April 3d Saturday

São Miguel Island, the largest island in the Azores.

This morning, the sun peeped in through the porthole, and we all arose at the first bugle call, which is 7 o’clock. Mama and I were the first on deck and rejoiced to see all protecting tarpaulins around the promenade deck removed, which gave us the first view of the forward deck where the steerage passengers live.

We enjoyed our breakfast and after that saw the first steamer, a “Spanish freighter.” Of course everybody brought out their marine glasses and as we are to pass the Azores to-day, we kept the glasses out.

These islands, nine in number, are situated about 700 miles from Portugal. They were discovered in 1433 and colonized by Portuguese and some Flemingers, the latter, however, became, in course of time extinct, and to-day the islands are inhabited by Portuguese. There are about one-fourth million inhabitants distributed on the nine islands of which St. Michael is the largest one. They raise oranges, lemons, pineapples, and other tropic fruits. The climate is mild, the temperature varying between 50 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit.

We passed them at about 10:30 and it was a beautiful panorama. The land looked good to us anyhow, but its beauty was enhanced by the green fields, white houses and the waves dashing against the rocks. Of course, “Everybody” was out and with reluctance we followed the call for lunch.

A little shower in the afternoon laid the dust, and we enjoyed the concert given on deck at night very much. We had a “Wireless” on board and the operator kindly explained it to us. I took his word for it. The one thing which worries me is what become of the one-half hour, which we lose every day. At 12 o’clock, we set and wind up our watches, and we are “Slow” one-half hour every day. Well, in case we return to the U.S., we will get them back again.

Photograph courtesy of  Ravi Sarma and Wikimedia Commons. 

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