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Straits of Gibraltar

3 Nov 1914

Reveille 6am. Sea moderate, ship steaming in an easterly direction now making for the Straits of Gibraltar.

At noon all letters are collected for postage.

At 2pm all the Battery parade to see if all are vaccinated.  Before the parade was over at 2.30 great excitement was caused by the shout of “land in sight”, and then all were clamouring to see what was to be seen, I should n’t think Columbus could not have been any more excited when he first saw the American Continent.

At 3.30pm we were steaming through the Straits with land on both sides.  On the Spanish Coast was the signs of civilisation, a town and cultivated crops, while the African coast was just the opposite. No signs of human life, very mountainous and rugged but very picturesque, after another 1 1/2 hours steaming we sighted Gibraltar Rock on our left, standing up in the foreground with all its bold appearance, while passing through the straits we passed swarms and swarms of porpoises which were interest to many who are fond of nature.

On the African coast we saw a large town which had in every respects the signs of being fortified on the outskirts.  Here we passed many trading craft. 2 french cargo boats that passed saluted as they passed, by lowering their flags, we returned the salute.  Three troopships passed us with British troops on board, on the way back to England.

As the evening crept on we left the Rock of Gib in our rear and slowly it faded away in the distance. Now again in the open sea, as it appeared to us.  In the Meditteranean and looking forward to the next land as the last 3 hours in sight of land had been so interesting to us.

The evening again brings forth its popular sport ‘boxing’ amongst the troops.  During the day preparations have been made for 9 days of sport aboard, which will make something to kill time considerably.

In the evening (On leaving the Straits we lost sight of the rest of our convoy) enjoy a quiet evening in the Sergts smoke room with a pipe of the popular ‘Chairman’ tobacco.

After the interesting day retire at 8.45. 9 Lights out.

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