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The plain bugle call announces breakfast and luncheon, but dinner is announced by playing “The Roast Beef of Old John Bull.” We have music by the string band of the Baltic for luncheon and dinner, and for an hour or so after dinner the band plays in the hall just outside the lounge. I went up here after dining, and listened to the music for some time. Finally, feeling tired and quite forlorn, being entirely alone on my trip, I went to my stateroom. Not feeling especially comfortable, I was glad to retire. I enjoyed a good night's rest, but toward morning awakened, feeling cold, and arose to get a blanket from the couch when I discovered my lower window sash was wide open. The lower sashes are under the steward's control, the upper only being at your command. It frightened me, but I closed it, and reported the circumstance in the morning to the stewardess. This same thing occurred a few nights later. It was carelessness, of course, but no harm resulted.
Sunday, May 15th, I dressed for spending the day on deck, went down to breakfast, but without an appetite. The table is fine on the Baltic, but nothing seemed to tempt me; besides, I felt I must be careful. I ate a very light breakfast, and usually this is my best meal. Going up to my chair on deck, I hardly seemed to have been seated, when the deck steward appeared with some hot Scotch broth, which he insisted on my tasting. This I did, and found it excellent; but my trouble soon commenced. I was not ill, only dizzy and uncomfortable, and felt I must get to my stateroom as quickly as possible. I succeeded in arriving under adverse circumstances, by the aid of chairs, hand rails, walls, etc.
Could I have found relief, as many do, I probably would have enjoyed the rest of my trip. I soon changed from dress to gown and robe, and this was my attire, until the day before we landed, as I spent most of my time propped up on the couch reading or on my bed sleeping. Everything I ate disagreed with
Among the fruit sent to me were some lovely sweet oranges. I tried to eat these, but with disastrous effect, and afterward learned they were the one thing I should have avoided. My diet consisted of grapefruit and ice water, as all else seemed to disagree with my very exacting stomach. My days were monotonously the same, sleeping a great deal, reading ditto, the only excitement being when I unscrewed my upper sash and glanced out at the tumbling ocean. The continuous tramping of feet past my windows almost drove me frantic as I grew so unutterably tired of it, yet it kept steadily on, and on, and on, stopping only for a few hours between midnight and morning. Commencing at 7 o'clock by washing down the decks, arranging chairs, etc., and then the steady tramp of feet again. So passed Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, May 16, 17, 18 and 19, and until Friday evening, May 20, when I began to feel more comfortable. Saturday, May 21, I dressed and went up on deck to my chair, remaining several hours, and greatly enjoyed the change. When I first went up the awnings were all closely fastened to the ship's sides, and I was told a heavy sea was running, throwing spray on the decks. When the awnings were raised, I could see the ship was rolling. I went down to my stateroom in the late afternoon and packed, as we expected to land Sunday, had dinner served in my room, as usual.
Sunday, May 22, I dressed and went down to breakfast and took my third real meal since leaving shore. I expected to attend church, having missed it the Sunday previous. They always have the full Episcopal service Sunday on the Baltic, the captain officiating when no clergymen are on board. They have a full choir of male voices from the ship's officers. I learned after breakfast there would be no service held, as they expected to land about 10:30 or 11 o'clock in the morning. We were kept in expectation all day. We were late in reaching Queenstown, and did not land, as the tide was not right. A steamer came out to us to deliver and receive passengers, also mail and freight. This occurred again when we reached Holyhead.
When I left my country, people were in a great state of excitement over Halley's comet, which was plainly visible in the eastern heavens between 2 and 5 o'clock every morning. My room at home fronted southeast, and I had no opportunity to see it. However, I expected to have a good view on shipboard, and gave it no further consideration. My entire time after the first day out was so fully occupied in trying to keep comfortable, or less miserable, that I never thought of the comet till I landed in England.
There was a large party of Japs on board. They were the third part of a larger party, who had been traveling through the United States. Some of them were very good-looking men; others quite the reverse. All seemed intelligent and interested in everything. Nothing seemed to escape them and they were everywhere all over the ship. For some reason, they seemed to surround me whenever I happened to be looking at anything in particular. The first time I noticed this was just as we were leaving the dock at New York. I was standing in a position where I could see my friends and wave adieu to them. The Japs were evidently of the same mind, and before I knew it I was completely surrounded by them. This occurred several times, the last being as we slowly steamed up the Mersey river to Liverpool. I had secured a fine position on the promenade deck, on the side from which we would land, and where I had a good view.
I was expecting my little friend, Miss Augusta Binford, to meet me. As we had not seen each other in a number of years, she having lived abroad, and in Paris the greater part of the time, I was not at all certain our recognition would be mutual. I had a new pair of binoculars in my steamer trunk which I would have been glad to have had at this time, as there was an enormous crowd of people on and about Prince's Landing Stage, men, women and children. My lorgnettes are fine, however, and I made good use of them. After looking carefully for a long time, I saw a young lady about the height of Miss Binford. She wore a small-checked suit of black and white, and a chic black hat with blue trimmings. She looked very like
my little friend, so I was careful not to lose sight of her. I found great difficulty in holding my place, for the Japs, as usual, commenced hemming me in on every side. This time, however, I remained firm, and having a post at my side, managed to retain my position.
The ride up the Mersey river was beautiful, it being late evening, almost twilight, and we glided along so quietly. The change from the noise of ocean and engines was most noticeably calm and restful. As we drew nearer the landing, I felt assured the young lady I was watching was my little friend. Leaving the promenade deck, I went to the lower one, as we landed from there. I told the steward in charge I wanted to be among the first to leave the ship. No passengers were allowed in the hallways until after the custom officers came aboard. The steward told me if I would stand quite near him, he would see that I was among the first out on deck. This he did, but even after we were out there, we were roped off until the hand luggage had been taken down the slide. Strange to say, I saw my own bags go sliding down the gangway first. It took a long time to land this luggage, at least so it seemed to my impatient self. All things have an end, and so did our long wait, and as the rope was withdrawn, being ready, I moved quickly and was the first passenger to leave the ship. On reaching the stairs of the landing, at its foot, gazing up at me,