首页其他书籍The Cruise of the Cachalot[mobi] [azw3] [epub] [txt] [pdf] 

The Cruise of the Cachalot

其他书籍

作者:Bullen、FrankT等        

出版时间:2019-09-18        格式:[mobi] [azw3] [epub] [txt] [pdf]         

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  At the age of eighteen,after a sea-experience of six years from the time when I dodged about London streets,a ragged Arab,with wits sharpened by the constant fight for food,I found myself roaming the streets of New Bedford,Massachusetts.How I came to be there,of all places in the world,does not concern this story at all,so I am not going to trouble my readers with it;enough to say that I WAS there,and mighty anxious to get away.Sailor Jack is always hankering for shore when he is at sea,but when he is"outward bound"——that is,when his money is all gone——he is like a cat in the rain there.
  So as MY money was all gone,I was hungry for a ship;and when a long,keen-looking man with a goat-like beard,and mouth stained with dry tobacco-juice,hailed me one afternoon at the street-corner,I answered very promptly,scenting a berth."Lookin'fer a ship,stranger?"said he."Yes;do you want a hand?"said I,anxiously.He made a funny little sound something like a pony's whinny,then answered,"Wall,I should surmise that I want between fifty and sixty hands,ef yew kin lay me onto'em;but,kem along,every dreep's a drop,an'yew seem likely enough."With that he turned and led the way until we reached a building around which were gathered one of the most nondescript crowds I had ever seen.There certainly did not appear to be a sailor among them.Not so much by their rig,though that is not a great deal to go by,but by their actions and speech.One thing they all had in common,tobacco chewing but as nearly every male I met with in America did that,it was not much to be noticed.I had hardly done reckoning them up when two or three bustling men came out and shepherded us all energetically into a long,low room,where some form of agreement was read out to us.Sailors are naturally and usually careless about the nature of the"articles"they sign,their chief anxiety being to get to sea,and under somebody's charge.But had I been ever so anxious to know what I was going to sign this time,I could not,for the language might as well have been Chinese for all I understood of it.However,I signed and passed on,engaged to go I knew not where,in some ship I did not know even the name of,in which I was to receive I did not know how much,or how little,for my labour,nor how long I was going to be away."What a young fool!"I hear somebody say.I quite agree,but there were a good many more in that ship,as in most ships that I have ever sailed in.

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