets know of their existence,
all ships are not allowed to leave port. Our ship, however, got under
way before any indications of the typhoon were evident. If a boat
encounters one of these terrific storms its chances for getting out are
about one in a hundred.

I was sitting on the deck talking to the ship's doctor when the boat
gave a lurch which threw us both headlong against the railing. Before
we could find something to hold to the ship pitched in the opposite
direction and we were thrown like rag dolls through the open hatchway
upon a pile of cargo. From this point we gradually found our way to the
mess-room. This was the first indication that we were in the vicinity
of a typhoon. The boat was a freighter and did not carry regular
passengers and, besides the crew, the extra travellers consisted of a
dozen Chinese coolies, a United States cable ship officer and myself.

The sea became rougher and rougher and if this was only the rim of a
typhoon what on earth would the centre of it be? All night the ship
pounded, swayed and lurched and the wind blew at a terrific rate. The
skipper remained on the bridge and had what little he ate served to
him there. In the morning the sea, instead of being calmer, as we had
all hoped, was ten-fold worse and the captain announced that we were
in the middle of the typhoon, and when asked what our chances were he
simply shook his head. When the experienced skipper looked worried and
considered that our prospects for reaching shore were small, unless
something extraordinary occurred, I philosophically--as did all the
others on board--resigned myself to the fact that I only had a day or
two at most to live. We were as helpless as babes.

The waves ran thirty and forty feet high and constantly broke over the
ship at the two hatchways. Fifteen feet of water dashed and redashed
across the deck in a mad torrent. Occasionally a wave would break over
the top of the mess-room, which was perched high upon the stem of the
boat, and the force of its blow seem to promise that one more would
cave in the sides of the ship and end it all. It was impossible to
serve meals and we all munched at pieces of bread or chunks of meat--or
any food we could get our hands on.

I had never imagined that the ocean could become so terrific and a
ship so helpless. Each time I saw the tremendous mountains of water
rush towards the vessel I would think it was all over. The ship would
cringe, dip and twist and in some mysterious way, half submerged, ride
the treacherous monster and, having got safely by, would instantly be
confronted with another equally as treacherous and terrible. To survive
these waves was a miracle.

With the heavy sea and the fearful wind the ship's engines were
powerless and the boat was swept about like a cork. To add to our
perilous situation the engine room was becoming flooded, although four
pumps were frantically sucking out the water. Thus we battled with the
sea for three days, not knowing when the end would come, but always
living in the hope that the extraordinary thing would occur which the
captain longed for.

Thank God, it did occur. During the third night the wind changed and it
began to rain. I never saw rain in such quantities before nor do I ever
expect to see it again. But every drop was a blessing, for it did its
share to quiet the waves, and it was only a few hours before the sea
had abated to a point where comparative safety was reached and the ship
was able to make some headway. A more thankful and happy crowd could
not be found at that moment on land or sea than the few men on that
ship. The first meal after the subsiding of the waves was as happy a
reunion and joyous occasion as any Christmas gathering I ever attended.

The next day the sea had calmed down to almost normal and the captain
discovered that we had been driven five hundred miles out of our
course. He headed the bow of his ship towards Manila and, on the
morning of the sixth day, we pulled into port. We were all intact, but
the faithful ship was a dismantled wreck. The Manila authorities had
given us up as lost and our experiences took up a column on the front
page of each of the daily papers.



CHAPTER VIII

RURAL CHINA BY CART


RICHARDSON was _en route_ to Peking as a third-class passenger. He had
just been discharged--with thanks--from his position of physics teacher
at the Tientsin Middle School. After his dismissal it took him about
ten minutes to gather his meagre belongings together and get out of
town.

In the Chinese capital he stayed at the native Y.M.C.A. which was
conducted by Americans and where his travelling comrade had put up
a few weeks before. His bill was one dollar, Chinese money, a day.
The Young Men's Christian Association is found in nearly every large
city in the Orient. Many of its plants are housed in substantial and
well-equipped buildings and it does a most valuable work. The men in
charge of these institutions are a fine lot and are representative
of the best type of Americans. Without exception, they received us
with the greatest cordiality possible and the recollection of their
hospitality will long remain with us. The many secretaries we met were
often invaluable to us for the advice they gave us, their suggestions
and the courtesies they extended to us, and we were always welcomed to
their accommodations at very reasonable prices.

In many ways Peking was the most interesting and fascinating city
of our travels. It is different from any other place in the world.
Richardson circled this oriental capital on foot. He walked along the
top of the twelve miles of huge walls which surround it. Peking has a
population of over a million people and is divided into four cities,
viz.: The Tartar City, inhabited by the middle classes; the Imperial
City, within the Tartar City, where reside most of the government
officials; the Forbidden City, in the centre of the Imperial City,
in which the Emperors lived and where the President of the Republic
of China now has his residence; and the Chinese City where the lower
classes live. Surrounding the entire metropolis is a great wall forty
feet high and sixty-two feet wide at the base.

The Imperial City occupies a space of nearly two square miles and is
enclosed by a wall twenty feet high. There are four spacious entrances,
each with three gateways, the middle one being opened only for the
Emperor or President. The Forbidden City is laid out on a grand scale
and is surrounded by massive pink-tinted walls thirty feet high and
thirty feet thick. Within are many palaces, private residences,
apartments for visitors and government officials and the necessary
quarters for an enormous retinue of domestics of various rank.
Foreigners without permits or the Chinese, except high officials, are
not allowed in this city.

Connecting the Tartar and Chinese cities is the immense and imposing
Chien-Mien Gate with its four oriental towers. The view from the top
of this gate is one of the most wonderful metropolitan pictures in
the world. Directly before one's eyes are the yellow-tiled palaces of
the Forbidden City, whose roofs look like sheets of glittering gold
under the rays of the oriental sun. To the right are the costly and
substantial houses of the Legation Quarter. Far to the left the Bell
and Drum Towers loom up like western skyscrapers. In a remote corner of
the Chinese City the stately Temple of Heaven with its rich blue roof
rests in the haze of the oriental atmosphere. Beneath one is a bee-hive
of human beings. Tens of thousands pass through the Chien-Mien Gate
each day. Nearly every means of conveyance that one can imagine, except
roller skates and submarines, can be seen creeping through the arched
openings of the huge gate. Camels, donkeys, rickshaws, the elaborate
equipages of officials, carts, men, women and children on foot, form an
endless stream from the time the gates are opened at six in the morning
until they close at midnight. A touch of the West is added by the roar
of trains whose tracks pierce the walls of the Chinese capital with
their numerous tunnels.

Travelling at the third-class mountain rate of two-thirds of a cent a
mile, Richardson was sharing his small compartment on a Chinese train
with a dozen coolies--on his way to Tai Yuam Fu. From Peking he had
made a trip to the Ming tombs and had also visited the Great Wall with
a party of American tourists. He was now on his way into the interior
of Shansi Province to visit some college friends who were missionaries
at a small town called Fen Chow Fu. The mission station was conducted
by the American Board of the Congregational Church. Richardson went
from Peking to Tchang Te Fou, a distance of one hundred and seventy
miles, by train. This city was where the Russian artist and I had our
trouble with the Chinese beggars. From this place Richardson took a
branch line to Tai Yuan Fu, about two hundred miles west, where he
spent the night as the guest of a young Britisher who was a Cambridge
University graduate and was then doing medical missionary work. Tai
Yuan Fu was the terminal of the railroad and Richardson had to complete
his journey to the mission station by cart. This Chinese vehicle had
been sent to meet him by his missionary friends.

In giving me an account of this eighty-mile Chinese cart trip, which
required three days, Richardson told me that in order to appreciate
his experiences I must keep in mind four facts. These were: first, a
Chinese cart has neither springs nor cushions; second, Chinese country
roads are simply two deep parallel ruts or grooves, made by the wheels
of carts (these roads are never graded and in places the ruts are
two or three feet deep); third, the portion of the road between the
ruts was lined with rocks and boulders of every description and size;
and fourth, it rained steadily the three days of his journey. He stated
that, by putting these facts together and adding a liberal allowance of
imagination, I could get some idea of a cart trip in China.

[Illustration: _Upper_: CROSSING A CHINESE COUNTRY BRIDGE

_Lower_: THE INN WHERE RICHARDSON PUT UP FOR A NIGHT]

This uncomfortable vehicle was drawn by two mules, hitched tandem,
and not once during the eighty miles did they get off a walk. An
Arkansas train was a comet in comparison. Richardson's attendants were
a driver and a servant, whom the mission station had sent. They could
not speak English. For three days my friend was slowly hauled over
hills and valleys in this primitive conveyance. At times he thought
his insides would be shaken to a hopeless mass; his head was snapped
about until there was grave doubt in his mind as to whether it would
stay on throughout the journey and he was so roughly tossed about that
he thought he would be lame for the rest of his life. He would ride a
couple of hours, about as long as he could stand it at one time, and
then get out and walk in the rain for an equal period.

At night and at noon-time he stopped at Chinese inns. "Inn" is a
misnomer, however. The Chinese country inn is a stable-yard filled with
mules, donkeys, dogs, pigs, chickens, babies and smells. This yard
is surrounded by a long one-story building in which are the sleeping
rooms, kitchens and eating compartments. All the rooms in an inn
open on the yard and with their doorless entrances extend a hearty
welcome to the numerous odours. Chinese hotels can be located by their
characteristic odour.

A bedroom in one of these inns has no conveniences. There is a "thing"
to sit on and a "thing" upon which to place food, but it requires a
great deal of intuition to know that they are respectively a chair and
a table. There is a brick platform in one corner of the room for a
bed. This is called a _kong_ in Shansi Province. Beneath these kongs a
fire is built on cold nights. It was at Tai Yuam Hsien, where he spent
the second night, that Richardson, while sleeping soundly on a kong,
was awakened about two A.M. by being nearly baked. The coolie who was
acting as stoker, had replenished the oven so generously with fuel that
the bed resembled a crematory.

For two and a half days he didn't see a foreigner or meet a Chinese
who could speak English. He communicated with his servant by means of
signs. As he entered each village he at once became the chief object
of interest. At the inns the scene on his arrival resembled a circus
procession. All the youngsters, beggars and cripples followed him into
the yard and watched the "animal" eat. At Tai Yuam Hsien they became
so numerous and so persistent in their pleas for cash that Richardson
had to flash his pistol to instil some fear into them and impress them
with the fact that he was a dangerous man.

This three days' journey was filled with inconveniences, but gave
Richardson an excellent opportunity to get a glimpse of Chinese rural
life. The country through which he passed was green and the farms along
the way gave a Mississippi Valley aspect to the scenery. The methods
of farming were somewhat different, however. To see hundreds of acres
of wheat planted in rows like radishes and hoed by hand was hardly
American. There were no cows or horses but, instead, thousands of goats
and sheep flocked the hills and valleys while mules and camels were the
beasts of burden. The country was largely agricultural and there were
but few walled cities, his course taking him through scores of little
villages.

In each of the first two days the Chinese cart made thirty miles and
the third day twenty. Richardson drove into Fen Chow Fu about six
o'clock on the third evening and received a very cordial welcome from
the members of the American mission station. Fen Chow Fu proved to be
a walled town of about fifty thousand people and the score or more
missionaries were the only foreigners. They entertained Richardson in
real American fashion. The members of this little far away colony were
mostly graduates of Carlton College, Minnesota, where Richardson had
taken his freshman and sophomore years before going to Dartmouth.

After ten days as a guest of his friends, Richardson returned to the
railroad at Tai Yuan Fu by Chinese cart. Three more uncomfortable days
over the eighty-mile course with the same experiences as the inward
trip and he arrived at the railroad without mishap. He took the first
train and the following day was in Hankow. In this city he spent a
comfortable week at the native Y.M.C.A.

It was at this time that one of the dreadful Chinese famines was
ravaging the country a few miles distant from Hankow and thousands
of people were dying of starvation. Large numbers of these homeless,
naked and wretched creatures flocked to the city and roamed its narrow
streets as beggars. They hardly had the strength to walk and they
presented a sad sight with their fleshless bones, visible ribs and
sunken faces. Real poverty was more in evidence in this section than
in any part of the world we visited. Human beings were huddled in tiny
huts built of rusty Standard Oil cans and located in a swamp. A whole
family of six or eight would crawl in on their hands and knees to get
a night's shelter from the cold and rain. During the day they would
beg or attempt to sell some worthless trinkets or pieces of junk. I
have seen a stock of goods spread out on the sidewalk which contained
nothing but what would be consigned to the ash barrel in an American
community. Rusty nails, pieces of glass, old newspapers, rags and
wornout soles of shoes were on display. In some unaccountable way the
vendor frequently found a purchaser.

It was in this poverty-stricken district that Richardson played the
rôle of philanthropist. He bought an American dollar's worth of
_cash_--small Chinese coins with a square hole in the centre which
are sold on long strings. As soon as he began giving these away a
hundred or more of these poor unfortunates gathered about him and
piteously begged for some of the money. Starved creatures--ragged
women, half-clad and shivering children, blind boys, men on all fours,
paralytics and lepers--thronged about him and pleaded for some of his
charity. He divided the money equally among the multitude, counting out
the coins as he gave them away. He found that for his American dollar
he had received twenty-seven hundred pieces of _cash_.

Richardson was the guest of some friends who were on the faculty of
Boone's College in Wu Chang on the opposite bank of the Yangtsze
River from Hankow. This school is under the auspices of the American
Episcopal Church Mission and is one of the leading institutions of
learning in the Empire. Here he spent several days in luxury, sleeping
in a warm and comfortable room and enjoying American meals.

Riding below the water line on an oriental steamer with Chinese coolies
as fellow passengers is the antithesis of the comfort of an American
Mission school. This was the sort of transportation Richardson
enjoyed down the Yangtsze to Shanghai. Three days in the midst of
unsanitary surroundings and curious and simple coolies were enough to
make the ordinary American quit the trip and buy a first-class ticket
home. Richardson was not that kind. He was anything but a quitter and
although he enjoyed a good bed, clean food and intelligent companions
as well as any one I ever knew, he could stand hardship and discomfort
without a murmur. He often appeared to like them. In the face of the
most discouraging environment he would simply smile and play the part
of a philosopher.

He trooped down the gangway at Shanghai with his fellow passengers and
in a few days trooped up another gangway on his way south. This time,
however, he had obtained a rather luxurious berth. For ten dollars he
was to be landed in the city of Victoria, on the island of Hongkong, by
the Scotch captain of a British tramp steamer. He occupied a cabin on
the upper deck, had the freedom of the ship and dined with the skipper
in the main saloon. The voyage was a quiet one and he had plenty of
time for reading undisturbed.

Richardson had tried Chinese steerage travel and found it very rough.
He decided to make a change. From Hongkong he sailed in the hold
of a Japanese steamer for Manila. According to his own statement
it was the lowest stratum he had ever reached. The Japanese in the
third-class quarters were an unintelligent and inferior lot. They
acted like animals; the food was coarse and half cooked; the bunks
were hard and full of vermin; the quarters were poorly ventilated;
toilet conveniences did not exist; the sea was rough and nearly all the
passengers were sick. Aside from this, the boat was very comfortable
and it was a pleasant trip.



CHAPTER IX

ASSORTED JOBS IN THE PHILIPPINES


THE Philippines proved to be a prolific field for jobs. It was our plan
to settle in the Islands for several months and add to our exchequers
before going on to India and Europe. Richardson held down three jobs
during our three months' stay and for a few days drew pay from them
all at the same time. I filled one position and declined two others.
The American who couldn't get work in Manila at the time of our visit
deserved to starve to death.

Many of the old Spanish laws are still in force and, before I could
transact any business, I had to comply with the insular regulations and
get a _cedular_ or license. This certificate costs two pesos and must
be held before carrying on any financial negotiations.

I was now ready to look for a job. The first day I had a chance to sign
on as a government teamster caring for and driving a pair of mules at
sixty dollars a month. I did not accept this position, but held it in
reserve in case I couldn't land anything better. The second day, the
city editor of the _Cable-News American_ said that he had an opening
as a reporter at eighty dollars a month. At last I got in touch with
the Bureau of Education which I learned wanted a man in its industrial
department. Four others had been under consideration for several
days for the position when I arrived on the scene. I interviewed the
director, Mr. Frank E. White, a charming man who has since died and, as
I made a favourable impression, he asked me to call again.

My application was considered for a week and I conversed with several
of the authorities of the Bureau. I didn't like the long time employed
in coming to a conclusion on my case, for I expected to remain in
Manila only a few months--a fact which I had to keep a secret to have
any one hire me.

One afternoon during these negotiations I was on the Luneta attending
the daily concert of the Philippine Constabulary Band, when I was
startled by a war-whoop. I looked up to see a sturdy figure dressed in
the white of the tropics bounding towards me. It was Richardson who
had just arrived in Manila from China. It was the first we had seen or
heard of one another for three months. That evening we spent several
hours relating our experiences since we separated.

The next interview with the Bureau of Education was the final one. My
qualifications evidently satisfied the authorities for Mr. White opened
the conversation by saying:

"Well, we have decided to take you on, Mr. Fletcher--on one condition."

"What is that?" I asked.

"That you will remain permanently," responded Mr. White.

After all the days of negotiation the job now hung in the balance, for
I intended to stay only three months at most and I wanted to be free to
leave at any time. I couldn't afford to let this information loose or
all would be lost.

"I can't agree to anything like that, Mr. White. I assume that you
reserve the right to discharge me if my services are not satisfactory
and I want the same privilege to quit if I find that I don't like the
work or can't get along with you or your assistants," I said.

"Of course we take such matters into consideration," replied Mr. White.
"You may go to work at once if you wish."

"There is one little matter which has not been mentioned yet," I added.

"What is that?" enquired the director.

"Compensation," I smiled.

"Two hundred pesos a month," said Mr. White with a laugh. This amount
is equivalent to one hundred dollars.

"That is satisfactory," I concluded and was conducted into the
department where I was to work. Now that I had the job I at once began
to figure out how to get rid of it when the time came. A few minutes
before I had been wondering how I was going to get it.

[Illustration: AN OLD CHURCH IN MANILA]

The Bureau of Education is one of the main divisions of the Insular
Government and employs nearly two thousand men and women, the large
majority of whom are scattered throughout the Islands as teachers. The
head office in Manila has about one hundred and twenty on its staff,
and these are divided among several departments. The Division of
Publications and Industrial Information was the title of the department
in which I was to work and my duties consisted of issuing bulletins,
editing text-books, publishing the _Philippine Craftsman_ (a monthly
magazine of the Bureau) and preparing the annual report. This last
embodied about fifty financial and statistical tables and twenty or
more graphic charts showing the work accomplished by the Bureau during
the year. This annual report turned out to be the main part of my
duties and I was assisted by eight Filipinos who compiled most of the
tables under my supervision. As the Governor-General of the Islands put
in a rush order for this report my assistants and I were compelled to
work until eleven o'clock each evening for about a month.

Immediately on his arrival in Manila Richardson started to look for a
job. The first day, he met a friend from the Hawaiian Islands who was
in the Philippines representing the Honolulu Planters' Association in
obtaining Filipino labourers for the sugar plantations in Hawaii. This
man said he would have a position open in a few weeks. Richardson
informed him that he could not wait and would have to get something at
once. The Hawaiian planter then agreed to take an option on his time
at thirty dollars a week until a vacancy occurred. Richardson accepted
this and remained in Manila to await developments.

The duties of the job for which Richardson was slated consisted of
visiting several of the islands in a small steamer, manned by a Spanish
captain and crew, and gathering labourers who would be taken to Manila
and thence shipped to Honolulu. He was to have a motion picture
apparatus, with an operator and lecturer who would accompany him in his
visits to the small villages and towns and after showing the natives
the wonders and advantages of life in Hawaii sign them on and ship them
out.

During his wait in Manila Richardson was afflicted with the common
tropical malady of dengue and was confined to his bed for ten days.
Dengue is a sort of tropical grippe which is conveyed by mosquitoes
and attacks its victims by means of a fever, rash and sore bones in
every part of the body. Probably its most aggravating features are its
after-effects, for a severe case often leaves the patient in such shape
that it requires several months to recover normal health. Fortunately
Richardson, due to his rugged constitution and to the fact that his
attack was comparatively light, was soon convalescent and recovered
without the usual lingering after effects.

Richardson soon received word from his Honolulu planter friend that he
was to report in Cebu, a town on the island of the same name about five
hundred miles south of Manila. He took an inter-island steamer and in
a few days reached his destination and was ready for duty. He expected
to go to work at once. But the man in charge at Cebu informed him that
he was not needed and instructed him to return to Manila. There was
a hitch some place. After some difficulty about expense money, which
the Cebu man refused to pay and which was adjusted satisfactorily to
Richardson by wiring to the Honolulu representative in Manila, he
returned north, arriving on a Wednesday morning. He was paid off until
the end of the week, which made a total period of one month at thirty
dollars a week with no work and an interesting trip with all expenses
to Cebu and back.

He began, Wednesday afternoon, to look for another job and by evening
he had obtained a position as shipping clerk for a wholesale grocery
house at one hundred dollars a month. He went to work the next
morning--Thursday. That evening, after dinner, he received a letter
from the Bureau of Public Works, to which he had made application the
afternoon before, which stated that he was wanted to go to the island
of Mindanao, a thousand miles south of Manila, and take charge of the
construction of several concrete bridges at a salary of one hundred
and twenty dollars a month and expenses. This offer was especially
tempting, not only for the increase in salary but for the opportunity
it offered him to see more of the Islands--the motive for which he was
travelling. The position called--so the man at the Bureau of Public
Works stated--for a knowledge of structural engineering, cement work
and drafting. Richardson was not an engineer and knew nothing about
such subjects.

"What, do you think of my accepting this job?" asked Richardson of his
travelling companion when he had finished reading his letter aloud.

"Take it," I said.

"But I don't know anything about structural engineering," he replied.

"What difference does that make? All jobs sound harder than they really
are. Suppose you accept it and they find in a couple of weeks that you
are no good and fire you, what do you care? You will be a thousand
miles farther along on the trip at their expense," I said rather
emphatically.

"All right," said Richardson. "To-morrow I will notify the grocery
people that I intend to quit in the evening and I will sail for
Mindanao on Saturday."

Richardson severed his connections with the wholesale grocery house the
following night and began making preparations for his departure south.
It will be remembered that the salary from his first position continued
until the end of the week. He received pay from the grocery store for
Thursday and Friday and his wages from the Bureau of Public Works began
on Friday morning. He therefore drew pay from all three jobs on Friday.

Richardson didn't know a transit from a trombone and he knew no more
about cement than a hair-dresser but, provided with a technical
hand-book, he sailed, certain that he would be a competent engineer by
the time he arrived at Zamboango on the island of Mindanao--in about a
week. I saw him off and interestedly awaited word from him as to how
matters would turn out.

I had rented a large room in the Imperial Hotel, one of the quaint old
adobe Spanish buildings with iron-barred windows and folding doors, in
the Intramuros or walled city. I had been living in this room for a few
weeks when the proprietor, evidently thinking that it was too large for
one person to occupy, placed another man in it without consulting me.
As the new arrival appeared a good fellow, and also because I received
a reduction in my rental, I made no objection. My new roommate was
a man about thirty years of age by the name of Edwards. He had been
a second-class yeoman in the United States Navy and, after serving
several years, had bought his way out. According to his own statement
he had enjoyed the reputation of having been the biggest drunkard in
the Asiatic Squadron and in this contention he was upheld by members
of the navy who knew him. He now, however, had been on the water wagon
for six months and intended to remain there.

It was only a few days after the advent of Edwards that the proprietor,
evidently still considering that the room was too large to be wasted
on two persons, intruded a third. This man's name was Lakebank, and
since (as in the first case) he appeared to be a decent sort of chap
and the proprietor again reduced the rental, we concluded to allow him
to remain. We all, however, agreed that he was to be the last. Lakebank
was a rough, uncouth fellow with one of the finest dispositions in the
universe and a heart as big as the ocean. He was chauffeur for one of
the high officials of the Insular Government. The three of us got along
very well together.

One evening as Edwards and I were eating the eternal chicken dinner of
Manila, Lakebank arrived with a most disturbed look in his face. His
eyes were nearly popping out of his head. I at once saw that something
was wrong and enquired what the trouble was but received only a wink
in reply. I took the hint and put the matter off until after dinner.
Lakebank, who was very nervous and excited, then informed me that he
had seen a man on the street, that afternoon, whom he recognised as
his sister's husband and who, nine years ago in the United States, had
left her on the night of the birth of their little girl. Later it was
discovered that he had gambled away all her savings. He had never been
seen or heard from, and was supposed to be dead, until Lakebank came
face to face with him on a _calle_ of Manila. Lakebank learned that his
brother-in-law was going under the assumed name of Polly.

We discussed the matter for some time and I offered a number of
suggestions as to how to handle the situation. The next day, Lakebank,
acting on our conclusions, went to the office of Mr. Polly, who had a
good position with the Insular Government, and stated that he wished to
speak to him alone.

"Go right ahead. Everything my stenographer hears is confidential,"
said Mr. Polly.

"No, I want her out of the room," insisted Lakebank, "for I have
something of a very serious nature to say to you."

"Don't mind her," repeated the man, "I assure you that everything you
say will be kept a secret."

"All right then," and looking him squarely in the face Lakebank said,
"I am James Lakebank, your brother-in-law. Your name is Ham, not Polly."

"Yes, yes, you are right; no one should be present," muttered Ham
nervously and, as he staggered towards the door, he added, "Come with
me." The two men left the office and wandered out on the street, both
in silence, until they came to a secluded spot in an adjacent lumber
yard where, sheltered from view, they sat speechless.

"What are you going to do about it?" Lakebank finally asked. Ham then
opened his heart and in tears stated that he had never spent such
remorseful years in his life as those which had elapsed since the
night he left his wife. He explained that he went directly to Chicago,
enlisted in the army and was detailed to Manila, where he had been ever
since. He said that if his wife were willing he would join her again
and to show his good faith, would give Lakebank five hundred dollars to
send her so that she could come to San Francisco and meet him there.
If she did not want to see him, she could keep the money for whatever
purpose she wished. He enquired affectionately about the little girl
who was born the night he deserted and whom he had never seen. He
stated that he had saved several thousand dollars and that, if it was
his wife's wish, he would return to America, resume his right name,
join her and begin life all over again.

Lakebank did not know whether his sister would forgive Ham, or not,
but informed him that he would write her of their meeting. The case
interested me and I was eager to know the outcome. It would take
several months for letters to be exchanged between Lakebank and his
sister and the matter would not be settled until nearly a year after
my departure from the Islands. Many months afterwards I heard from
Lakebank. Ham returned to America, met his wife and little girl in San
Francisco, were reunited and were happily situated in the States.

[Illustration: THE HOUSE IN WHICH RICHARDSON LIVED DURING HIS EMPLOY AT
THE PRISON]

One evening I was much surprised to see Richardson come bounding into
my room.

"Where did you drop from?" I enquired, astonished.

"Just blew in from Zamboango," said Richardson. "I have had enough of
these islands. Are you ready to beat it to-morrow?"

"Any old time suits me. To-morrow if you say so."

"All right, to-morrow we go."

Richardson then related his Mindanao experiences. On his way south on
the steamer he did all he could to prime himself full of engineering
knowledge. He discovered among the passengers an engineer whom he
put through a severe cross-examination. After seven days he arrived
in Zamboango and, reporting to headquarters, was instructed to go to
the Insular Penitentiary about twenty miles down the coast. At the
prison his duties were outlined to him. What a drop from structural
engineering they were! His "bridge building" consisted of acting as
foreman in charge of one hundred and twenty convicts who were hauling
wheelbarrow loads of sand and filling in a gulch near the prison
buildings.

The penitentiary was situated on the shore of the island of Mindanao
and was one of the Insular Government prisons. The institution
consisted of several one-story, cement-walled and thatch-roofed houses
which, in addition to containing the cells for the convicts, had rooms
and accommodations for the guards and officers. The prisoners were
largely recruited from the Moro tribe, nominal Mohammedans, with whom
the United States has had much trouble. There were also a few Filipinos
and a number of Chinese.

Richardson was comfortably situated in one of the cottages which
were provided for the officials of the prison. The entire group of
buildings was within a few hundred feet of the ocean and was buried in
a luxuriant jungle of palms and evergreen trees of the tropics.

Each morning at six o'clock the convicts, attired in their striped
uniforms, were conducted by a number of armed guards to a ravine
across which the prison authorities had planned to build a bridge. The
preliminary work of filling and grading was being done and it was to
oversee this work that Richardson was assigned. All day long, under
the tropical sun, he supervised the hauling, filling and levelling.
It was a position a ten-year-old boy could have held. As the work
progressed he, no doubt, would have had to use his knowledge of bridge
construction. Fortunately, for those of posterity who are destined to
use this bridge, he did not remain to complete the work.

Ten days on the job and he was notified that he was to be transferred
to another part of the Islands. He was instructed to report to Manila
for orders. His removal was due to the fact that the Manila office had
sent six men to Mindanao when only four were needed and as he was the
last to arrive he was naturally the first to go. He took a boat and
reached Manila after an absence of one month during which he received
one hundred and twenty dollars and expenses and two thousand miles
travel, visiting many of the island ports _en route_.

As the Bureau of Education authorities had assumed that unless
something extraordinary happened I was a fixture in my position, I
expected to be thrown out when I notified them of my intention to
leave. It also would look as though I were afraid that I could not pass
the civil service examination which was scheduled for the next day
and which I had to take to become a regular employé--for I was only
a temporary man up to this time. The shortness of the notice might
also cause trouble for, as we were to leave the Islands that day, I
could give only a few hours' notice. On second thought I concluded
that the Bureau could not justly object for I had come at a time when
it was badly in need of a man to issue the annual report and I had
finished this volume, having put in much overtime on it without extra
remuneration.

However, everything passed off smoothly and, instead of being forced
to stay or being kicked out, I was treated with the greatest kindness
and consideration by every one from Director White down. I never before
left a position with so much good will on the part of my employers.
Mr. White expressed his regret and stated that he had planned to soon
promote me and give me an increase in salary. He added that if at any
time he could be of service to me I should not hesitate to call on him.

That evening Richardson and I sailed in the hold of a ship for
Hongkong. After travelling through Japan, Korea, China and the
Philippine Islands we left Manila with more coin than we had when we
departed from Honolulu eight months before. We each were now worth
about eight hundred dollars.



CHAPTER X

A PORT-HOLE VIEW OF SOUTHERN ASIA


WITH our eight hundred dollars each we felt somewhat flush. We
realised, however, that it would probably be a long time before we
could obtain positions that would pay us as well as those we had left
in Hawaii, China and the Philippines, and we foresaw that we might
have difficulty about getting work in Europe that would even pay our
expenses. For these reasons, although now comparatively opulent, we
decided to continue the steerage route.

We sailed from Hongkong in the forward part of the French Mail liner
_Caledonien_ for Saigon, Indo-China. Our only companions in the
steerage on this three-day trip were thirty Japanese women of the
underworld going to settle in the _La Petite Paris_, as Saigon is
frequently called. The meals on this steamer were not bad in quality
for steerage fare but were not numerous enough. The first meal of each
day took place at nine o'clock in the morning and the second and last
was served at eight in the evening. Each eater was allotted a piece of
bread--the sturdy production of some French cook--a bottle of wine,
meat and potatoes, and in the evening a pudding of some sort. We spent
the long hours between meals reading or conversing to the best of our
ability with the Japanese prostitutes.

The _Caledonien_ began winding her way up the Mekong River to Saigon,
about fifty miles inland. French Indo-China is a beautiful spot and
Saigon with its fifty thousand inhabitants, many of whom are French, is
indeed a miniature Paris. It is a gay little town with many substantial
buildings, numerous cafés and ornate theatres. Scores of quaint tables,
at many of the restaurants, are placed on the sidewalks and sometimes
out into the street, completely closing it for traffic. At these tables
hundreds of pleasure-loving French people sit during the afternoons and
evenings, tranquilly sipping their wine. They chat and laugh as though
they didn't have a care in the world. The natives of Cochin-China are
Annanese, a similar people to the Chinese. Both the men and the women
dress their hair in a knot on the top of their heads, and as they both
wear trousers it is difficult for the new arrival to distinguish the
sexes.

The steerage quarters of the _Caledonien_ were crowded to their
capacity by the large number of Frenchmen and women who came aboard at
Saigon. In order to make room for his countrymen, the steward moved
Richardson and me from our stateroom, in the forward part of the ship,
to a cabin between the engines and the kitchen. We did not realise
what sort of a place it was until it came time to retire. It was
hotter than Hades and there was no more chance for a breath of fresh
air to get into this dingy compartment than for light to penetrate
a photographer's dark room. One glance was enough. We made our beds
on the bow of the ship. We were rudely and suddenly awakened by the
French steward, who was as mad as a man could be when he saw his clean
bed-clothes on the dirty deck, covering two crusty Americans. He
grabbed the sheets and blankets, uncovered us with one jerk and left
us clad in only our night clothes to scramble nearly the length of the
ship, through the steerage crowds, to our stateroom.

This French steward was a most irritable being and was continually
worried at the actions of Richardson and myself. He would fly off
into a fearful tirade of French when he found us taking a bath in
the first-class passengers' tub, or when he saw us steal food from
the breakfast table to sustain us until the evening meal, or when he
discovered us asleep in a different part of the deck each night with
the clean bed-spreads. He became so cranky that he even called us down
when we spotted the coarse cloth on the table in the mess-room. He
became so needlessly exasperated at whatever we did that Richardson and
I devised means by which we could provoke the old fellow.

The _Caledonien_ spent a day at Singapore. This was the hottest day I
ever experienced and the sun's rays seemed to have more penetrating
powers than usual. I thought I should liquefy from the way in which I
perspired and only for my thick pith hat, which protected my head and
neck from the sun, I surely should have been a victim of sunstroke.

Richardson and I had planned a trip to Java but gave up the idea and
went directly to Ceylon. The _Caledonien_ dropped anchor in the harbour
of Colombo and we were taken ashore in a small boat propelled by one
oar at the stern. We obtained rooms at the Y.M.C.A. at sixteen cents
a day. This rate did not include bed-clothes, which all travellers in
Ceylon and India have to furnish themselves. We each bought a blanket
which we carried strapped to the outside of our suit cases.

If it were not for the intense heat, I would agree with Mark Twain
that Ceylon is the most beautiful island in the world. Eliminating its
temperature, it is Paradise on earth. With it, it is Hell. Colombo
is built about several small lakes whose shores are a very jungle of
graceful palms and other dense tropical plants. There is a beautiful
driveway along the beach which is the promenade for the wealthy of
the place and, during the afternoon, one can almost imagine that he
is on some fashionable European thoroughfare from the numerous grand
carriages and well-groomed horses which pass. Richardson and I swept
back and forth on this lengthy boulevard in our rickshaws. We continued
into Cinnamon Park, where most of the Europeans live. We had foolishly
agreed to pay our rickshaw coolies by the hour. My man became so
apparent in his efforts to loaf that I remarked to Richardson that he
was the slowest and laziest horse I had ever driven.

"Mister, I'm a man, not a horse," said my coolie angrily and in
excellent English, stopping and dropping the shafts of the vehicle.

I never was so startled in my life. This was the first horse that I had
ever had speak to me. I had become so accustomed to rickshaw men with
whom I could not communicate that this man's clear and to-the-point
remark completely confused me for a minute.

"Then you are the poorest man I ever saw," I finally said, "and if you
don't show some signs of a horse very soon, you will find yourself out
of a job."

My threat to discharge him had no effect in increasing his momentum.
Richardson and I dismissed both men, paid them off and returned to town
on foot.

After a short trip to Kandy in the interior of Ceylon, we sailed for
India. It was a night's journey to the little seaport town of Tuticorin
and we took second-class passage.

The two hundred or more naked coolies of the steerage were walking
down the pier towards the shore. Richardson and I were following
close behind. Presently a man in uniform uttered a shrill call. The
two hundred coolies stopped and separated into two columns. The
uniformed man beckoned to us to come on. "Gangway for two white men,"
had evidently been the nature of the call. We were not used to such
treatment. We were generally included in those swept aside. We were
now in a land where the native, if he doesn't respect the white man,
at least pretends that he does. This ceremonious entrance into India
struck us as funny and we giggled our way down the double line of
salaaming Tamils and Singhalese.

"It's too bad you're not a Christian," remarked a strange and simple
looking man as I, smoking a cigarette, was waiting for my train at the
Tuticorin station.

"Why?" I asked, blowing a cloud of smoke in his face.

"Just think of all the good you could do while travelling around the
world."

"How do you know that I am not a Christian?"

"I was simply putting out a feeler," he said, somewhat embarrassed.

"I think I am a Christian but, probably, not according to your ideas."

"Perhaps."

"What is a Christian?" I asked, interested to know what the man's ideas
were.

"When a man is saved he is a Christian."

"Isn't it rather difficult to know when such a happy state of affairs
exists?" My train drew into the station at this moment and the
theological dialogue was brought to a sudden conclusion. I left this
simple but well-meaning person, my pocket full of his pamphlets. He
was a member of the sect of "Plymouth Brethren" working by himself
converting the heathen. If he uses no more tact on the natives than
he did on me his efforts should be flat failures. I was told by a
prominent missionary that there are many such persons in India who are
labouring independently of an ecclesiastical organisation, the results
of whose work are not very substantial.

Leaving our baggage at the station at Madura, Richardson and I rode
in a springless cart to Pasumalai--a distance of about three miles.
This cart was pulled by two bulls who were spurred on to greater speed
by their naked driver who sat on the shafts and cruelly twisted their
tails. We were going to call on the Rev. Dr. J.P. Jones, a prominent
Congregational missionary and author of books on India, and have him
outline an itinerary for us.

Dr. Jones was leaving on an inspection tour of several of the mission
schools in a near-by jungle, as we arrived at his house. He asked us
to accompany him and also invited us to spend a couple of days at his
home. We explained that we had left our baggage in Madura and that,
although we appreciated his kindness, we did not want to impose on him.
He insisted and sent a coolie to Madura for our bags.

It was about noon when we left with Dr. Jones to visit the schools.
The three of us rode in another seatless and springless cart drawn
by two bulls. We passed through several small native settlements and
towards evening came to one of about two hundred inhabitants. It was a
thief caste village. Stealing was the sole trade of all the men. They
made no pretence at doing anything else. Although closely guarded by
the British police they were successful in robbing and looting the
neighbouring villages. Each night at twelve o'clock there was a roll
call but, even after this hour, they would grease their bodies in order
to slip from the grasp of their pursuers, get away and carry on their
work.

A number of shirtless women were threshing shocks of wheat as we
entered the little settlement of mud huts, each with its thatched roof.
Naked children were playing in the streets. Our advent soon became
known and the village drummer, squatted by the school house, announced
our arrival and summoned the people to come and meet us. It was hardly
a minute before we were surrounded by two hundred or more odd and
inquisitive-looking people. If I had not known where I was I should
have thought myself in the wilds of Africa. The black bodies of the
naked men glistened in the sunlight; the young boys and girls, clad in
nothing but the happy smile of youth, hovered about us like a swarm
of butterflies, and the almost nude women, remaining a little aloof,
stared at us with eyes of intense curiosity.

Every man in this interesting group was a thief. I began to get
worried for fear one of them might steal my watch or the few coins I
had in my purse. Dr. Jones allayed my fears when he informed me that
there wasn't a pick-pocket among them. A hundred thieves and not one of
them a pick-pocket! This was strange. I couldn't understand it. I had
thought that this means of appropriating another man's possessions was
fundamental and indispensable to the profession. I discovered also that
these robbers never used pass keys, pistols, flash lights or gas pipes
as means to hold up their neighbours. They didn't have such things. Now
the mystery of a hundred thieves with no pick-pockets was solved. There
were no pockets to pick. Their victims wore no clothes and they had had
no training along this line. They didn't know a pocket when they saw
one.

[Illustration: _Upper_: THE FOREIGN BUSINESS SECTION OF SINGAPORE]

[Illustration: _Lower_: THE VILLAGE DRUMMER SUMMONING THE PEOPLE ON OUR
ARRIVAL]

Dr. Jones led the way into the small mud-walled school house. The room
was full of naked boys and girls. The fathers and mothers crowded in
at the rear of the little hall. They were an interesting and simple
lot of savages. Richardson and I were given seats of honour near the
teacher's desk and a wreath was placed about our necks. Dr. Jones asked
for a report from the native teacher and also questioned several of
the pupils on their lessons. He then explained to his audience that
Richardson and I were Americans travelling around the world. He went
into detail defining an American. He asked the chief of the village, a
much whiskered and hairy-chested man, if he had any message to give us.

"Tell them to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and they will get around
all right," were the chief's words of greeting as interpreted by Dr.
Jones.

"Why don't you believe in Him yourself?" asked the doctor.

"Don't waste your time on us old fellows. We are past saving. We have
been thieves all our lives and you can't change us now. Do all you
can to help the children and you will be doing a good work," was the
chief's reply.

All the natives gathered in the street in front of the school for the
customary foot races which Dr. Jones held on each of his visits. There
were four races: one for the boys; one for the girls; one for the women
and one for the men. They were all eager to take part for the doctor
distributed a few coins as prizes to the winners. The rivalry was
intense and, at the conclusion of each race, there was much confusion
with many disputes as to who finished first. Dr. Jones insisted on
being the judge and all were informed that they must abide by his
decision or all the games would be called off.

That evening we enjoyed the hospitality of Dr. Jones. I slept in a
comfortable bed, protected by a fine mosquito net and cooled by the
breeze of a huge punka--which was operated by a coolie woman who sat on
the porch all night and pulled the rope.

In the cities of India foreigners use electric fans and in the rural
districts a native-propelled punka. It is so intensely hot in some
parts of the country that if the coolie goes to sleep on the job the
foreigner immediately awakens.

Twenty thousand people die each year from snake bite in India. I awoke
to find a small reptile in my room. The floors of the houses are built
close to the ground and the doors and windows are often left open for
ventilation. Snakes are so numerous that they frequently find their way
into the huts of the natives and occasionally into the houses of the
foreigners.

Railroad travel in India is the cheapest I have ever known. From Madura
to Trichinopoly is a distance of about one hundred miles. We rode
native third-class and our tickets cost us but eight annas (sixteen
cents) each.

There are five classes of travel on Indian trains: first-class,
second-class, intermediate, European third-class and native
third-class. The trains are divided into compartments with a capacity
of from twelve to twenty-four passengers. The first-class seats are
covered with leather cushions and the seats of the other classes
decrease in softness to the hard and cold benches of the native
third-class. The first-class accommodations are used exclusively by
British officials, missionaries, resident Europeans and tourists.
The native third-class is a cattle train. These bare stall-like
compartments are crowded with naked coolies--men, women and
children--who are jammed in by the train guards like dried prunes. I
have seen coolie after coolie slammed into one of these compartments,
already full to the roof, until I thought the poor beggars would all
die of suffocation.

The first-class fare is usually twelve or fifteen times greater than
the native third-class. Our tickets from Madura to Trichinopoly would
have cost us about $2.50 each for first-class.

The cheapest possible fare from Calcutta to Bombay, a distance of
over fifteen hundred miles and a three-day trip, is about $2.80. This
rate is for native third-class accommodations. The first-class fare
would be about fifty dollars and the intermediate classes would be
proportionately graduated in price.

Richardson and I usually travelled native third-class. We were always
able to get an empty compartment, which we would monopolise to the
exclusion of the natives. We ordered the poor chaps away as though they
had no right in their own country. Conductors do not stay on the trains
but remain at the stations where they take up the tickets as the trains
arrive. They proved to be a negligent lot and frequently failed to
collect our tickets. Richardson saved his uncollected fares and found
that they totalled two thousand miles. We were in India two and a half
months, travelled over five thousand miles and our railroad fares were
only $24.40 each.

We rented bicycles in Trichinopoly. These vehicles were the most
decrepit and ancient pieces of machinery in active service on this
earth. Richardson's wheel had lost its back pedal feature. In other
words, it was impossible to put on the brakes. He could not stop
himself unless he fell off or came to a hill. We rode through the
crowded streets of Trichinopoly. Rich was a reckless rider. I thought
he was trying to kill a native child. With his uncontrollable bicycle
it is a mystery to me how he avoided running down several of the
thousands of naked little babies who played in the dust of the street.
Every moment one of them would dash in front of him. I expected that we
should land in jail charged with manslaughter.

Neither Trichinopoly or Tanjore has European hotels and the caste
system excludes the unclean foreigner from the native inns. For twelve
annas (twenty-four cents) we obtained a clean room on the second floor
of the station. It contained a large bed, an electric fan and a private
bath. We ate our meals in the station restaurant. Such prices and
arrangements are hard to beat.

Life seems to be a battle for coin. I could write a volume on the
number of street lights I have seen in different parts of the world
over the matter of a few cents. A Japanese coolie will wrangle for an
hour over a _sen_. I have seen a score of Chinese grapple for a _cash_
piece. It is hard to tell what a Filipino wouldn't do for a _centavo_.
However, I think a native of India can kick up more fuss over a
two-cent piece than any man alive.

Richardson and I had returned from the Roman Catholic Cathedral in
Madras where Saint Thomas is said to be buried. We had made the trip in
a double-seated rickshaw drawn by one man. By arrangement in advance
the coolie had agreed to make the journey for ten annas. This, we were
told, was a generous amount for the distance. I felt that he had had a
hard time pulling two heavy men so I gave him a rupee, over-paying him
six annas. He wasn't satisfied and bellowed for more. Richardson and
I ignored him and went to our room on the third floor of the Y.M.C.A.
building. The coolie followed us up the three flights of stairs. He
had worked himself into a genuine state of anger. At first it was a
pretence. We locked him out in the hall, where he remained at our door
for twenty minutes pleading and begging for more money. I made up my
mind that he could pursue me to America or haunt me the rest of my
life, but I would not pay him any more. I could be stubborn myself.
He realised that I had made a mistake in over-paying him in the first
place and he now thought that I was a tenderfoot and that I should
sooner or later yield. The Y.M.C.A. authorities finally put him out of
the building.

The incident did not end here. It became the main topic for discussion
among the coolies of Madras. Each time we ventured on the streets a
dozen of them would molest us and trail after us jeering and shouting
a lot of jargon which we did not understand. They became regular pests
and life in Madras grew almost unbearable. We stood firm and resolved
not to give an anna more even if we had to fight every coolie in
Southern India.

In a few days we left for Calcutta. We rode from the Y.M.C.A. to the
railroad station in a bus. As we alighted at the entrance of the
station, we were sighted by a group of coolies who made a mad rush
at us from across the court. Others dropped their rickshaws and came
plunging towards us from all directions like a huge flying wedge. We
scrambled into the station, forced our way through the ticket gates,
climbed aboard the first car and in two minutes were speeding towards
Calcutta. That angry mob would have annihilated us in about five
seconds.



CHAPTER XI

TWO TRAMPS IN INDIA


AT Calcutta we lived in comfort. We were the guests of college friends
of Richardson's. In Japan and China we stayed in native hotels and were
constantly in contact with the people. The caste system of India barred
us from mingling with the Hindus, even if we had desired to do so.
It was impossible for us to eat at their restaurants and the nearest
approach we could make to it was to buy our food at the native shops.
We often ate at the foreign hotels and cafés when these institutions
were to be found. There was usually a restaurant connected with the
station.

Harrison Road in Calcutta is one of the most interesting streets in the
world. Thousands of people rove its sidewalks and scores of races are
represented among them. Hundreds of moving or reclining bulls block the
traffic. The natives pass around these sacred beasts and are careful
not to disturb them. They belong to no one and wander aimlessly about,
fed by the people.

[Illustration: A _jutka_ OR "JITNEY" USED IN CENTRAL INDIA]

Richardson and I moved along this bustling street. We had been out
seeing the sights for several hours and were hungry. In a native shop
before us was a show-case of cakes. We stepped in to purchase a
couple. The merchant was putting the first cake in a paper bag when
Richardson put out his hand to take one from the pile. The proprietor
dropped the sack and dashed towards him. His wife threw her hands
in the air and screamed, and two natives standing by shouted at the
top of their voices. They were too late, Richardson had grabbed the
cake and had part of it in his mouth. I thought the Hindus had gone
insane. What they were saying I didn't know but it was something very
important if one could judge from their numerous excited gestures.
They gave us both a thorough scathing. One would have thought we had
insulted the shop-keeper's wife or had set fire to his place. No, it
was more serious. Richardson had contaminated every cake in the shop.
By touching the top one he had charged them all with uncleanness. We
were out-casts. Several hundred cakes--or about one-half the poor
shop-keeper's stock--were ruined and could never be used.

This disastrous result of our little transaction caused no end of
excitement and twenty or more natives gathered to see what we had done.
The shop-keeper and his wife immediately set about to throw away the
cakes and with long sharp-pointed sticks like hoe handles began casting
the food into the street.

"Hold on!" I shouted, "I will buy the whole bunch for a _rupee_." We
had contaminated the outfit and I thought this was an opportunity to
get a bargain.

"Good idea," exclaimed Richardson. "I will get a cart. Let's haul away
every biscuit the poor beggar has."

The word _rupee_ sounded good to the ears of the shop-keeper who had
looked upon the cakes as a total loss, and he accepted my offer at
once. The next minute, Richardson and I were in the bakery business.
A two-wheeled cart had backed up to the shop and we were loading on
cakes as though we had done nothing else all our lives. Scores of
Hindus congregated to see us buy out the shop-keeper. The cart was soon
heaped high with cakes. They packed like bricks, being more substantial
than the same variety of food in America. Richardson and I climbed on
the seat with the driver and pursued our way down Harrison Road. Our
little bread wagon excited more comment and caused more commotion than
a circus in an American country town. Every one was speculating on what
we were going to do with all the cakes. We did not know ourselves. We
couldn't give them to the poor, for the poor wouldn't eat them. I threw
a couple at a group of natives on the street corner. They scattered
like birds at the shot of a gun. We drove on. We came to our host's
house. He thought we were crazy. We unloaded the cargo of cakes and
placed them all in our bedroom. There they remained. We tried to eat
them up but the job was too large. They finally found their way to the
rubbish barrel.

Darjeerling is a beautiful settlement at an elevation of seven thousand
feet. Here we had come to view the Himalaya Mountains. On a strange
little train, which was as elastic as a snake, we wound in and out
among the valleys, scaled the sides of the mountains and arrived at
this little town among the clouds. The scenery was stupendous. The
world's greatest peaks were about us like tremendous church spires.

Everything out of doors was wonderful and beautiful. Everything inside
was wonderfully inconvenient, uncomfortable and unhealthful. We stayed
at the "Rockhouse"--appropriately named--and it was one of the worst
shelters I have ever occupied. The place was run by a woman with a
dirty apron. I doubt if she had ever done up her hair since childhood.
Her children were the most untidy white youngsters in the Indian
Empire. That's a safe statement. The carpets were filthy with spots and
dust; a couple of mangy dogs hung listlessly about; the guests of the
house looked like a bunch of cripples; the food was poorly cooked and
tasteless and the atmosphere of the place was stale and musty from lack
of ventilation. If there is any other affliction a boarding house can
have, I should like to know it.

With the "Rockhouse" as a background for comparison, the beauty of the
Himalayas stood forth stronger than ever. We arose one morning at
2:30 o'clock and went on horseback to Tiger Hill to see the sunrise.
It was a sight that no one can describe and one that I shall never
forget. The world's greatest peaks, white with snow and tinged with the
glistening gold of the sun, appeared one by one above the clouds at the
break of dawn. First, Kinchenjanga with its 28,156 feet arose like a
monster iceberg, and then, in turn, appeared Kaby (24,015 feet), Jannu
(25,304), Pandim (22,017), and Jabanu (19,450). Last of all, far away,
Mount Everest (29,002)--the giant of them all--thrust its gold-tipped
summit into view. The sea of clouds shone like a vast sheet of light,
and the rugged snowy peaks, aglow with the rays of the sun, stood like
mighty towers of marble. It is one of the most beautiful scenes the
world has to offer.

The native population of Darjeerling is a mixture of Paharis,
Nepalese, Tibetans and Bhutians, people from the small kingdoms of the
mountains. They look like a cross between a North American Indian and
a Chinese--with their almond eyes and red skin. They are very fond of
colours and jewelry. Some of them wore earrings two inches in diameter
and others had ear ornaments six inches long which were so heavy that
they had to be supported by a band over the head. The people of India
adorn every part of their bodies with trinkets. I have seen women with
rings on their toes, anklets all the way to their knees, bracelets up
to their elbows, ear ornaments, rings in their noses and beads pinned
to their foreheads. The whole outfit would hardly be worth a dollar.

At Benares, the Holy City of the Hindus, we put up at a _Dak Bungalow_,
a small house with bedrooms, sitting room and kitchen, provided by the
government for travellers. We were charged only eight annas (sixteen
cents) a day for our accommodations.

We met a British missionary in the station and asked him to outline an
itinerary for us to aid us in seeing Benares.

"Have you any business to attend to here?" he asked.

"No, why?" I said.

"There is an epidemic of cholera in Benares and twenty British soldiers
in the cantonment within three hundred yards of us died last night. My
advice to you is to leave town as soon as you can."

The missionary's warning had no effect on us for we had heard it before
and expected to hear it again. Every Indian city generally has a number
of cases of cholera and other contagious diseases. If we had taken the
advice of every man who told us to move on because of an epidemic we
should have been advised out of the country in a very short time. It
was our custom to reduce our chances of getting cholera by drinking
only bottled liquids and eating only thoroughly cooked food.

We drove about Benares in a _jutka_. This is one of the most
picturesque vehicles in the world. If anybody had the courage to ride
in one on Broadway he would at once be arrested. It is a two-wheeled
cart drawn by a horse that seldom gets a chance to eat. There is no
place for the driver or passenger to sit and they stick on as best they
can, letting their feet drag in the street. Richardson and I mounted
one of these carriages and took in the sights of the city.

Benares seemed to be the focal point for all the feeble-minded,
crippled and destitute persons of India. Ascetics, beggars and
religious fanatics were as numerous as were the flies. The temples were
thronged with pilgrims from all parts of the empire and the Ganges was
crowded with natives bathing in the muddy water and even drinking the
filthy liquid. The _Jal Sain Ghat_ was a gruesome place. Here the dead
bodies of the high caste Hindus are cremated. They are burned on piles
of wood and the ashes are dumped into the river, adding to the pleasant
character of the water.

Why is it that religion and filth so often travel together in this
world? We visited the _Kalighat_, a temple in honour of the goddess
Kali, the wife of Shiva. We were fortunate or unfortunate, I don't know
which, to be present at the celebration of the chief annual festival
held in this temple. Many thousands of half-clad people were making
pilgrimages to the place. Bullocks and goats were being offered as
sacrifices to the numerous Hindu gods. We came to the court where the
animals were killed. The place looked more like a slaughter-house than
a temple of worship. The dead bodies of a dozen bulls and goats were
lying on the stone floor, reeking blood and filth, with their entrails
exposed and protruding. This scene might have interested a butcher.
To me it was revolting. We picked our way among these carcasses to
another part of the temple. Here we saw a green, scummy, unsanitary
pool of water. Several hundred people were bathing in it and drinking
the putrid stuff. At the entrances to the temple hordes of deformed
beggars--many half-eaten with leprosy--extended their partially decayed
limbs, soliciting funds. It was a disgusting and depressing scene. I
prefer an autopsy.

Our train arrived in Lucknow at two o'clock in the morning. We finished
our night's sleep on the stone floor of the men's waiting room in the
station. A man who looked like a missionary advised us to leave the
city on account of an epidemic of cholera. We smiled at him.

Both Lucknow and Cawnpore are chiefly of interest on account of their
connection with the sad events of the Indian Mutiny. These cities are
full of monuments and memorials which are kept in excellent condition
by the British Government.

My chief recollection of Lucknow is an intense thirst. It is the most
difficult city in the world in which to get a drink of any kind. We
rented bicycles and toured about the thirty-six square miles of the
city. We had visited a number of places and ridden about ten miles
when, hot and dusty, we were seized with an intolerable thirst. We
were in the midst of the native shops. A sanitary glass of water was
as rare as in the middle of the desert. We rode on, hoping to find
a better part of the city. We went on for miles. The narrow streets
were six inches in dust; the sun was so hot that we fairly simmered in
perspiration and the odours from the native shops were enough to make
a man faint. A naked ascetic, rolling over and over on the dusty road,
would get in our way. In each block a dozen beggars would plead for
funds and the rays of the sun would nearly burn us up. We got out of
the native quarter into the British section. My throat was parched and
Richardson said his tongue felt like a sharp stick in his mouth. We
found an oasis. We had been in search of water for two hours.

At Cawnpore we made our beds in an empty box-car on a side track in the
freight yards.

"What's up?" asked Richardson, awakening about midnight by a sudden
jolt to the car.

"I suppose they're going to take this empty away," I said.

"Let's get out of here," suggested Richardson.

"No, stay in and see where they take us. We may get a free ride to some
place."

We were banged back and forth on switches for nearly an hour. There was
no chance to sleep. We sat up and smoked. At last the engine whistled
and we started for some place: we didn't know or care where it was.
With the even motion of going in one direction we were able to sleep.
I never slept more comfortably in an American Pullman, when I knew my
destination, than I did in that empty Indian freight car bound for I
didn't know where.

When we awoke the old box-car was at a stand-still. I opened the
door and peered out. We were in a freight yard and appeared to be
on a siding. There were trains on both sides of us and I could see
nothing but box-cars, flat-cars and engines. We grabbed our bags and
in a minute were walking towards one end of our train. We came to the
station.

"What are you doing in the yards?" a Britisher in uniform called out.

"Just walked in from Cawnpore," I replied, not knowing how far we had
travelled. "That's a pretty good hike, isn't it?" I continued.

"Indeed, it is," said the Englishman. "When did you start?"

"Last night," I answered. "How far is it?"

"One hundred and sixty miles."

"What's the name of this town, anyway?" asked Richardson, changing the
subject.

"Agra," said the Britisher, who appeared to take our story without
doubting a word of it.

We got by him and in ten minutes were housed in a _Dak Bungalow_ where
we cooked our own meals and lived a life of leisure at about fifty
cents a day, each.

We were hardly settled in our new home when a missionary knocked at
our door and advised us to leave the city on account of an epidemic of
cholera. We smiled at him.

Agra is the home of the most beautiful building in the world--the
_Taj Mahal_. Most of the magnificent structures which make Agra so
interesting are in the Fort. The _Taj Mahal_ stands by itself about a
mile away on the banks of the Junna River and its solitude prevents
anything impairing its beauty.

Commenced in 1630 by Emperor Shah Jahan, as a tomb for his favourite
wife, it is to-day as fresh and new looking as though it had just
been taken out of the band-box. Surrounded by magnificent gardens
and fountains, approached by imposing red sandstone gates, it is the
perfection of beauty and symmetry. It is built of white marble and,
with its huge dome and four stately minarets resting against the azure
sky, presents a picture of wonderful colour and perfect harmony. I have
never seen a more beautiful edifice.

The whole of India was talking Durbar. We had been told a dozen times
that it would be impossible to obtain hotel accommodations in Delhi for
less than ten dollars a day. We were advised to eliminate this city
from our itinerary as only the rich could afford to stay there during
the Coronation festivities.

We arrived in Delhi late in the evening and had a good meal at the
station restaurant. This meal cost us only one-half the rate listed
on the menu card. This pleasing reduction had happened several times
before, during our travels in India, but we did not know the reason
until the waiter in the Delhi restaurant asked what regiment we
belonged to. We had been taken for British soldiers. It seems that
in certain cities Tommy Atkins gets a discount of fifty per cent. in
all eating places. India is no place for a woollen suit. White linen
or duck are the clothes usually worn by foreigners. Richardson and
I didn't have the time or the money to have white suits laundered.
We solved the problem by wearing khaki with white suits for special
occasions. With our khaki suits and brown pith helmets we looked like
British soldiers.

In the Delhi restaurant we got a thirty cent meal for fifteen cents.
This wasn't a bad beginning for a city in which ten dollars a day was
the minimum expense for living. We went out of the station into the
darkness of a large park near-by.

"Can you speak English?" said Richardson to the first passer-by. There
was no response.

"Hey, there, do you understand English?" I shouted to a group of
natives. They looked at me as though I were crazy.

A lone man strutted towards us. He looked like he might know something.

"Where can we find a good cheap hotel?" Richardson asked.

"The Coronation Hotel," the man replied in good English.

"What kind of a joint is it?" I interrupted.

"A good place. Just built for the Durbar."

"Lead us to it," said Richardson.

The native accompanied us to the hotel which was but a short distance
away in the business section of Delhi. It was conducted by a Mohammedan
and consisted of about twenty rooms on the roof of a large brick
building. We were given a compartment which we had to share with two
Moslems. We furnished our own bed-clothes, as is the custom in India.
The common wash-basin was at the other end of the roof. The hotel's
rates were one rupee (thirty-three cents) a day each! The expensiveness
of Delhi was a myth.

The city was busy making preparations for the Durbar. Public buildings
were being painted; flags were being hung; grand stands erected and
streets paved. The Durbar grounds, about five miles from the city,
covered hundreds of acres and consisted of thousands of tents which had
been pitched to house the various maharajas, rajas and their retinue of
attendants. Richardson and I explored the grounds. We visited the large
amphitheatre, where King George was to be crowned emperor. It was a
large semi-circular wooden building with a throne in the centre. The
circle was completed by a mound of earth on which were placed seats.
The structure would accommodate about twenty thousand people and the
earthen mound would hold about eighty thousand more.

[Illustration: _Upper_: WASHING CLOTHES IN THE GANGES]

[Illustration: _Lower_: A SINGLE TREE--A BANYAN]

Preparations were being made on a large scale. A special Durbar Post
Office of brick was erected. A new and imposing station, called
"Kingsway," especially designed for King George, had been built. It was
here we met the youthful Maharaja of Cooch Behar with his attractive
little wife. They were wandering about the newly constructed station as
naturally as though they were ordinary persons.

"You're afraid to break in on them," I said to Richardson.

"I beg your pardon, but would you kindly direct us to the amphitheatre
where King George is to be crowned?" said Richardson, addressing
his question to the Maharaja as he would to any other prospective
informant. He answered at once. Our intrusion was so easy that it was
a joke. The Maharaja was not a snob and with a clear voice and in good
English, for he was a Cambridge man, told us how to find the theatre.
He was a tall, rather slight fellow with a shady complexion and was
dressed in a black European suit. His wife had on an ordinary dark
dress and over her hat she wore a heavy black veil. They looked and
acted like human beings.

Richardson and I were asleep in a third-class compartment of a train
with four British soldiers. We were on our way to Lahore, nearly four
hundred miles north of Delhi. Our train had been at a stand-still for a
few minutes and when it started up I was awakened. I heard some one say
"Lahore."

"Rich, this is Lahore. Get up." I shouted and gave him a punch in the
ribs. The train was slowly pulling out of the station.

"Get out and catch our luggage as I throw it to you," I said.

We awakened the soldiers. Richardson jumped off the car. I scrambled
about the compartment to collect our belongings. The train was
increasing its speed. I threw out one suit case. Richardson didn't
catch it. I threw out the other. Richardson missed it. I hurled the two
hand bags out. I never moved so fast in my life. The soldiers helped
me throw. Like a whirlwind we threw trousers, shoes, coats, shirts,
hair-brushes, tooth-brushes, socks and toilet articles out through the
compartment door. The train was now going about twenty miles an hour. I
made a jump and landed on my face. There I was in my underclothes and
bare feet. The passengers, looking out of the car windows, thought we
were drunk. The train swept by and left us.

What a scene greeted us! Richardson and I stood in our underwear--with
all our personal belongings scattered for a hundred yards along the
cement platform of the station. A hundred or more natives looked on
in profound silence. I surveyed the scene and began to laugh. Dozens
of things from shoes, coats and hats to toilet articles stretched from
the station for nearly a block and two foreigners arrayed in B.V.D's!
Surely it was a rare situation to be in at seven o'clock in the
morning. We sat down on the cement platform and laughed ourselves out.

We finally gathered ourselves together and dressed. The station master
came out to give us assistance.

"Why doesn't some one announce the stations on these trains?" I
enquired. "This is a fine way to land in Lahore."

"This isn't Lahore," said the station master.

"What?" cried Richardson and I together.

"No, Lahore is five miles farther."

"What in hell is the name of this place?"

"Lahore Cantonment."

All our scramble was for nothing. We had landed in the quarters of the
British soldiers. There was no passenger train until evening. That was
too long to wait, so we rode into Lahore proper on a freight which went
by an hour later.

Lahore was not worth all the trouble it took to get there. I have a
hazy recollection of thousands of native shops, many temples and a
large museum. I remember, rather distinctly, a large cannon in front of
this museum. It was called "Kim's Gun," as it was on this weapon that
Kim was supposed to have been sitting when the Llama came along, as
recorded by Kipling.

I do remember one other thing in Lahore. We met a shabbily dressed
American who related a sad tale to us about being discharged from a
theatrical company and how badly he had been treated. He said that he
was broke and his appearance certainly indicated that he spoke the
truth. The fellow being a countryman of ours, his speech moved us to
the extent of ten rupees. One hour later our down-and-out American
friend was reeling about the station so intoxicated that he didn't
recognise me when I spoke to him. He was drunk at our expense.

We didn't know one soul among Bombay's million inhabitants when we
arrived in that city. There were about twenty Americans living there
and I think we met them all before we had been there a week. We lived
at the Y.M.C.A. and received our board and room--for both of us--for
five rupees ($1.65) a day. We met the acting American Consul and
through him the American dentist, the Standard Oil crowd and a number
of other young business men. They all entertained us royally. We went
to their homes for dinner, had the privileges of their clubs and
attended a number of social functions at their invitation.

We went to Poona and spent a night in the National Hotel. I will
never forget that night if I live a thousand years. We retired at ten
o'clock. By eleven I had killed forty-two bed-bugs. This is not an
estimate: it is actual count. I didn't ask the proprietor for another
bed for I thought all of them would be alike and I estimated that I had
killed off nearly all the bugs in my present bed. At midnight I had
slaughtered sixty-seven. This is not a parlour subject, I know. But we
are not in a parlour. We are in an Indian bedroom. I would raise up the
bed-clothes, light the lamp and they would flock in all directions,
like the ribs of a fan, to get under cover. At one o'clock I had killed
eighty-one. There seemed to be no end. I couldn't stand it any longer.
I tried to rout out the proprietor but he was asleep and couldn't
be found. I returned to my room and made my couch on the floor. The
mosquitoes nearly finished me during the rest of the night. I venture
the guess that this hotel entertains only transients. One night is
enough.

We drove in a _tonga_, a two-wheeled cart, to the Karli Cave. This
excavation is made out of a solid rock and is said to have been done
two hundred years before Christ. It resembles an early Christian church
in its arrangement and all the dimensions are similar to those of the
choir of Norwich Cathedral.

It was our plan to catch the mail train for Bombay. On our return from
the cave one of the shafts of the _tonga_ broke. The driver was unable
to mend it. We had six miles to go to the station and we had but little
time. We estimated what the _tonga_ had been worth, paid the driver
and left him in the road. We ran the entire six miles through a heavy
tropical rain. The heat was intense and the atmosphere was sultry and
close. Drenched to the skin we arrived at the station only to see the
rear-end of the train pulling out of the yards. Two hours later we took
a slow train for Bombay.

Driving a bargain in India takes time, if nothing else. All merchants
charge what the traffic will bear. Richardson and I wanted two deck
chairs and made up our minds that we were going to get them at a fair
price. One evening I dropped into a native shop to look over the stock.

"How much is this steamer chair?" I asked the shop-keeper.

"Twelve rupees." I started to walk out.

"How much will you give?" the native called out.

"Two rupees," I said emphatically.

"No. I will let you have it for eight."

"Two rupees are all I will give you," I said as I continued to walk
towards the door.

"Six rupees." The native reduced his price. I took a few steps nearer
the door.

"Four rupees," he uttered reluctantly. This figure began to interest me
so I lingered to continue the negotiations.

"I will give you only two rupees," I said again. "That chair isn't
worth an anna more."

"No. Four rupees or no sale." The old fellow had reached his rock
bottom price.

"I will meet you half way and give you three rupees," I said.

"No, four rupees." He stood pat.

I finally left the shop telling the native that I had to consult a
friend before making any purchase and that I would come again in the
morning. I informed Richardson of the negotiations. I explained that I
had worked the native from twelve rupees down to four and I suggested
that he continue to beat down the price from that point.

That same evening we went to the shop and I waited on the sidewalk
while Richardson entered to resume the battle with the poor shop-keeper.

"I will give you three rupees for that chair," he said to the native,
pointing to the piece of furniture which was the subject of all the
wrangle.

"No. I have a man coming in the morning who is going to buy it for four
rupees." I was the man. I had made no promises.

Richardson struck a dead-lock at once. As he came out of the shop I
went in. It seemed a heartless thing to brow-beat the poor native, but
we were out for a record.

"Well, I have decided that I can't pay any more than three rupees for
the chair," I said.

"All right, no sale then."

I walked out of the shop, joined Richardson on the sidewalk and started
up the street. We hadn't gone half a block when the native came running
after us.

"Three rupees, eight annas," he shouted.

"All right," I said. "I have some heart left. We have beaten the poor
chap down far enough," I added to Richardson.

We returned and bought two chairs. Three rupees, eight annas, seems a
big reduction from twelve rupees but even this figure was exorbitant.
Both chairs collapsed before they ever saw the deck of a ship.



CHAPTER XII

A SAILOR TO SUEZ


THE first-class fare on the large liners from Bombay to the Suez Canal
was two hundred and twenty dollars. The cheapest that Richardson and
I could find was one hundred and eighty-five dollars. We had the
money to pay this price but considered that it would make a large and
unnecessary hole in our coin. We agreed not to pay a cent more than
twenty dollars each, even if it meant spending the rest of our lives in
Bombay. We shook hands on this.

Bombay is a large shipping port and it appeared, on first impression,
to be a fertile field from which two semi-stranded roamers could obtain
passage. We made a thorough canvass of the water front in search of a
job. Richardson would strike the skipper of one ship while I tried my
luck with another, or we would board the same boat together, one of
us interview the captain while the other placed the case before the
steward. We hung out at the Seamen's Institute, skippers' clubs, water
front saloons, sailors' rest houses and about the docks. It was uphill
work for we received little encouragement and, often, short and rough
treatment at the hands of the hardened old seamen. We didn't give up
our search until we had visited all the vessels in the harbour--which
took up the greater part of three days. We could find nothing. It was
impossible for us to compete with Oriental, South African and Hindu
labour on these ships, not to mention the practical impossibility of
living on their diet and in their unsanitary quarters. We finally and
reluctantly gave up hope of getting out as toilers and decided to do
the next best thing. We began our campaign over again and visited all
the freighters, asking the captains how much they wanted in money to
take us to the Canal. Many of them were insulted at such a proposal.
Some regretfully said that their owners had rigid rules against taking
any one. Others wanted more than our twenty-dollar limit.

Our luck had been pretty tough and was due to change. We boarded the
steamer _Levanzo_, an old-time Italian freighter, which had ploughed
the sea for centuries, if her looks indicated anything. We marched
straight up to the bridge where the old skipper was standing, smoking a
pipe with an odour strong enough to kill a hog.

"Do you speak English?" I enquired.

"A little," was the reply.

"Which way are you going?" was my second question.

"To Napoli," said the Italian.

"When do you get under way?"

"To-morrow afternoon at one o'clock."

"What do you want to take the two of us through the Canal?"

"I will take you for sixty rupees (twenty dollars) each, I think," he
said after a minute's reflection.

"All right."

The captain explained that we must sign on as members of the crew,
for he was not allowed to take passengers and we should have to be
accounted for both at departure and arrival. We signed up without
delay; Richardson as assistant cook and I as deck hand.

Although the boat was not scheduled to leave until one o'clock the
following afternoon we were instructed to be on hand at ten in the
morning for a quarantine inspection. It is a regulation that the crews
of all ships leaving Indian ports have to be examined before the
authorities will issue clearing papers, thus insuring that no Indian
disease will be transmitted to Europe. Richardson and I lined up at the
appointed hour the next day with the rest of the crew and filed by the
doctors while they gave us a farcical examination.

This proceeding lasted only a few minutes and at its completion we were
driven through the quarantine sheds to the wharf. It was then two hours
before our ship was to leave and Richardson returned to town to bid
farewell to our friends who had entertained us. I took all the luggage
and went to the boat.

At one o'clock, the hour that the _Levanzo_ was to get under way,
Richardson had not returned. The British quarantine doctor issued an
order for the crew to come off the ship and line up so as to file on
one at a time. He beckoned to me and I came down the gangway and fell
in at the rear.

"Where's your friend?" the doctor asked, abruptly, addressing me.

"He's not here," I replied with an attempted evasion of the question,
not wishing to divulge the fact that my partner had broken quarantine.

"He has broken quarantine and can't go on this ship," the officer said,
angrily. "Do you want to go without him?"

I said nothing.

"You must make up your mind at once," added the doctor.

"All right, I will go." I thought that the officer didn't mean every
word and that Richardson would arrive in a few minutes and have no
difficulty in getting aboard.

The motley Italian crew ascended the gangway and, as I was the last one
to go aboard, the plank was removed and several sailors began loosening
the lines. I went up on the stern to look across the wharf to see if
Richardson was in sight. He was not. The ship was pulling away from
the pier. Ideas flew through my mind like water through a sieve. I
had all Richardson's baggage and what was worse I had all his money.
From Bombay to Suez was three thousand miles. It took at least ten
days to make the trip. To leave Richardson stranded on the shores of
India would be nothing short of murder. I was provoked at him for not
appearing but my conscience vibrated with the guilty pangs of deserting
my friend and leaving him probably to starve in a strange land. As
these alternating emotions were flashing in and out of my mind, the bow
of the ship was swinging away from the pier. At last I saw Richardson's
head bobbing in the distance. I shouted, whistled and waved. My frantic
efforts finally instilled in him the necessity for speed. He came
bounding down the wharf like a big calf and attempted to board the
ship. He was abruptly stopped by the captain, who ordered him to stay
off. The marine doctor had left and there was nothing for me to do but
to go on without my companion. The _Levanzo_ was now making her final
swing and I threw Richardson's luggage onto the wharf, hurled him his
money wallet and bade him farewell.

"I will wait for you in Cairo," I shouted as the boat was getting under
way. Richardson stood on the pier with a philosophic smile.

"All right. I will try and make a getaway to-night. So long."

The old Italian "battleship" was soon out in the channel and in a few
hours had her nose pointed towards the west and began her lengthy
journey to the Canal. I wondered how Richardson would fare but had
no doubt that he would get out some way. I therefore dismissed all
conjectures from my mind and decided to wait for the news until we met
some time in the future.

The _Levanzo_ was a hardened, rusty old tramp. Her crew was entirely
composed of Italians who knew little of this world beyond the range of
their ship and the water fronts of the ports to which they had sailed.
I was consigned to the hold where my iron, hay-mattressed bunk was
sandwiched in amongst those of the Italians, who huddled about like
a bunch of gypsies. The dark, foul-smelling atmosphere, the wambling
fumes of the ship's kitchen, the greasy and treacherous appearance
of the crew--none of whom spoke a word of English--promised a trip
whose equal I should never experience. However, I had done sufficient
travelling of this sort to feel at home in such surroundings and I
played the part to a perfection hard to imagine in one who had seen
most of the good things of this life. Attired in a blue flannel shirt
and khaki trousers, I went barefooted, grew a beard--such as it
was--and chewed quantities of the crew's black tobacco.

At four bells the chief steward appeared on deck and called out,
"mangiare." From the empty feeling of my stomach, coupled with the
revolting odours emanating from the galley, I recognised the equivalent
of the word _dinner_. I followed the crew in the hope of getting a
square meal. We formed a line at the kitchen window, where we were
given our eating implements for the voyage. They consisted of a tin
cup, a tin sauce-pan, a knife, fork and spoon. We then marched in a
body to the forecastle where we were given a piece of hard bread each
and a pint of red wine. As we trooped back by the kitchen, the steward
placed some macaroni in our sauce-pans and gave us some milkless and
sugarless coffee. With this assortment of food we retired to the lower
deck, sat on a winch or a coil of rope and proceeded to devour it.

The second day out I lost my knife and, when I made an appeal for
another I was so severely snubbed by the steward that I made no more
requests during the rest of the voyage. I had to resort to my pocket
knife to take the place of the lost article.

Macaroni! Macaroni! I thought my stomach would become paralysed on the
greasy stuff before the journey would end. I vowed that, if I ever
reached shore, I would never allow the word _macaroni_ to be mentioned
in my presence. The bread was actually so hard that each member of the
crew was compelled to soften it in a tub of water--provided for the
purpose--before it was possible to sink his teeth in it. When a man is
hungry enough he will eat anything. Stew that almost turned my stomach
one day and which I refused to eat, I would consider delicious the next.

From Bombay to Suez is something over three thousand miles and at
the rate our ship was travelling it would require sixteen days to
make the trip. How these days did drag--on a macaroni diet! The long,
hot, foodless days and the dark, stuffy nights in vermin-infested and
unsanitary quarters made these sixteen days seem like sixteen years.
Between meals I was supposed to assist the crew. Because I was paying
the captain a small sum for my passage I was let down rather easily on
the work. However, I had to appear busy. Each morning I scrubbed the
stern deck and gave the place a general clean-up. In the afternoon I
washed clothes in a ship-bucket or painted the iron railings and life
boats.

The days dragged slowly on, and three times between sunrise and sunset
the red wine and macaroni diet stared me in the face. We entered the
Red Sea, our journey only half completed; and the thought rose in my
mind that I had eight days more of macaroni. However, all good things
come to an end and, thank God, the bad ones are not exempt in this
respect. On the sixteenth day at midnight the _Levanzo_ pulled into
Suez, the eastern entrance of the Canal.

As soon as the old tub dropped anchor I gave the captain twenty dollars
for my passage and, with the speed of a fly, was on my way to shore in
a small boat propelled by an Arab, leaving the _Levanzo_ to sink in
her tracks for all I cared. I was taken to the Customs House where I
was subjected to the most rigid examination to be found anywhere in
the world, at the hands and mercy of impudent, coarse and treacherous
Arabs. These heavy featured, horse-sized human beings--if such they can
be called--were the worst type of men I had seen in a long time--and I
had seen some tough specimens in the past few months. Fortunately my
belongings made up such a meagre collection that I proved of little
interest to these huge parasites who prey upon innocent travellers who
wend their way through the Canal.

[Illustration: THE SPHINX]

After an ordeal that lasted two hours, in spite of the size of my
luggage, I was liberated. I wandered up the track to the station where
I learned that a train for Cairo was to leave at six o'clock in the
morning. There was an hotel at Suez but I did not care to pay four
dollars of my precious coin for an equal number of hours in bed. I
stood in front of the deserted station for something, or anything, to
happen. Presently a lean-looking Englishman ambled along. This man, who
had a face like a dried prune, entered into conversation with me and I
learned that he was a travelling acrobat who, with his wife and little
daughter, had just come in from the Far East after a theatrical tour of
several months.

"Where are you going to put up?" he asked.

"I don't know. I can't see the hotel for only four hours. I thought
I would crawl in one of those passenger coaches on the siding over
there," I said, pointing to several cars on an adjacent track.

"All right, old chap, I will go with you. Wait until I get my wife and
daughter," said the acrobat as he stepped around the corner of the
station for his family.

In a minute he returned with his wife, a London cockney type, whose
general appearance indicated that she had seen chiefly the rough spots
of this earth. She wore a dress of many colours and a hat which looked
like a vegetable salad. Clinging to her skirt was a frail little girl
who showed the effects of her wandering life. The four of us, with our
luggage, crossed the tracks and tried the doors of several cars but all
were locked. At this moment, a large greedy-looking Arab appeared out
of the darkness and asked what we wanted.

"A place to sleep," I replied.

"Come with me," blurted the man.

We were so tired that if the devil himself had appeared on the scene
and offered us a bed and shelter we would have eagerly accepted. We
followed this burly human being and he led us to a small shed about ten
by twelve feet. He opened the door and ushered us in and immediately
left, stating that he would call us at six o'clock. This shack was
certainly a beautiful bedroom for our homeless little band--nothing but
a barren wooden house with the earth for the floor and cracks in the
walls through which the cold wind rushed in torrents.

The acrobat's wife coiled up in one corner with the little girl on
her lap, the man nestled in another and I stretched myself diagonally
across a third. Sleep was impossible. We all were nearly petrified with
the cold. The Englishman took to his feet and began walking the floor
in silence. I soon followed his example. We paced and repaced that
ten by twelve compartment for an hour, as speechless as two ghosts.
Finally, into the tomb-like silence, the Englishman thrust these
words, "Feed the animals." A few seconds' laughter at this remark and
silence reigned again. At the end of the second hour the woman, whom we
supposed had dozed off to sleep, murmured, "If my mother could see me
now." In this way the night crept on and we ignored our hardships.

The Arab appeared at six o'clock and after paying him an exorbitant
fee, which he exacted, we boarded a third-class coach of an Egyptian
train and, surrounded by a curious lot of natives, started towards
Cairo. I have been told that Egypt was the most expensive country in
the world in which to travel and that it would be impossible for me
to live on less than several dollars a day. Such information had been
given me about so many countries and cities that it was a joke. Egypt
turned out to be one of the cheapest sections of the globe I ever
encountered.

After nearly a day's journey across the desert the train drew into
the huge station at Cairo and in a few minutes I was flowing with the
crowds towards the street. I stood for an instant on the sidewalk and
surveyed the swarms of people who roamed the large plaza in front of
the station. I pulled my hat down securely on my head and dived into
this sea of humanity and in a second was lost in the million or more
inhabitants of that city--of whom I knew not a single soul.

I was on my way to the Hotel Des Princes, a hostelry recommended to me
by my English acrobat friend. By enquiring of every person who gave
any indication that he might speak English, I found the hotel. It was
a two-story structure operated by a middle-class native. I soon made a
deal with him by which I got a room with a double bed for twenty-five
cents a day, with the promise of a rate of forty cents for two when
Richardson arrived. This was surely cheap enough and I thought it was
ridiculously so when I recalled the statements made to me concerning
the high cost of living in Cairo.

This hotel had no dining room and it was necessary to rustle a cheap
but sanitary eating place. Perhaps this was where Cairo deserved its
reputation for being an expensive city. I left the hotel determined
to be the first man to live on a reasonable amount in the Egyptian
capital. I had hardly walked a block when I saw in an alley a sign
which read, "Soldiers' Club." I directed my steps toward it, entered
the place and in a minute was studiously reading the daily menu,
which was posted on a bulletin board in the hallway. Steak, potatoes,
vegetables and tea for three piastres (fifteen cents); tarts and
pudding--one piastre, and other eatables were listed at equally low
prices. As I stood gazing at the bill of fare, almost paralysed with
delight over such a fortunate discovery, an Englishman approached.

"What are you looking for?" he asked.

"For something to eat," I replied. "I am making a sort of tramp trip
around the world and expect to be in Cairo a few days. Money is rather
a scarce article with me and I would like to know what my chances are
of eating here."

"Are you a British soldier?" enquired the Englishman.

"No, sir."

"Are you an ex-soldier?" asked the man, sizing up the hungry-looking
traveller.

"No, sir," was my honest reply.

"All right," said the club man with a smile. "You may eat here."

"Thanks," I added and immediately sat down and ate one of the finest
meals ever served anywhere for fifteen cents. The Soldiers' Club, an
institution of the British soldiers in Cairo, served as a sort of home
for me during my stay in the city. I had just left the club when two
blocks farther up the street I came across a sign with the inscription
"Soldiers' Home" and in this place I found a similar reception and
similar prices. To accuse Cairo of being expensive was slander. I
labelled it one of the most inexpensive places I had visited.

It was now eighteen days since I had left Richardson on the wharf in
Bombay and during this time I had not heard a word from him. Shortly
after my arrival in Cairo I called at the office of the American
Consul, the Y.M.C.A. and Thomas Cook and Son and left in each place my
address with instructions to direct Richardson to me in the event that
he came in and enquired. I also met an occasional train coming in from
Port Said. It was on one of these that I found him.

As soon as my steamer got under way from Bombay, Richardson walked
across the wharf and boarded the British tramp _Farington_. He went
up on the bridge and asked the captain for passage to the Canal. The
pleasant-looking skipper stated that he was sorry that he could not
take him, as his ship had received her papers and was to leave that
night at eight o'clock. Richardson graciously withdrew and descended
from the bridge but, instead of leaving the vessel, he threw his
luggage down an open hatchway and climbed down himself. Here he crawled
off to a crevice in the cargo and remained there until the following
morning when the ship was about two hundred miles out to sea. He
appeared on deck shortly before breakfast and immediately informed the
captain what he had done. The skipper took it very kindly. Instead of
putting Richardson to work he greeted him cordially and said if it had
been proper he would have suggested that he stow away.

Richardson's trip on the _Farington_ was in strong contrast to mine on
the _Levanzo_. He travelled like a civilised person. The captain was a
fine type of Englishman and was very hospitable. The first officer was
a thoroughly good chap and was very friendly.

Richardson had a cabin on the main deck adjoining the officers; he
ate with the second mate and he had the freedom of the entire ship.
He spent many hours on the bridge where the officers answered his
questions. At the end of the journey he was almost a past-master at
navigation. He understood the use of the log; he could locate a ship at
sea by use of the sextant and he was able to handle the wheel and give
signals to the engine room.

The _Farington_ arrived at Suez and steamed through the Canal to
Port Said. As Richardson was not listed on the ship's papers he had
to hide down the hold while the port officials came on board for the
inspection. As soon as she was received he slid over the side of the
ship, jumped into a native boat and was rowed ashore.



CHAPTER XIII

AN AMERICAN CHRISTMAS IN JERUSALEM


BAKSHISH is the call of the Near East. Nearly every man, woman and
child in Egypt must say this word a thousand times a day. At Memphis
two hundred people greeted us a mile from the town with a chorus of
_bakshish_. They trailed along with us for an hour with their hands
extended, begging for coins. This group of people was one of the most
forlorn I have ever seen. There were all ages of both sexes represented
among them. The little children tripped along in front of us, the old
men made earnest appeals for money and the women, attired in what
appeared to be simply an assortment of rags, tottered along behind us
calling _bakshish_ incessantly.

The greatest act of kindness that any one could do these people would
be to travel through the little villages with several tons of boracic
acid and bathe the eyes of every inhabitant. Seventy-five per cent.
of these poor creatures seem to be either blind or suffering from eye
infection. It is all due to filth. The children are the most forlorn
lot I ever saw. Their faces looked as though they had never been
washed. I saw babies with a dozen flies on each eye and a score on
their mouths, and their mothers made no effort to brush them off. Every
child's face was speckled with flies. It was enough to make a person
sick to look at them. The youngsters with flies on their eyes and
two-thirds of the aged blind! Why don't these people realise that there
is a connection between these two conditions and do something?

At Sakara, where we saw eleven pyramids, including the famous
step-pyramid, we negotiated with some native labourers for a camel
ride. It was a couple of miles to the railroad and we arranged to
travel the distance on these oriental beasts of burden. We were in the
rural districts and the camels were carrying loads of dirt. My man
agreed to a piastre (five cents) for the trip. When I was mounted he
demanded a shilling. I paid no attention to him. He started the beast
on the run in the hope of frightening me. It was simply fun. Then he
urged the animal into a gallop. I didn't know a camel was capable of
such a thing. I know it now. A scenic railway is as mild as a baby
carriage when compared to the up and down movements of a galloping
camel. There isn't much speed about it. Two-thirds of the energy of the
beast is devoted to vertical motions. I hung on to the canvas bag on
the camel's back with the grip of a bull-dog. My insides were nearly
shaken out. The native continued to shout for a shilling and jab the
camel in the belly with a sharp stick. The animal leaped and bounded
about like a bronco. By a miracle I managed to hang on.

Fifteen minutes of such a shaking process was enough for me. I swung my
feet over to one side and jumped from the camel's back to the ploughed
ground. My ride only cost me a piastre. It was well worth it.

A man at the American Presbyterian Mission in Cairo told us that there
was a crowd of American "free-lovers" in Jerusalem who frequently
entertained travellers, and he thought we could get accommodations
there. The free-love feature had an attractive sound to Richardson and
myself and we concluded that if there was any of that sort of thing
loose we would round it up. We therefore decided to go to Jerusalem at
once. Our destination was the "American Colony," the name by which this
group of people was known.

We scrambled out of bed, packed, paid our hotel bills, rode a mile to
the station--all in thirty minutes--and left Cairo for Palestine. At
Port Said we boarded the _Maria Teresa_ of the Austrian Lloyd Company
and took up our quarters in the steerage, along with a dozen French
monks and others making a pilgrimage to the Holy City. There was one
Austrian priest on board. He had a long brilliant red beard which
looked as though it was the growth of centuries. When he saw me shaving
before the common mirror in the steerage he was suddenly seized with
the desire to part with the fearful brush he had on his face. He
wanted to buy my razor. I, of course, wouldn't sell it. Then he asked
to borrow it. I didn't very much like the idea of lending my razor to
chop off the beards on strangers' faces. However, I passed over the
weapon.

The priest asked me to assist him. My part of the work was trimming
his beard with scissors down to the point where the razor would be of
service. I refused to do more. He did the shaving himself. It took him
half an hour to ruin a good razor.

It is but a night's journey to Jaffa and in the morning we were off the
shore of that little town. The sea was very rough and we were unable to
land. Jaffa hasn't any wharves and the captain considered it dangerous
for the passengers to be taken ashore in the small native boats. We
stood by all day, hoping that the sea would subside. Evening came and
there was no change.

There were a number of Americans among the first-class passengers. A
California judge and his wife, a Chicago gas merchant and his wife, an
English clergyman and a Pentecost preacher proved the most interesting.
Richardson and I paid no attention to the steerage limits. We mingled
with the first-class passengers and made several lasting friendships
among them.

We all wanted to be in Jerusalem and Bethlehem on Christmas Day. It
was now the 22nd of December and unless we landed somewhere soon we
couldn't make it. The captain decided to sail for Haifa, whence we
could go to Jerusalem by land.

In the morning we arrived at Haifa. The purser presented us with a bill
for two dollars for extra fare and food from Jaffa. All the passengers
paid it. Richardson and I refused.

"But you have to pay it," said the purser.

"Pay nothing," I said, "we bought tickets to Jaffa and you didn't land
us there."

"All the passengers have paid it."

"We don't care if they have," said Richardson.

"I insist on your paying the money," the purser added in a most
dignified manner.

"No money from us. What are you going to do about it?" I said.

"Well, if you persist in refusing to pay, I must have you write a
letter to the Austrian Lloyd Company stating that you declined to do
so. I want something to show the officials of the company."

"Sure, we will do that."

Richardson and I framed up the following brief epistle which we gladly
gave the Austrian purser. He couldn't read English and didn't know what
was in it.

  "_To the Austrian Lloyd Company_:

  We are a pair of religious fanatics making our monthly pilgrimage to
  Jerusalem. For the first time in our many trips on your company's
  boats we are charged an extra fare. We bought tickets to Jaffa--not
  to Haifa. The purser demands two dollars more and says the high
  sea is the cause of it. We refuse to pay for rough weather. If the
  captain took it into his head to go to Siam, we suppose that your
  purser would render us a bill. No, the gentleman is wrong.

  R.J. RICHARDSON,

  ALFRED C.B. FLETCHER."

All the passengers went ashore at Haifa in small boats provided by the
Thomas Cook and Son tourist agency. They paid five shillings each.
Richardson and I stood on the deck and bargained with the native
boatmen. We got them bidding against one another. One of them finally
rowed the two of us to land for one shilling.

There is no railroad from Haifa to Jerusalem and the only means of
getting to the Holy City is to drive to Jaffa, a distance of about
seventy miles. From Jaffa we could go by train to Jerusalem. Richardson
and I had always made it a point to keep out of the hands of Thomas
Cook and Son. This concern, which is in all parts of the world, is a
great convenience to travellers and their rates are moderate in most
cases. However, we had no time for them and they had no time for us. We
could travel cheaper without their assistance. They are not interested
in tramps or steerage passengers.

Haifa was one place where we were forced into the hands of Thomas Cook.
It was a case of go in one of his stages to Jaffa at ten dollars each,
or not go at all. It would have been a source of regret to us for
many years if we had abandoned the trip. The Americans were full of
enthusiasm about it. Richardson and I caught the spirit and agreed to
go.

There were ten stages in the party with about thirty passengers from
the Austrian Lloyd steamer, including our newly-acquired American
friends. This little caravan left Haifa about noon. It wound its way
around the base of Mount Carmel, on whose summit is a monastery--said
to be erected over the cave in which Elijah sought shelter from Ahab.
In an hour we were on the coastal plains of Palestine. There are no
modern highways in the Holy Land. I don't recall seeing anything that
looked like a road all the way from Haifa to Jaffa. We rode over
fields, up hills and through valleys. We simply started in the right
direction and went straight across the country.

That evening we came to a small Jewish village called Zamarine. This
settlement was nothing more than a dozen little houses on the top of a
hill. The whole party put up at the Hotel Graff. The proprietor of this
place knew nothing of our coming and hadn't prepared any food for us.
We were a tired lot and had to go to bed hungry, with only the promise
of a good breakfast in the morning.

Every one was up at two o'clock to get an early start for the
fifty-mile run into Jaffa. The good breakfast consisted of weak
creamless coffee, unbuttered bread and a few sardines or small canned
fish. This repast was a keen disappointment. It was an amusing sight
to see the millionaire Chicago gas merchant and the California judge
munching a dry piece of bread for a two A.M. breakfast. They expected
more. Richardson and I took the meal as a matter of course. We had seen
the time when such a menu would have been a luxury.

We left Zamarine when it was still dark and in a heavy down-pour of
rain. This down-pour continued all day. The plains were soaked with
water. When we were not pulling through the sticky mud of the fields we
were bumping over the rocks and boulders of the hillsides. It was the
worst stage trip I ever took.

The Pentecost preacher rode in the stage with Richardson and myself.
He prayed for the rain to cease. The harder he prayed the harder it
rained. We passed the hours in religious discussions. The old fellow
was the most rigid Puritan on earth. He objected to cards, dancing and
the theatre. We asked a hundred questions to draw him out and amuse
ourselves.

"What chance has a man who drinks?" Richardson asked the preacher.

"None; booze is the devil in liquid form."

"Won't you have a cigarette?" I said, offering him a sack of Bull
Durham and papers. I insulted the old man. He refused to answer.

"What do you think of Shakespeare?" enquired Richardson.

"I haven't time to waste on him. The Bible is good enough for me."

"Do you approve of football?" I asked.

"No, athletics are the work of the devil."

"This fellow is what I call a real broad-minded man. He's a relic of
the last century. I didn't know that people of his sort still existed,"
I said to Richardson.

"Do you ever use the word 'damn'?" Richardson asked him.

"No man with the spirit of Christ would ever use such a word. I refuse
to talk to you boys any longer," he concluded, perceiving that we were
making fun of him. He sat in silence the rest of the trip and pouted
like a five-year-old child.

The rain continued. The wagon wheels became heavy with mud. The horses
had hard work pulling the heavy coaches over the roadless fields. The
front wheels of one of the wagons sank several feet in the mud and the
vehicle was securely anchored. The horses were unable to pull it out.
Another team was hitched on. The four horses struggled with the stage
while their drivers whipped them up. One horse after another fell in
the slippery mud. Not until a third team was hitched on was the wagon
extricated from the mud-hole.

[Illustration: THE MOUNT OF OLIVES]

We came to a mad rushing stream which seemed impossible to ford. One
of the Bedouin drivers stripped off his clothes and waded through to
sound the depth and pick a way. The water came up to his shoulders.
After a half-hour's deliberation we all agreed to take the chance of
crossing. Our stage was the first to go through. The horses at first
refused to start. The driver finally urged them in. The water covered
their backs and only their heads were above the surface. The stream
came in the bed of the high wagon which bounded back and forth over the
boulders on the bottom of the river like a rocking cradle. We landed
safely. The second stage made the crossing. In mid-stream one of the
horses of the third stage lost his footing and fell. He was completely
submerged for a moment. He regained his feet and the stage landed
safely on the other side. At last all the ten teams came across without
mishap. The women of the party were a brave band in the way they
tackled the crossing without a murmur. It was a treacherous stream and
our safe passage was almost miraculous. Two Englishmen were drowned at
this same place the next day.

This was an unusual way to pass Christmas Eve. We continued on over
ploughed fields and rocky hills. We forded several little streams.
About nine in the evening the lights of Jaffa could be seen in the
distance, and we were soon on the road which led into the town and at
nearly midnight we arrived. It was a tired crowd that blew into Jaffa
that night and I doubt if the little Kamitz Hotel ever lodged a sounder
set of sleepers.

The train from Jaffa to Jerusalem is an ancient sample of rolling
stock. It winds its way through hillside orange groves and soft plains
sprinkled with grazing sheep. The country about Jaffa is the only
beautiful portion of Palestine that we saw. We crossed the Plain of
Sharon, where the Crusaders fought; we passed Timnath, where Samson set
fire to the Philistines' corn and we saw the valley of Ajalon where
Joshua commanded the moon to stand still. We arrived in the Holy City
at one o'clock in the afternoon of Christmas Day.

"Drive us to the American Colony," said Richardson to a cabman. We
drove outside the walls of Jerusalem and in ten minutes we were at
the entrance of a large two-story stone building. The door opened and
before we had a chance to say a word we were greeted most cordially by
a middle-aged man. He at once recognised us as Americans and invited us
in.

Fifteen minutes after our arrival in Jerusalem Richardson and I sat
down, with one hundred and twenty Americans, to one of the finest
Christmas dinners any two human beings ever ate. There was everything
served that ever graced a Christmas table. Turkey, cranberry sauce,
plum pudding, mince and pumpkin pies, nuts, raisins and candy were
placed before us in quantities that bewildered us. Everything was so
deliciously cooked that we thought we were in America,--or Heaven.
Richardson and I were so hungry that we flew to this grand feast like
two men that had never seen food before. We had to put on the brakes
to keep from disgracing ourselves at the first meal.

The free-love talk by the American Presbyterian missionary in Cairo
was malicious gossip. This rumour probably originated from the fact
that the American Colony consisted of a number of people who came to
Jerusalem to be present at the second coming of Christ. They thought
that this event was soon to take place and they concluded that marriage
was not necessary. It was back in the eighties that a score of people
from a Chicago Protestant Church, thinking that the second Advent was
soon due, came to Jerusalem to be on hand for the event. As time went
on the little colony expanded and their plans became more settled. The
idea of the second coming was given up and they intermarried in the
usual manner. They resolved to live the life of the original Christians
at the seat of the foundation of Christianity. Through the years the
colony grew by the birth of children and additions from the outside
until it numbered at the time of our visit about one hundred and twenty
people.

There is not a finer group of people in the world. They are among the
most hospitable we have ever met. Every one of them, from the several
babes in arms to the fine old men, was an excellent type of American
manhood and womanhood. They are known far and wide in the Near East and
are spoken of everywhere in the highest terms.

The entire colony lives as one community in a group of substantial
stone buildings. There is a common purse, a common table and sitting
room. The whole institution is thoroughly systematised and is very
efficient. Each member of the household has his or her duties to
perform. Some of the women look after the kitchen and dining room;
others work in the bakery and a number take care of the bed rooms.
There is a school to which all the children are sent for daily
instruction. The men devote most of their time to a curio store
conducted by the colony in the business section of Jerusalem. This is a
well-known store and the best pictures of Palestine, Syria, Egypt and
even India are the work of the photographers of the American Colony.

This was the home Richardson and I found and where we spent two of the
most interesting and enjoyable weeks of our lives. The hospitality of
some people is marvellous. The kindness of the members of the American
Colony will stay in our memories forever.

Christmas afternoon Richardson and I walked to Bethlehem, a distance
of six miles. It was bitterly cold and a hard wind was blowing. On
leaving Jerusalem we descended into the valley of Gihon. We saw the
tomb of Rachel which was erected over the place of her death and which
is revered by Christians and Moslems as well as Jews.

Bethlehem is a hillside town of eight thousand people. Its houses are
built of stone and mud and are huddled close together. Its cobblestoned
streets are narrow and steep and are the picturesque scenes of
many small markets. We went to the Church of the Nativity, the most
interesting place in the village. It is a fine building, but poorly
kept. It contains four rows of marble columns, some of the stones of
which are said to have once formed a part of the Temple of Jerusalem.
The roof is of beams of rough cedar from Lebanon. The nave is the
oldest monument of Christian architecture in the world--the sole
remaining portion of the grand Basilica erected by the Empress Helena
in 327 A.D. In the grotto, or chapel of the Nativity, a silver star in
the pavement marks the spot where Christ was born. Fifteen silver lamps
are perpetually burning in this chapel.

The Church of the Nativity is under the control of the Turkish
government. The edifice has been turned over to the Greek Church
which has the main altar, to the Armenians and Copts who have a side
altar and to the Latins--as the Roman Catholics are known--who have
built an addition to the church for their several altars. This is a
unique arrangement--three churches in the same building. The grotto
or Nativity chapel is also divided among them. This unity in one
building has a sensible sound. It is only apparent unity, however.
There were several Turkish soldiers on hand and I was told that they
were stationed there day and night throughout the year. They stood
within a few feet of the altars with their guns over their shoulders
to see that the priests of the various churches do not fight and kill
one another as they have done on previous occasions. Christ came as the
Prince of Peace--and His representatives stand fighting at His very
birthplace!

That evening Richardson and I spent in the living room of the American
Colony. These good people were having their Christmas tree celebration.
There was an elaborate programme arranged which took place before
the distribution of presents. The young women gave a very pretty
colonial dance; the little children delivered recitations and there
were a number of good vocal and instrumental selections. One of the
old men read a portion of the Bible and explained to the children
the significance of the Christmas festival. Then the gifts were
distributed. The gathering was like a huge family. The five-year-old
girl called the white-haired man of eighty "brother" and he called her
"sister." It was a very joyous occasion.

Many people are disappointed in Jerusalem. They expect to find a
modern city with large hotels, electric lights, telephones and every
convenience. Their ideals are harshly shattered when they find
themselves in an unsanitary, backward and poorly kept city. It has a
population of about eighty thousand people made up of Jews, Bedouins
and peasants from the countries that border on the Mediterranean. The
city is thronged with lazy priests, who hang about the sacred spots.
These shrines are based on tradition and many of them are so far
from reason that they are ridiculous. The holy places are not kept
clean, the interior decorations of the churches are tawdry and Turkish
soldiers are stationed in the buildings to preserve order among the
various sects of Christians. These are not attractive features.

Our Chicago gas merchant friend was one of the disappointed ones. He
went to Jerusalem expecting too much. I suppose that he thought he
would find streets of gold studded with jewels and every human being in
it an angel or a saint. He confused the old Jerusalem with the new. He
was a staunch Roman Catholic. His disappointment was so keen that his
faith in Christianity was nearly shaken.

The American Colony sent one of their number with us to act as our
guide in the city. We entered Saint Stephen's Gate and walked along
the Via Dolorosa to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. This is a
large impressive building, but all the sacred association is at once
killed in a person's mind by the ridiculous and petty things under
its roof. When an intelligent man is shown the tomb in which Adam is
buried and where his skull was discovered he can do nothing but smile.
Where is evolution? To point out a spot about six inches in diameter
as the centre of the earth may be appropriate information for an
ignorant peasant but it is folly to tell such rubbish to an educated
man. If this church was simply over the tomb of Christ that would be
sufficient, but when so many varied and silly events are commemorated
under the same roof an enlightened person naturally shrinks from the
whole thing. He is impressed by the ignorance and superstition of
the poor pilgrims who crowd in and out of the sacred places by the
thousands. He thinks that all these things may be all right for them
but he with his knowledge has to reject them.

Richardson and I made the rounds of the many sacred spots and shrines.
But these were not of so much interest to us. The city itself, the
people, their customs and daily round of life took up our attention.
There are no wheeled vehicles in the walled city of Jerusalem. In
fact there are none in the whole of Palestine, with the exception of
a few cabs about the station in Jerusalem. All freight is carried on
the backs of camels or donkeys. The narrow streets of the city, often
roofed over like tunnels, are sometimes an endless chain of donkeys
carrying heavy loads of grain or other provisions. These thoroughfares
are so narrow that we often had to step into the cave-like shops to
let a donkey pass. These tunneled streets look like large cement water
pipes. At intervals of a few yards there are openings or sky lights
through which the sun casts its rays and fresh air circulates.

The Kubbet-es-Sakhra, popularly known as the Mosque of Omar, is the
most conspicuous building in Jerusalem. It was erected in the seventh
century and is said to stand on the site of Solomon's Temple. Under
the dome of the Mosque is the sacred rock upon which a thousand things
have happened, if one believes all he hears about it. It contains a
foot-print of Mohammed. Beneath this ordinary cobblestone, the like
of which Arizona has by the thousands, the waters of the Flood are
supposed to roar. Abraham attempted to sacrifice Isaac here. Numerous
other things happened in, on and under this boulder--but I didn't have
time to listen to them.

Richardson and I were hemmed in at Jerusalem. The sea was so rough at
Jaffa that it was impossible for passengers to get to the steamers.
The wind and the rain made an overland trip very disagreeable. These
conditions delayed us a couple of days. We asked for our bill at
the American Colony for our two-weeks' stay. They said we owed them
nothing. We wouldn't hear of such a thing, and insisted on making
a payment. They suggested that we make a donation, as that was
the custom. Richardson gave an amount which was the equivalent of
seventy-five cents each a day. It was the finest board and room we ever
received for such a price.

Early one morning we set out with a pack mule and a guide to see
Palestine by horseback. We were bound for Nazareth.



CHAPTER XIV

WANDERING IN THE NEAR EAST


PALESTINE is the most barren, desolate and forsaken country--outside
of a desert--that I have ever seen. Many people, in their religious
enthusiasm, work themselves into a state where they imagine that its
stony hills are thickly wooded; that its arid valleys are spots of
beauty and its dull plains are fertile fields. I have heard tourists
indulge in a series of platitudes in praise of some dreary hillside
and vale which, in America, would not be fit for even post-holes. To
speak in such a way about the Holy Land may seem sacrilegious. However,
I would rather write the truth and run the chance of profaning this
sacred country.

With our pack-mule and guide Richardson and I slowly crawled away from
Jerusalem and our horses picked their course over the dismal plains
towards the north. We drew near to the little village of Sha'fat, the
ancient Nob. Not a soul was stirring. The place looked like a group of
deserted and decrepit tombs. Bethel, the scene of many events recorded
in the Old Testament, stood before us on a hill. Every village stands
on a hill, is surrounded by cactus and stones and is inhabited by
a lot of poor unfortunates who have sore eyes and are filthy and
ignorant. A dozen loathsome and mangy dogs usually received us with
their sickly-sounding barks. The simple people congregated and shouted
_bakshish_. We rode through the rubbish-ridden streets, along the
vile-smelling alleys and out into the open again. We didn't stop.

Along the road-side we saw occasional olive trees, two thousand years
old,--if one was to believe what was said about them and if their
appearance indicated anything. Sometimes a number of women and children
would be gathering the fruit. In the plains a flock of sheep would be
grazing. What they found to eat--unless it was the cobble stones--was a
puzzle to me. We would pass a man on a donkey with his wife strutting
along a few paces behind on foot. Or again we would be startled by
actually seeing a live tree on the hillside.

Our destination for the first night was Nablus, the ancient Shechem and
at one time the capital of Palestine. We came to Jacob's well, one of
the most venerated spots in the Holy Land, and in a few minutes were
in the town, an enterprising community of Jews, Moslems and a handful
of Christians. Richardson, with grim inversion, described the place
as the town where the dogs throw stones at you and the boys bite you
in the leg. We were met at the city's gates by the usual reception
committee of barking and snapping dogs and a score of Moslem youngsters
who greeted the vile Christians by pelting us with rocks. To be the
recipient of a cloud of precious stones from the skilful arms of youths
who daily indulge in such a pastime was anything but comfortable. One
lad planted a huge board with all his might across the tail of my
horse. This sudden and violent stroke, together with the hailstorm
of boulders, put a streak of life into an animal which had been
practically dead ever since I had made his acquaintance.

We rode up to a French monastery, conducted by the Latin Church, and
there we put up for the night. Richardson and I sat at the long dining
table with a dozen monks and ate a simple but good meal and drank our
share of wine. It was almost impossible to incite these old fellows to
speech and our dinner was as silent as a religious retreat. Our bedroom
was as well furnished and as comfortable as in an American home.

We made an early start in the morning. We soon came to Samaria, which
is now nothing but a small unsanitary village surrounded by a cactus
hedge and half in ruins. We reached the summit of a hill and, before
us, stretched the Plain of Esdraelon, and the mountains of Tabor and
Carmel stood in the distance like huge monuments. There was nothing
beautiful about the scene.

Riding along quietly we were startled by the sudden appearance over a
hill of two Bedouins on horseback. These men, with their head-dress of
white cloth and a double coil of goat's hair, their hard faces and
guns over their shoulders, were a treacherous-looking pair. They stared
at us, exchanged a few words with our guide and passed on. Many a
Christian has been robbed and killed by Bedouins in the vicinity of the
River Jordan. Our guide must have told them that we were poor men, for
we were never disturbed.

Our stopping place for the second night was a small settlement called
Jenin. We obtained accommodations in a tiny hotel. On leaving we had a
row with the proprietor who demanded more money than he had agreed upon
the evening before. We refused to pay and he followed us for a mile out
of the town, wrangling with us over the matter.

We spent the morning crawling across the Plain of Esdraelon and, about
noon, began ascending the hill to Nazareth. It was a long winding climb
over a road which had never seen a grader. Nazareth is situated on a
sort of plateau. It is a town of about ten thousand people and has
several substantial school buildings and hospitals erected by various
churches. Here are found many places venerated for their Biblical
associations. The Church of the Annunciation is supposed to be erected
on the site of Mary's house and the scene of the annunciation. In the
Moslem quarter of the town the Latin Church has possession of the
"Workshop of Joseph" and the "Table of Christ" upon which he dined
with his disciples before and after the resurrection. The Mount of
Precipitation, where the people sought to cast Christ down, is plainly
visible from Nazareth and on its summit is a Latin church.

We left Nazareth at four o'clock in the morning. We recrossed the Plain
of Esdraelon and arrived at Afuleh where we missed our train--the only
one that day--for Damascus. Turkish trains run on peculiar schedules.
This train is supposed to leave Haifa for Damascus each day at sun
rise. Occasionally the conductor--or some one--decides to start an hour
or more earlier. This is done without any notice to the public. Such
was evidently the case on the morning we tried to catch the train, for
we arrived on time at Afuleh only to find that we were too late.

We dismissed our guide, who returned to Jerusalem with the two horses
and pack-mule. It looked as though we were doomed to spend a day and
a night at Afuleh, a station and a native shop--and nothing more. A
Syrian lace merchant and a young New York Jew, a commercial traveller,
were also left behind. We telegraphed the director of the railroad and
obtained his permission to go by freight train to Damascus. We declined
this route, however, when the freight conductor consigned us to an open
car exposed to a steady down-pour of rain.

[Illustration: OUR START FOR NAZARETH]

We spent the day walking the ties in front of the station and went to
Haifa for the night on the train from Damascus late in the afternoon.
We had landed in Haifa when we first arrived in Palestine, and our
second coming completed a small circuit. The next day we took the train
that leaves at sun rise for Damascus. The only thing a Turkish train
has in the way of accommodation is plenty of time. It hasn't a single
convenience I can think of. I actually saw one train stop to allow
two ducks to cross the track. One conductor threatened to beat me up
because I made fun of his little engine and cars by running backwards
beside his train and winning the race into the station.

The Sea of Galilee is a glassy, stagnant-looking body of water, and
when we saw it was as calm as a plate of soup. It was so peaceful that
one could hardly realise that it was capable of the storms described
in the Bible. I was told that these storms take place on it to-day.
Tiberias, the most vermin-ridden settlement in the world, stands on its
shores. The River Jordan, which looks like a Southern California "wash"
in winter, has its source in the sea. Richardson and I walked down to
the banks of this mad-rushing little stream and filled a bottle with a
sample of its water. This fluid looks and tastes like that of any water
company in America. I have done nothing but give portions of my sample
away ever since.

Beyond the Jordan the railroad crosses a vast plain which produces
nothing but rocks. I don't think I ever saw so many boulders before. I
didn't see a suggestion of vegetation or a sign of life in the entire
distance from the Jordan to Damascus. We travelled across this weary
expanse of nothing with a Greek priest, who spoke English, and a female
missionary of the Church of England who had spent many years of her
life converting natives in a village east of the Jordan.

Damascus is the oldest city in the world. It is the city in which Saint
Paul became a Christian. It is larger than Pittsburgh, having over half
a million inhabitants. It is famous for its picturesque markets and
bazaars, which are the focal point for all the products of the interior
of Syria.

Richardson and I took in the sights of this city without a guide, as
was our custom. The Reverend Mr. Hanamar, of the English Church, told
us how to get about most profitably. He is an authority on the Holy
Land and Syria and had the task of revising Thomas Cook and Son's
Handbook on Palestine and Syria. We walked the length of the "Street
Called Straight." If it were not for the fact that every one who sees
this street makes the same remark, I would here state that it is not
straight. However, it is an interesting thoroughfare. With its wooden
roof, its hundreds of picturesque shops and its hordes of humanity it
is unique among the streets of the world.

The Great Mosque, which at one time was a Christian Church, is said to
contain the head of Saint John the Baptist. I understand that a half
dozen churches throughout Europe also claim this distinction. At any
rate, it is interesting to note--and strange to think--that the Moslems
have allowed the following inscription on the walls of the Great Mosque
to remain: "Thy Kingdom, O Christ, is a kingdom of all ages, and Thy
dominion lasts throughout all generations."

Our train from Damascus to Beirut travelled at the rate of six miles
an hour. A man can nearly beat this walking. But out of justice to
this train I should say that in a distance of eighty miles we had to
rise three thousand feet to the ridge of the Lebanon Mountains. From
the summit of these mountains a beautiful picture was suddenly spread
before us. Directly beneath us was Beirut--its houses crowded in among
the jungle of trees--and stretching out beyond to the horizon was the
expanse of the blue and white-capped Mediterranean. Bobbing up and down
on the waves was a small steamer flying the Stars and Stripes. It was
the first American flag Richardson and I had seen since we left Manila.
We decided to investigate it on our arrival in Beirut.

We were the guests of Professor and Mrs. Brown, who were connected
with the Syrian Protestant College, one of the leading institutions of
learning in the Near East. Beirut is a great educational centre, having
forty schools for boys and twenty-five for girls.

The Syrian lace merchant, whom we met at Afuleh while waiting for our
train, entertained us at dinner. After the meal we drank several cups
of muddy-looking Turkish coffee with its inch of sediment in the bottom
of the cup, and smoked a _narghile_, or hubble-bubble pipe. From our
Syrian friend we learned that the little steamer with the American
flag was the _Virginia_ of the Archipelago-American Steamship Company.
This concern was incorporated under the laws of the United States and
carried the Stars and Stripes, although its capital and management were
largely Greek. This arrangement was to serve as a means of protection
against Turkey.

Richardson and I concluded that here was our chance for a free ride.
We would go to the steamship company's office, announce that we were
Americans, act important and demand passage to Constantinople.

"When does the _Virginia_ leave for Constantinople?" I asked a man in
the company's office after introducing Richardson and myself.

"In a few days, as soon as her cargo is loaded. She doesn't run on any
schedule," was his reply.

"Mr. Richardson and I are studying conditions in Syria for an American
newspaper syndicate and we want to get passage on your boat to
Constantinople. We are paying special attention to the commerce and
shipping of this section of the world and we wish to make a favourable
report. We noticed that your steamer flies the American flag." There
had been considerable criticism of the policy of permitting foreign
concerns such as the Archipelago-American Steamship Company to fly
American colours on their ships. The officials of this company were
aware of this and when we gave the newspaper talk they imagined that
we might make it a point to use their company as an example in our
write-ups.

"But the _Virginia_ is only a freight boat. She hasn't any
accommodations for passengers. But----"

"We can put up with the crew," interrupted Richardson. "In fact we
would rather travel in that way. We can get the sailor's point of view."

"Can you drop in again this afternoon? I will see what I can do," the
man concluded after a moment's reflection.

"Rich, if we don't land that boat to Constantinople I will walk there,"
I said, as we sauntered along the waterfront from the steamship office.

Two nights later we were nicely settled in a stateroom on the
_Virginia_ adjoining the captain's. It was one of the most comfortable
cabins we had been in. Across the way was a young Greek governess,
a friend of the skipper's. She was also getting a free ride to
Constantinople.

The scheduled time for the regular passenger steamers from Beirut to
Constantinople is three days. The little _Virginia_ see-sawed up and
down the coast of Asia Minor, discharging and taking on freight, for
two weeks. Richardson and I didn't care if it took six months for the
journey or if she went to South America for a cargo.

We anchored off the shore of Tripoli but were unable to land on account
of the city's being under quarantine for cholera. The little steamer
continued on to Alexandretta. Richardson and I went ashore here and
wandered in and out among the markets. It is a town of thirty thousand
people and possesses nothing of extraordinary interest. The _Virginia_
received orders to go to Bayas, a small port to the north, for several
thousand boxes of oranges to be brought to Alexandretta.

Morning found us off the coast of Bayas. During the day a number of
Greeks with their wives and daughters came on board. They were orange
growers of Syria. Their presence meant jam for breakfast, a delicacy
we didn't otherwise get. Richardson nearly disgraced America by the
amount he ate. The steamer returned to Alexandretta that evening and
discharged her cargo of fruit.

Mersina, a city of about fifty thousand people, was the next place
on our itinerary. The night's trip proved a rough one. A strong wind
stirred up a very heavy sea. The little boat was tossed about as though
it had no weight. The waves broke over the ship and water mysteriously
came in our cabin in spite of the fact that the portholes were securely
closed. It was one of the wettest nights of my life. It seemed as
though some one was emptying a tub of water in our room every minute.
Everything was literally swimming in water. It was foot deep in our
stateroom in the morning. Richardson and I waded out of the cabin as
wet as two oysters and dressed in the saloon.

[Illustration: THE PORT OF DEDEAGATCH]

The night had been a wet one and a long one to us. But to the poor
Greek governess in the adjoining stateroom it was one of continual
distress. The gruesome and appalling shrieks and groans which
emanated from this unfortunate creature indicated that she was in the
last stages of sea-sickness. I have seen thousands of people suffering
with this ailment but I never heard one perform as this young Greek
did. All night she gasped for breath, coughed and choked. She gave vent
to the most heart-rending whoops which penetrated to all parts of the
ship. We thought the poor girl would strangle to death.

During the following night the steamer put into Rhodes. Much to our
regret we were off before morning and there was no opportunity to land.
A short stop was made at Khios, a small town on an island of the same
name off the coast of Asia Minor.

We steamed into the beautiful bay of Smyrna with the city clinging
snugly to a hundred hills clothed in a garment of evergreen. Every
section of the world seems to have its Paris, and Smyrna has this
distinction for the Near East. There are many French people among its
half million inhabitants and the city is gay with cafés, theatres and
places of amusement. We only had a short time to go about while the
steamer discharged a small consignment of freight.

Two hundred Turks were driven up the gangway to go as deck passengers
to Dedeagatch, a little seaport in Southern Bulgaria. It was a motley
crowd of human freight that huddled in bunches on the forward deck.
The men with red fezzes or soiled turbans and unkempt straggly beards
were an unattractive lot. The women with their black dresses covering
shapeless figures and with their veiled faces didn't look like human
beings. They had the appearance of walking pyramids.

As Richardson and I wandered about the deck to look them over, the
women would turn their faces or quickly veil themselves. It was
immodest to expose this part of their anatomy to a man and especially
to a foreigner. What a strange thing custom is! The women of America
go clothed to the limit except in the ballroom, on the stage or in the
water. The women of Japan are indifferent as to when or where they
disrobe. The women of Turkey hide their faces on the approach of man. I
was told that when Milady of Turkey is caught unaware in the bath she
makes haste to cover only her face. Some of the faces I chanced to see
look better behind their black curtains. It might be wise to introduce
such facial disguises in America. I know instances where they would
serve a laudable purpose.

Life on the _Virginia_ was getting monotonous. The food had taken a
slump from its fairly good beginning. We had little to do and time
began to drag. We had read all the books on board. The steamer didn't
remain at the various ports long enough for us to acquaint ourselves
with the towns and cities--still less with the commerce and shipping
interests of the country. We looked forward to Constantinople and some
diversity.

We only remained at Dedeagatch a sufficient time to dump the human
cargo of Turks, and then set out for Constantinople. We sailed through
the Hellespont, passed the small town of Dardanelles, steamed across
the Sea of Marmora and entered the Bosporus.



CHAPTER XV

GREECE AND ROME FROM A THIRD-CLASS COACH


TWO weeks of the Greek freighter were enough, and Richardson and I
rejoiced to see the picturesque sky-line of Constantinople come into
view. We made short work of getting ashore as soon as the anchor
was dropped and in a few minutes were on a local steamer going up
the Bosporus on our way to Roberts College, the famous American
institution of the Near East, where we were to be the guests of friends
of Richardson's. Here we received a real welcome and once more began
living the civilised life--as true Americans can when given a chance.

It had now been many months since we had left Manila and a job; and
our exchequers, in spite of the economical methods of travel we had
pursued, were being slowly depleted. However, as near as can be
recalled, we had about two hundred and fifty dollars each and, although
this sum is a mere joke when compared with the distance we were from
home, still a man is not broke until he is broke. We concluded that if
it was possible we would get jobs in Constantinople and at least break
even financially during our stay there.

Looking for work in Europe is a very different thing from such a quest
in the Orient. Indeed, we soon found that as a whole travel in Europe
was far different and in many ways less interesting than in the Far
East. Europe is the beaten path where the inhabitants of each country
are organised and lie in wait to separate the American tourist from
his coin. The paths are all cut and dried and everything is carried on
along the lines of the personally-conducted sight-seeing tours. Jobs
are scarce, and the few obtainable pay very small wages. The thrifty
native can do the work as well as, and oftentimes better than, the
transient American. The conventional character of European travel
strips this pastime of two-thirds of its charm. Experiences, which one
is daily encountering in the more or less primitive countries of the
Orient, are not to be found in Europe. Civilisation, with its comforts
and conveniences, eliminates the possibilities of adventure and the
traveller, whether rich or poor, usually deteriorates into a bored and
bleary-eyed sight-seeing machine.

After a couple of days' rest we set out to find jobs. We invaded
Stamboul, Galata, Pera and Scutari, the three sections of
Constantinople, and called on the American Consul, several large
foreign mercantile houses, and a number of educational institutions. In
nearly every instance we were dismissed with a laugh. Roberts College
came to our rescue. Richardson received a position, if it could be
elevated to such dignity by the appellation, which consisted of doing
electric wiring in one of the college buildings at two dollars a day.
Out of this he was to board and room himself. The best I could do was
to become assistant instructor in physical culture in the gymnasium at
thirty-five dollars a month and from this princely sum I was to pay for
my board and clothe and shelter myself--in addition to providing for
the many and sundry wants of an American in a strange land.

Richardson decided to accept and I to reject the respective posts. I
concluded that I would rather starve moving than while stationary.
We agreed to separate--Richardson to remain in Constantinople for a
couple of months and I to continue on alone,--to meet later in London.
Before our separation we made a systematic and tourist-like conquest
of beautiful Constantinople. We went up the Bosporus and travelled in
circles on the Black Sea. We explained the interesting but backward
city itself. We made our way among the quaint bazaars and finally came
to the Mosque of San Sophia. Here I took leave of Richardson and we
planned to meet in London in a few months to cross the Atlantic to
America together.

I did not have any itinerary. My plan was simply to go through Europe.
I decided to go from Constantinople to Greece. The first-class fare to
Athens was eighty francs. At this rate my supply of coin would not last
long. I knew I could beat that. I visited several steamship offices
along the waterfront in search of cheap passage.

Accompanied by a Greek, as an interpreter, I entered a dingy little
office.

"When does the next boat leave for Piræus?" I inquired of a moon-faced
man in uniform behind a counter.

"To-morrow morning at nine o'clock," was the reply by way of the
interpreter.

"What is the fare?" I asked.

"Thirty francs," was the response.

"That's too much," I said, starting to walk away.

"What will you give?" asked the steamship company official.

"Five francs," I uttered, smothering a smile at the smallness of the
amount.

"All right," agreed the officer--and I bought my ticket at once. I
was so astonished that I could hardly dig up the money fast enough.
As I left the little office I concluded that my luck had not left me
on setting foot in Europe. I shipped my suit case direct to England,
deciding to travel with only a small hand bag.

As my boat did not leave until morning, I now had the evening in
which to stir up some excitement. I wandered along the streets of
Constantinople ready to welcome any one or anything that came my way.
Presently a sign "American Bar" greeted my eyes and in I immediately
went, thinking that there the English or American language would be
spoken and I might find a companion of some sort. I found that French
was the only means of communication. Shortly, however, a man entered
the place who knew a little English.

"Where can I find a bit of excitement this evening?" I asked.

"There is nothing going on to-night except at the Paris Café," replied
the man.

"What takes place there?"

"Music, theatre, pretty women and plenty to eat and drink."

"Where is this café and how do I get there?" I asked, determined to
investigate the establishment.

"The proprietor will be here in a moment and you can go with him."

In a few minutes a sleek-looking Frenchman arrived and was introduced,
and in a second I was off with him in a closed carriage for the Paris
Café. We rode on for an hour. It was nine o'clock in the evening. The
Frenchman didn't speak a word of English. I began to think that I was
up against a knockdown and drag-out game. I decided to stick, however,
and see what this Paris Café was. We rode on. Finally, the carriage
came to a stop and we alighted in front of a small house, brightly
illuminated, from which was emanating the maudlin laughter of male
and female voices. There was not another house to be seen. We might
have been in the midst of an American prairie from the appearance
of the darkened landscape. My French companion and I entered the
house. I reluctantly paid the equivalent of one dollar admittance. On
entering, the Frenchman was lost in the crowd and I was left to find my
own way. An inebriated gathering of French life greeted my vision. I
seated myself at a table in one end of the large room, ordered a drink
and in a careless manner took in what was about me. A dozen or more
tables with six or eight people at each occupied half of the hall, a
highly-polished floor for dancing took up the other half and at one
end was a stage on which a succession of scantily-clad French women of
tender age executed a series of sensuous dances while the maudlin crowd
cheered and applauded.

I sat at my table unnoticed for fully an hour. At last, an ill-shapen
feminine individual advanced and, in broken English supplemented with
portions of French, asked me to join her crowd in an adjacent room
in some refreshments. I accepted. I considered that I was not a fool
and could take care of myself, and decided that I would investigate
the place to the limit. I joined this select party of eight. Liquid
began to flow freely and all were very solicitous that I should drink
my fill. Being suspicious of the whole proceeding I decided to drink
nothing. I had fears of being drugged, robbed and thrown out in an
alley to spend the night. My fears were well founded. The gang became
more and more intoxicated. They reached the point where they evidently
thought that I was ripe to pluck, and two of them ventured to separate
me from my money. It would have been a fruitless effort, if it had
been allowed to proceed to its consummation, for I had left all my
coin, with the exception of a small amount, in my hand bag at the
steamship office. My assailants plunged towards me like huge tigers.
They were so drunk that they were helpless. I handled them like a pair
of twin punching bags and left the room and the Paris Café with one
man stretched out so flat that he looked like an inlaid design on the
floor, while his co-partner was so completely pasted against the side
of the room as to be hardly distinguishable from a figure on the wall
paper. After this clean-up I calmly walked out of the joint, ordered
a hack, drove to town, put up at a little Greek hotel and had a good
night's sleep.

In the morning I boarded the Greek steamer ΙΣΜΝΗ. My bunk consisted of
nothing more than a niche in the side of the ship--similar bunks being
occupied by a score of Greeks--and my food was a supply of tinned goods
I had purchased in Constantinople. The next day at sunrise we were off
the shore of the Dardanelles, and here we spent most of the morning
waiting for the sea to subside in order to land a herd of cattle and
a small flock of unhealthy-looking sheep. The sea continued to rage
and it was not long before our common sleeping compartment presented a
most distressing scene, with a Greek chorus which so affected me that I
nearly joined the regurgitating throng myself.

[Illustration: A MARKET IN CONSTANTINOPLE]

Early the third day the Greek ship arrived at Piræus, the port of
Athens, and without stopping I betook myself by electric car to the
capital. I went directly to the "American School of Classical Studies"
where I presented a letter of introduction to Dr. Clyde Phaar. This
gentleman--for he surely was one--conducted me about the city of Athens
and I spent two most interesting days visiting the Acropolis, the
Olympieion, the Theatre of Dionysis and many other ancient structures.

On leaving Dr. Phaar I returned to my old level and picked up a couple
of Greek peasants who led me to their various haunts. One evening,
after a seven-cent meal (consisting of stewed liver, kidney and other
entrails) in the most unsanitary restaurant I ever saw, I left Athens
for Patras, laden with many introductory letters from my Athenian
friends to Grecian fruit vendors and candy fabricants in New York City.

After travelling all day, with an hour's delay at Corinth, due to a
defective engine--which time I utilised by sight-seeing--I arrived at
Patras in the evening. I was besieged by an army of hotel men as I was
leaving the station and nearly landed in jail, instead of an hotel,
for beating up an especially persistent hawker. However, I managed to
find an hotel and I spread myself to the extent of eating a first-class
dinner, the first food for the day. With this meal safely placed away
I strolled up the street. I was ambling aimlessly along; my thoughts
had drifted to America, when I was attracted by a Greek of about
thirty years, who called to me from across the street, addressing me as
"Charlie." As there was nothing on the calendar, I responded to my new
name and crossed over to see what the native wanted.

"Where are you going, Charlie?" he asked.

"No place," answered Charlie.

"Come along with me then," said the Greek in good English.

"Where are you going?" I enquired, preferring to know something of my
destination.

"To call on some of my relatives and friends." My boat for Brindisi did
not leave until midnight and I had plenty of time to learn something.

We strolled along a winding road lined on each side with little
native houses. Our first call was on the Greek's aged aunt, a peasant
woman, whose husband had been killed, a few days before, in a duel
with a neighbour. The house in which this simple and grief-stricken
woman lived was a low thatch-roofed adobe structure with the earth
for its floors. It was a near-to-nature residence and I was impressed
by its almost spotless cleanliness and neatness. We remained in this
little home for nearly an hour while the poor woman poured out her
troubles to her nephew, who later informed me that he had assumed the
responsibility of her support since her husband's death. We next called
on the Greek's older sister. This Grecian peasant home was also an
interesting place and was as immaculate as its predecessor. With this
second visit completed, my companion evidently had performed all his
obligations and he now felt at liberty to call on some of his girls.
Our last visit was at the home of a travelling butcher, who saunters
about the town pushing a one-wheeled vehicle, resembling a wheelbarrow,
laden with carcasses of cows and sheep, from which he hacks off a chunk
whenever he finds a customer. The walls of this modest mud house were
literally plastered with calendars, newspaper pictures and display
advertisements. It was inhabited by a most interesting set of human
beings. There was the mother with her three youngest huddling around
her skirt like little chicks around the proud old hen; there were twin
girls of about twelve years, who spent their energies giggling at the
idiosyncrasies of the American guest and there were two young women
of some twenty-one summers. There was also a boy of about sixteen and
from the accounts of his mother he must have been the tough lad of the
neighbourhood.

The two young ladies, whose names were Miss Vaseleki Caetina and Miss
Caraperpara Caetina, were bright, healthy creatures in spite of the
fact that they worked fourteen hours a day, one in a stocking factory
and the other as a dressmaker.

My visit was considered a great distinction and my presence was soon
noised about the neighbourhood and an endless file of proud mothers
came to exhibit their offsprings to me as I handed out compliments and
passed comments on them by means of my Greek companion. The Misses
Caetina became so infatuated with the sample American, in spite of
my travel-worn and trampish appearance, that they insisted on their
mother's inviting me to dinner. What they would have done to a regular
American one can only surmise. I was enjoying the affair to the limit
of my capacity and if I had been invited to a suicide I would have
accepted.

The meal was served in the most informal way in what might be termed
the parlour. Informal is hardly the word. Jam came straight from
the jar to the eater's mouth. One spoon did service for the entire
gathering, each one using it in turn without any cleansing process
intervening. Still having some ideas of hygiene in spite of my
unsanitary experiences, I considered myself fortunate in being the
guest and, therefore, getting the first fling at the much-worked
spoon. Greek wine was poured out in lavish quantities and, not being
acquainted with the inebriating efficiency of this liquid, I partook
of it cautiously. Strips of dried meat, squares of bread and walnuts
completed the repast.

The evening was an entertaining one and I took my leave while the
young Grecian maidens danced with joy as I wrote down their names
and promised I would drop them post cards from Italy. This promise I
fulfilled.

I now turned my thoughts towards Italy. A much-travelled man once
advised me that if I had but six months in which to tour Europe to
spend four of them in Italy. Although I do not agree with his ratio, I
do thoroughly believe that four months is much too short a time to even
get a start in this wonderful land, rich in everything that interests
an intelligent human being. But lack of funds haunted me with the
necessity for speed and, much as I regretted it, I had to keep moving
on.

A sea trip of two nights and one day brought me to Brindisi. I took the
first train to Naples where I arrived after a delightful route through
green fields, prosperous farms and orchards and a country radiant
with the bloom of youth, for it was the early spring-time. I put up
at a small rooming house with eating arrangements connected, which I
discovered near the station.

Italy proved to be a land of little adventure. The traveller has
nothing to do but go sight-seeing and about the only way in which to
encounter an unusual experience would be to go out in the street and
deliberately insult some one. Not having any desire to do this I became
a simple and ordinary tourist, and the following sample from my diary
concerning my activities in Naples very clearly illustrates this:

"Saturday:--I nearly walked my crimson head off to-day. Armed with a
Baedeker, I went after Naples with the persistence and energy of an
American book agent. I managed to get about very satisfactorily without
a guide or even the disbursing of a single tip.

"In the morning early, after carefully studying the Baedeker map, I
went to the Villa Nazionale, a public garden next the sea, with many
trees and marble statues. The 'fashionable' world flit to and fro in
their automobiles on the broad Via Caracciolo along the water, while
the scum and tramps, like myself, get out of their way in the best
manner we can or are run down and trampled into eternity. In the Villa
Nazionale is the famous Aquarium, which I will visit to-morrow--as on
Sundays the admission is one franc instead of two.

"From this park I went to the English church, a fine large building,
with a tasteful interior, quite in contrast to the churches of the
Papal obedience which I have seen. I wandered through busy, noisy
streets,--the inhabitants of Naples are the noisiest people I think I
ever heard--and came to the large church of San Francesco di Paola--a
modern edifice--having been constructed in 1817-31. In the interior are
superb marble columns, modern statues and pictures and a high altar
inlaid with jasper. It impressed me more favourably than other churches
of Naples because time had not filled it with a lot of gaudy fixtures.

"Passing the Plazzo Real and the Theatre of San Carlo, I went in the
Galleria Umberto Primo, a beautiful arcade containing many high-class
shops. I walked by the Municipio, a large square structure used for
city offices, as its name suggests, and came into the Via Roma or
Toledo, the main street of Naples. Jostling along this thoroughfare for
awhile, I turned off on a side street and spent some little time in
the Jesuit church of Gesu Nuovo. Near-by I visited the Church of Santa
Chiara, built in the fourteenth century and richly but tastelessly
decorated. It contains numerous altars and many paintings, and the
ceiling is a solid mass of gilding. Referring to the map in Baedeker
I directed my course to the Church of San Domenico Maggiore, erected
in 1289 and restored several times. My guide book states that some of
the great families (great because of inherited wealth, I suppose!) of
Naples have their chapels here.

"I next found my way in some mysterious manner through the narrow
foul-smelling alleys of the slums to the Cathedral of San Gennaro. This
church is in the French-Gothic style and is not especially attractive.
It contains a shrine called the Chapel of Saint Januarius. In the
tabernacle of the chief altar of this chapel there are two vessels
containing the blood of Saint Januarius, Bishop of Benevento, who
suffered martyrdom in the fourth century. The liquefaction of the
blood, which, according to the legend, took place for the first time
when the body was brought to Naples, occurs three times a year on
several successive days. On the occasion of this liquefaction thousands
of the faithful make pilgrimages to this shrine for prayers and
offerings, for by means of this liquefying a forecast can be made of
the prosperity of the land.

"From the Cathedral I went to the Castel Capuano, once the residence of
the Hohenstaufen, later of the Angevin kings and, since 1540, the seat
of the law-courts. Close by is the Porta Capuano, one of the finest
existing Renaissance gateways.

"In the afternoon I walked along the Via Tossa, a winding street
which ascends the hill behind Naples and which passes many beautiful
buildings and from which good views of the city and bay of Naples may
be had. I took a cable car lift and went up to and around the Castel
Sant' Elmo, fortified with huge walls and now used as a military
prison. Near this castle I visited the Church of San Martino. This
church seems to be deserted so far as religious purposes are concerned,
and has been turned into a money-making institution. In the Tesoro, a
room beyond a sacristy, is a "DESCENT FROM THE CROSS" by Ribera and on
the ceiling "JUDITH" by Luca Giordana--who is said to have painted it
in forty-eight hours, when in his seventy-second year. This sounds like
a California fish story.

"Adjoining the church is the museum, which contains many sculptures,
paintings and ecclesiastical vestments. From the Belvedere, a spacious
balcony, is an excellent view of the city and of Vesuvius beyond.

"Sunday:--I spent two hours this morning (admission free on Sundays) in
the Museo Nationale. It contains a fine collection of marble and bronze
sculptures, most of them from Herculaneum and a few from Pompeii--the
bronze exhibition consisting mostly of household utensils and affording
an admirable insight into the domestic life of antiquity. The museum
also contains a gallery with many beautiful and masterful pictures and
also an unrivalled collection of vases.

"Later in the day I visited the Aquarium, which was very interesting,
although not so large as the one in Honolulu. The sea life it contains
is of a different species, being from other waters, but there are not
so many varieties as in Hawaii.

"The shops, streets, and tenement sections of Naples are unique. Noise,
congestion and colour are their most predominant features. Every man
who is not a priest is engaged in ravenously devouring a greasy string
of macaroni, while the women are shouting inhuman shrieks in the effort
to sell a bottle of red wine."

The feeling of loneliness, which seizes us all at one time or another,
is probably more acute, when--travelling alone--one enters a large city
in a foreign land where he doesn't understand the language and doesn't
know a single soul. Especially is this the case when the traveller is
making his way on a sum which is so small that rigid economy has to be
practised every minute of the day.

Never was I more impressed with this feeling of loneliness than when
I arrived in Rome at midnight. It is a simple thing for the opulent
traveller to alight from his first-class train and take a carriage
to the leading hotel, but it is a very different matter for the lone
and coin-depleted tramp to find board and lodging commensurate with
his meagre funds and, especially so, during the middle of the night.
The greatness of Rome, its magnificent history and its position in
the world to-day made me feel as insignificant as when one gazes into
the heavens on a moonless night and beholds the stars. I swung off
a third-class coach, made my way through the crowds in the station,
elbowed the hotel hawkers aside and reached a street corner, where I
stood for a moment's reflection. I might as well have been in a jungle
so far as knowing where to go next. I finally set out in search of
an hotel, and for two hours I hunted in vain. I inquired for a room
at every establishment over the door of which was printed the word
"portier." My hotel in Naples had displayed this sign and I concluded
that all places with such a label were hotels. Working under this
delusion I canvassed every building which bore the inscription. No one
would take me in and I couldn't make any one understand me. I began
to wonder if there was something about my appearance which made me an
outcast and caused the portiers to regard me with suspicion. Some of
the supposed hotel-keepers laughed at me, others nearly threw me out,
while still others seemed to regard me with pity. I became discouraged.
It was now two o'clock in the morning. Was I to pace streets all night,
luggage in hand, in search of a place to sleep? Tired and disgusted I
decided to retire in the first vacant lot I came to, if Rome had such
things. Presently I came across a large open space which appeared in
the darkness to be some sort of an ancient excavation or ruin. This was
good enough, I thought, and I scrambled down the decomposed steps and
in a few minutes was sound asleep in a secluded corner of this deserted
square.

[Illustration: THE TEMPLE OF THESEUS]

I awakened early to recognise that my bedroom was no less than the
Roman Forum. A smile rippled over my unshaven face and my thoughts were
shifted years back to the time when I studied in school of the ruined
Roman Forum and how at that time I little realised that the day was
coming when I would wake up, like a tramp, and find myself surrounded
by its huge and stately old columns.

I explored the venerable place at once and, although it was six o'clock
in the morning and I had not eaten, I opened my Baedeker and spent two
hours reading and becoming familiar with this ancient seat of oratory
and modern domicile for hoboes.

Later in the day I found a modest little hotel whose proprietor spoke
English quite fluently. He explained to me that the reason I was unable
to get a room on the preceding night was that I probably did not
inquire at a single hotel. He informed me that many buildings in Rome
had a porter or caretaker and usually had the sign "portier" over the
door. I had been trying, in the early hours of the morning, to force
myself into wholesale houses, department stores, private homes and what
not. In each instance I had, unknowingly, applied to the watchman whose
duty it was to keep off all intruders and burglars. It is a wonder
that I wasn't shot down.

Probably the first point to which the traveller in Rome directs his
steps is Saint Peter's and I was no exception. I took a car to this
wonderful church and spent the entire day drinking in its marvels.
From the lantern on the dome (where I poked my crimson head--five
hundred and eighty-three feet above the ground--and took in the amazing
panorama of the Eternal City) to the main floor, I left little unseen.
I was quite content to be a spectator and took no active part in the
customary devotions of the average pilgrim. As I watched the long line
of the faithful file by the large bronze statue of Saint Peter and
osculate his big toe--which has been worn down, through the centuries,
nearly half an inch by this unsanitary process--I decided to give these
poor peasants a lesson in hygiene, but the play was taken away from me
by a high dignitary of the Church. A well-fed clean-shaven man, dressed
in a red cassock, was approaching the statue, accompanied by another
ecclesiastic in purple. At once I recognised them as a cardinal and a
bishop. They were going to kiss the toe of the saint. I forced my way
through the crowd to see how they would act. The cardinal drew a white
handkerchief from his cassock and diligently set to work to give the
toe of the huge figure of Saint Peter a vigorous scrubbing. He was so
adept at these menial movements that I concluded he must be one of
the peasant prelates of whom we hear so frequently in America. The
respectful pilgrims were much interested in the cleansing which the
cardinal was giving Saint Peter's toe, but the example was of no avail.
When he was satisfied that the member was sufficiently sterilised, the
church official stooped and brushed it with his lips. He was followed
by the bishop. Then the thousand or more ignorant pilgrims passed by
and performed this act of devotion without a thought of a microbe. I
can image the activity that would be exhibited on this toe under the
lens of a microscope after such an army of the unwashed had filed by.

The next day I returned to Saint Peter's and took up as companions
an American Methodist preacher and his wife, who were _en route_ to
India to resume their missionary duties. This unrefined and prejudiced
pair of representatives of our Great Middle West performed their
sight-seeing obligations in a thoroughly bigoted Protestant manner. The
Pope and all his adherents were denounced every time a new picture came
to their notice and as they watched the priests of Rome chanting the
ancient liturgy. They were not very pleasant companions but I concluded
that they were better than none at all.

Each day during my stay in Rome the three of us would meet in the
morning, map out our itinerary and follow it closely. We visited the
Vatican--that atrocious piece of architecture; we spent some time in
the Sistine Chapel with the usual horde of tourists; we drove to the
Coliseum and the Pantheon and saw hundreds of churches in all parts of
the city.

We hired a carriage, with meter and driver, and rode, along the
Appian Way to the Catacombs of Saint Callixtus. As we alighted at our
destination I took down, in my note-book, the figure that the meter
registered, having a suspicion that the cab driver might cheat us. My
suspicion was well-founded for, on our return, the gauge indicated that
an additional six miles had been rung up. The fare was cheap enough
and we had little objection to the amount our bill was approaching.
However, I remonstrated with the driver to let him know that our eyes
were open and that he had not tricked us without our knowledge. The
climax of this incident was reached at the end of our journey when,
in exacting our bill, the driver with a sudden jerk of the meter
forced it up five points more and then insisted on money for the last
dishonestly acquired mileage. We, of course, refused and paid him only
for the distance we had travelled, plus the increase registered while
visiting the Catacombs. As we walked down the street he followed with
his carriage loudly demanding more money. Finally an Italian policeman
intervened and we were brought to the first police station. Here the
magistrate heard both sides of the tale and on giving the matter a few
minutes' consideration told us to go on our way and placed the poor cab
driver under arrest for fraud.

For a city with a distinctive atmosphere I recommend Florence. To walk
its various streets is a rest for the weary. After the teeming millions
of oriental cities, the repose and quietness of this attractive town
is most restful. Florence is worth a visit if one only sits in its
beautiful cathedral and thinks. Its identity as the birthplace of
Dante, of Petrarch, of Boccaccio, of Galileo, of Michael Angelo, of
Leonardo da Vinci, of Andrea del Sarto and a host of other great minds
is sufficient to stamp it with a character which none but the dumb
brute would fail to discern.

With the contents of my pocketbook approaching the vanishing point I
could only visit the large cities of Italy and had to give up all idea
of seeing the countless small towns and villages with their wealth
of historical association and present-day charm. However, even a
tramp would not think of touring Italy without spending a few days in
Venice. Its unique situation, if not its rich past, would be sufficient
incentive to have it included in the itinerary of the most humble
traveller.

Venice is a city without a wheeled vehicle, without trees, without
sidewalks and without many of the ordinary appliances found in a
modern community. Situated as it is on a cluster of seventy-two small
islands, each inch of space is utilised and there is no subdividing of
large tracts of land into fifty-foot lots. Its streets are a regular
maze and the only way to get about, in the event one does not hire a
guide, is to follow the crowd and trust to luck. This was my method,
which at times proved very interesting. In this manner I wandered
aimlessly along and, after a couple of hours' walking, the beautiful
Piazzo of San Marco burst upon me. It was a scene I shall never forget.
Several thousand people were assembled for a band concert and I was
shortly lost in the crowd and had nothing to do but take in the many
interesting things about me. The stately and oriental-looking church of
Saint Mark at one end; the imposing Campanile, the ornate Palace of the
Doges and the old government buildings now converted into stores and
cafés, presented a picture for beauty and symmetry of design which is
probably unequalled.

In the middle of the square a man drove a donkey hitched to a small
cart, and the novelty of the conveyance aroused the curiosity of not
only the children but of the grown people as well.

Midnight seemed to be the hour at which I was destined to make my
advent into nearly all European cities. It was at this hour that my
train pulled into Milan. Finding cheap hotels had almost become second
nature to me and, with little difficulty, I located a comfortable
domicile and was soon enjoying the rest which no one but a weary
traveller can truly appreciate. Most of my brief stay in this city was
devoted to the famous cathedral. This church, the second largest in
Europe, stands alone from an architectural standpoint. It is richly
decorated with statues and sculptured pinnacles--more than two thousand
in number--which from the street look like countless inverted icicles.



CHAPTER XVI

EUROPE ON A VANISHING BANK-ROLL


MY journey through Europe was a foot-race. I was trying to beat a
bank-roll which was rapidly diminishing and which I feared would be
totally exhausted before I reached England, where I hoped to get work.
If my money had been rubber I could not have stretched it over a
greater distance.

From Milan to Zurich is a big jump in Europe and especially is this
true when one considers the perfect Paradise of things there are to
see. But with my depleted financial condition always confronting me I
had to press on and to content myself with a train-window view of the
beautiful Italian "lake country" and the rugged scenery of Switzerland.

Why I went to Zurich, I don't exactly know, but I suppose it must have
been the cheapest trip open to me. Aside from scenery Zurich possesses
little of interest. After a few hours there, during which I visited
the Ton-halle, the cathedral in which Zwingli--the Swiss reformer--set
forth his peculiar doctrines and made an excursion of the town, I went
on my way to Munich.

My train journey was broken by a trip on a little steamer across
Lake Constance. This small body of water is on the boundary line
between Switzerland and Germany and, on landing, I was received by
a German policeman who evidently sized me up for a spy. I took him
for a baggageman and when he spoke to me told him to "beat it." He
resented my tone and manner and pressed his solicitations with a little
more severity. At last it dawned on me that he was an officer and I
decided that for my general welfare it would be well to treat him more
courteously. I soon learned from him that he wanted my passport. I
had that document in my possession but knew that it was not necessary
for an American citizen to present such an instrument in Germany so I
declined to produce it. I was able to satisfy the inquisitiveness of
the gentleman by answering a few questions, and he allowed me to go on
my way.

In my diary I find the following entry concerning Munich:--"Munich is
celebrated for two things, its art and its beer. I spent little time
on the art but confined myself to the beer. I sampled it thoroughly
and can say that it is a high-class liquid. For the equivalent of two
cents one gets a large glass, and for five cents a toilet pitcher
sufficiently large to drown a ten-pound baby.

"There are no saloons in Germany or on the continent of Europe, liquor
being sold in restaurants and cafés, all respectable places frequented
by women as well as men. I once knew a good American Baptist woman who
was as strict an abstainer as ever lived, but she could not withstand
the temptation to partake of beer in Munich during her sojourn there. I
understand that many staunch prohibitionists temporarily fall off the
wagon in this manner.

"In Italy every one drinks _vino_, but in Germany men, women and
children drink beer. For an Italian to eat a meal without wine or
a German without beer would be considered in these countries as
extraordinary as if a man should bathe his feet with his shoes on. It
is a common enough thing to see a pretty German girl of eighteen calmly
drinking a schooner of beer instead of the afternoon cup of tea of her
American sister. Absolute prohibition has no more chance in Europe
than the snowball of the classic simile, and one might as well talk
to a turtle on the subject as to these liquor-drinking but temperate
peoples."

From Munich to Vienna is about a day's journey and the third-class
accommodations are the poorest I encountered in Europe. I sat in one
of these compartments with three Austrians for the entire distance
without saying a word, assuming that none of them spoke English. As our
train was drawing into Vienna I unthinkingly enquired the time of the
man opposite me. He replied in excellent English and we both smiled to
think that all day we had sat in silence although communication would
have been possible if we had only known it.

"You are an American, are you not?" he asked.

"Yes," I replied.

"What are you doing away over here?"

"Just knocking around the country," I informed him. "Do you know where
I can find a cheap hotel in Vienna?"

He said that he did and, when we arrived at the station, very kindly
conducted me to a clean and modest hostelry.

"What are your plans for the evening?" he enquired.

"I have none," I said.

"I expect to meet a couple of my friends and should be very glad to
have you come along," he added cordially.

I cheerfully accepted this opportunity of making some acquaintances in
a city the size of Vienna. We boarded a street car, received a transfer
about the dimensions of an American Sunday newspaper, changed to
another line and were soon at a café, where I was introduced to his two
friends.

These three Austrians were clean-cut chaps of the middle class.
During the evening I learned that their occupations were respectively
piano-tuner, barber and window-trimmer. To add an American tramp
to this trio made, I thought, a rather extraordinary assortment of
vocations. The prospects for a lively evening looked very gloomy, for
the combined wealth of such an aggregation was naturally small. We
dined at a big restaurant and then set out to see the town.

First we lodged ourselves in one of Vienna's large cafés, where we
remained for two hours watching the fascinating crowds and listening to
the music. During this time we had but one glass each of the delicious
Vienna coffee and when I suggested that it was only right that we
should continue to buy while sitting at a table and enjoying ourselves
my companions assured me that it was all right to spend a whole evening
in a café with the purchase of but one drink, for every one did it. As
an American this seemed strange to me, to say the least. I confess that
I felt rather sheepish about it.

The barber and the piano-tuner bade us farewell and the window-trimmer
and I started out to see Vienna by moonlight. I shortly discovered that
the party was to be at my expense for, as poor as I was, I was a rich
man compared to my Austrian companion who from his vocation received a
salary of twenty dollars a month. However, I was willing to carry him
for a while as he was not only good company but served as an excellent
guide.

The places we left unseen in the night life of Vienna do not exist.
My window-trimmer friend certainly knew the town and led me into all
the cafés and joints he could find. We were ready for anything and
after a general round of the more respectable places we heard of a
large public ball which was being held in the opposite side of the
city, and thither we decided to go. The late Hinky Dink's dances in
Chicago or the "Chickens' Ball" given in honour of an ex-pugilist in
San Francisco might be considered the last word in refinement compared
with this Vienna function. It would be indiscreet to go into a detailed
description of this "social" affair for fear of infringing on the
American postal laws. The immense hall was crowded with representatives
of Vienna's underworld. The women were attired in short skirts,
tights and one-piece bathing suits. Liquor was so plentiful that it
rose and fell like the ocean tide. The rag, the turkey trot and other
modern dances of America, which are the subject of so much criticism,
would look like devotional exercises alongside of the steps that were
executed at this four-in-the-morning function.

The daytime I spent by myself seeing the more ennobling sights of the
city, while my Viennese pal arranged neckties, collars, shirts and
pajamas in the windows of a large clothing store. With the aid of
Baedeker I made as thorough an investigation of the daylight sights of
the city as I had made of those of the night.

Each evening I met my native friend. One night we went for dinner
to a quiet little restaurant, where we made the acquaintance of a
floorwalker in one of the large department stores of the metropolis and
his elderly fiancée, who were seated at the same table with us. They
were an interesting pair. It was a mystery to the woman why I should
have wanted to come to Austria when America was such a fine country.
"You must be very rich to be able to travel around the world," was a
remark she made--a remark I had heard probably five hundred times
during my trip.

On the way to the café the window-trimmer and I were approached by a
street vendor who was selling plaster of paris busts of the famous men
of Austria.

"How much are they?" I enquired.

"Two dollars each," he replied.

"I will give you a nickel for one," I said as a joke.

"All right, sir," he exclaimed in an instant, and half dazed with the
sudden reduction in his price I bought two of the images, giving one
to my friend. The other I purposely let fall on the cement sidewalk
and the bust of Francis Joseph, whose likeness it was, went into a
thousand pieces at the feet of the vendor--who was much disgusted at
my wilful extravagance. The Austrian drew the bust of a two-year-old
baby, purporting to represent one of Austria's illustrious sons at that
tender age, and this ungainly toy he presented very formally to the
café keeper's wife, who presided at the till. She received the piece of
bric-a-brac in a most gracious manner and with much amusement. The baby
was perched on the top of the till and there remained the rest of the
evening.

Late that night I was the guest of the window-trimmer in the room in
which he lived. He had prepared a supper of rye bread, cheese and beer.
The repast consumed, he entertained me by playing a few simple tunes on
his cheap and shabby-looking violin. About midnight we separated and
as I was leaving Vienna in the morning we said our last farewell--among
the most touching of my trip.

On my way to Budapest I made the acquaintance of a Serbian fisherman,
an Hungarian blacksmith and a plumber. They all spoke English, for they
had lived in America, and when they were not talking to me they were
expounding the fine points of that nation to their countrymen in the
third-class coach of the train. A Roumanian who was aboard, becoming
interested in my travels, invited me to be his guest on a three weeks'
horseback trip through the mountains of the Balkan States. He said that
we could put up at farmhouses for nothing and that my only expense
would be the hire of the saddle and the horse. This was a very alluring
invitation but the state of my finances made it impossible for me to
accept.

Baedeker states that only the "lower orders," whatever that means,
use third-class coaches in Europe. He should travel in this manner
for a while and he would change his mind. The German third-class is
good enough for any human being, and the passengers whom I met looked
very civilised and had all the appearance of taking at least a weekly
bath and of wearing underclothes. The Austrian third-class is an
exception and carries a lower grade of humanity, representatives of the
Great Unwashed, who comprise about eighty per cent. of this earth's
inhabitants.

[Illustration: The Roman Forum--A "Vacant Lot" of Rome]

I mingled with the bustling crowds on the streets of Budapest for
three days and then became a second-class passenger _en route_ to
Paris, there being no through third-class coach. This journey through
the beautiful Austrian and Swiss Alps was uneventful. I was only
entertained by a German, who had returned from America where he held
a position as cook in a short-order restaurant in Butte, and a French
couple who fed their two-year-old baby large quantities of beer. This
infant had a capacity that would make many an American undergraduate
envious.

Alighting from my train at midnight I walked through the crowded
station and in a minute was making my way along a deserted street of
Paris. I intended to locate an hotel as soon as possible. I had hardly
gone a block when a heavy down-pour of rain set in and I foresaw that
I was in for a thorough drenching unless I sought shelter at once. At
that moment a man appeared out of the darkness and enquired if I wanted
an hotel. It had been my custom to decline all street hotel hawkers
but, in view of the heavy rain, I decided to accept the services of the
man and to find out what kind of an establishment he had. He took my
hand bag and started back towards the station with me close behind him.
We turned to the right and walked along the railroad tracks while the
rain continued to come down in torrents. Three blocks in this direction
and my guide crossed the tracks and proceeded down a dark street.
Suspicions began to arise within me as to where the Frenchman was
leading me. My knowledge of French was so limited that I could not find
out anything but that I was going to an hotel. I decided to continue. I
had heard stories of how innocent travellers are sometimes trapped by
the thugs of European cities, drugged and robbed. This thought came to
my mind but did not weaken my determination to go ahead and get under
cover as soon as possible. We continued along this dark thoroughfare.
We seemed to be in the wholesale district and there was not a human
being in sight. Finally we turned down a narrow alley, at the end of
which was a decrepit stairway. Up this rickety flight we ascended and
at the top turned into a room dimly lighted by the intermittent flicker
of a candle, which was resting on a high desk. Behind this desk I could
see a bearded Frenchman who peered over his spectacles as the two of
us entered. My guide and the old fellow exchanged a few words and I
was conducted down the hall to my room. This compartment contained
a wash-stand and a heavy wooden bed. Inside, my suspicions began to
increase as to the safety of my place of abode. There seemed to be
an atmosphere of mystery and I thought that I might expect anything.
I listened at the door for strange sounds but heard nothing but a
creaking noise which seemed to come from the back end of the building.
Before retiring I decided to take every precaution and made up my mind
that if any Frenchman attempted to disturb my rest with the intention
of relieving me of my money he was going to be welcomed with at least
the best fight he ever encountered. I first locked the door with a pass
key I had in my possession. Then I placed the back of the bed against
the door and wedged the wash-stand in between it and the wall. The room
was so small that the stand made a tight fit in the space left for
it. Armed with a piece of pipe I found in one of the drawers of the
wash-stand I threw myself on the bed, clothes and all, and shortly was
as sound asleep as if guarded by a regiment.

My suspicions may have been nothing but a bubble to explode in the
morning. However, I am sure that I was in the proper place to be
stripped of my coin by any means necessary. I evidently was not worth
plucking. I was awakened in the morning by the moving trains in the
yards near-by and without any delay grabbed my bag and in a minute was
out of the joint on my way to a more civilised part of the city. I
learned from a French shop-keeper a few days later that in this very
lodging house in which I feared foul play, two Englishmen had been
gagged, robbed and dumped into an alley for the rest of the night.

My experience in this hotel netted me two things: scabies and
influenza. The bed clothes were so filthy that I was infected by a
germ which penetrates the skin and causes no end of trouble. It was
fully three months later that I mastered this disease, known by the
euphonious name of scabies, and only after prolonged treatment by a
doctor. My exposure to the rain and cold gave me an attack of influenza
which, with its accompanying fever, pains and aches, was poor equipment
with which to see Paris.

In spite of this malady I kept moving and succeeded in finding a
clean and comfortable room at one franc a day on the fifth floor of a
small hotel. The main objection to this place was the absence of an
elevator and it was a most fatiguing effort for a sick man to climb
these five flights several times a day. Later I learned that I had not
much improved upon my neighbourhood of the first night, for I was now
located in _Monte Mart_.

To spend a few days in Paris without company except a case of influenza
was anything but a cheerful outlook. I went to a drug store and told
one of the clerks my symptoms. He put up a prescription which I took
conscientiously, at the same time exerting my will power not to let
the disease get sufficient hold on my constitution to force me to bed
and make me a public charge of the municipal authorities. Each day I
arose, hoping that my fever would subside, and dragged myself about
the city. On the _Rue de Turbigo_ in the vicinity of the _Halles
Centrales_, I fainted away and fell to the sidewalk. When I recovered
consciousness I was speeding at a rapid rate in an ambulance for the
municipal hospital. A glass of water was being choked down my throat.
This resuscitated me. Accompanied by one of the ambulance attendants I
returned to my hotel.

The average visitor to Paris places himself in the hands of a guide
connected with one of the large hotels and is thus relieved of all the
routine and detail of systematically and profitably seeing the city.
A guide is a luxury never meant for a poor man. I never entertained
the thought of hiring such an individual. A map of the streets, a
Baedeker and some intelligence was all I had. With this outfit I
explored Paris. Sometimes I would go about sight-seeing methodically,
and again I would simply drift. To drift is the more interesting. Down
the _Boulevard Magneta_ I found my way to the _Halles Centralles_, the
central and largest market of Paris. I wandered through the interesting
_pavillons_ which cover twenty-two acres. I jostled along the narrow
streets, covered with hay, decayed vegetables and other refuse, and
mingled with the natives. I little realised what was in store for me. I
crossed the Seine and visited the _Hotel des Invalides_, under the dome
of which repose the ashes of Napoleon I. I moved on to the Pantheon
where I attached myself to a group of American tourists conducted by a
Cook's guide. This harmless gathering surely could not lead me into any
trouble. I stood in their midst and listened to the mumbling speech of
the guide as though I were a regular member of the party and had paid
my fee. We were taken to the vaults in which are located the tombs of
Victor Hugo, Mirabeau, Rousseau, Voltaire and others. An attendant of
the Pantheon went in advance of our little procession and unlocked the
heavy doors which led into the various tombs and the curious looking
crowd would draw together while the guide grew eloquent on the life
of some reclining corpse. When we surrounded the tomb of Voltaire I
became so engrossed by the fact that I was in the presence of the
remains of this master mind of the past that I failed to leave with the
party and remained a minute, rather stupefied. When I returned to my
senses I found that the porter had locked the door of the vault and I
was incarcerated in the gruesome abode of a dead man. The Thomas Cook
and Son party had returned to the main floor and I was the sole living
creature in the crypt of the building. To add to my ghastly situation
the lights were turned off, for it was nearly night-fall. My prospects
for immediate freedom were rapidly diminishing. I decided to call out
in the hope that I would attract the attention of one of the porters on
the main floor. I gave a shriek which sent shivers down my spine and
nearly frightened me to death. I at once saw that it was useless to
shout as a means of being rescued, for the echoes of my call resounded
in such confusion from the walls of the small vault that they sounded
like a bedlam of bass drums turned loose. If I shrieked again I was
afraid that I might awake Voltaire. I had heard ghost stories in which
the main character, on a dare, voluntarily entered the tomb of a dead
man; but I never thought that I should play this rôle against my will
in the heart of Paris. There was nothing left for me to do but wait
until some one came to liberate me. The prospect of this event's
happening before morning was very remote. I therefore resigned myself
to my confinement and concluded to spend the night communing with
the spirit of Voltaire. I hope that the august gentleman enjoyed my
company. I know that I didn't enjoy his. On previous occasions in my
life I have, under trying circumstances, spent lengthy and wearisome
nights, but as I recall them, they were mere flashes of time compared
to the long, ghostly and dark hours I slept with Voltaire. It was
about six o'clock in the evening and I estimated that it would be at
least nine in the morning before another party of travellers would be
conducted into the vaults of the Pantheon. I made up my mind to spend
most of this time in sleep, if such a thing were possible. I stretched
out on the cold pavement, alongside of my bed-mate, closed my eyes and
tried to imagine that I was in a warm couch and thus hypnotise myself
into sleep. My mind refused to transform the hard slab under me into
a comfortable mattress. The corpse of Voltaire was haunting my brain
and the stillness of the tomb nearly drove me insane. The long hours
wore away while I lay awake, my mind full of hideous thoughts and
imaginations. About midnight I dozed off from pure mental exhaustion
and spent the rest of the night the victim of the most gruesome and
ghastly dreams any man ever had. I awoke at six o'clock, only to spend
three more hours in this fearful prison cell. I was literally buried
alive. Shortly after nine I heard the clump of feet and chatter of
voices and I knew a group of tourists was approaching. My spirits were
immediately transformed. In a minute the tourists stood before my tomb.
The door was unlocked and I rushed out like a wild beast. The attendant
stood speechless. The sightseers drew away in fright. A living man
leaping from a tomb of the dead! I did not wait to give any explanation
or receive congratulations on obtaining my freedom, but bounded down
the crypt to the stairs, up to the main floor and out of the Pantheon
into the fresh air. Those fifteen hours with Voltaire seemed like a
century, and I sauntered down the street with the feeling that Rip van
Winkle had nothing on me.



CHAPTER XVII

FROM LUXURY TO HUNGER


RECOLLECTIONS of a jail sentence in the Pantheon were enough to make
any man leave town. The next morning I was riding through northern
France gazing at the beautiful fields and gently rolling hills from
the window of a third-class coach. I was bound for London. At Calais
I filed by the immigration officials with the rest of the third-class
passengers before I was allowed on board the ship sailing for Dover.
This is an indignity which the American tourist who travels first- or
second-class does not have to undergo.

The soft outline of England's shore appeared through the mist of the
channel, and as I stood on the deck of the steamer I turned over
in my mind the fact that my trip would soon be over. A few weeks'
roaming in the British Isles and I thought I would be on my way across
the Atlantic. But with a foot-loose traveller anything is likely to
happen--and England proved no exception in having a surprise for me
which upset my vague plans and entirely changed my course.

It is only a few hours from Dover to London and the road passes through
picturesque country scenery. The green fields and meadows, the fat,
wholesome sheep, peaceably grazing, the quaint windmills and zig-zag
fences and the substantial village houses all made me fall in love
with England at once. At dusk I was one of London's seven million. I
was now in a land where the people speak a language I had not used
very much for some time, and where I would be able to make myself
understood without using my hands. I could also eat in almost true
American style. England is the only country in Europe where one can get
a real breakfast. It was certainly a pleasure to sit down to a bowl of
porridge, bacon and eggs and even pancakes after the monotonous rolls
and coffee, and occasional jam, of the continent.

That evening I sat in a comfortable arm-chair before a cheerful fire,
in a cozy dormitory study of Lincoln College, Oxford. I was the guest
of a California friend, an undergraduate of the University. It was a
bit of luxury that I thought I had well earned and I looked forward
with pleasure to a week of rest and comfort, which I badly needed after
my illness in Paris. I felt that such a rest would put me in proper
physical trim for resuming my travels.

For seven days I led the life of a plutocrat. I could hardly believe
it. I arose each morning at nine o'clock and climbed into a tub of hot
water, prepared by a servant; then (among other articles) into a pair
of shoes polished by the same individual. After breakfast, served in my
room, I would take a stroll about the college grounds with an English
cap on my head, a brier pipe in my mouth and a walking stick in my
hand.

Oxford is an ideal place in which to take the rest cure. Beside
its academic atmosphere, which one feels immediately, the historic
buildings of the several colleges with their graceful spires and
sacred associations, the miles of green turf fields for sport and the
winding river languidly pursuing its course among the drooping elms,
made a scene to which it is easy to become passionately attached, and
one in which I lost myself, or rather found myself, completely. Such
environment would cure the most helpless invalid. It made a new being
of me.

In the afternoon I would watch a game of football, hockey or tennis.
I was much impressed by the universality of sport in England, and
especially at Oxford. All the students take part in some form of
athletics, and the University has provided dozens of hockey, cricket
and football fields in addition to many boat houses and facilities
for rowing and water sports. I attended the four hundredth meeting
of the Davenant Society, a literary organisation of Lincoln College
undergraduates, and heard a paper read by the Rev. Dr. Carlyle on
William Morris. The members of the society took part in a free
discussion of the subject afterwards and many admirable impromptu
speeches were made. I heard a debate on Socialism in the Oxford Union,
one of the speakers for the negative being a Hindu student. It was the
close of the University term and several of the students were giving
celebrations in their rooms. I was a guest at one of these at which the
most striking feature was--to me--the large number of empty bottles
that were lined up in rows on the centre-table at the close of the
function. I was told that this room had been occupied by John Wesley,
founder of the Methodist Society, when he was an Oxford undergraduate!

In the chapel of Magdalen College I heard the famous male choir,
probably the best in England. I called, one afternoon, on the Cowley
fathers--or Society of Saint John the Evangelist, a monastic order of
the Church of England--at their mother house in Cowley, a suburb of
Oxford. I visited the village of Iffley and saw the ancient church of
Saint Mary the Virgin. This edifice is one of the few Norman churches
in England, and is a typical example of the twelfth-century village
church. I got an insight into English home life by making a trip to
Shipton-under-Wychwood to visit relatives of a friend in America.
Shipton-under-Wychwood is a representative English village of about
eight hundred souls, with an ancient parish church, squire's court and
park, and many quaint old English homes. My host lived in a substantial
old house with the proper quota of servants. Everything was carried
on with, what seemed to an American, an undue amount of ceremony.
These good people shunned all modern conveniences, such as telephones,
electric lights, and up-to-date plumbing appliances, considering them
vulgar and commonplace.

My high living continued. My Oxford friend accompanied me to London
and we both registered at the Inns of Court on Holborn street. This
hotel, facing Lincoln Inn Fields, was a pleasant, moderate-priced
establishment, and was the only hostelry in which I had stayed which
could be ranked as first-class. Of course, I was living beyond my
means, but it was out of the question for me to drag my Oxford friend
down to my usual plane of living.

I once came across an American from the Middle West travelling in
Europe and asked him if he had been to London. He replied that he had,
and when I enquired how he liked the National Gallery he looked at me
with the intelligence of a cow. I then ventured a query about Saint
Paul's Cathedral--and he told me that he had not seen it. I thought I
was on a safe footing when I asked for his impressions of Westminster
Abbey and Houses of Parliament. He had missed these also.

"What did you see?" I asked.

"Oh, I spent about an hour walking up and down the main street, looking
in the store windows."

If this was all there is to "seeing" a European city, why not stay at
home on the farm?

My collegiate friend and I had our hands full with the many places we
mapped out, and we were far from satisfied when we had leisurely taken
them all in. The National, Tate and Wallace Galleries were on our
list. We spent hours in the British Museum. We visited both the Abbey
and Saint Paul's several times, as well as countless other churches. We
saw the Tower of London, Buckingham Palace, Westminster Cathedral, Hyde
Park and so forth. At night we visited the various halls and theatres
and on Sundays went to church in the morning and evening, and in the
afternoon attended the concerts given under the auspices of the Sunday
Concert Society by the Queen's Hall Orchestra.

My money was getting low. Something had to happen--and happen soon. My
Oxonian friend left for St. Malo, in northern France, to spend a month
studying French. I decided to take stock and find how much money I
had. Counting all my cash I found that I had but thirty-five dollars.
Over five thousand miles from home, out of work, with no friends and
only thirty-five dollars--it meant I was broke. Work in England under
normal conditions would be hardly profitable, for I could at best earn
only about twenty shillings a week. At this time work was impossible.
A great coal strike was on and every line of business was in a very
disorganised state, due to the consequent fuel famine. Trains were
running intermittently. Factories were closed and the country was full
of the starving and the unemployed. I had in mind purchasing a steerage
ticket for America or obtaining a job as waiter or deckhand on a
trans-Atlantic liner.

[Illustration: ST. JOHN'S CHURCH, NEEDHAM MARKET]

I drifted with the crowds along the Strand. I continued down Holborn
Street and came to Ludgate Circus, where I went into the office of
Thomas Cook and Son. There I found a letter from Norway. It was from
Mr. Scott Turner, manager of the Arctic Coal Company, offering me a
position in Tromso, Norway, and on the island of West Spitzbergen, at
one hundred dollars a month and expenses.

This letter was the opening sentence in a volume of adventure.

I had foreseen that my funds would soon run out, and, while in Italy,
had written several letters to a number of business concerns asking
for work. One of these was to Mr. Scott Turner, whom I had known years
ago in Seattle and of whose whereabouts I had lost track. On receipt
of Turner's address from my brother in America, I wrote him for a job,
telling him that I was working my way around the world, and that being
a poor man there was little luxury in it. In his reply he said that he
thought he could make use of a man of about my size and shape, and he
outlined a most bewildering list of duties. I was to spend two months
in Tromso arranging the company's files, running errands and doing
general office work. On the first of June I was to sail for Spitzbergen
at the expense of the company, where I was to have charge of the mine
office, operate the store, look after the supplies in four warehouses
and have charge of the commissary department, which fed two hundred and
fifty men. Turner stated that these duties would take up about fifteen
hours each day, and that if I was not needed in the mine I could have
the rest of the time to myself.

After reading Turner's letter I at once looked up Tromso and
Spitzbergen on a map. Tromso I found to be three hundred miles north
of the Arctic Circle, or four hundred miles farther north than Nome;
while Spitzbergen was about one thousand miles from the North Pole.
The Arctic Coal Company was an American corporation mining coal on the
island of West Spitzbergen and its purchasing office was in Tromso.

Fifteen minutes after reading this letter I was on my way to the
Arctic Circle--in a third-class coach going to Newcastle. _En route_
I stopped off for a few days' visit with an uncle of mine, the vicar
of the English church in a small village called Needham Market. He had
not seen me since I was an infant in Canada, and I suppose that he was
curious to see what sort of a specimen his tramp nephew would prove to
be. I was, at the same time, anxious to make a good impression on the
old gentleman, whom I knew to be full of aristocratic British ideas.

England turned out to be a land in which I was destined to live in
luxury. That evening I sat at the vicarage dining table and put away a
thoroughly good meal, which included wine and which was served with all
the ceremony that an English household could muster. I had no evening
clothes. My uncle thoughtfully dispensed with such garments himself
out of consideration for me. I found him to be a high Churchman, a
staunch Conservative and a man who gave the impression that he disliked
everything American. He considered us a crude lot, with a few virtues
but somewhat vulgar and best tolerated at a distance. The Monroe
Doctrine was to him like a red rag to a bull. He argued that the
population of America was made up of half castes through inter-marriage
with negroes, and that our climate was so hot that it produced a lazy
race of people. I laughed at such statements and tried to accept his
hospitality in as gracious a manner as I could.

He lent me his bicycle and I rode to the neighbouring village of
Stowmarket. Here I visited the parish church, obtaining the key of
the edifice from the bar-keeper across the road. This obliging person
was very courteous and kindly. He conducted me through the church,
discoursing on its points of interest and displaying great pride in the
building. On the walls of his saloon, behind the bar, were pictures
of the church choir and building. He gave me a notice with a list of
Lenten services. I bought a drink.

Upon leaving my uncle's he very kindly offered me some money to help
defray the expenses of my trip. I did not, however, accept this
well-intended assistance.

The road passes through many interesting places from Needham to
Newcastle, and I regretted very much that I was compelled to get
nothing but a train-window glimpse of the great cathedrals at Ely,
Lincoln, York and Durham. After lodging at Newcastle in a cheap hotel
I sailed for Norway as a steerage passenger on the _Jupiter_, a small
steamer belonging to a Norwegian company with the overpowering name
of _Det Nordenfjeldske Dampskilsselskab_. My steerage ticket cost me
twenty-five dollars, which left but three dollars to see me through to
my destination. I soon discovered that the price of this ticket did
not include meals. The journey from Newcastle to Tromso requires seven
days, and I was therefore confronted with the problem of stretching
three dollars over a period of one week. With this sum I had to buy
food from the steerage steward. When it gave out I had to fast.

There are few attractive features connected with Norwegian steerage
accommodations, which rival those of Italian ships in their lack of
conveniences. But ups and downs were a part of the game, and I recalled
with pleasure--and regret--the good meals and beds I had enjoyed during
my sojourn in England.

The first morning out, Stavenger, on the coast of southern Norway,
hove in sight amid a cluster of snow-clad hills. We had little time
for this small town, and after an hour's stop the _Jupiter_ turned
her nose towards the north and resumed her journey. At Bergen I
tramped down the gangway with my fellow passengers of the steerage
and spent a few hours, during the time our ship was in the harbour,
roaming the streets. I found my way in and out among the alleys of
the fishy-smelling fish markets and ate some food which I bought,
taking advantage of land prices. In Trondhjem I made my way through a
snow storm to the Cathedral, returning to the ship by way of the main
street, where I laid in a supply of cheese and bread.

The trip along the Norwegian coast is a beautiful one, and our boat
slowly wound through the maze of narrow channels and picturesque
fjords. For a few hours we would be hemmed in by an endless number
of little snow-covered isles on one side, with the abrupt and rugged
cliffs of the Norwegian mainland on the other. In a short time we would
steam out into the open ocean. The first morning out from Trondhjem
we crossed the Arctic Circle. A feeling of intense loneliness came
over me and I almost imagined that I was going to another world. The
snow-covered mountains and islands, the sharpness of the cold, the
absence of any habitations along the coast, the incessant and silent
plunging of the ship, the dreary surroundings of the steerage and the
emptiness of my stomach, all filled me with the most lonely and forlorn
thoughts. Where was I going and what put it into my head to wander to
this out-of-the-way corner of the earth?

The problem of food had become a serious one. My money had given out
and the supply of provisions I had laid in at Trondhjem had all been
eaten. The steerage steward had taken a dislike to me, for I had
rebelled at the small portions he dealt out in the beginning of the
trip, when I had money with which to pay. I tried to make up to him in
the hope of a "handout," but instead I nearly got a "kick-out." There
was nothing to do but fast until I reached my journey's end.

Late one afternoon, couched in the centre of a vast desert of snow, a
small village appeared. Our boat directed her nose towards this dreary
and lonesome-looking settlement, and in a short time was alongside the
pier. It was Tromso. How glad I was! As soon as the lines were tied
and the ship made fast I descended the gangway and set out to find my
friend Turner. I didn't have a cent of money and hadn't eaten for two
days.



CHAPTER XVIII

A RESIDENT OF THE ARCTIC ZONE


ON alighting from the ship I took a deep breath of the fishy atmosphere
and proceeded up the street lugging my two bags. I was now three
hundred miles north of the Arctic Circle, and the island town of Tromso
was buried in eight feet of snow. I had walked barely ten yards when
my feet flew out from under me and I came down with a fearful thud.
My two grips fell from my hands and slid about on the slippery snow
of the packed street like drops of quicksilver. I gathered my meagre
belongings together and started again. Ten yards more--and I fell in
the same undignified manner. I thought the eight thousand inhabitants
of Tromso were gazing at me, as the crowds on the sidewalks congregated
to see the drunken foreigner perform. I tried again to make some
progress, but it seemed impossible for me to keep my equilibrium. I
nearly became discouraged. A waxed floor is a ploughed field compared
to the winter smoothness of a Tromso street.

I found Turner in his room at the Grand Hotel and we were very glad to
see one another, for we had not seen each other for four years. To meet
up here in the frozen north made a reunion of two Americans especially
cordial.

A Mr. Gilson of Pennsylvania, superintendent of the Arctic Coal
Company, was Turner's roommate, and, with my advent, the foreign
population of Tromso was raised to three. This scarcity of aliens
made us conspicuous members of the community and a great source of
curiosity. We three comprised the American staff of the company; and
we all lived at the Grand Hotel. The hotel was a three-story frame
building buried up to the window sills of the first floor in snow. It
was conducted on purely Norwegian lines.

The average inhabitant of Tromso lives on an incessant diet of fish and
boiled potatoes, with an occasional piece of cheese or canned "salt
horse." Breakfast is almost an unknown meal, and when it does take
place it is seldom held earlier than ten o'clock. Dinner follows at
two-thirty in the afternoon and supper at nine in the evening. This
is a most distressing schedule when one wishes to keep office hours
and accomplish some work during the day. By a special arrangement with
the proprietor of the hotel we were able to have our breakfast served
in our rooms each morning at half-past eight. Cheese and bread being
the usual diet, we could not expect any great variety of food at this
meal. On their arrival several months ago, Turner had expressed a wish
for soft boiled eggs and Gilson for fried eggs, and these, accompanied
with bread and coffee, had been the menu of the initial meal of the
day ever since. When I arrived there must have been great confusion in
the kitchen among the cooks and waiters to determine what odd notions
I might have about eating. However, without consulting me, the maid
appeared on my first morning with one soft boiled egg and one fried
egg, and this was my assortment for breakfast every day of my month's
stay in the hotel.

Bath-tubs seem to be a rarity in Norway, and the town of Tromso had the
distinction of possessing one bath house. Our hotel and all private
houses, with few exceptions, did not contain a tub. To add to this
scarcity, the one bath house only opened its doors to bathers on one
day of the week. We American residents were three of its most regular
patrons. Bathing in a wash-basin is an unsatisfactory process as well
as an extremely awkward one. However, we were forced to this means
of cleansing ourselves during the interval that the bath-tubs of the
village reposed behind closed doors.

The morning after my arrival I reported for work at the company's
office. I was at first assigned to arranging and card indexing a
tangled pile of machinery catalogues and supply hand-books. I next
prepared a systematic card index of all the articles of merchandise
that the company had purchased during the previous years of its
existence. I finally became sufficiently familiar with the business to
assist in the buying of the food and mining supplies for the summer
season at the mine.

The office was a crowded little space on the ground floor of a frame
building on the main street of Tromso, and consisted of three small
rooms. In addition to the three Americans the staff included a chief
clerk and an office boy. The chief clerk was a Norwegian who had served
as an American soldier in the Philippines and who spoke excellent
English. He was an invaluable man and acted as the channel through
which all business of the office was transacted, for the Americans, not
knowing Norwegian, had to have him translate all letters and contracts
and interpret all conversations. The office boy was a young native who
had acquired a fair smattering of English. Although an industrious
lad he was frequently drawn from his work in amazement at what he
considered the outlandish and freakish mannerisms of the Americans.

The office was busy buying supplies for the summer and coming winter
seasons at the mine on Spitzbergen, making contracts for the sale of
coal, chartering ships and hiring men as miners and labourers.

Spitzbergen is entirely frozen in eight months of the year, and the
mine had an open season, or time when the coal could be shipped out,
of four months. It was necessary to have a winter crew and a summer
crew. The winter men, who numbered about one hundred, were now on the
island and were out of touch with the world, with the exception of
communication by means of a wireless station operated by the Norwegian
government. This crew did nothing but mine, and the coal was placed in
a stock pile alongside of the wharf. A new force of two hundred men was
taken to the mine at the opening of the summer season and the huge task
of shipping out the coal mined during the winter was undertaken.

The company chartered all its eight boats with the exception of one,
the _William D. Munroe_, which it owned. This ship was in dry-dock
undergoing a thorough and expensive overhauling under the numerous
and many unnecessary instructions from officials and inspectors of
the Norwegian government. The company chartered the other seven tramp
steamers at the rate of one hundred and twenty-five dollars a day,
procuring them through ship brokers in London and Newcastle.

The coal mined was bituminous with a low percentage of ash and was
considered exceptionally good fuel for steamers. The demand for it much
exceeded the supply, the production at this time being only twenty-five
thousand tons a year, and there was a good market for it at five
and six dollars a ton delivered. The larger part of the output was
sold to Norwegian steamship companies, most of it being consigned to
Christiania, Christiansund, Bergen and Trondhjem. Several cargoes were
despatched to Archangel, on the White Sea, for a Russian concern.

Aside from business I found much time to devote to the social life of
Tromso. On the second evening after my arrival I received an invitation
to attend a _ski_-ing party of young men and women. It was the plan
to _ski_ over the hills of the island back of Tromso to a small cabin
about five miles distant, and there cook a meal over a log fire. I knew
nothing about _ski_-ing and had never seen a pair of _ski_. When one of
my Norwegian acquaintances offered to lend me a pair I was puzzled to
know how any one could get over the snow with such fence rails strapped
to his feet. I was perfectly willing to learn. I donned the two
unfamiliar slats and, assisted by two pretty Norwegian women, who did
not understand English, started out on the five-mile trip to the cabin.
Ten miles was a long distance for a novice. The party numbered about
twenty boys and girls, and they were soon far in the lead while my two
female aides tussled with me in the rear. We proceeded smoothly enough
(the arms of the two girls around my waist and mine, of course, around
theirs) until we came to the first hill. This incline looked about a
thousand miles long and almost vertically steep. My escorts were expert
at the sport, but they did not have sufficient strength to prevent my
causing a catastrophe. We started down the hill and in a few seconds
were going at the speed of an express train. I never expected to reach
the bottom in anything approaching a dignified position. About fifty
yards of such travelling was all I could stand, and then the spill took
place. I wasn't man enough to fall by myself, but had to drag the
poor girls down with me. The three of us rolled down the hill together
and landed, half buried in the snow, in the most undignified pile I
ever was in. The party ahead returned to untangle and dig us out. It
was a most intimate affair. One young woman was almost completely
concealed, being half submerged in the snow, while I was so irregularly
sprawled out on top of her that she had no possible means of being
resurrected until I was removed. I, in turn, was pinned down--for the
other young woman had one of her nether limbs so securely entwined
around my neck that I felt roped to the earth. She, at the same time,
was struggling in a vain effort to dislodge one of her _ski_ from
the snow where it had penetrated several feet. The three of us were
securely anchored, and if we had tried to attain our relative positions
by a deliberate plan we could not have been so successful.

[Illustration: _Upper_: THE AUTHOR'S HOME IN TROMSO]

[Illustration: _Lower_: _Tromso in Summer-time_]

With the assistance of the rest of the party we were finally
unravelled. I arose only to repeat the performance, not with the same
resultant intimacy and proximity as in my first experience, however,
for the young women arranged to keep at a certain distance and I was
allowed to navigate by myself. My courage was not much slackened by the
first unhappy incident, for I tackled each hill as it came, although I
knew that I should come to grief in the shape of a tangled mass at the
bottom. I made a jolly good fool of myself, I know, and at each attempt
swept everything before me, dragging down Norwegian widows, massage
artists, fishermen's daughters--and all within arms' reach as I swooped
by. This performance continued until we arrived at the cabin.

Soon we were all refreshed by coffee and sandwiches which the girls
prepared and we sat around the big log fire singing and smoking.
Everybody smoked, women and all, for it is a common thing for the fair
sex to use cigarettes in Norway. I dreaded to see the time approach for
us to depart, for I knew that our return home would be a repetition of
our eventful journey to the cabin. It was two o'clock in the morning
and the sun was rising on the distant horizon--and I thought I might
show signs of improvement when assisted by daylight. We started back,
the leaders of the party very judiciously selecting a course which
was not so hilly and which portended a more peaceful journey. It is
a rather simple matter to glide along on the level, and the way we
returned didn't prove nearly so disastrous as the way we came. I
managed to conduct myself fairly well, for the time being.

When we reached the edge of the town, where the hard packed road which
led down hill to the main street begins, we all took off our _ski_ and
converted them into small sleds by sitting on them and riding into
the village. I decided to try this new method. We all strung out at
intervals of about twenty feet and started from the summit on a mile
shoot into the heart of the town. I managed to begin all right. I had
only gone a few yards, however, when the _ski_ beneath me became
unmanageable and I could not steer them. We had all acquired a terrific
speed. I was sandwiched in between two young women, one sliding a few
feet in front of me and the other several paces in the rear, I reached
a curve in the road! I lost my _ski_ and continued sliding down the
cold and hard road on the seat of my trousers. The next minute over
I turned and grabbed the first object with which I came in contact.
It was the girl behind me who had overtaken me. I clung to her like
a leech and the two of us rolled over for several yards and finally
landed in a heap on the side of the road. Another intimate pile. She
had lost her _ski_; her skirts were clustered around her neck; my hat
had disappeared--and we lay in the gutter like two pairs of scissors.
My feminine associate had her feet extended towards the summit of the
hill and mine were pointing towards the town below. We unwound. I got
up and assisted her to her feet. We walked the rest of the way to the
village.

To be the cause of so much human wreckage was enough to discourage
me. However, I made up my mind to persist, for _ski_-ing was the
only outdoor sport in this part of the world. One of the young women
condoled with me when she learned that _ski_-ing was not in vogue
in my country, for she thought it was a pity that we had no outdoor
sports. During two-thirds of the year there is not a wheeled vehicle
to be seen in Tromso, all transportation being conducted on sleds and
the majority of the inhabitants spending much of their time on _ski_.
Even the five-year-olds are expert at this method of locomotion. I,
therefore, decided to learn, in spite of all my reverses, and in a few
weeks became so proficient that I welcomed hills and often complained
because they were not steep enough.

The company bought a house on the hill and we three Americans moved
out of the hotel into a home of our own. Norwegian houses are often
arranged in a most inconvenient manner. The second floor seldom
contains a hallway, and in order to go from one bed room to another, it
is necessary to pass through the private apartment of another member
of the household. Very frequently the maid's room is situated in one
end of the house, and in order to reach her bed-chamber she has to walk
through all the bedrooms. Between all rooms there is a sort of sill
about two inches high running the width of the opening upon which the
door swings. One would think that the occupants of such houses would
become accustomed to these obstructions and learn to step over them.
But this is not the case, for Norwegians are continually falling over
the sills. On one occasion an officer in the Norwegian army, who had
just completed a call on us, was making his ceremonious and prolonged
farewell. With each deep bow he would step back towards the door. He
receded until he toppled over backwards on one of these senseless
sills. The poor chap gathered himself together and left without saying
a word. He was the most embarrassed man I ever saw.

Our house was destitute of furniture, and, as there was not much of a
line of this commodity in town, we spent many evenings as carpenters
and painters, making tables, beds and chairs with lumber we purchased
from a local merchant. Now that we were in our own home we re-arranged
our mode of living by changing our hours of eating and sleeping. We
adopted a menu which conformed more nearly to what Americans usually
eat. We also did a little entertaining. We decorated the walls of our
house with pictures we cut from the covers of American magazines and
hung up curtains which we imported from England.

The most elaborate social function I had the pleasure of attending was
a house dance given at the home of one of the doctors of the town. My
two American friends and I arrived at the party at about nine o'clock.
The other guests were all present. As we entered the host and hostess
were introducing each one in turn to the others who were lined up in
a row at one end of the room. It is the custom to address a man by
prefixing his vocation to his name, and this manner of designating each
one was used during the introductions. Engineer Hansen, Coppersmith
Johnsen and Fisherman Olsen were all introduced in this way. The three
Americans were simply addressed as "Mister."

It was remarkable to notice the number of people who could speak good
English in Tromso. A few of them had acquired their knowledge by visits
to England, but the majority had learned the language in the schools of
the town. I met one woman who had never been south of the Arctic Circle
who spoke English almost perfectly. There were a number at the doctor's
dance who spoke the language fluently.

After every one was thoroughly introduced, folding doors were opened,
and on tables in the adjoining room stood the most sumptuous supper
any man ever saw. The food was served in buffet fashion, and each
one was requested to help himself to the endless variety of eatables
spread before us. Chicken, fish, sandwiches, salads, cakes and fruits
were piled on this table in such abundance that it looked like the
assemblage of a dozen Christmas dinners. Liquid cheer was so plentiful
that one almost believed all the booze in town was concentrated in
this one room. Every conceivable form of liquor was on exhibition, and
it would be a most fastidious drinker who could not find something to
suit his taste. Beer, several kinds of wine, punch, whiskey and even
gin were arrayed before us like the choice liquors in a millionaire
brewer's cellar.

The sight of this bountiful feast nearly paralysed me. I at first
thought it was a dream, and it took several minutes before I was aware
that it was real food and drink. To come up from the steerage to such
a grand meal as this was nothing short of a miracle. I dived in
and--with the rest of the guests--ate heartily.

The Norwegians confine themselves to square dances, somewhat similar
to the Lancers, and to the waltz. This last dance is very much like
the American step, with much more of a hop to it and a larger interval
between the man and his partner. I insisted on teaching several of the
women to two-step. They were very pleased with it, but had difficulty
in becoming accustomed to such proximity to their partner. One woman
became very fond of this near feature, but insisted on my resuming a
distant position as we passed her husband, who was seated at one end
of the room. Those who didn't care to dance played cards and smoked.
The dainty way in which the women handled their cigarettes killed any
prejudice I had nourished about the feminine use of tobacco.

One meal during an evening is evidently not considered sufficient in
Norway, for at four in the morning the same folding doors were opened
and another array of refreshments lay spread before us. The second
assortment was by no means the scraps of the previous meal. It was an
entirely new lot of a different variety, and consisted of pudding, cake
and coffee. All the participants had danced so diligently that they had
acquired new appetites, and the food was all consumed as though it were
the only lot of refreshments served at the party. This second feast
was the customary conclusion of Tromso social functions. Farewells
followed, and the guests departed. We Americans arrived home at six
o'clock, changed our clothes, concluded that it was useless to go to
bed and went directly to the office for the day's work. The dancing
party was a great success, and I could easily have imagined it a New
York affair instead of an Arctic Zone function.

It was now only a couple of weeks before the company's boat, _Munroe_,
was scheduled to make its initial trip to the mine on Spitzbergen. The
office staff had an immense amount of work to dispose of in this time.
Men from all parts of Norway were slowly drifting into Tromso to sign
contracts for summer employment. Supplies were being rushed in. A new
propeller shaft for the _Munroe_ was _en route_ from England. Cabin
fixtures were being installed and many matters were being adjusted to
comply with the maritime regulations of the Norwegian government before
the ship would be permitted to leave port.

The last week several American engineers and their wives began to
arrive. Turner had made arrangements for these experienced men, and
they had signed contracts with the company for a period of two years. A
score of English miners, who had been engaged through a British labour
bureau, also arrived.

With the influx of Norwegian miners and labourers the streets of Tromso
were thronged with drunken, fishy and rough-looking men, and the
sailing of the _Munroe_ for the far North was the most discussed topic
in town.

Two days before the scheduled time for her departure the _Munroe_ was
launched from the dry-dock and crews were kept busy loading her with
supplies of provisions and other merchandise. Twenty men were put to
work building bunks in the hatchways for the miners, and the final
touches were rushed to completion.

At midnight on the 25th of May everything was ready. About one hundred
Norwegian peasants filed up the gangway and boarded the ship. They
were the most forlorn set of adults I ever saw. I should have said one
hundred drunks--for I don't believe that there was one entirely sober
man among them. Some were completely out as the result of a week's
intoxication and had to be packed aboard like sacks of bran. Fifty
were conducted from the town jail by several policemen, assisted by
Superintendent Gilson and myself. They had been locked up on account of
disorderly conduct and had been in prison awaiting the departure of the
_Munroe_.

At four o'clock in the morning every one was aboard, and the little
ship, loaded to her water line and carrying a hundred helpless
inebriates, turned her bow towards the North Pole and started on her
way.



CHAPTER XIX

MINING UNDER THE MIDNIGHT SUN


THE steamer _Munroe_ was the first boat this year to penetrate the
frozen north, and her departure was looked upon as an event of great
importance, for an early season trip was one full of uncertainties.
The condition of the sea in the vicinity of North Cape and Spitzbergen
was unknown until reported by the first vessel in. A severe winter
would mean a difficult voyage, while a mild season would render the
passage comparatively easy. The trip from Tromso to Advent Bay,
where the company's mines are located, had varied in length, in past
years, from three days to five weeks, depending on the amount of ice
surrounding the island of West Spitzbergen. We had sailed, therefore,
fully provided with supplies for the limit of the time required to make
the journey. The _Munroe_ was completely equipped for Arctic Ocean
travel, and had been built to meet all conditions encountered in the
seas of the Far North. She was a small steamer, being only about two
hundred feet long, and resting very low in the water--her stern deck
being but four feet above the surface when loaded to her full capacity.
She had been especially designed for navigation in the icy seas of
this region. Attached to her main mast was a "crow's nest," a sort of
barrel-shaped device which looked like a preacher's pulpit. From this
point one of the crew constantly kept watch for icebergs and pieces
of float ice. Her bow was re-enforced with a solid mass of hard oak,
fourteen feet thick, which was covered with a heavy band of steel. By
reason of this solid bow she was equipped so that she could ram the
ice and loosen large chunks which would float away. Her crew comprised
experienced Arctic sailors and her captain was a kind-hearted old
Norwegian who had served as skipper on ships of the northern seas for
twenty years. In addition the steamer was well provided with sixteen
large life-saving boats, each with a capacity of fifteen passengers.

It was bitterly cold the morning we left Tromso, and the trip through
the narrow fjords leading to the open sea was calm and peaceful. The
early morning hours seemed to lend a stillness to our departure which
made one feel as though he were attending a funeral. At noon we were
well out to sea, travelling directly north, and, with the exception of
the intense cold, there was nothing to indicate that we were not on an
ordinary ocean voyage in the temperate zone.

Towards evening the drunken miners down the forward hatch began to
sober up and gradually come on deck. With their appearance there was a
demand for heavy socks, boots, underwear, shirts, wind-proof coats and
trousers. As the handling of these articles belonged to my department
I was kept busy for several hours, assisted by my Norwegian clerks,
dealing out wearing apparel to the men. The upper deck of the ship was
transformed into a temporary store, and as each man filed by he was
given what articles he needed, together with a store tag, a duplicate
of which was retained in order to charge the amount of the purchase
against his account--to be deducted from his first pay-check.

The second morning we sighted Bear Island, a lonely, uninhabited
piece of land rising abruptly out of the ocean about midway between
Norway and Spitzbergen. We saw an occasional chunk of float ice which
had broken loose from the ice pack farther north and was drifting
carelessly towards the south only to melt away when it came in contact
with the Gulf Stream. We were awakened the next morning by the crashing
of the bow of the ship against the ice. I went up on the bridge and
as far as my eye could reach I could see nothing but countless pieces
of float ice, varying in area from a few feet to the size of an acre
lot. It was an inspiring sight--both fore and aft an endless expanse of
white broken here and there by the irregular streaks of the blue water.
For two days the patient ship ploughed her way through this creaking
and cracking mass. Occasionally she would sail into a space of open
sea, and in a few minutes would again be completely surrounded by an
ocean of ice which rubbed and knocked against her sides with the
wheezing sound of the ice-man's saw.

[Illustration: _Upper_: PACK ICE IN ICE FJORD]

[Illustration: _Lower_: TWENTY MILES FROM LAND]

The captain said that we were making fine progress, and if nothing
unforeseen occurred should arrive in Ice Fjord in the morning. All on
board were aroused early by the fearful charging of the ship. We were
now well within the fjord alongside of the fast ice. The boat would
get up steam, proceed ahead at full speed, plunge into the ice, draw
back and plunge again at a little distance away. By this process a
large piece of ice would be loosened and would slowly drift off. All
the morning the _Munroe_ battered the ice in this manner. Finally we
reached a point where the captain considered that the ice was secure
enough to tie to. Stakes were driven, lines extended and the ship made
fast.

We were now about twenty miles from shore. The little black ship was
nestled in a bed of snowy down. Ice Fjord was a solid mass of ice.
The steep and snow-clad mountains of Spitzbergen surrounded us like
a cluster of marble cathedral spires, and the glacier-choked valleys
looked like frozen and motionless rivers. It was a dream in snow. At
first there appeared to be no signs of life, and the death-like silence
made one sure that it was a new world. In the midst of this dreary
expanse of ice and snow the little veteran ship of the Arctic, hugging
its frozen wharf, stood like a messenger from another planet, bearing
greetings to the bleak and uninhabited land around us. The first
signs of life shortly came into sight. Here and there, at irregular
intervals, we saw seals and sea lions dotting the ice like flies on a
white ceiling. A flock of geese flew overhead and as soon as our advent
had been heralded to the inhabitants of the air, droves of reaper
hovered about the ship to welcome us to their frigid home. Thousands of
these fearless birds, to whom the report of a gun was unknown, gathered
about us and formed a sea of blackness in the open space at the stern
of the ship.

There was no time to lose, and once the ship was made fast two men were
detailed to proceed to the mine and notify the winter superintendent of
our arrival. The hundred and fifty men were getting their belongings
together for their march to the camp. In a short time one could see
this small army of men creeping like a huge caterpillar over the
twenty-mile stretch of ice to the mine. Superintendent Gilson and I
remained with the ship, making preparations for the unloading of the
cargo and awaiting the arrival of the sleds from the camp.

We couldn't resist the temptation, and towards evening we went hunting.
From the deck of the ship we landed a goodly bag of reaper for our
evening meal. We would shoot into the black mass of these trim little
ducks that clustered about the boat, and with each shot the innocent
creatures would momentarily flutter and then close up the gap. Every
time we fired we killed half-a-dozen birds and shortly we had a
sufficient number to feed the ship's crew. It was like slaying little
babes, and as soon as we had enough for dinner we stopped the heartless
slaughter.

There are no barbers on Spitzbergen. Seated on a stool on the stern of
the ship I allowed Superintendent Gilson to shingle my rustry locks
with a pair of clippers provided by the company. I didn't realise how
intensely cold it was until the sharp currents of the Arctic began to
circulate around my ears in the paths made by the moving hand of the
superintendent. One complete run of the clippers up the back of my head
was all I could stand at one time, and in I would run to warm myself
by the stove in the mess-room. In a minute I would return to let the
work continue, only to speed back to the stove again. Dinner was on the
table and the little mess-room could not be turned into a barber-shop.
After half an hour the job was finished. It was Gilson's first attempt
at anything in the tonsorial line. On gazing into the mirror to inspect
the work I concluded that he should have been a winding stair-maker.
The most skilled mechanic could not have made a more perfect set of
steps.

In the morning half-a-dozen sleds drawn by horses could be seen making
their way towards the ship. Occasionally one of the horses would step
on a soft or melted spot in the ice and sink in for several feet.
Finally one of the poor animals disappeared beneath the ice and was
completely submerged in the freezing water. After a twenty-minute
struggle, aided by its team-mate which had been hitched in such a
manner as to render assistance, the brave beast was brought to the
surface of the ice.

The sleds reached the ship and the place became a scene of great
activity, discharging the cargo and loading it again for transportation
across the ice to the mine.

Gilson and I left the work in charge of the captain and about noon set
out across the ice to the camp. Gilson went in the lead a few paces to
select the way and avoid the soft and treacherous-looking water holes.
Distance on the ice was very deceiving. We had walked for two hours,
and the mountains seemed to be as far away as ever. We proceeded on for
two hours more and still our destination seemed no nearer. However, we
knew we were making progress, for the _Munroe_, in the rear, looked
like a small row boat and became smaller and smaller as we continued
until she disappeared from view. We tramped on over this vast expanse
of ice. At eight o'clock in the evening we reached the shore. We walked
over the hill about a mile, and in a few minutes were in the little
camp. Turner and the other members of the American staff had arrived
the day before and had prepared a big dinner for us. Gilson and I sat
down at the table in the little cottage which served as headquarters
for the Americans, and ate one of the finest meals of our lives. Roast
reindeer, killed by a member of the camp the day before, made a great
filling for two hungry and frozen men.

The Spitzbergen archipelago is another "No-Man's Land." It belongs to
no country. The Arctic Coal Company, incorporated under the laws of
Massachusetts, owns about forty-five thousand acres on the island of
West Spitzbergen, which it acquired by staking out claims and which it
holds by the moral protection of the United States. A British company
has several thousand acres of coal lands on the same island which
it abandoned a number of years ago. There is a marble quarry on the
east coast operated by an English concern. At Green Harbour, near the
entrance of Ice Fjord, the Norwegian government conducts a wireless
plant, and near by there is a Swedish whaling station. There are no
native inhabitants of Spitzbergen, and its population, numbering
about three hundred and fifty in the summer season and two hundred in
the winter, is made up of those engaged at the several places I have
enumerated.

The islands of Spitzbergen are coveted by the three Scandinavian
countries of Norway, Sweden and Denmark. Russia is also desirous
of adding them to her vast domain. Each year a council, made up of
representatives from each of these nations, meets in Stockholm,
Christiania or Copenhagen and discusses ways and means to settle
the question of their disposal. Nothing definite has ever been
accomplished, and without the approval of Great Britain and America,
whose properties make them big factors, the problem bids fair to remain
undecided for some time. As a result of this situation Spitzbergen
does not possess a local government of any kind. It is a land where
might is right. There are no laws, no police and no means to enforce
order. Manager Turner was the ruler and executive in our part of the
island, and any regulations that existed had been instituted by him.

Eight months of the year the islands are entirely frozen in; their
steep mountains are covered with snow, their valleys filled with
immense glaciers and their interior is one endless waste of ice.
During the summer months the fjords and bays of the southern part are
freed of ice, the mountains shed their white mantles and the hillsides
burst forth with the bloom of millions of little wild flowers of many
varieties, which, with the abundant fresh green grass, present a most
beautiful picture. I once read a booklet descriptive of Spitzbergen
in which the trees were stated to be only two inches high. This is
literally true. None of the vegetation attains a greater height than
two inches, but it is doubtful whether these miniature plants should be
dignified to the extent of being called trees.

[Illustration: THE FIRST LOAD FOR SHORE]

Advent Bay, on whose shores the camp of the company is situated, is a
small body of water and is on the northeastern side of Ice Fjord, of
which it is a part. The company has a wharf with coal bunkers which is
not accessible for steamers until the ice breaks and flows out--about
the first of July each year. The camp consists of a store, a mess
pavilion, a power plant, four warehouses, the manager's cottage and
about a dozen bunk-houses for the men. This little settlement is called
Longyear City, being named after the president of the company, and its
inhabitants proudly boast that it is the most northerly city in the
world, thus cold-heartedly snatching this distinction from Hammerfest,
on the northern coast of Norway. Hammerfest is a town of five thousand
people and is described in tourist literature as being the nearest
municipality to the North Pole. Longyear City is seven hundred and
twenty-five miles from the Pole, and therefore has Hammerfest beaten
for the honour by nearly a thousand miles!

Twenty small frame buildings comprised the total number of dwellings
that the little snow-clad village could muster, and these were all the
property of the Arctic Coal Company. On the sides of the small houses
were nailed the hides of polar bears, killed by the miners during the
winter, and the walls inside were decorated with the skins of the white
fox, an animal whose fur is as white as snow and as soft as a baby's
cheek. The mine was about fifteen hundred feet above the camp on the
side of a hill and was connected from below by a zig-zag trail. The
coal was conveyed to the stock pile on the shore of the bay by means of
an aerial tramway about one mile in length. Supplies were transported
from the store to the mine by an incline. The mine was simply a
horizontal hole in the ground, about two thousand seven hundred feet
long, and an elevator was an unknown device to this dark tunnel. The
roofs of the drifts were frozen and numerous icicles hung down in such
a manner that the huge cavern looked like a grotto in fairy land.

On the arrival of the summer crew the winter superintendent turned
the direction of the camp over to Manager Turner. The one hundred men
who had spent the eight months of the winter at the mine immediately
started across the ice to the _Munroe_, which, the following day, was
to take them back to Norway. There was no end of work to be done. I
organised the office, instructed the German bookkeeper to open a set
of accounts and started the "Mulligan" to feed the two hundred and
fifty men. My biggest job was taking an inventory of all supplies in
the camp. The stock in the store had to be listed first, and this
task was begun and completed the night of my arrival; in the morning
we were open for business. This little mercantile establishment was
a grocery store, hardware store, butcher shop, dry goods store, boot
shop and haberdashery all in one. Everything was displayed on its
shelves, from a needle to a miner's drill. Hairpins and cheese, socks
and salmon, nails and raisins, boots and bacon, leather vests and
condensed milk, shovels and cold storage eggs, were all piled together
like an assortment in an American junk shop. The morning its doors
opened nearly the whole camp of two hundred and fifty men made a run on
the place, crowding before its counter and scrambling to be waited on
by the two Norwegian clerks. Each man wanted to outfit himself so that
he could go to work the next day. Much confusion resulted because of
the many duplications of names, and many accounts were charged to the
wrong man. There were a score of Ole Olesens, a dozen Johan Jensens, a
half-dozen Johan Johnsens and several each of Johnsons, Johannesens and
what not. We finally had to rename each man whose customary designation
caused confusion with those of his fellow workers.

The inventory of the supplies in the four warehouses was the big task.
Before we could even get possession of the articles to tabulate and
price them we were compelled to dig them out of the ice with picks and
shovels. I had a crew working for nearly a week excavating dynamos,
engines, barrels of oil, mine implements and so forth, before it was
possible to know what we had in stock. Then there were supplies in
the mine, transformer houses with electrical appliances, powder sheds
and three dynamite houses, which all had to be listed and priced. The
new supplies, as they arrived from Tromso, had to be inventoried and
placed away. With the fresh fish and meat which the company's boats
brought from Norway, the fifty mine cars from America, the hundreds of
steel rails for new tracks about the camp, the thousands of feet of
lumber for construction of buildings, the fixtures for the wireless
plant the company was to install, the hundreds of packages of cheese,
sacks of flour, beans, potatoes, canned goods and other provisions--my
assistants and I were kept busy from six o'clock in the morning until
eleven each evening. We were installing a new warehouse card system,
and each article in the camp had to be entered and priced. We took no
time off at noon except to eat; we worked Sundays, and only laid off
for a half hour on the Fourth of July to play baseball.

The miners were paid six _kroner_ a day, and from this amount a _krone_
and a half was deducted for their board. One _krone_ is equal to
twenty-seven cents of American money. These wages were nearly double
what they were accustomed to receiving in Norway for the same sort of
work. However, this comparatively generous pay did not satisfy them,
and at the end of the first week they all went on a strike. A walk-out
was a serious thing. The company was under contract to deliver coal
to several concerns in Norway, and it was paying one hundred and
twenty-five dollars a day rental for each of its seven ships and could
not afford to permit any of them to be idle. Advent Bay was now clear
of ice, and there were three chartered steamers at anchor taking on
coal for transportation to Norwegian ports.

The miners demanded that they be paid six _kroner_ a day and free
board. After a day's conference with two representatives from the men,
the management agreed to the raise on the condition that they would
be satisfied for the rest of the summer season. The men accepted these
terms and returned to work.

The _Munroe_ arrived on her second trip from Tromso, bringing the
remainder of the summer crew. This lot of men consisted of about
seventy-five Norwegians, several Russians, Laplanders and Finns. Among
the Finns were three labour agitators. These men immediately set to
work to stir up trouble and in a short time were successful in again
causing dissatisfaction among the miners. The result was a second
strike, in which the men demanded a raise of two _kroner_ a day. This
would bring their wages up to eight _kroner_ and board. Such an advance
was out of the question. The management absolutely refused the demands
and discharged every striker in the camp. A complete walk-out followed.

The next three days were exciting ones. The manager instructed me to
have the office prepare the accounts of all the men and issue them pay
checks which they were to present to the Tromso office for their money.
It was his plan to ship the whole crowd back to Norway. There was not a
ship in the harbour, and it would be several days before one returned
from Norway. In the meantime the work of the accounts went on. The
German bookkeeper and I, assisted by two Americans, worked forty-eight
hours without a wink of sleep.

Manager Turner expected violence, and each one of the eight Americans
was provided with a pistol. There being no policemen on the island,
each man had to become an officer. Watches were formed and two men
remained up all night to see that no trouble was started. One man
was assigned to guard a batch of supplies down the coast about five
miles, where they had been unloaded from the _Munroe_, and another
was delegated to keep an eye on the several dynamite houses. The two
hundred and fifty Norwegians, Swedes, Russians, Laplanders and Finns
gathered in groups about the camp or paraded up and down the main
road carrying red flags, shouting and jeering. The little camp was in
a state of high tension, and we eight Americans didn't know when the
minute might arrive that would force us to battle for our lives.

The company each year took precautions for such an uprising, and it
was a regulation that no firearms be allowed on the island. The men
were searched as they boarded the steamer at Tromso. But in spite of
this inspection a number of pistols were always smuggled in by the
miners. It was not the fear of the guns that caused the Americans so
much apprehension, but the thought that the strikers might storm the
dynamite sheds. With each man armed with a twenty-five pound box of
nitro-glycerine, they could attack the staff house and blow us all into
eternity in one minute, swear themselves to secrecy and the world would
never know a thing about it.

The strikers would gather about the manager's cottage, and it would
seem that the crisis was about to take place. From a staff on the
cottage an American flag was flying, and this was a continual source
of temptation to the miners. Turner had decided, in case they pulled
down the Stars and Stripes, to go quietly out in their midst and calmly
hoist it up again. In the event of their insulting it the second time
he would instruct the Americans to fight--and it would have been a
fight to the death.

Three days under such circumstances seemed like three years. All day
the demonstrations on the part of the men kept our little band ready
for any emergency. The wives of two of the Americans were in camp
on a short visit from Tromso, and they confined themselves to the
staff house, where they no doubt served as an element restraining the
strikers from violence.

One night I stood at the door of the office along towards twelve
o'clock, and by the misty light of the midnight sun I could see several
pairs of the miners skulking up the valley towards the giant glacier;
others were sneaking quietly along in the vicinity of the mine, and
still others were walking slowly along the docks. The strikers were
organised and had their night watches as well as the Americans.

The third morning of the strike the accounts were completed. Each
man came into the office for his pay-check. In this way we had an
opportunity to talk to them apart from their fellow workmen. Fully
two-thirds of them stated that they were not in sympathy with the
strike, but were afraid to rebel for fear of being injured or killed
by the leaders. The strikers kept two men at the office door checking
each man as he went in and out. Several of the miners had not worked
long enough for their wages to offset their purchases at the store and
owed the company money. This, of course, was lost.

Late in the afternoon of the third day of the strike two of the
chartered ships arrived in the bay from Norway. Orders were issued for
them to get in readiness to transport the whole gang of miners back
to Tromso that evening. The crews built bunks in the hatchways and
supplies were put on board. By dusk the ships were ready for their
unruly passengers.

Before going aboard the strikers paraded about the camp, scouring
the place for deserters. They were determined to make a clean-up of
every labourer of any kind, and in this way tie us up completely.
They threatened to kill one man who attempted to hide himself in the
power house. To save this man's life the captain of one of the ships
locked him up in a cabin. The strikers finally boarded the two boats.
The whistles blew and they were off for Tromso. The camp was almost
deserted. Under my instructions the cooks had hidden up the valley in
the vicinity of the glacier, and thus the culinary department was kept
intact--which was something.

With the strikers shipped out, a feeling of relief descended upon
us. The manager had a tremendous burden taken from his shoulders and
each man displayed a tired but smiling face instead of the worried
expression of the three past days. All the office hands turned to and
became miners, rushing the work to load the incoming ships.

[Illustration: THE ICE PACK FROM THE CROW'S NEST]

If the management had complied with the demands of the strikers the
report would have circulated through Norway that the Arctic Coal
Company was an easy mark, and the mine would have become the rendezvous
for all the labour agitators and riff-raff miners in the country.
The day after the departure of the strikers Turner sent a wireless
message to the Tromso office advising the Norwegian in charge of the
strike and informing him that the whole crew was on its way to Norway
to be paid off. Turner anticipated that the advent of this gang might
cause a disturbance in Tromso, and that they might raid the company's
office. He therefore made arrangements with the government to close the
_samlag_, or federal liquor house, and to have the militia in readiness
for trouble. He cabled a list of the names of the men who owed the
company money for store purchases with instructions to attach their
personal possessions and place them under arrest.

The Norwegian in charge of the Tromso office had a difficult situation
to handle. However, he carried out Turner's instructions to the letter.
The two ships with the strikers arrived in Tromso; twenty of the men
were immediately arrested; the militia was on hand to maintain order
and the _samlag_ was closed and there was no booze.

Two Norwegian clerks were despatched to Norway to go into the country
villages and engage another crew of miners. In two weeks a new set of
men began to arrive at the mine, and at the end of a month a complete
force was on hand and the work was proceeding as though nothing had
happened.

The company's little store occasionally had distinguished customers.
I found the Norwegian clerk selling a large consignment of goods one
afternoon to two Englishmen. They engaged me in conversation and asked
me many questions about the mine and the camp. They were curious to
know what brought me to this far-away land, and our talk naturally
drifted around to my world trip. They became interested at once.

They were out on a hunting expedition in the vicinity of Spitzbergen.
One of the blades of the propeller of their steam yacht had been broken
on a piece of float ice and they had come into Advent Bay to get it
repaired at the company's machine shop. I invited them to dinner at
the staff house. They declined, as the repairs to their boat were
nearly complete and they wanted to get under way as soon as possible.
They valued my invitation, and as they took their leave asked me to be
their guest in England on my return trip to America. They presented
me with their cards. "Sir Philip L. Brocklehurst, Swythamley Park,
Macclesfield, The Bath Club," was the inscription on one and Sir
Something Mitford on the other. I was mingling with two of England's
noblemen, young fellows who had acquired their titles by inheritance.
The rest of my stay on the island I was known as the "King."

I had now been with the Arctic Coal Company four months and had four
hundred dollars saved. I hoped to meet my father in Toronto, Canada,
in a few weeks and go with him to California. One morning about four
o'clock I boarded one of the company's coal freighters and started for
Norway.



CHAPTER XX

TO AMERICA AS AN IMMIGRANT


THE company's coal steamer brought me safely to Tromso. What a
wonderful transformation had taken place during my two months' absence.
Tromso had discarded her dreary winter garments and was now arrayed
in a mantle of summer gladness. Her gentle slopes were covered with
green grass and myriads of little wild flowers literally danced as they
thrust their tiny faces towards the deep blue sky. Trees were in leaf,
the air was crisp and clear and birds were singing. The atmosphere rang
with the joy of summer time and the snow-bound village of the winter
was a glorious symphony of beauty and happiness. I wanted to remain
there the rest of my life.

But I was now homeward bound. My whole object was to reach Toronto,
where I was to meet my father, by the quickest and cheapest route.

It was my plan to go by train through Sweden to Stockholm. My steamer
for Narvik, the beginning of the railroad, did not leave for a day,
during which I remained in Tromso. That evening I spent with several
of my Norwegian friends at the Grand Hotel eating, drinking and making
merry. In the midst of our good time, about ten o'clock, one of the
bell boys presented me with a note. This little communication was from
one of Norway's many Mr. Ole Olesens. This particular Ole Olesen was
one of Tromso's butchers, from whom the company had purchased most of
the meat for the mine. He was showing me a courtesy by asking me to go
fishing with him about midnight. To engage in such a pastime at such an
hour struck me as an odd thing to do. With the assistance of one of my
native friends I wrote Mr. Olesen a cordial note--declining.

Anyway, I had another engagement for the rest of the evening. I called
on the wife of a Norwegian army captain and a woman companion of hers.
Her husband was in Christiania, two thousands miles away. On a previous
occasion the captain's wife had told me through an interpreter that I
was the finest man she ever knew. This sort of flummery was new stuff
to me. Making love through an interpreter is a very unsatisfactory
process, even if it is to another man's wife.

Whatever admiration this woman may have had for me was completely
dispelled, I thought, by the displeasure she manifested on the occasion
of this call. I had some difficulty in ascertaining what her grievance
was, but finally learned that she was provoked at the method I had
pursued in entering her house. I couldn't find the gate in front of
her residence, so I climbed over the fence. My object was to get in
and I had no time to spend searching for gates if such entrances were
not in the places they should be. To climb over a fence at eleven
o'clock at night in the light of the midnight sun was a fearful breach
of Norwegian good form. What would the neighbours say to see a man
entering her house in this strange manner at such an hour, when her
husband was away? I left her house, disgraced.

I was on board the steamer for Narvik. The boat was swinging away from
the Tromso pier. My displeased friend of the night before came running
down the street to bid me farewell. By the time she reached the wharf I
was beyond speaking distance--my boat was out in the stream. We could
do nothing but wave handkerchiefs. I waved until my arms were tired and
the lady was out of sight. I borrowed a pair of field glasses, and as
long as I could see the poor woman continued waving. She may be waving
yet. She had forgiven me for the fence episode. Hers was the first
broken heart I had left behind me on the whole trip.

A dreary journey in a third-class compartment of a Swedish train
brought me from Narvik to Stockholm. I saw this beautiful city
as a real tourist. I was a comparatively rich man with the money
I had earned in Tromso and Spitzbergen, and I lavished it rather
extravagantly in an effort to crowd the interesting points of Stockholm
into a short time.

[Illustration: _Upper_: THE _Munroe_ ALONGSIDE THE ICE--60 MILES FROM
LAND]

[Illustration: _Lower_: LONGYEAR CITY, SPITZENBERGEN--700 MILES FROM
THE NORTH POLE]

I sailed from Gottenborg for Hull as an honest passenger of the
steerage. My fellow travellers were Swedish, Danish and Norwegian
immigrants bound for America. Being the only member of the steerage
without a through ticket to New York, I was called before the captain
of the ship, the second day out, for a cross-examination. He asked
me several personal questions. I feigned that I was not used to such
humiliation, and the generous-looking skipper said that he would leave
my case to the English authorities.

When the ship docked at Hull, the cattle of the steerage were
instructed to congregate in the mess-room for inspection. Presently
a group of five British immigration officials entered the room. They
were all dressed in blue uniforms with brass buttons, and these brass
buttons seemed the biggest thing about them to me.

"Where is the tramp from Sweden?" gruffly asked one of them, directing
his question to the captain of the ship.

"I presume I am the man for whom you are looking," I volunteered in as
excellent English as I could command. I was standing beside the officer
and he seemed somewhat perplexed when a response to his question came
in the words of his own language from an unshaved tramp. The Swedish
authorities had cabled to the immigration headquarters at Hull that I
was on the boat, and I was thus assured of a reception.

"Are you a Swede?" was the officer's next question as he turned his
eyes on me.

"Do I look like one?" was my flippant reply.

"What nationality are you, then?" he enquired sternly.

"I am an American."

"Where are you going?"

"I am going to America as fast as I can get there."

"How much money have you in your possession?"

"I have enough."

"I want to know the actual amount," said the officer impatiently.

"About sixty pounds."

The officer conducted me into an adjoining cabin and there I had to dig
into my pockets, pull out my money (which I had converted into English
coin in Stockholm) and prove to his satisfaction that I had some real
wealth in my possession.

"I think this thing has gone about far enough," I said. "I am not a
pauper and am well able to take care of myself. There is no need to
suspect that I will become a public charge. This sixty pounds is as
much as any one of you makes in a whole year. I realise that you are
simply carrying out the immigration regulations and doing your duty,
but why can't you exercise a little discretion and let a man, who is
well able to take care of himself, go on his way without all this
nonsense?" This complaint of mine seemed to bring the Britisher to his
senses and with a few remarks in conclusion I was allowed to land; not,
however, until I had promised to go directly across to Liverpool and
take the first steamer for America.

In five minutes I was going towards London at sixty miles an hour. The
first boat from Liverpool to Quebec did not leave for a couple of days,
and I decided to spend this time in the metropolis in spite of the
instructions of the immigration officials.

Nearly three years of travel had reduced my wardrobe to a shabby
lot of garments, and I was afraid of being arrested for vagrancy. I
wandered into a men's furnishing store on Holborn Street and purchased
a complete new outfit, including a Scotch tweed suit and two English
caps. I was now equipped to travel to California with my father
properly dressed.

That evening I put on all my new clothes, hopped into a taxicab and
was off to make a call. I alighted at Fulham Palace and presented
to the servant at the door a card of introduction to the Bishop of
London, which I had received from the chaplain of the British legation
in Peking. In a minute the servant informed me that Bishop Ingram was
absent from the city and was not expected for two weeks. I was sorry. I
wished to end up by interviewing a Lord Bishop.

I cabled my father in California that I would meet him in Toronto on
August 17th, and left from Paddington station for Liverpool. I bought a
through ticket from London to Liverpool by rail, thence to Quebec by
steamer and finally to Toronto on a colonial train--all for six pounds.

At Liverpool I boarded the _Tunisian_ of the Allan line and in a few
minutes was lost in the hold of the ship among the two thousand English
and Irish emigrants. My three cabin-mates were East End cockneys and
they might as well have been Comanche Indians--for I was unable to
understand their peculiar twang for a couple of days. The food was a
substantial sort of stuff but was served as though the eaters were
animals. And, as a matter of fact, the eaters were quite capable of
playing the rôle of any trough-fed beast. "Pass the bloody jam" and
"shoot the bleeding bread" were the customary phrases employed in
asking for food. Profane and obscene expressions, which are not fit
for print, although considered proper for the ears of the women of the
steerage, were used at the table as so many platitudes. Seamstresses,
Irish mill hands, English servants, cobblers, mechanics, barbers and an
endless assortment of skilled and unskilled labourers of Great Britain
were on their way to Canada to begin life over again.

After the first two days of sea-sickness were over, the fun on board
ship began. Restraint and feminine modesty were cast to the winds,
and the man who wasn't good enough to get a lover wasn't worth taking
along. The women "fell" for anybody. "Down the bloody hatches" and on
the "bleeding deck" and in every nook and corner were lovers. It was
probably the most brazen exhibition of spooning I ever saw. It was a
case of wrestle and osculate from morning until night regardless of how
many curious and amused spectators were in the audience. The jesting
and jeering of the onlookers seemed to act only as an incentive to the
love-sick sea-farers, who were bent on having a big fling now that they
were free from the restraint of home surroundings.

I spent most of the time as a spectator, frequently engaging in
conversation with my fellow passengers to learn their ideas of this
world and the next. I occasionally dropped into the first-class kitchen
and made a friend of the chief cook, a good man to know when travelling
steerage and living on its dessertless menu. I soon was the daily
recipient of hand-outs and I very gratefully devoured the samples
of cake, pudding and tarts which were prepared for the first-class
passengers of the ship.

The _Tunisian's_ schedule from Liverpool to Quebec was nine days but,
owing to the dense fogs, we were compelled to anchor for three days
off the Newfoundland coast to avoid any chance of colliding with an
iceberg. When the fog lifted there was no end of these huge monsters
of ice in our immediate vicinity. On one side of the ship I counted
sixty-five icebergs, and there were as many on the other side.

The twelfth day we pulled into Quebec and the two thousand steerage
passengers were quartered in the immigration sheds awaiting inspection
by the Canadian officials. I again encountered difficulty in proving
that I was not a Norwegian cut-throat or a Swedish crook but finally
obtained my inspection card which permitted me to go on my way.

I took a colonist train to Toronto, where I met my father, who had
come from California to meet me. He had wished me Godspeed three years
before from San Francisco, and he was now to cross the continent with
me and help me complete the circuit. Our meeting was a joyful one. He
didn't shy at my travel-worn appearance. I was dressed in an old suit
which was spotted and covered with dust; I had a two-weeks' growth on
my face and I needed a hair-cut and a bath. While my father waited in
the station I sought the first barber shop I could find, and after an
hour of cleansing at an expense of $1.55, I was ready to travel with
civilised people.

Toronto was my native city and I had not visited it since I was an
infant. My father and I, therefore, spent several weeks looking up
friends and relatives before starting west. _En route_ to St. Louis,
I took leave of my dad, and went to visit Richardson at his home in
Fairmont, Minnesota. He had returned to America four months before and
we had not seen one another for nearly nine months--since we separated
in Constantinople.

During my two days' visit we each outlined where we had been since
parting and related to one another our different experiences.
Richardson remained in Constantinople two months holding down his job
of electric wiring for Roberts College. In that time he made many trips
about Constantinople and its environs and became very familiar with the
Turkish capital. He made a journey into the country districts and got a
glimpse of village life in Turkey.

His course through Europe was somewhat similar to mine and included
Greece, Italy, Switzerland, Germany, France, England and Scotland.
He did not visit Austria-Hungary but spent several weeks in Germany,
stopping at Munich, Nürnberg, Dresden, Leipsic and Berlin. From London
he took a trip to Edinburgh, returning to Liverpool whence he crossed
the Atlantic steerage to Boston. He arrived in America without a cent.
Fortunately there was a letter for him at Thomas Cook and Son's office
from his mother, in which was enclosed a money order for twenty-four
dollars with which to buy tableclothes. He cashed the order and with
the money bought a cheap ticket to Fairmont. Again broke, he arrived
home after being away two years and eight months. At the time of my
visit he had a position with the New York Life Insurance Company.

I joined my father in St. Louis, where I spent three days visiting a
married sister, and we then continued our journey to California. My
return to San Francisco was the occasion of the following article in
the _Examiner_:



  U. OF C. STUDENT GIRDLES GLOBE ON $3.85

  Alfred C.B. Fletcher Travels Three Years as Teacher, Sailor and
  Adventurer

  "Three years of adventure and 30,000 miles of travel through the
  seven seas ended yesterday when Alfred C.B. Fletcher, university
  graduate, journalist, school teacher, Government official, sailor and
  miner, returned to California with a Kiplingesque stock of personal
  experiences and jingling a silver surplus over the $3.85 with which
  he left San Francisco.

  Fletcher was arrested as a spy in Japan, battled with pirates on
  a Chinese junk in the Chinese sea, visited Bethlehem on Christmas
  Day, attended the Durbar in India, toiled in a mine of Norway and
  has returned from the rough and tumble of world adventure to study
  theology for Orders in the Episcopal Church.

  LEADER IN UNIVERSITY

  In 1907 Fletcher graduated from the University of California, where
  he was a leading figure on the campus. He was editor of the _Daily
  Californian_, prominent in other affairs, and a member of the
  Golden Bear and Winged Helmet honour societies and the Psi Upsilon
  fraternity.

  [Illustration: NORWEGIAN WIRELESS STATION IN ICE FJORD]

  Three years ago he decided to take a graduate course in the school of
  hard knocks and see the world on his nerve and native hardihood. He
  bought a steamer ticket to Honolulu and waved good-bye to his friends
  at the pier with a promise that he would not return until he had
  swung around the belt of the Globe.

  At Honolulu he halted for lack of funds to get him further
  transportation and entered the business of school teaching. Between
  school periods he took examinations for work as a Government official
  on the Pearl Harbour project, more from curiosity than a desire to
  quit school teaching. His examination marks were high and he was
  appointed.

  TRAVELS ON EARNINGS

  Several months of Pearl Harbour work got him money enough to go on,
  and he travelled for several months on the earnings. On this leg of
  the journey he was accompanied by a young Dartmouth graduate whose
  method of travel was akin to his own.

  While in Japan they snapshotted pictures of Japanese fortifications
  and were arrested and thrown into prison. The services of the
  Secretary of State were secured before the two young college
  travellers were liberated. For the rest of their visit in Japan they
  were shadowed by agents of the Japanese Government, and they found
  the pursuit so uncomfortable that they shortened their stay.

  In China Fletcher became instructor in a Peking school of
  engineering. He travelled leisurely down the coast to Hongkong,
  making inland trips and long stays in all the great ports of China.

  By the time he reached Hongkong his finances were low and a trip
  across the China sea to Manila was made in a junk. On the voyage a
  typhoon struck the rickety craft, and the Chinese, believing they
  were lost, flocked around the images of their gods with shrieks of
  terror. Fletcher rushed to the deck, saw the danger to the unmanned
  ship, and compelled the Oriental sailors to return to their posts.

  MORAL FORCE NECESSARY

  For several months he remained in Manila, serving most of the time
  as an official of the Territorial Government in its department of
  education. From there he journeyed on to India and witnessed the
  Durbar spectacle.

  His travel was broken by spells of work on land. Frequently he signed
  on steamers as sailor or deckhand. A long stay was made in Palestine.
  From the eastern Mediterranean he went up into France and England
  and, for the first time in years, looked into familiar faces. Many
  of his former college friends were travelling in Paris, London and
  studying at Oxford.

  The experience in Europe took his last cent and he worked his way to
  Spitzbergen, Norway, where a friend of college days is superintendent
  of a mine. There he spent several months and gathered sufficient
  funds to insure his return to California.

  Fletcher is visiting his brother, John D. Fletcher, at 2320 Le Conte
  Street, Berkeley. For a few days he will renew old associations
  around the university and after a visit to his home at Covina in the
  southern part of the state he will leave for New York to enter a
  theological seminary."

Three days in the vicinity of San Francisco, and I went to my home
in Southern California. When in Toronto I had bought a ticket to Los
Angeles and return, for I had planned to go to New York City to enter
a theological seminary. I might state parenthetically that after six
months of study for the ministry, I came to the conclusion I was in
the wrong pew and gave it up. The change from a tramp to an embryo
parson was too sudden, I suppose. The price of the round-trip ticket
from Toronto and my expenses to California had taken the last of my
Norwegian earnings and I arrived home broke. I had been away three
years, had circled the globe and had travelled over sixty thousand
miles.


THE END





*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "From Job to Job around the World" ***

Doctrine Publishing Corporation provides digitized public domain materials.
Public domain books belong to the public and we are merely their custodians.
This effort is time consuming and expensive, so in order to keep providing
this resource, we have taken steps to prevent abuse by commercial parties,
including placing technical restrictions on automated querying.

We also ask that you:

+ Make non-commercial use of the files We designed Doctrine Publishing
Corporation's ISYS search for use by individuals, and we request that you
use these files for personal, non-commercial purposes.

+ Refrain from automated querying Do not send automated queries of any sort
to Doctrine Publishing's system: If you are conducting research on machine
translation, optical character recognition or other areas where access to a
large amount of text is helpful, please contact us. We encourage the use of
public domain materials for these purposes and may be able to help.

+ Keep it legal -  Whatever your use, remember that you are responsible for
ensuring that what you are doing is legal. Do not assume that just because
we believe a book is in the public domain for users in the United States,
that the work is also in the public domain for users in other countries.
Whether a book is still in copyright varies from country to country, and we
can't offer guidance on whether any specific use of any specific book is
allowed. Please do not assume that a book's appearance in Doctrine Publishing
ISYS search  means it can be used in any manner anywhere in the world.
Copyright infringement liability can be quite severe.

About ISYS® Search Software
Established in 1988, ISYS Search Software is a global supplier of enterprise
search solutions for business and government.  The company's award-winning
software suite offers a broad range of search, navigation and discovery
solutions for desktop search, intranet search, SharePoint search and embedded
search applications.  ISYS has been deployed by thousands of organizations
operating in a variety of industries, including government, legal, law
enforcement, financial services, healthcare and recruitment.



Home