Page:Audubon and His Journals.djvu/299

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251
THE EUROPEAN JOURNALS

ure boat, while one in the bow gave us fine music with the bugle. We soon reached the Quarry, and found ourselves under tall, luxuriant, handsome trees forming broad avenues, following the course of the river, extremely agreeable. Indeed, being a woodsman, I think this the finest sight I have seen in England. How the Severn winds round the town, in the form of a horse-shoe! About the centre of this horse-shoe, another avenue, still more beautiful, is planted, going gently up the hill towards the town. I enjoyed this walk more than I can tell thee, and when I thought of the disappointment I had felt at five hours delay at Shrewsbury, and the pleasure I now felt, I repeated for the more than one thousand and first time, "Certainly all is for the best in this world, except our own sins."

London, May 21, 1827. I should begin this page perhaps with a great exclamation mark, and express much pleasure, but I have not the wish to do either; to me London is just like the mouth of an immense monster, guarded by millions of sharp-edged teeth, from which if I escape unhurt it must be called a miracle. I have many times longed to see London, and now I am here I feel a desire beyond words to be in my beloved woods. The latter part of the journey I spent closely wrapped in both coat and cloak, for we left Shrewsbury at ten, and the night was chilly; my companions were Mr. Bentley and two Italians, one of whom continually sang, and very well, while the other wished for daylight. In this way we continued till two of the morning, and it was then cold. From twelve until four I was so sleepy I could scarcely hold up my head, and I suffered much for the want of my regular allowance of sleep which I take between these hours; it is not much, yet I greatly missed it. We breakfasted at Birmingham at five, where the worst stuff bearing the name of coffee that I ever tasted was brought to us. I say tasted, for I could do no more. The country constantly improved in beauty; on we drove through Strat-