“I see that Mr. Boulong has painted the ship, and she looks as taut and snug as a man-of-war,” said the commander, who was evidently glad to see his vessel.
“They are lowering the boats,” added Louis; and in a few minutes the barge and first cutter came up to the shore.
There was a general handshaking with the first officer, in command, and the boys extended this courtesy to all the crews of the boats, going on board of them for a few minutes. It was a happy meeting; but it could not be long continued, and the carriages drove off again.
As he was about to take his place in the landau, Mr. Boulong informed the commander that he had received a visit from Captain Mazagan. He wanted to see Captain Ringgold, but did not state his business. The first officer could not tell whether the visitor knew the Blanche was in the river, for he had not mentioned her. With the statement that the party would go on board in two or three days, they parted, and the boats returned to the ship. The commander had something to think of now; but he came to the conclusion that the reprobate was not aware of the presence of the Blanche or her owner.
The carriages followed the shore road till they came to the upper end of the city, and then turned into the first of the long streets with several names in different parts, which extends entirely through the town. Near the esplanade they found the finest shops, and the ladies went into some of them to see the goods. Then they struck the Circular Road, and drove entirely around the city.
“This reminds me of Moscow, in some parts, where palaces and shanties are side by side in the same street,” said Captain Ringgold. “There does not seem to be any aristocratic section, unless that by the esplanade is such.”
They saw plenty of mosques, temples, and churches, some of the latter very fine. They believed they had taken in the whole city. After dinner Lord Tremlyn invited them to an excursion on board of a steam-yacht the next day, the use of which was tendered to him by a high official.
A SUCCESSFUL HUNT IN THE SUNDERBUNDS
A breakfast at six o’clock was provided the following morning for the tourists, and they came down from their chambers prepared for the aquatic excursion, which was to include something more than sight-seeing, for the gentlemen and the boys were directed to take their rifles along. Mr. Boulong had called upon the commander the evening before, and he had been invited to join the party; but he had excused himself, and suggested that Mr. Gaskette would enjoy it more than he should, and he was asked to go.
By half-past six the party were on The Strand, as the road in the esplanade bordering the river is called. The second officer of the ship was there; and he was not only a sailor and an artist, but he had the reputation of being a dead shot. The company embarked on the steam-yacht, which was large enough to make voyages to Madras and Ceylon. The excursion was not intended as a mere shooting-party, Lord Tremlyn explained, but to enable the company to obtain a better view of Calcutta than they could get in any other manner.