Wednesday the 14th Cont'd.

The few hours before going ashore in the morning gave us an opportunity of witnessing the natives coaling our steamer. Each have a round basket, these are filled from the trucks, the natives carrying same on their backs into the ships bunkers, keeping up and endless procession as they follow each other up the Gangway. There are four dozen working on each truck, singing, and whistling the whole of the time You can imagine the noise. Frequently a couplr of them will argue over something and then there is some fun especially when the Boss comes along with a whip, which he does not forget to use.

The above seems a very slow method of coaling a large steamer, but it would surprise you to see how quickly these niggers can go; they only get about 1/6d. per day and to see them working you would think they were on contract. In the evening I went to the beach. This is the most popular place in the city and is a splendid pleasure resort. The beach is similar to Cottesloe only they have some beautiful gardens on one side of the road and all kinds of side shows on the other, that is the road leading to the Beach.

Friday 16th

We were kept on Board all day, and needless to say we were very disappointed in not having the chance of going ashore. Coaling all day, the work completed at 7 p.m. which time also terminated our stay in Durban, as soon as the decks were cleared we drew anchor for our journey to Capetown. The town presented a fine spectacle, Darkness having crept in, the lights of the city giving a grand effect. After passing the breakwater the illuminations of the Beach came in view, presenting a lovely sight. Our short stay in Durban was very enjoyable, although the business people imposed upon us.

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The pic at the top right and background of the page is the SS Miltiades.