Chapter 18. Igneous Rocks II
Published:June 01, 2015
Extract from beginning of chapter:
On board the German mail [ship] bound for Genoa! Rapidly the Orient is slipping past. A few more glimpses of eastern ports along the familiar course of ocean travel. Same old sea, same blue-green waters, same waves, and wind, and clouds, and sunshine—all friends from my youth up, all welcome and congenial spirits. High up in the topmost saloon of the steadiest of steamers, Prinz Ludwig, days were spent working over Harry Washington's Tables (Washington, 1903), selecting analyses for volume II (Igneous Rocks), and calculating their positions as central or intermediate in the quantitative system of classification. Gradually the wind rose in strength and whistled about the ship, which neither rolled nor trembled. Old ocean became a “howling swell” and came with a rush up the east coast of Africa. It kept us riding the waves until under the lee of Somaliland, approaching Aden and desert shores.
FROM ADEN TO SUEZ
The town of Aden is high and dry on the base of an ancient volcano, whose barren sides expose the anatomy of its parts, like a parched skeleton on a sandy waste. The black inhabitants who came out to shift cargoes were lean and lank […]. How the lean face of age masks our lingering youth. Here's a subject for reflection and possibly essay. Months of tropical heat and a wholesome dread of local waters, with no great fondness for “Aju blanda”—apollinaris1—had brought me almost to the condition of a desiccated frog; my cheekbones