From The Caves And Jungles Of Hindostan Translated From The Russian Of Helena Petrovna Blavatsky

 -   Bombay looks, on
the maps, like an enormous crayfish, and is at the head of the
rest of the islands - Page 8
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Bombay Looks, On The Maps, Like An Enormous Crayfish, And Is At The Head Of The Rest Of The Islands.

Spreading far out into the sea its two claws, Bombay island stands like a sleepless guardian watching over his younger brothers.

Between it and the Continent there is a narrow arm of a river, which gets gradually broader and then again narrower, deeply indenting the sides of both shores, and so forming a haven that has no equal in the world. It was not without reason that the Portuguese, expelled in the course of time by the English, used to call it "Buona Bahia."

In a fit of tourist exaltation some travellers have compared it to the Bay of Naples; but, as a matter of fact, the one is as much like the other as a lazzaroni is like a Kuli. The whole resemblance between the former consists in the fact that there is water in both. In Bombay, as well as in its harbour, everything is original and does not in the least remind one of Southern Europe. Look at those coasting vessels and native boats; both are built in the likeness of the sea bird "sat," a kind of kingfisher. When in motion these boats are the personi-fication of grace, with their long prows and rounded poops. They look as if they were gliding backwards, and one might mistake for wings the strangely shaped, long lateen sails, their narrow angles fastened upwards to a yard. Filling these two wings with the wind, and careening, so as almost to touch the surface of the water, these boats will fly along with astonishing swiftness.

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