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The San Francisco call. [volume] (San Francisco [Calif.]) 1895-1913, December 05, 1897, Image 20

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The award of the Paris tribunal was the first
check to his career, but it was left to recent
events to mark the final passing of the fur seal
hunters in ihe water of the North Pacific.
ft is not the lubberly landsman who on the
rookeries hits a sturdy but harmless bull seal over
the head with a club that is spoken of, but a far
more picturesque individual, the hunter of the
pelagic sealing schooner.
His was a calling that arose and flourished ex
clusively on the Pacific Coast, was in its heyday
i bout live years ago and is now becoming a his
tory. His was a life teeming with danger and
adventure, demanding biawn and brain and
daring; arduous, perilous and exciting. Al
though unsung in verse and unrecorded in prose
save in the brief marine news dispatches his
career will ever he honored by those who go
down to the sea in ships, for they appreciate
what he was and what glory he deserves.
Pelagic sealing and seal poaching are all one
to the average reader of newspapers. "Seal
poachers" is the term hurled at the fur seal
hunter* by those journalists who know not of
what they write, but think that to b? patriotic
they must condemn that to which the United
States Government is opposed.
Whatever the merits of the controversy be
Sealing Schooners and Supply Steamer at Rendezvous
Harbor on Afognak Island, Western Aslaska.
.'Well, then," started the old man,
•when I first came to Apia I was a young
man. with no wife to look alter me, and
I don't know but that I was better off for
my loneliness, though I've bet»n happy
enough since. Now I'm alone again," and
he heaved a sigh, for reference to his own
marital experiences always made hint
heavy hearted.
"But to come back to my story," he
continued, "being alone like that, I nat
urally wanted some one to do my wash
ing, and the very first day I landed a lit
ile half-caste boy came to me. He was
not more than five or six, I should think,
with light curly hair, and a skin which
showed only a touch of the tar brush. He
seemed a fine, manly little chap, and in
terested me from the first, especially as I
couldn't understand a word of Samoan,
and he spoke English. So he acted as my
" 'Please, sir.will you let mother do your
washing?' was the first remark he made
to me.
" 'And who's mother?' I asked.
" 'Oh, mother's a Samoan. She washes
for a lot of the sailors and men who come
here. She does the things well. too. Only
$1 a week.'
" 'But where'? your father?'
"'I don't know.' And his blue eyes
tilled with tears. 'But I'm white, I am.
Mother days so, and 1 go to school with
the whi c boys at the priest's, ana I'll
'tit any boy who says I am a Samoan.'
"I was interested in this curious tropi
cal product, and, of course, gave the
mother my washing to do. She seemed
_ decent kind cf woman when she came
for tho clothes not exactly pretty, but
with an. honest, faithful face. And she
wrs fond of the boy, too; no mistake
about that.
"By and by. when I got to know them
better, I learned all about their life his
tory, though the little drama was then
only at its commencement. But after
ward—many years afterward— l saw the
last scene played out.
"Some half a dozen years before a dis
solute young man, by trade a blacksmith,
had come to Apia, and, as a matter of
course, hud taken a native wife. But he
lound the climate too hot for his work, or
tween the nations as to pelagic or open sea
sealing outside of a protected zone encircling
the Bering Sea rookeri-s it is a misnomer to
term those brave and hardy men who hunted
the s?al on the bosom of the broad Pacific
poachers. A poacher is one whom a thorough
sport-man detests; a pelagic seal hunter is one
whom all sportsmen must admire.
To know what a pelagic seal-hunter was one
must know something of how pelade sealing
was carried on. For over 100 years it has been
known that annually-, about February, the fur
seals were 10 be found in larger or smaller
schools, moving northward, off the Pacific Coast
on their annual pilgrimage to the Bering Sea
rookeries. Off the vicinity of Coos Bay, Oregon,
is where the seals usually first appear.
They move leisurely northward, scattered
over a wide area of sea. While their movement
is general, it must not be supposed that large
numbers are to be found in company. About
Jul}' 1 they pas« through the channels of the
Aleutian Is'an is and enter Bering Sea, Boon to
haul themselves out on the rookeri s. Year
after year they have pursued the same course,
varying hardly more than two or three days in
entering the sea.
By reason of the fact tbat the United States
| else it was the drink, or some other cause,
for after be bad been there a year he |
| cleared out, leaving his young wife with j
a baby a few months old in her arms. He I
left no money or anything else behind lor •
her support, and when he was gone no
one troubled more about him.
"It would have been easy enough for the
woman to have got another husband, a
native this time, to whom the baby
would have been no obstacle. But no,
Siami, as she called him, meaning Jim,
would one Gay come back to her, and in the
: meantime there was Siami the younger,
! named after his father, to look after and
' tiring up in white man's style, so that
when her husband returned he might
I have no reason to be ashamed of their
j child.
"This one idea stuck to her right
| through. . Siami must be brought up as a
papaiangi, as a hi c man's son. and not
as a Samoan. Therefore, sbe refused to
go back and live with her people in the
native style, though of course, being kind
to their relations, as all Samoans are,
they would have been glad to keep her.
"She knew that if she took her boy into
a native house she could not prevent bis
learning native habits and growing up
like a brown-skinned youth. So she did
a brave thing for an island woman,
though it mightn't seem muc.i to you,
being accustomed to the ways of Euro
peans. Stic cut Herself adrift from her
family altogether and took her few sticks
of furniture into a small weatherboard
bouse, which -tie rented at the back of
the town. It was only a miserable little
place, hardly more than a hut, but she
made a home c f it for her boy,
"She got washing from the ships, and
the people of Apia, knowing her sad
story and admiring her independence,
gave her odd jobs of ma making and
needle-work, at which she was very
c.cv' r. So she just managed to exist, but
as for the boy, he fared like a rich man's
child. The mother would live on tnro or
bananas, or any native food she could I
pick up, but the boy must have every
luxury. The mother might wear an old
cotton lava-lava for her sole garment, but
the child must always be dressed in trie
daintiest little clothes the Apia store's •
could furnish.
leases the rookeries and the right to kill a cer
tain number of seals on them annually to a
private corporation this Government has long
Jooke i with disfavor upon the operations of the
open-sea sealers, who ply their vocation while
the seals are moving up the coast. The theory
of the Government is that the slaughter of seals
at sea so reduces the number that the seal tribes
will sooner or later be extinct, while if the num
ber to be killed is limited to those killed on the
islands no perceptible lessening would be ex
While the term "poacher" has been freely
used there has been no instance of poaching for
over five years, while there are only two on rec
ord for the last 'en years. They took place when
lawless sealers raided the rookeries and killed
seals on the shore. True, previous to the first
modus vivendi and in the seasons of 1838 ana
1889 with possibly a few cases later, British
schooners have sought to seal within the then
prohibited area of Bering Sea, but ince the
Paris tribunal decided that the United Statesdid
•not have exclusive jurisaict ; on over the whole
sea this was hardly to be considered poaching.
It was about twelve years ago that the pelagic
sealing fleet began to assume large proportions.
In the season of 1892. when pelagic sealing was
The Supply Steamer Coquitlan.
',1 am afraid some of the Apia trades- '
men, being not altogether hard-hearted
men, failed to put on a profit when they
supplied the poor woman wiih the dainty
articles. But she never knew it, bless
you. She was so independent that she
would not have dealt at a store if she had
thought she was beinr favored at all. Bie
even tried to learn Baalish so that she
might talk to her son in what she deemed
to be his proper language, but I am afraid
she was not very successful at that. Her
tongue could not manage our barbarous
consonants, and 'Siami kea kume hele'
was her nearest approach to calling the
boy to her in Baalish.
"Every Dlgbt, when the day's work and
play were over, she would dress the boy up
carefully in his best coat ana iron
light the lamp and seat him before
a colored picture-book which some kind
auy had given her, at the one table their
little hut possessed. Everything was neat
and clean, the floor properly swept, the
little bits of furniture polished till you
could see your face in them, and there was
nothing to indicate that tho home might
not have belonged to some English
women in humble circumstances.
"Many a night have I dropped in and
found the couple sitting the c, little
Jimmy laughing at his pictures and the
woman busy over her needlework. His
father might come back at any minute,
she would explain in her simple way; he
would like to find his boy a papaiangi
gentleman and not a common Samoan
"For herself the poor soul had never a
thought, ber whole being centre i round
the boy. And when he got big enough
the eood fathers tock him in at the con
vent school, and he was educated with the
white children, so that he rrew'np speak
ing English perfectly. Though they never
admitted it 1 am sure that the kindly
priests stretched a point in the mother's
lavor, or else the poor woman would never
have been able to pay the fees for her
son's education.
"As long as I was in Apia 1 never lost
sight of this interesting couple, but after
a few years, you know, I got married my
self. Then I went away trading In New
Bri am. and so for a time I heard nothing
of the mother and her son.
"When I did come back to the Navi
gators I found Jimmy quite a grown-up
lad — _ general favorite throttrhout the
whole town. His education was finished,
and he could read and write belter than
the majority of white men on the beach,
let alone the half-castes. His mother's
friends, and she had many, had got him a
good position in one of the largest stores.
He was already able to help her a little,
and promised to do well for himself in
life. The good woman was still single, she
lived confidently in tne hope that one
day Siami would return and tind that his.
son had been well brought up and was
ie illy a pipalangi. This was ber one con
solation, poor woman, and she had held
to the idea so long that at last she had
at its height, there were
ninety-five schooners in the
fleet. All but twelve or fif
teen floated the British flag.
It was the practice of tbe
sch< oners to get to sea in
February and endeavor to
fall in with the seals as
speedily as possible. Each
schooner carried irom tour
to eight hunters. For each
hunter there were two boat
puilers. In addition tc these
the crew of the average
schooner was made up of a
captain, a mate, a cook and
a boy.
J height, there were
-five schooners in the
All but twelve or fif
onted the British flag.
as the practice of the
ters to get to sea in
ary and endeavor to
a with the i-eal- as
ly as poss.bie. Each
ler carried irom tour
lit burners. For each
r there were two boai
s. In addition tc these
rew of tbe average
ler was made upoi a
n, a mate, a cook and
ther permitting, the
boats woull take leave of the
schooner every morning and
scatter about on the ocean,
looking for seals. Sometimes
tbe schooner and her littie
fleet of boats would be 400
or 500 miles off shore wuen
at work. The boats would
range away from the vessel
* to a distance often or fifteen
miles. And here c:me in one
of the dan ers of the life. In
tbe North Pacific Ocean fogs
have a most depre-sing and
annoying habit of shutting down on the water
scare without a moment's warning. They are
thick and clammy, and to a sealer possess hor
rors untold. With such a fog shutting off a
view of the schooner from the hunters the latter
were in a dangerous predicament. They all car
ried compasses, and olten water and a small
amount of food.
On the appearance of a foe the schooner would
commence discharging a small cannon kept for
Sealers Boarding the Supply Steamer to Get Mail,
First News From Home in Five Months.
that purpose to notify the boats of her presence.
With all that, however, boats often failed to get
back. There have been many cases where the
three men comprising the crew of a hunting
craft have gone off in the morning from the
schooner far out to sea, and have never returned
or been heard from. There are other cases
where such crews have been picked up nearly
dead from starvation and exposure days after
they lost their home craft.
The danger of sudden gales and storms at sea
was another one the sealer had to face. That it
J grown to believe in it. I did not see much i
of her then, though, for soon after I got
back to Apia I bought this store, and
moved out of town altogether."
The old man paused and wiped his fore
head. Talking always made him perspire,
he said. And Silei, who seemei by some
kind of instinct "to understand that he
had been conversing about women of her
own race, beamed with her most engaging
smile as she handed him the bowl of kava.
"But did Jimmy never come back?' I
asked, when I saw that he had recovered
his energy.
"Oh. yes; that's tbe second and saddest
act in the drama. He did come back;
worse luck.
"It was about two years ago and I was
living quietly enough down here. I
hadn't seen m eh of the young half-caste
or his mother for some time, since it was
seldom I went to Apia, a place where one
only snends money and does no good to
one's self. But I had heard that the boy
had shown great business aptitude, and
had been advanced to a responsible por
tion in the firm, so that he was able to
keep his old mother in comfort. To do
him ju-tice, he was not like most young
people who, once, they are grown up and
able to shiit for themselves, think no more
of their parents. Naturally, though, he
didn't admire his father much when he
saw him.
"He told me all about it himself. I was
sitting here when I was surprised to see
him turn up in grand style, with a large
whaleboat and a tig crew of natives. His
firm was snort of copra, be said, to com
plete the cargo of a ship they were load
ing, and had sent him round the islands
to buy up all he cou'.d get. He offered a
good price, so our business was soon satis
factorily settled, and then, as it was get
ting la c in the afternoon, and it was a
long way to the next station, I persuaded
him to spend the night. When we were
settled down comfortably over our kava,
he sail, 'I suppose you know father's
come back?'
" 'What,' and I whistled with surprise
at the happening of the long expected,
'you don't mean to say, Jimmy, that the
old man's turned up again?'
" 'Yes, ii's true enough,' Jimmy replied,
'and a nice handful we've found him.'
'• Tell me all about it.'
"'You know,' Jimmy went on, 'that
mother always bad a habit of getting
everything ready in the evening for fath
er's return. When I was a little child she
used to dre«s me lor the occasion, an d,
now I'm grown up, I try to humor her as
much as I can. So, whenever there's
nothing special going on I sit with her in
the evenings and put on mv best coat,
just to keep tier company. Well, about a
fortnight ago we were there, quietly
enough, when suddenly mother looked
up from her work and said:
" • "Your father will come back to-night,
" 'She had *aid the game thing many
times before, so 1 didn't take any special
was no small danger is shown by the record —
long and ghastly — of lives lost in his manner.
In hunting the seal the hunter stood upright
in the bow of the double-ended boat, his shot
gun or rifle ready across his breast. Aft sat the
boat-pullers, facing each other, one pushing nnd
one pulling the oars. Often they put up a small
sail and. toot it easy while the hunter kept up
his watch forward.
In good sealing the capta n and the mate have
often taken out a boat, sometimes leaving the
cook and dog alone to watch the vessel.
The hunter was a superior individual. He
often made from $1000 to $1800 a season lasting
eight or nine months. He lived in th- cabin
wi the captain and mate, and had nothing to
do with tne liling or navigation of the vessel.
His ability as a shot had need to be excellent
and of a peculiar quality, for his t isk wa= a d.fli
cult one. All that s exposed of a seal above
water is a nose anl small bit of head. A hy
animal, the sea. is hard to approach. Add to
this the necessity of shooting him while he is
bobbing up and down on a wave and while the
boat is also doing aquatic gymnastics and one
may imagine a seal is difficult to hit.
To recover the body of a sea! shot in the water
it is nece sary that the shot be so accurate as to
eau c instant death ; otherwise the wounded ani
mal sinks.
The boat-pullers worked on what was termed
"lays." That is, they received a certain per
centage of the value of the skins secured on a
voyage. In addition they also received small
wa^es. The hunter received a fixed price for
every skin he took. Captain and mate received
salaries and ''lays."
The practice of the schooners was to follow
the seal herds close up to the Aleutian Islands.
There they would meet at a previously ap
pointed rendezvous, the supply steamer from
Victoria, bringing mail and supplies. The catch
would be transferred from schooners to steamer,
and then the schooners would go on for the re
mainder of the season. They would cruise
about he entrance to the sea for stragglers or
would strike westward to the Asiatic coast to
pick up the seals tbat had migrated northward
on the Japanese and Siberian coasts. Sometimes
a schooner would be rash enough to get within
Siberian waters and would promptly be pounced
upon by a Russian gunboat, seized and her crew
hurried off to Petropaulovski, to be either sent to
prison or allowed, after several months' confine
ment, to return horne — if they could get there.
notice, but just then the door was roughly
pushed open and a fat, middle-aged man
came in. He didn't look a very respect
able party; his face was flushed, and he
rolled in his walk as if he had been drink
ing, and he wore a ragged suit of clothes
which would have disgraced a beach
comber. But mother knew him, and like
a fl ish she had her arms round his neck
and was hugging and kissing him. "Hero's
your father come bt-ck; I knew he would,
I waited long, but now he is here."
"'The man seemed dazed by this sudden
display of affei tion, and said nothing for
a while. I sat quietly at the table, won
dering what would happen next.
"'Then mother took the man by the
hand and pointed me out.'
" ' "There's our boy, Siami," she said, as
well as her tears would let her. "I have
cared for him well. Look at him, is he
not a tine papaiangi gentleman?"
"'The man sefnicd sort of dazed. He
passed his hand over bis forehead and
i hen he recovered himself. "Oh, yes, I
remember now; there was a kid when 1
went away. Blessed if I hadn't forgotten
oil about it. I never thought it would
live; it seemed such a sickly little thing.
But what did yer want to go and
make a gentleman of the boy for,
Mele? What I wants is a rood hard
working boy, with a trade at his fingers'
ends, who can be a help to his father in
his old age."
'• 'Mother was terribly disappointed, I
could see, though she tried to hide the
tears which would fall. Stili, she replied.
"If he is a gentleman, he's a steady hard
working lad, and he's getting $15 a week
at the -*tor ."
" "When the old man heard this his
bleared eyes brightened. "Oh, all light
then, Jimmy, my son; here's my band,
and I hope you'll be a good son to your
dad, who's come all this way to seek you
" -But I wouldn't take his dirty hand.
He might be my father, so Jar as I knew,
but I wasn't going to have anything to do
with him. So I left the house, and I
haven't been back since. I've tried to
persuade mother to come away, too, but
-he will slick to him, though he*'* the
dru ketiest old loafer on the beach. Every
penny he can tqueeze out of her goes in
drink, and he tried the same game on me
but I turned him out of the store quick
" 'What's he be n doing ail this time?'
I asked.
" 'Oh, he's been in Australia, and, from
what I hear, he did pretty well at his
trade for a while. But lately he failed
altogether, and then, when he found the
colonies played out, he thoueht he would
run down to Samoa and see what he could
do here. I've told mother again and
anain not to give him any money, so as to
make him go to work; but it's no use,
she's too fond of him.'
"This was all J mmy's tale and next
day he went his way in the boat, and I
heard no more of the matter for a while.
Transferring Bags of Sealskins to the Supply Steamer
and Receiving Supplies at Sea.
"But a few months later I went on a
Malanga up to Tununga, where, you
know, there are several stores. I had
some business there, for I was buying up
tobacco, but 1 thought 1 would make a
bit of a pleasure trip of it a3 well. So I
went along by easy stages, stopping
several nights at villages on the way.
And, the last night before I got to Tun
unga, I found a white man living in a
Samoan house. His name was Johnston,
he said, he was a blacksmith by. trade,
and had bsen making some ironwork for
a man who was building a schooner near
by. But now the job was finished a.:d he
was just living on among the Samoans,
wait in: for something else to turn up. I
couldn't help thinking that there wasn't
much chance of getting work in that
place, but he didn't seem to mind. He
was a free and easy old fellow and I soon
made myself quite at home with him.
By and by he produced a bottle of gin, a
rare thing in those pans, and we were
soou friendly enough. He had a native
wife, a good-looking young girl, and he
seemed reconciled to his lot an to be in
no hurry to go out and look for work
where he might have had a chance of
finding it.
"He was very talkative and told me a
lot about himself and his family, and soon
I began to suspect something. It wasn't
the name — that was common enough.
But when he said that he had been in Sa
moa twenty years before and had only re
turned a lew months ago, it dawned upon
me. ,
"'Were you married- when you first
came here?' I asked.
"'Oh, yes,* he replied, carelessly. 'I
had a native wife, but I never thought any
more about her after I went away.'
" 'And a child, too?'
"'Oh. yes, there was a boy born just be
fore I lelt. He's grown up now into a fine
young fellow and getting a good >alary at
So-and-so's store. But be won't have any
thing to say to his old lather; much too
great a swell for that.'
"I thoueht the old father deserved all
the treatment he had cot, but, of course,
it would not have been polite to say so.
"Then the fellow told* mo more of his
family history and confided to me that he
had come to Samoa utter his business in
An tralia failed in the hope of setting up
a blacksmith's shop. But he bad gone on
the scree w en he arrived and soon spent
the little money he brought with him.
Now he dd it see how to send for his
wife and children, much less how to keep
hem when they got here.
" 'Children, did you any!' I exclaimed,
thinking of young Jimmy and the Sa
moan woman, with her unchanging
" 'Oh, ■yes,' said the old man, quite una
bashed, 'I've a wife and six kids in Aus
tralia. And they've got a -ood education,
too, for I was well off then. L >ok here.'
"He went to a battered old sea -Chest,
which appeared to be his whole personal
luggage, and from under a layer of rag
In 1892 I made the trip northward on 'ne sup
ply steamer, the Coquitlam of Vancouver, B. C,
Captain E. E. McLeil >n. We had two appointed
rendezvous. Besides making them we met sev
eral schooners at sen.
We brought the first news from home that the
sealers had received in months. It was pathetic
to note their euge ness as they swarmed aboard
of us to get their letters, to hear the hungry
shouts a- tney lowered into their boats the fresh
fruit- and delicacies we brought them. One ap
preciated then what this exile at sea signified.
Couiminder Robley D. Evans, U. S. N., was
that year in command of tne United States
patrol" He went gunning for us with some
of hi- fl-et with the object in view of preventing
our giv ng provisions to schoolers, thus break
ing up heir work for the remainder o: the sea
son. He succeeded, although we tried our best
to prevent him. It was the revenue cutter Cor
win, acting under his orders, that finally caught
us, but not until we had provisioned nine
schooners and had given mail to seventeen oth
ers whom we were about to prov sion when the
seizure was made. A prize crew saw us sately
to Siika, where the civil authorities looked after
our physical comfort for a time. They say the
Sitka jail has never l een whitewashed half so
well since the crew of the Coquitlam finished
the job that summer. •
Bui the authorities had to give us up after all,
for the contention of the Government that it
he'd jurisdiction over twelve miles from shone
and that we should have cone beyond J«V
tw-lve-mile and not the three-mile limit in
making our cargo transfers wa" punctured
eventually by the Circuit Court of Appeals, sit
ting at San Franci-co.
The move of Commander Evans was a good
one, however— from the Government if not
irom a just standpoint — for many of the schoon
ers lost the latter half of their season. Since
then no supply steamers have been seized.
Strange as it may seem, most of the hunters
who were hunting seals from a British vessel
were Americans, and not a few of the British
vessels were British in name and register only,
owners and crew beiny Americans.
With the Paris award prohibiting the use of
firearms in pelagic sealing, and with the com
bined effort now seemingly being mode to stop
such hunting, the seal hunter will soon be a
thing of the past. He cops, bin he leaves an
honorable record behind him. May some writer
who love* to weave stories of danger and daring
study him as he was a"d rentier him immortal
in a tale of the North Pacific.
ABHMUB N. Bnowsr.
ged clothing extracted a package carefully
wrapped up in brown paper/ It turned
out to contain a cabinet photograph— a
family group representing a comely mid
dle-aged mother and six well-dressed
" 'There's the family,' sa rd Johnston.
'There s Johnny, the eldest; he's a real
clever boy; he* going to be a great archi
tect some day; he's in a good Sydney of
fice. And there's Polly; she plays the
piano fine.'
"Thus the old man ran over the little
accomplishments of his white children I
listened in silence, but I couldn't help
thinking all the time of the plain, b-own
skinned woman sitting so patiently with
her little boy and waiting for Siami *« -
come back." '■ii"
(the e\p.) /
Learning to Ride.
I never recall my first attempt to ride a
wheel without experiencing a thrill of
pleasure to think that I am still alive.
With the aid of two experienced riders
I had managed to mount a wheel.
Haidiy had I taken a firm grip on the
hanule-bars than the two accomplices re
leased their hold and left me alone to tho
wild mercies of an unmanageable bike.
I knew well that everything depended
upon my coolness, so I held the handle
bars with a still firmer grip and endeav
ored to balance my body to the move
ments of the wheel, which was now shy
ing desperately from one side of the road
to the other. Already I realized that I
was in a hopeless pos tion, and, as the
wheel struck the curbing at this moment,
I hastily dismounted. Perhaps I did not
get off in a very graceful manner, never
theless I struck the sidewalk with a force
ana enthusiasm that won the applause of
the onlookers.
By the end of * "lree weeks I was able to
lay aside ray crutches, remove the splints
from my arm and take 'he pledge against
beef tea. For a time I caied not to ride,
so well satisfied was I in being able to
walk; but in an unguarded moment I
again fell a victim to the pernicious habit.
This time I was more successful, and be
came so well satisfied with my success
that I determined to visit a young lady
It was not until I was about to leave }
that I realized my inability to mountJ
The very thought made me turn pale, a. *
by the time I reached the gate cold bea/s
o. perspiration were standing on my ore
he..d. After making several unsuccessful
attempt to mount, the young lady c.me
to my assist nee; the ne ghLors a. so came
out to encoura-e us by b ts of advice nnd
kindly suggestions. With each failure I
tec. me more excited, my wheel became
more unmanageab c, until in sheer des
peration I started off leading the. bike,
and traying that some friendly comet
would strike the earth in my immediate
vicinity. Kick BowPEN.

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