I must now observe that, during our run from Savu, I allowed twenty minutes a-day for the westerly current, which I concluded must run strong at this time, especially off the coast of Java, and I found that this allowance was just equivalent to the effect of the current upon the ship.
[Footnote 112: This is a single but not an inconsiderable instance of Cook’s skill, in the important art of navigation.—E.]
At four o’clock in the morning of the 2d, we fetched close in with the coast of Java, in fifteen fathom; we then stood along the coast, and early in the forenoon, I sent the boat ashore to try if she could procure some fruit for Tupia, who was very ill, and some grass for the buffaloes that were still alive. In an hour or two she returned with four cocoa-nuts, and a small bunch of plantains, which had been purchased for a shilling, and some herbage for the cattle, which the Indians not only gave us, but assisted our people to cut. The country looked like one continued wood, and had a very pleasant appearance.
About eleven o’clock, we saw two Dutch ships lying off Anger Point, and I sent Mr Hicks on board of one of them to enquire news of our country, from which we had been absent so long. In the mean time it fell calm, and about noon I anchored in eighteen fathom with a muddy bottom. When Mr Hicks returned, he reported that the ships were Dutch East Indiamen from Batavia, one of which was bound to Ceylon, and the other to the coast of Malabar; and that there was also a flyboat or packet, which was said to be stationed here to carry letters from the Dutch ships that came hither to Batavia, but which I rather think was appointed to examine all ships that pass the Streight: From these ships we heard, with great pleasure, that the Swallow had been at Batavia about two years before.
[Footnote 113: Mr Barrow advises that vessels should touch at Anger or Angeire Point, for refreshments. He says it is vastly better than stopping near North Island, on the Sumatra side, as the stores are much superior, and the station is very healthy.—E.]
[Footnote 114: This is related in the preceding volume.—E.]
At seven o’clock a breeze sprung up at S.S.W., with which having weighed, we stood to the N.E. between Thwart-the-way-Island and the Cap, sounding from eighteen to twenty-eight fathom: We had but little wind all night, and having a strong current against us, we got no further by eight in the morning than Bantam Point. At this time the wind came to the N.E., and obliged us to anchor in two-and-twenty fathom, at about the distance of two miles from the shore; the point bore N.E. by E., distant one league, and here we found a strong current setting to the N.W. In the morning we had seen the Dutch packet standing after us, but when the wind shifted to the N.E. she bore away.