On board S.S. Ormonde off coast of Crete

Tuesday, January 29, 1929

The French gentleman in the next cabin was very sick all night. Monday morning we were through the Straits, so it became calmer and also milder. I was asked to coach a tug-of-war team but later on got in one instead, the Irish team. They had a lottery on the distance traveled from Naples, which I entered. I was signing up for some sports on board when a man who saw my name asked if I hadn’t won a prize in the lottery. It was all news to me, but upon looking on the board, I found I had won first prize, 35 bob or $8.75, two bob of which I donated toward prizes for the sports. Lucky number 318. My lucky half-sovereign is OK. After lunch the Irish waded through two teams, winning four pulls and losing none. Only preliminaries though, and as I go tomorrow, I’ll miss out on the real times. There are several very good piano players aboard, including Jim. Strangely, they have taken a liking to this low-down jazz I play. I am leaving the ship much too soon. The people are very nice and I have made friends with a lot of dandy boys and men. They have a good time on board.

This morning about 7:30 we passed Gavdo Island (Ancient Cauda) 20 miles south of Crete. It is just a big rock protruding some 1,000 feet from the sea. Behind can be seen the Madara Range mountains (ancient Leuce). We are soon to pass Cape Littinos at the most southerly point of Crete. Behind it is Mount Psiloriti (ancient Ida), rising to a height of 8,060 feet. The visibility is rather poor this morning.

11PM — A man who has taken a great liking to “my piece” said he would print it if I would write it out for him. Jim and I tackled it for a couple of hours, but finally gave it up as a bad job. Wrote a letter to Dudie after tea this evening. When I had finished, Jim and I started out to have a look at the dance on deck. A couple of young women grabbed us before we left the writing room and so we were partnerized for a few dances. I think they are married—at least they are the best looking in third. The palace lists slightly to starboard, and as she is rolling some, everybody slides right across the deck and into the deck chairs along the rail. Lots of fun. There is a gorgeous moon, nearly full, sailing through a cloudy sky. It is pure gold in color and when behind a cloud, perfectly outlines it with a silver lining. And the band plays “There ain’t no sense, sittin’ on the fence, all by yourself in the moonlight,” so I’m going to bed. I didn’t win anything in the sweeps today. It has been a nice day, though rather cloudy, cool, and windy. Haven’t had a drop of agua to drink for seven days, a la [dumb] camel.

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