Friday, February 27, 2009

Congo (18) At Sea (Anversville) 12/16/1920 [BMS]

Congo Placemarks


16 Dec. 20

Dear Mother and Daddy:

We are now on our way to the Congo, and this afternoon, are almost past the coast of Spain. Saturday morning, we are due to reach the Canary Islands and will stop at Teneriffe about eight hours. This means that we shall go on shore, the weather permitting.

We sailed from Antwerp Saturday, 1:00 P.M., the appointed time, and reached Plymouth Eng. Monday morning early in a big snowstorm. It snowed so hard that it delayed our departure several hours. There were about 20 passengers taken on at Plymouth, amongst whom were three missionaries for the Congo whom I had met out there. There are about 20 Protestant missionaries on board now, so we have plenty of company and are already among acquaintances. There are five whom I knew in the Congo, one of these being a Swedish young lady about whom we wrote you in Brussells. Returning to the subject of our trip: We left Plymouth in a heavy snowstorm, and the next day were crossing the Bay of Biscay which is nearly always rough; so we had a bit of rolling that day. But today has been ideal, the sea as smooth as a millpond and the weather just cool. The first two nights we had to use our overcoats and raincoats on our beds to keep warm, but we are already in a warmer zone.

There were four people at the steamer to see us off Saturday, which made it very pleasant, Mr. Gilliam and Mr. Kinman (about whom we have written you), and the two ladies who keep the house in Brussells where we have been staying. Then there was a big crowd on the wharf, between 1,000 and 2,000 people, with a brass band in full blast.

We have spent a good part of today out on deck playing games and studying some, too. Of course our meals occupy a very important part in our day's program.

Our accommodations on this boat are very good. Our meals are fine, so we are enjoying our trip. This is the same boat on which I came home from the Congo, and as I spent 27 days on her, I feel somewhat at home.

After Teneriffe (Canary Island) our next stop will be Dakar, on the coast, only two or three days from Teneriffe. Then after that I think we make straight for the Congo, our first stop being Boma, the capital of the Congo, and then to Matadi where we disembark.

Goodbye for this time. With love to all.

B. M.

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