Under the Big Dipper

Morton nodded thoughtfully as he lighted a cigar. Both remained silent. From the shore came the sounds of murmuring crowds, the splashing of oars, the shrill tones of muleteers and the hoarse laughter of negroes. Then followed the clanking of chains, the straining of ropes, a few short commands from the bridge and the anchors had dropped.

Everyone was delighted to have reached another milestone in the long journey home. Passengers were discussing as to whether they should continue in the “Hindoostan” or take the night train to Ishmaila or Alexandria. Perhaps there might be some excitement in Suez, or at Port Said? Congestion of traffic in those days delayed the passage through the Canal and even the P. & O. liner might lose two days.

Stewards passed back and forth, in and out of saloons, and announced, in loud voices and in intonations ranging from Cockney to the resonant

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