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[Page 24]

come. For a few minutes we had rather an excited time but succeeded in doing our job.

A fine English 'Castle' liner was tied to the opposite side of our wharf to-day & Alan & I scaled off for an hour to have a look over her. We went right through her from stem to stern, & poked our heads through every door & window we saw and came off perfectly amazed at the grandeur of her fittings. She was a little larger than the P. & O. boats & seemed more like a huge city hotel than a floating piece of steel.

During my 9-11 shift on guard the officers had a little sing-song among themselves. One of them can play beautifully and others can sing and for the two hours I simply revelled in the music, which was high-class & good. The officer's steward got me a nice supper for 1/- at 10.30, and, needless to say, it went down without touching the sides.

Dec. 24. Xmas eve. Leave from 2-6 and Picquet in Town from 7-11; so, since Ship-guard lasted till 10 o'clock we found it hard to imagine that Xmas was no near. I didn't hang up my stocking this time

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