’The next day our march led us to the vicinity of a large populated town. We halted near a plantation of date-trees, and one of our mendicant pilgrims was dispatched with money to purchase bread and dates for our sustenance, with instructions to conceal, if possible, our numbers and our halting-place, fearing that the inhabitants might assail us with stones if it were suspected that we came from the infected city. The quantity of food, however, required for so large a party excited suspicion, but our preservation was again secured by Divine interference.
’A Dirzy from the city visited our resting-place, and finding we were pilgrims, asked permission to travel with us to Kraabaallah, which was readily agreed to, and when a host of men were observed issuing from the town, this man, who was an inhabitant, ran towards them, explained that we were all healthy men, and interested several Arab-Syaads to come forward and befriend me and my party, which they readily assented to on finding that brother Syaads were in danger. The Kauzy of the town hearing all the particulars attending us, came to the spot which we had selected for our halt, presented his nuzza of twenty-one dinars to me, entreated pardon for the intended assault he had in ignorance authorized, obliged me to accept his proffered civilities, and we remained several days in the enjoyment of hospitality in that town, where we had at first such strong reasons to anticipate violence and persecution; but this could not be whilst the arm of the Lord was raised to shelter His confiding servants. To Him be the praise and the glory for every preservation I have been favoured with! and many were the perils with which I was surrounded in my walk through life, yet, always safely brought through them, because I never failed putting my trust in His mercy and protection who alone could defend me.’
On one occasion of his pilgrimage to Mecca, Meer Hadjee Shah, with all his companions on board a trading ship, off the coast of Arabia, were attacked by pirates, and taken prisoners; but, as he always declared, the goodness of Divine Providence again preserved him and those with him from the hands of their enemies. In the event in question, he undertook to speak for all his party to the Arab chief, before whom they were taken prisoners, and having a thorough knowledge of the Arabic language, he pleaded their joint cause so effectually, that the chief not only liberated the whole party, but forced presents upon them in compensation for their inconvenient detention.
The most interesting, if not the most remarkable incident which occurred to Meer Hadjee Shah in his journey through life, remains to be told. The story has been so often related by his own lips, that I think there will be little difficulty in repeating it here from memory. It may be deemed prolix, yet I should not do justice by a farther abridgement.