fairly busy all day) watching the various scenes on the jetty. 2 or 3 Egyptian policemen dressed in a neat navy uniform with the red fez &: black tassel, &: armed with a long 3-cornered bayonet in addition to a cane at once attracted attention by the vigorous way they wielded their canes when one of the "niggers" on the wharf went to near the piles of gear or got in their way.
Much amusement was caused by a native acrobat turning somersaults, walking on his hands, etc, &: at the conclusion holding out his cap for bucksheeh. This was fairly freely given by the men who were very wild when a rush by other loiterers was made to grab some of the coins: this changed to delight when one of the policemen pounced on one or two of them &: lustily laid his cane round their shoulders.
The unloading of the bales of blankets etc was interesting. They were brought up on deck from the hold by the winches &: then to the monotonous chant taken up by all the coolies, - quite timeless to my ears, - four men lifted the bale on the back of the coolies doing the carrying. These men had over their shoulders a coarse bagging &: horse-hair pack coming down to the small of the back: this acted as a buffer between the load &: the back &: by friction, also kept the load in place.
The bales contd 50 blankets each, but were carried with ease once they were placed in position on the back. Wherever a gang of Arabs was working there was a boss who always carried a stick or piece of board. A flourish from which very