The inn where we had taken shelter was fortunately not touched, nor were any of the trees which surrounded it. Beautifully situated on a high bank, sloping down to the Hudson, full of fine old timber; it had belonged to some English noble—I forget his name—in the old colonial times; now, it was a favourite baiting-place for the frequenters of the Bloomingdale road, and dispensed the most undeniably good republican drinks, cobblers, cock-tails, slings, and hail-storms, with other more substantial and excellent things to match. The storm being over, we unhitched the horses, and returned to town at a more sober pace; nor were we much troubled with dust during the drive home.
Lest the reader should get wearied with so long a stay at New York, I now propose to shift the scene for his amusement, and hope he will accompany me in my wanderings. If, during the operation, he occasionally finds me tedious in any details uninteresting to him, I trust that a judicious skipping of a few leaves will bring us again into agreeable companionship.
[Footnote F: The largest boom in the Navy is 72 feet long, and 16-1/2 inches in diameter; the largest mast is 127 feet 3 inches long, and 42 inches diameter; the largest yard is 111 feet long, and 26-1/2 inches diameter.]
[Footnote G: Turbot is a good substitute for sea-bass.]
[Footnote H: A small American biscuit made of best flour.]
[Footnote I: Vide sketch of Aqueduct.]
South and West.
Being anxious to visit the southern parts of this Empire State, and having found an agreeable companion, we fixed upon an early day in November for our start; and although I anticipated much pleasure from the scenery and places of interest which my proposed trip would carry me through, I could not blind myself to the sad fact, that the gorgeous mantle of autumn had fallen from the forest, and left in its stead the dreary nakedness of winter. The time I could allot to the journey was unfortunately so short, that, except of one or two of the leading places, I could not hope to have more than literally a flying sight, and should therefore be insensibly compelled to receive many impressions from the travelling society among which the Fates threw me.
Eight o’clock in the morning found us both at the Jersey ferry, where our tickets for Baltimore—both for man and luggage—were to be obtained. It was a pelting snow-storm, and the luggage-ticketing had to be performed al fresco, which, combined with the total want of order so prevalent in the railway establishments in this country, made it anything but an agreeable operation. Our individual tickets were obtained under shelter, but in an office of such Lilliputian dimensions, that the ordinary press of passengers made it like a theatrical squeeze on a Jenny Lind night; only with this lamentable difference—that the theatrical squeeze was a prelude to all that could charm the senses, whereas the ticket squeeze was, I knew but too well, the precursor of a day of most uncomfortable travelling.