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[Page 29]

the dinkum oil. On 29th and 30th the weather was very hot, with a calm sea. On the latter day those who were crossing the Line for the first time, were ducked, clothes and all. On Sunday,1st July, at noon. We crossed the Line. We saw a very large shark swallow half a bucket of slops. He came up, turned on his back, swallowed half of the refuse gave a swish of his tale and dived.
Monday, 2nd. We saw thousands of dolphins and flying fish. The "Ascanius" broke line to bury a man who had died the day previous.
Tuesday, 3rd.. The weather was very hot. We saw another large shark. At 7p,m, the convoy turned sharp to starboard, stopped for a few minutes, and then proceeded slowly. I posted No 9 Letter card in Lat. uncertain, and longitude 2 degrees more so.
Wednesday, 4th. We sighted Sierra Leone at 7.30 a,m. We arrived at Freetown, and anchored a mile from the town at 11 a,m. The shore looked beautiful, with the dark green tropical foliage and white houses. Just outside the lighthouse a steamer is on the reef. She is on an even keel, and looks as if she is at anchor. We were told that she had been there for three years, and that is was impossible to float her off. The town is built on a slope of a mountain, and looks pretty from the Bay. The hills are covered with cocoa-nut palms, wild cotton trees, mangoes, etc. The rest of the country is very flat, and full of wild animals. The general told us that a Puma with a cub had been prowling round the Governor's house all night. The only mans of conveyance, is a hammock slung between two poles, and carried on the shoulders of four niggers. The place is very unhealthy for whites

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