Page:Diary of ten years.djvu/416

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which he had killed. I bought the skin from him; he eat the body. The only bad effect from these excursions is that from the exposure or from the change of diet, any cut or wound festers, and does not heal readily, but a little medicine sets all right again. We went about 83 miles going and coming.

The men are busied in clearing trees. They have found in them many grubs which the natives eat. The grub is a large maggot, which turns into something like a locust. Can this have been the food of John the Baptist in the wilderness? Found some fine plants of native tobacco, and have stripped some leaves to dry them as an experiment.

Having now come to the end of my paper, I shall commence upon a new leaf on my return, so I need not make any conclusive adieus. We are beginning to think that some mischief must have befallen the Black Swan, or she would have been here long since. What a long interval always intervenes between the promise and the fulfilment of the arrival of a vessel.

Nov. 16th.—You will see, I suppose, in the newspaper of this week an account of a dreadful accident which happened at King George's Sound, so I need not dwell upon it. There was a storm and some thunder at Perth on Thursday night, and a good deal of rain, which continued at intervals until Friday, and even hail showers. On Friday night there was a ball at Mr. Brown's, where dancing was kept up till near five o'clock in the morning, and I came home to-day (Saturday) very tired in consequence of it. Found the men busy clearing ground and making a most beneficial change in the appearance of that part of the farm which I bought from Lamb. Our newspaper editor wanted me to give him an account of my last short excursion, but, as I had seen nothing and had only gone over ground frequently traversed before, I declined. The Messrs. Samson have built a very large fine house, which is to serve as a dwelling-house, store, auction-room, &c. It