Saturday, 26th.—Turned out of bed between two and three, A.M., with orders to fall in, at a moment’s notice, in “light marching order,” as an attack was strongly expected. Spies had reported that 10,000 Beloochees were in a shikargur not seven miles from us, and that they intended a night attack; everybody in the highest state of excitement, pistols loading, &c. Fell in an hour before daylight; cavalry sent out in all directions; staff and field-officers galloping about like mad fellows; remained under arms till day had fully broke, when we were dismissed, but commanded not to stray far from camp: great excitement all day; Cunningham’s horse sent out to reconnoitre; returned late at night, reporting that they had patrolled sixteen miles in advance, had closely examined the shikargur in question, and could find no traces of the Beloochees,—a strong suspicion, however, remained that there were Beloochees in our neighbourhood.
Sunday, 27th.—Under arms an hour before daylight; no further news; camp quiet. As I was to be on out-lying picket this evening, rode out after breakfast to look at my ground, which appeared rather strong, intersected with ravines, brushwood; &c., and a good place to hold against cavalry. Mounted picket at five o’clock, P.M., fifty-seven rank and file, two serjeants, four corporals, and one bugler, a chain of nine double sentries, the right resting on the river and the Hydrabad road, and the chain running along a dry nullah, till it communicated with the sentries of the 5th regiment’s picket; a corporal’s party of three men detached in advance to an old ruin on the left front; a picket of cavalry about two miles in advance, with videttes on some high ground. A beautiful moonlight night, and not very cold till about one o’clock in the morning; lay on the ground and thought of what was going on at Brookhill and fancy ball at Torquay; visited my sentries continually; the men in high spirits, and very much on the alert; nothing extraordinary occurred.
Camp Kotree, four miles from Hydrabad,
February 6th, 1839.