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23 Jan 2024
updated 23 Jan 2024

Sea Voyages

I have no memories [not quite true – see First Memories] of my first journey from Nova Scotia to Ireland. I was only two then when my father was posted to Dublin and we remained there until I was six years old. Gibraltar was my father's next station. The fact that in addition to Leily my nurse, we also, as a matter of course, took our nursemaid and the cook with us, shows the difference between travel then and now.

Arrived in Gibraltar we were installed in temporary quarters in the Windmill Hill barracks until a suitable house could be found for us to live in. Our rooms in the barracks were all on a wide verandah on the first floor, and my little brother Frank and I occupied one of them.

It was in this room that I had a calamity. I had been given a most attractive present, a replica of a baby's basket containing everything necessary for its toilet, and I couldn't resist further investigation. I also found a box of matches – there were no electric lights then – for my candle and caused a conflagration amongst my bedclothes. Frank's and my screams brought rescuers in good time and the loss of my baby's basket, in the end, was my only punishment.