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    Software name: appdown
    Software type: Microsoft Framwork

    size: 339MB


    Software instructions

      The nondescript individual whom we saw among the passengers early in the voyage had joined the party, and heard the story of Captain Hunting's[Pg 68] whale. When it was ended, he ventured to say something on the subject of whaling.

      Everybody had a joke of some kind to propose, and the breakfast party was a merry one. Suddenly Captain Spofford called out, "There she blows!" and pointed through the cabin window. Before the others could look, the rolling of the ship had brought the window so far above the water that they saw nothing.Fred remembered that when they left San Francisco at noon, the bell struck eight times, instead of twelve, as he thought it should have struck. The Doctor's explanation made it clear to him.

      "I went to sea from New Bedford when I was twelve years old, and kept at whaling for near on to twenty-seven years. From cabin-boy, I crept up through all the ranks, till I became captain and part owner, and it was a good deal of satisfaction to me to be boss of a ship, I can tell you. When I thought I had had enough of it I retired, and bought a small farm. I stocked and ran it after my own fashion, called one of my oxen[Pg 60] 'Port' and the other 'Starboard,' had a little mound like my old quarter-deck built in my garden, and used to go there to take my walks. I had a mast with cross-trees fixed in this mound, and used to go up there, and stay for hours, and call out 'There she blows!' whenever I saw a bird fly by, or anything moving anywhere. I slept in a hammock under a tent, and when I got real nervous I had one of my farm-hands rock me to sleep in the hammock, and throw buckets of water against the sides of the tent, so's I could imagine I was on the sea again. But 'twasn't no use, and I couldn't cure myself of wanting to be on blue water once more. So I left my farm in my wife's hands, and am going out to Shanghai to command a ship whose captain died at Hong-Kong five months ago.

      "What puts that into your head, Kathleen?" said Mary, with a laugh.I understand, he said. No telling tales out of school.


      The paper was passed around the table and examined, and finally returned to Frank's hand. Mr. Bassett then explained to his son the uses of the document.


      For an Oriental city Tokio has remarkably wide streets, and some of them are laid out with all the care of Western engineering. In the course of their morning ride the party came to Sakuradu Avenue, which Fred recognized from a drawing by a native artist, who had taken pains to preserve the architecture of the buildings on each side with complete fidelity. The foundations of the houses were of irregular stones cut in the form of lozenges, but not with mathematical accuracy. The boys had already noticed this form of hewing stone in the walls of the castles, where some very large blocks were piled. They were reported to have been brought from distant parts of the empire, and the cost of their transportation must have been very great. Few of the houses were of more than two stories, and the great majority were of only one. Along Sakuradu Avenue they were of two stories, and had long and low windows with paper screens, so that it was impossible for a person in the street to see what was going on inside. The eaves projected far over the upright sides, and thus formed a shelter that was very acceptable in the heat of summer, while in rainy weather it had many advantages. These yashikis were formerly the property of Daimios, but are now occupied by the Foreign Office and the War Department. Inside the enclosure there are many shade-trees, and they make a cooling contrast to the plain walls of the buildings. The Japanese rarely paint the interior or the exterior of their buildings. Nearly everything is finished in the natural color of the wood, and very pretty the wood is too. It is something like oak in appearance, but a trifle darker, and is[Pg 120] susceptible of a high polish. It admits of a great variety of uses, and is very easily wrought. It is known as keyaki-wood; and, in spite of the immense quantity that is annually used, it is cheap and abundant."We don't reckon whales by their length," Captain Spofford answered, "but by the number of barrels of oil they make. Ask any old captain how long the largest whale was that he ever took, and the chances are he'll begin to estimate by the length of his ship, and frankly tell you he never measured one. I measured the largest sperm-whale I ever took, and found him seventy-nine feet long; he made a hundred and seven barrels of oil. Here's the figures of him: nose to neck, twenty-six feet; neck to hump, twenty-nine feet; hump to tail, seventeen feet; tail, seven feet. His tail was sixteen feet across, and he was forty-one feet six inches around the body. He had fifty-one teeth, and the heaviest weighed twenty-five ounces. We took nineteen barrels of oil from his case, the inside of the head, where we dipped it out with a bucket. I know one captain that captured a sperm-whale ninety feet long, that made a hundred and thirty-seven barrels, and there was another sperm taken by the ship Monka, of New Bedford, that made a hundred and forty-five barrels. I don't know how long he was.


      The boys considered a moment, and were forced to admit that, as Frank expressed it, they hadn't heard a whimper from a native infant. And they added that they were not anxious to hear any either.