Sunday 14 August 1836

[, on board the wrote.]

An albacore was caught, weighing eighty pounds. This was the first fish taken, except flying-fish, of which several were found in the boats, whither they had flown to escape the dolphins which pursued them. The albacore was cut to pieces, and in colour and appearance resembled coarse beef. When boiled it looked and tasted something like veal. Many of the passengers thought it delicious. We had a part of it and pickled it in vinegar, but I could not fancy it. It was a singular fact that a large fish, which had been wounded several days before, still continued. to follow the vessel. For half an hour one morning I watched it keeping pace with the ship. It was distinguished by a white mark on its back, where a piece of flesh had been cut out as large as a saucer. The evenings at this time were remarkably beautiful, the moon shining with a brightness that is not seen in England, so that I could sit on deck or at my cabin door and go on with my fishing-net with ease. The stars also presented a splendid appearance, and we could now see the Southern Cross, that is, five stars in the form of our Saviour’s cross. This is only seen in the Southern. Hemisphere. (The cross is assumed as the Australian arms and worn by the Government officers, the emblem being stamped on their buttons.) It likewise frequently happened that a beautiful rainbow was seen at sunrise, which, as it appeared on the edge of the water, was truly magnificent.

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