I travelled over most of England, Scotland, and Ireland, and spent some time in some of the principal cities of the Continent. I became a fair linguist, speaking German, French, and Italian, with some fluency, although my accent always bewrayed me. I took a second class in classics, bade adieu to Oxford, and began to make up my mind as to what I should do with my life. I had thought of the various professions in turn, and had decided against them all; and, finally, as I had no taste for idleness, and as I had some money, I resolved to invest it in sheep or cattle farming in some of the new countries. I thought successively of New Zealand, the United States, Canada, and Australia, and I was determined in favour of Australia by falling in with Jack Wilbrahmn. He and I had gone into residence at Oxford about the same time, but not at the same college, and we took our degrees in the same year; but we hardly belonged to the same set. Jack was more of a sporting than a reading man, and I was not much of either, at least as either was understood at the University. So Jack and I, although we heard of one another occasionally, did not meet until a few months before we left Oxford.
Then we became fast friends, and, as he had already determined to go to Australia, I made up my mind to