Two Years Before The Mast A Personal Narrative Of Life At Sea By Richard Henry Dana, Jr.





























































































































 -   The bedding from the berths was then spread on
deck, and dried, and aired; the deck-tub filled with water - Page 500
Two Years Before The Mast A Personal Narrative Of Life At Sea By Richard Henry Dana, Jr. - Page 500 of 618 - First - Home

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The Bedding From The Berths Was Then Spread On Deck, And Dried, And Aired; The Deck-Tub Filled With Water;

And a grand washing begun of all the clothes which were brought up. Shirts, frocks, drawers, trowsers, jackets, stockings, of

Every shape and color, wet and dirty - many of them mouldy from having been lying a long time wet in a foul corner - these were all washed and scrubbed out, and finally towed overboard for half an hour; and then made fast in the rigging to dry. Wet boots and shoes were spread out to dry in sunny places on deck; and the whole ship looked like a back yard on a washing day. After we had done with our clothes, we began upon our own persons. A little fresh water, which we had saved from our allowance, was put in buckets, and with soap and towels, we had what sailors call a fresh-water wash. The same bucket, to be sure, had to go through several hands, and was spoken for by one after another, but as we rinsed off in salt water, pure from the ocean, and the fresh was used only to start the accumulated grime and blackness of five weeks, it was held of little consequence.

We soaped down and scrubbed one another with towels and pieces of canvas, stripping to it; and then, getting into the head, threw buckets of water upon each other. After this, came shaving, and combing, and brushing; and when, having spent the first part of the day in this way, we sat down on the forecastle, in the afternoon, with clean duck trowsers, and shirts on, washed, shaved, and combed, and looking a dozen shades lighter for it, reading, sewing, and talking at our ease, with a clear sky and warm sun over our heads, a steady breeze over the larboard quarter, studding-sails out alow and aloft, and all the flying kites aboard; - we felt that we had got back into the pleasantest part of a sailor's life.

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