The Moltke dropped anchor at quarantine and a yellow flag was run to the top of the mast to remain floating there until the Italian physician had completed his examination and was convinced that there were not, and had not been, any cases of plague, cholera, or contagious disease on the ship. During the detention at quarantine a large mail was brought on board. We crowded eagerly into the office inquiring for letters. The stewards, not taking time to distribute the mail in the boxes, called out the addresses, and little thought was given to anything else until letters and papers were obtained and the news from home devoured.
The fog soon rolled away and Naples, beautifully situated on the crescent-shaped shores of the bay, was disclosed to view. From the deck of the steamer we saw a picture unsurpassed in color and composition by any previously beheld, excepting, perhaps, the view of Constantinople from the Bosporus, or the panorama of Algiers seen from the sea; but each one of the three pictures was unique and beyond comparison. But here, as at Constantinople, distance lent an enchantment to the view; for a closer inspection after landing revealed on the white and yellow and pink buildings ravages of time and unsightly stains of smoke and grime unnoticed from the bay.
We had no sooner reached the street, ready for sight-seeing, than the cabriolet drivers thronged about, importuning us to ride in the low open carriages that comfortably carry two persons.
"How much to the Cathedral?" we asked one of the drivers, using an expression that we thought the Italian might comprehend.
"One lira the course, one and a half lire the hour," he succeeded in getting us to understand.
"Only ten cents each. And it's fully two miles to the Cathedral!" exclaimed my companion. "But we have a number of places to visit," he added, "and it will be better to engage the cab by the hour. Show him your watch and make a note of the time."
At the entrance of the Cathedral, the beggars asking alms reminded us of the description of similar scenes at the gate of the Temple in the Savior's time. A blind man standing by the door called loudly upon the passers-by to have pity on him, a cripple seated on the steps with rough crooked crutches by his side stretched out his hand for aid, and a fat dirty woman with a tiny babe in her arms whiningly cried, "poveretta mia! poveretta mia!"
The regular services in the Cathedral were over when we entered, but many people were in the building. Some were in silent adoration before the Cross at the magnificent high altar; some were worshiping at the foot of the Virgin, or praying at the shrines of the saints; others were contritely kneeling at the confessional boxes with faces close to the little grated windows, whispering deeds of misdoing to the confessor within and awaiting the father's words of penance or of absolution. We followed a crowd of Italians who were going into a chapel at the side where preparations were being made for a special service. There being no pews or sittings in the chapel, but a few plain chairs for hire, we paid the verger two cents for the use of a chair and waited. Wooden benches were placed in line to form an aisle and a number of women and children knelt at the benches, each holding a large unlighted candle.
A cardinal in a red robe came down the aisle, accompanied by a surpliced acolyte bearing a cup of oil. As the cardinal passed each kneeling person, he dipped his thumb into the oil and then, repeating a formula, made a sign of the cross with his thumb on the worshiper's forehead. A priest in black cassock and a chorister in white followed the cardinal, the priest wiping the foreheads with a piece of cotton and the chorister taking the candles which were handed to him as offerings to the church.
The doors of the magnificently adorned Cathedral were open to rich and poor alike; but the poor were in the majority, and among them appeared such cases of slovenly poverty as we had not seen elsewhere, not even in Jerusalem or Constantinople, for in the Moslem cities fountains were at the gates of the mosques and no worshiper entered the sacred edifice with soiled hands or feet. Three cases of slovenliness we noted particularly. A woman of middle age, with tangled hair, torn, untidy dress and soiled, stockingless feet partially covered by dilapidated slippers, was violating the rules of the church by sidling up to strangers and stealthily begging within the building; a boy, probably sixteen years of age, hatless, shoeless, coatless, with pantaloons in need of patches and body in need of soap, stood gazing curiously at the ceremony; and a man whose whole attire consisted of a ragged shirt and cotton trousers, with marks of grime on hands, neck, and face, leaned carelessly against a pillar with bare feet thrust forward. But these were extreme and exceptional cases of untidiness, the worshipers generally being neatly clad and careful of their personal appearance.
The military band was playing on a platform when we visited the park and the paths and the grass plats were filled with people, many standing and a few seated on chairs. Noticing some unoccupied chairs, we sat down to listen to the music and watch the life and movement of a Neapolitan crowd. We had scarcely taken our places when a woman with a badge and a bag approached, demanding ten centessimi for each seat. "Gratia!" she said when paid, and "Gratia!" we responded, grateful for a comfortable resting place.
"I thought, before we started on this trip, that sight-seeing prolonged day after day might become monotonous and that I might lose interest," remarked one of the group seated on the chairs, "but, on the contrary, I find continual variety. Our drive through the beautiful residence section and suburbs on the heights this morning was charming, and the extensive landscape and marine view from the Convent of Camaldoli is unsurpassed, save by the view from Mustapha Superieur. Each place visited has differed so thoroughly from all the others that my interest is as intense now as when we landed at fascinating Funchal."
"In each city I am compelled to replenish my stock of films; I find so many pleasing subjects," replied an artist who always had his camera with him. "Did you see those women on the hillside road at Capri carrying wine kegs on their heads? They posed for me to take a picture of the group. It was not necessary to tell them to look pleasant; every face wore a smile. I am sorry that my kodak does not reproduce colors. The dresses of the women, though worn and faded, were very picturesque in their combinations of scarlets, blues, and yellows."
"And I regret that cameras cannot reproduce the beautiful azure and silver tints of the interior of the Blue Grotto just as we saw it yesterday," said one of the ladies who was collecting photographs and postal cards. "I want a good picture of the Grotto Azzurra but I cannot find one. Those that are offered for sale are such poor imitations."
After the concert was over, we entered the salt water aquarium of Naples, which is famous throughout Europe as the finest and largest ichthyological collection in the world. In the glass tanks curious sea fish darted through the water, grotesque sea monsters crawled over the pebbles, and transparent jelly fish floated slowly; pink and white sea anemones, like a bed of flowers, opened and closed, and diminutive sea animals, almost invisible, spread thread-like tentacles; sponges and coral grew upon the rocks, and mollusks showed by their movements that they had life.
One evening we drove to the suburban village of Posilipo and from the cliffs at that place saw the sun descend in glory, a golden ball dropping into a radiant sea. While we were returning, a picturesque beggar with a crooked stick and one string across it trotted alongside our carriage, trying to convince us that he was a musician and his music worth a penny. At dusk, an Italian boy ran alongside the carriage, opened and lit the carriage lamps while the horse was moving at a rapid gait, and asked for payment.
Naples is a city of striking contrasts. It was interesting to study them. We drove over well paved streets, admiring marble palaces, great hotels, and beautiful homes; but with feelings very different from admiration we walked through narrow, filthy thoroughfares, densely populated, where networks of clothes lines with garments of all colors hung overhead. We saw high-spirited horses and superb carriages in the avenues and parks, and teams of handsome cream-colored oxen in the suburbs: but we saw also in the highways, small, rough-coated donkeys overburdened with panniers of fruit; tall, bony horses mismatched with diminutive donkeys; incongruous teams composed of a cow and a donkey, or a large ox and a small cow; and a team even more grotesquely made up of a horse, a cow, and a donkey. We saw the elite of the city elegantly dressed in the latest fashion promenading in the shopping districts; but on the sidewalks of the tenement district we saw slovenly barefooted women washing clothes, cooking maccaroni, scrubbing children in a tub, and combing children's hair with fine combs, regardless of our curious gaze. Here, too, we saw boys, apparently eight or ten years of age, playing in the streets with no other clothing than a shirt reaching to the knees, and women peddlers of mineral water dressed in ragged red blouses and blue skirts, who, with disordered hair and stockingless, slipshod feet, shuffled by pushing hand-carts filled with earthen jugs.
On the avenues street peddlers besought us to purchase canes, matches, coral beads, and souvenirs cut out of lava, but asked prices four or five times their actual value. On the narrow streets dealers in cooked viands for the home trade did an active business at low prices, but did not think it worth while to offer us the hot potatoes, maccaroni, fried fish, and stewed meats which they prepared on little sidewalk stoves.
The trip from Naples to Pompeii was made by rail in less than an hour. At the gates of the enclosure we each paid an admission fee of two lire, or forty cents, and official guides were assigned to conduct the party through the streets of the excavated city.
"About one hundred and fifty years ago," explained the guide, "a farmer ploughed up some objects of art in this locality. The government, hearing of the discovery, ordered investigation to be made. Removal of the soil disclosed a house and furniture and articles of value. The excavations, carried on irregularly for a century, then continued regularly but slowly for the past fifty years and still in progress, revealed the ancient city that had been smothered in ashes and buried from sight for eighteen hundred years. The wooden roofs, crushed in by the weight above them, had crumbled into dust, but the walls and columns, the altars and statues, the fountains and baths, the paved streets and mosaic pavements, and the frescoes on the walls had been preserved by the covering of ashes, and were in almost as good condition as when deserted by the terror-stricken inhabitants. All articles of value, as soon as found by the excavators, were carried away to the museums and carefully preserved; but the uncovered walls were left exposed to the weather, and, as you will see, are badly damaged and defaced. The government for the past few years, however, has been protecting the newly excavated buildings by enclosing and roofing them over, and in these we shall find the beautiful Pompeian red and blue colors and the dainty frescoes well preserved on the walls."
This ancient city of probably only twenty-five thousand inhabitants had improvements that we now designate as modern. The streets, just wide enough for one wagon track with narrow footways on each side, were paved with square flat stones in which the chariots had cut deep wheel ruts. The public baths had separate rooms for men and women, exercise courts, sweating rooms, furnace heat, hot baths, cold baths, capacious marble plunge tanks, and cooling rooms in which the bathers, cleansed, oiled, and perfumed, could rest after the bath. The water supply was distributed through the city in the same manner as in our own cities. Lead water pipes conducted the water through streets and into buildings. Bronze stopcocks governed the fountains, and bronze inlets and outlets regulated the supply at the marble baths.
"The Pompeian plumbers used good material and did good work," commented a manufacturer after examining the plumbing.
"If I could produce paints that would endure for centuries, and have them laid on as the Pompeian artists applied them, my fortune would soon be made," remarked another, who had been impressed particularly by the brightness of the red and blue on the walls of the House of Sallust. "But," he added, "the secret of making paint that will endure the ravages of time has been lost."
In a baker's shop we saw four small stone mills in which grain had been converted to flour by hand power, the stones having been revolved by means of long wooden handles. Near the mills was an oven similar to those of the present time.
"In this oven a number of loaves of bread were found," said the guide.
"Yes," answered one of our party, "we saw fourteen loaves in the Museum of Naples yesterday and were told that it was the oldest bread in existence. The loaves were well preserved in form but were as black as charcoal."
Our interest in Pompeii was heightened by our previously having visited the Naples Museum, where a multitude of articles found during the excavations were on exhibition. There we had examined hundreds of objects of art, marble statues, bronze statues, mosaics, vases, frescoes, and paintings; we had seen thousands of ornaments for personal adornment, necklaces, cameos, bracelets, rings, chains, and toilet accessories and had looked at numberless articles for household use, such as stoves, lamps, dishes, and kitchen utensils. Even food was not lacking in the exhibition, being represented by olives in a jar, oil in bottles, charred walnuts, almonds, figs, wheat, and eggs. These things, abandoned by the fugitives in their wild flight, helped us to imagine the taste and manner of living of the Pompeians before the destruction of their city.
"This is the Amphitheatre," said the guide, as we assembled around him in the arena of a large structure. "Here fights between wild beasts, gladiatorial combats, and other great spectacles took place. Underneath the seats on one side are the dens where the lions and tigers were kept in a starving condition to make them ferocious, and underneath on the other side are the dungeons where prisoners were confined until forced into the arena to meet the wild beasts. On the hill nearby are the barracks where the gladiators lived and trained for combats." An announcement of an oldtime entertainment remains inscribed on one of the stone walls. It reads as follows:
Twenty pairs of gladiators, at the expense of Decimus, a priest, and ten pairs of gladiators, at the expense of Lucretius, will fight at Pompeii on the eleventh of April. There will be a complete hunting scene, and the awnings will be spread.
Another inscription on the wall stated:
On the dedication of the baths, at the expense of Maius, there will be a hunt, athletic sports, showering of perfumes, etc., at the Amphitheatre.
"There was also a Tragic Theatre in Pompeii," continued the guide. "It was reserved for dramatic performances. The stone tiers seated an audience of five thousand. The Amphitheatre and the Tragic were open to the sky, but both were provided with awnings that could be spread above the seats to protect the people from the sun."
Almost all of us had read Bulwer-Lytton's novel, "The Last Days of Pompeii," and were familiar with his vivid description of the fearful eruption of Vesuvius which overwhelmed the city in the year A.D. 79,—the darkness, the terror of the people, the hasty flight, the roar of explosions, the volcanic lightnings, the scorching ashes, the sulphurous fumes, and the hot rain. Very interesting to us were the places described by Bulwer in his novel; the dwelling of the magistrate Pansa, the villa of the wealthy Diomede where eighteen skeletons surrounded by provisions and jewels had been found, the house of the poet Glaucus whose threshold was guarded by the mosaic of a chained dog with the now well known motto 'Cave Canem' or 'Beware of the Dog.' Most interesting, perhaps, was the Temple of Isis, in which the most exciting incidents of Bulwer's novel took place. There the guide showed us the altar, the well, the secret stairway, the platform from which the oracle spoke, and the spot where the skeleton of the priest with an ax was found.
"Broken columns and ruined walls are all that remain of the grandeur of the Forum," explained the guide as he led the way through a triumphal arch into a large area. "These extensive marble-paved floors were once decorated with statues of the illustrious men of Pompeii."
"The Forum was a bustling place," he continued, as we stood in the centre of the area. "In the open court the people met to exchange opinions and obtain the news. On the porticoes the money changers made loans and the brokers sold real estate and grain. It was the political center of the city. Here the magistrates administered justice. Here the populace met with joyful acclamations to raise a favorite to power, and here, too, angry mobs gathered to compel an offending ruler to vacate his office. It was the religious centre as well; for adjoining the Forum are the ruins of the Temple of Mercury, the Temple of Venus, the Temple of Jupiter, and the Temple of Augustus."
When we were ready to leave Pompeii, after a tramp through other streets and a visit to the Museum, the subject of giving a fee to the guide was considered. At the gate when entering we had read a notice stating that guides furnished by the government were not permitted to accept fees from visitors. The guide assigned to us, however, had been very obliging and had given much interesting information. Appreciating this we slipped into his hand secretly at parting a token of our good will. "Gratia! Gratia!" very heartily he responded, assuring us that our gift, the forbidden, was acceptable.
After returning from Pompeii to our steamship we found that although the evening hours had arrived, the harbor was still a scene of animation. Scores of Italian stevedores were carrying baskets of coal on their shoulders from barges into the bunkers of the Moltke. Near by other laborers were hoisting crates of lemons and oranges and lowering them into the hold of an English steamer. A little rowboat with a stove on board was running a brisk restaurant business, selling bread, coffee, fried eggs, fried potatoes, and fried fish to boatmen and laborers, who managed to devour the viands without assistance of plate, knife, or fork.
Alongside our steamer a number of boys in a rowboat were making a distracting noise with tin pans and crude instruments, looking up in the hope that some one would pay them for creating a disturbance. In another boat, gaily attired Neapolitan musicians played and sang popular airs in a pleasing way that drew coins from the pockets of the hearers. At the close of each piece of music one of the women held a spread umbrella upside down to catch the coppers that were dropped into it from the deck thirty feet above.
"The daylight ends too soon," regretfully observed one of our party, an artist of considerable reputation, who, seated in his favorite nook near the stern, was endeavoring to complete his color notes and sketches of the picturesque scenes before the darkness hid them from view. "But the sky above the mountain is reddening and the glow of Vesuvius will give me work for to-night."
NICE AND MENTONE.
Throughout the cruise to the Orient, up to the time of departure from Naples, our party of tourists had the great steamer to themselves, there being no other passengers on board. At Naples, however, a change took place. As the Steamship Company granted us the privilege of remaining over in Europe and returning later in the season in some other steamer of the same line, a large number of the tourists left the Moltke at Naples for side trips on the Continent, and many more intended to leave at Nice; so that not more than one-fourth of the original number was booked to return direct from Nice to New York. During the time our steamer lay at Naples a cargo of freight was taken on board, and on the day of departure one thousand steerage passengers ascended the gangway, some with valises of curious shape, a few dragging trunks, but the greater number with all their possessions in bags or bundles.
At ten o'clock on the night of March thirtieth, we stood at the rail watching the lights on the shore gradually disappearing from sight as the Moltke steamed away from the harbor.
"What must be the thoughts of these Neapolitan exiles as they sail away from 'Sunny Italy,' their place of birth, their homeland, and their friends?" mused my friend, referring to the emigrants gazing farewell to their native land.
"There is sadness in their hearts, for their faces and attitudes show it," said he, answering his own question. "Some of the women are shedding tears. But they are all hopeful. They have heard that in the promised land there is plenty of work, high wages, enough to eat, and, what is far better, opportunity to rise. In Italy there is scarcity of work, low wages, a chunk of black bread, and nothing better to look forward to in the future."
"You are right, young man, there is something to look forward to in America, an opportunity to rise in the world," said a fellow tourist, well known as a man of wealth and distinction. "I can sympathize with these poor people who are seeking to better their condition. Thirty years ago I was a poor man, leaving Europe in the steerage as an emigrant to the land of promise. I worked my way to the West, became a miner, and met with success."
"To reach America appears to be the desire of many in Italy," remarked another. "In the elevator of one of the hotels in Naples I found the elevator boy studying an English spelling book. He said, 'I am going to America as soon as I have money enough; there is a chance for me to become something if I can get to New York.' A cab driver asked me if I knew his cousin in Chicago. 'My cousin,' said he, 'saved enough money to buy a third-class passage to New York. That was just three years ago. Now he is sending money home to his friends to take them over. He must be doing well. We never have any money to give away.' Money to spare for his friends! That told the cabman the story of a golden land."
On Tuesday, as we sailed northward, we passed the island of Elba, on which the banished Napoleon remained ten months after his abdication. We endeavored to recall the history of the events that preceded the great Emperor's first downfall; the campaign in Russia, the burning of Moscow, the winter retreat, the depletion of the grand army by frost and hunger. But when the little island of Monte Cristo came in sight, memory brought to mind pleasanter recollections,—Dumas' story of the "The Count of Monte Cristo," so wonderful in our youthful days, Edmond Dantes' escape from the dungeon, the cave on the island, and the fabulous wealth concealed therein.
On the day of arrival at Nice, hundreds of owners of automobiles from all parts of Europe were assembled in that city for trials of speed; the morning races had taken place and the dust-covered racers were just coming in from their fast runs. On the way to the hotel we saw an automobile run over one man and knock another down. An excited French woman who was rolled over in the dust but not injured followed the offending car to the garage with tongue, hands, and arms all in rapid motion. She was giving the chauffeur a tongue-lashing and calling his attention to her soiled clothing. Her tirade prompted the chauffeur to draw some coins from his pocket and place them in her hand, and then her hurt feelings apparently were quickly relieved.
Nice has a delightful climate. It is protected from the cold winds of the north by hills and mountains and fanned by the mild breezes of the sea. Royalty, beauty, and wealth make their abode in this favorite resort on the shore of the Mediterranean during the winter season, and English lords, French counts, Russian princes, German barons, and American millionaires sojourn at the magnificent hotels or reside in beautiful villas.
The season of gaiety was just closing when we arrived and the hotels were not crowded, yet there was much to see. It was a pleasure to drive on the clean, well-paved avenues, which are shaded by great trees and lined with handsome homes and white stone hotels, passing lawns and gardens filled with palms, roses, choice flowers, and blooming vines. It was interesting to stroll along the sea front for two or three miles on a stone pavement fifty feet wide, the popular promenade of the city, with the waves of the blue sea rolling almost to your feet on one side and the wide avenue filled with handsome teams and motor-cars of every description on the other. It was entertaining to secure a chair in the park during the afternoon concert, and, comfortably seated, listen to the military band, admire the gowns of the French women, and note the variety of uniforms worn by the French officers. Those afternoons in the park were very restful for there was no hurry nor confusion nor crying of wares for sale, and the balmy sea breeze had a soothing effect on the nerves.
The weather was delightful and the air pure and clear when, on the morning of April fourth, a party of sixteen filled the seats of a four-horse drag for a drive from Nice to Mentone over the famous Corniche road, a round trip of over forty miles, noted as one of the finest drives in Europe. We had decided to go to Mentone over the Upper Corniche road, which winds among the mountains, and return by the Lower Corniche road, which follows the shores of the sea.
Our driver snapped his long-lashed whip and the horses started off as gaily as if they shared our exuberant spirits.
"That is the river Paillon," said the driver, pointing to a diminutive stream in the midst of a wide stony bed. "The river has very little water in it now, but when the snow melts in the mountains it becomes a torrent."
The little stream had a peaceful look. Many washer-women were busily at work along its banks, many clothes lines were filled with drying garments, and sheets were bleaching on the stones. A number of red objects in the distance proved, as we drew nearer, to be a company of red-trousered French soldiers washing their linen in the stream. Another company in red trousers and white shirts marched by us, carrying their bundles to the river. After leaving the river we passed an immense public wash trough where forty women were washing clothes and apparently having a social time. There was room at the trough for double that number.
The macadamized road winding up the mountain side in easy grades, supported at many places by walls of substantial masonry, was in perfect condition. Occasionally as our team moved slowly upward we heard the "honk, honk" of a horn and a racing automobile making a time record flew swiftly by and was soon out of sight, or rushing down grade around sharp curves at tremendous speed toward us caused some hearts in our coach to palpitate in anxiety until the racer had safely passed.
"At this spot a Russian Count and his friend were killed on the morning of the races," said our driver as we rounded one particularly sharp curve. "The count, expecting to be a winner in the race, was speeding his motor-car at the rate of fifty miles an hour, when it swerved against the rocks and he and his friend were hurled over the wall and crushed to death."
As we ascended the mountains we saw on the slopes below us orchards of gray olive trees, in the valleys orchards of dark green orange and lemon trees filled with yellow fruit, clean looking white or yellow or pink houses with red tile roofs dotting the landscape, and the white stone Hotel Regina, beautiful for situation, standing prominent on a summit. The rocks in the channel of the Paillon appeared to be a bed of pebbles. In the distance, to the south, could be seen the buildings of the city we had left and the glistening waters of the sea beyond; on the north, wooded hills and terraced mountains; and far away, the snow covered summits of the Alps. While we gazed at one of these scenes of beauty, the soft mellow tones of a convent bell came pleasingly to our ears.
"Why is it the bells ring so sweetly here?" inquired one of the occupants of our coach. "It must have been melodious notes like these that pleased the ear of the poet Moore."
At each turn of the road our point of view changed and the panorama unrolled before us. We looked down upon a series of beautiful pictures. The Mediterranean lay two thousand feet below us, its surface reflecting every shade of blue and green, its coast a succession of inlets, bays, promontories, and peninsulas. White roads winding among the shrubbery on the peninsulas looked like white ribbons on a green background, the red tiled houses like little toys, and the harbor of Ville Franche like a pond on which floated tiny boats that a child might play with.
"What a picturesque town!" exclaimed a tourist.
"That is the city of Eze. It is a very old city," said the driver.
"Perched among the mountains, with its odd castle on a detached hill top," said one of the tourists "it reminds me of a painting by one of the old masters. Cimabue, I think, or Perugino. I cannot remember which. I am constantly regretting while traveling abroad that we are not more proficient in history and art. While the professor and the artist were with the party we could turn to them for information. But now we must depend upon ourselves."
"Not necessarily," replied another, "for we have Baedeker and the guides; and there are the drivers, too, to call upon when they can understand our English or we can understand their French."
For some distance beyond Eze the road followed the side of rugged limestone cliffs surmounted by fortifications and signal stations. At the old, queer-looking town of La Turbie, while the horses rested for an hour, we selected postal cards and took kodak views. Soon after leaving La Turbie, while descending the mountain, we looked down upon the little principality of Monaco, its capital, the city of Monaco, the palace of the Prince built upon a rocky promontory, and the white buildings of Monte Carlo.
Mentone is a popular winter resort on the Mediterranean with handsome houses and flower-filled gardens. Vineyards and groves of orange, lemon, and fig trees, cover the hillsides surrounding the city. We lunched in Mentone, and were entertained under the palm trees of the hotel garden by a band of Italian musicians, one of whom, an amusing character actor as well as singer, responded cheerfully to our requests for special selections and solos.
Our return from Mentone to Nice was through a succession of towns and villages. Along this coast road are many white hotels, comfortable-looking villas, and trimly kept lawns. In the gardens there were century plants, orange, lemon, and palm trees, and rose bushes of great size covered with bloom. On the tops of the garden walls, plants of various kinds were growing. Some of the walls were covered with long clusters of pink geraniums, some gracefully festooned with masses of overhanging heliotrope, and others draped with trailing vines aglow with scarlet bloom. The exuberant growth and bloom of these flowers attracted much attention and drew forth exclamations of delight.
"Did you ever see geraniums and heliotropes growing in such luxuriance?" asked one of the ladies.
"Only in my own state," replied a Californian. "There the plants grow to immense size and bloom in profusion."
"Do not forget charming Funchal," said another. "Remember that there we saw geraniums and fuschias of wonderful size, and vines of pink bouguainvillia that covered the mountain-side cottages."
At Monte Carlo, as we drove through the park that surrounds the white marble gambling palace, we admired the magnificent parterres of flowers, the beds of pansies being especially beautiful in variety of color and size of the flowers. On the piazza of the Cafe de Paris, where a band was playing, we had afternoon tea and from there watched the throng of visitors who were moving along the palm-lined paths or were ascending or descending the marble steps of the Casino.
"Is there a charge for admittance?" we inquired of the guard at the entrance of the white palace.
"No," he replied. "Present your visiting card at the desk of the Secretary in the corridor. He will approve. Then, after you have registered your name, a card of admission will be given you."
In the decorated rooms where the games of chance were in operation, many handsomely gowned women and well-dressed men were moving from place to place conversing in quiet tones, but crowds were centered around the roulette tables, where the chairs were all occupied and many people were standing. We joined the throng around one of these and saw that the table was divided into numbered spaces, some colored red and some black. In the centre of the table was a little wheel with spaces to correspond in number and color to those on the table. The stakes were silver five franc pieces, one or more. No other coins nor bills were permitted on the table.
"I will try it," said one of our party after watching the game awhile. "I will place a five franc on number seven black."
The table was dotted with silver coins. The croupier touched a spring that sent a small ball spinning around the wheel. The ball stopped in space three red.
"Three red wins," announced the croupier.
A woman with gray hair and large diamonds in her ears picked up her winnings and added them to the stack of silver on the table in front of her, and the croupiers with wooden rakes raked in scores of coins that had been laid on losing numbers.
At some of the tables in the magnificent apartments of the Casino the stakes were higher, twenty franc gold pieces being used, and at these tables, eager players, infatuated with the game, hazarded handfuls of gold on the turn of the wheel.
"The chances to win or lose appear to be about even," said the Californian. "They must, however, be in favor of the Casino; for the company requires a large income to meet the enormous expenses incurred in keeping up this handsome palace and grounds with thousands of employees, croupiers, guards, gardeners, and care-takers. In addition, the company pays a heavy tax to the Prince of Monaco, and yet is said to have large profit."
When our coach arrived at the hotel in Nice some one remarked: "You appear to be enthusiastic over your drive." We were; there was no doubt about it, and we might well have added that we were just as well pleased with the whole trip to the Orient. We started with great expectations and we were not disappointed.
At Nice, when the Moltke sailed for New York, we parted with feelings of regret from many pleasant friends and companions whose acquaintance we had made during the trip, and with whom we had been agreeably associated on sea and on land.
* * * * *
Minor spelling and typographical errors have been corrected without note. Some Illustrations have been moved to avoid splitting paragraphs and make smoother reading.
Noteworthy corrections: Pausanius => Pausanias (p. 110) re-remarked => remarked (p. 254) cavaran => caravan (p. 281) Mahmond => Mahmoud (p. 338) symphathize => sympathize (p. 380) millionaries => millionaires (p. 381) exlaimed => exclaimed (p. 386)