The diaries of Ronald Baldwin, British Constable in the Palestine Police Force from 1946 to the termination of the British Mandate in 1948.
Wednesday, 19 February 2014
16th & 17th April, 1948 - Ron's just watching the scenery go by...
We are still following the coast; last
evening we saw Algiers and other smaller
Algerian towns on the coast.
During the night we must have altered course
some degrees North for at we sighted the mountains
of South Spain. This coast
line reminds me of Palestine, the coastal plain
sweeping inland to the mountains.
The loudspeakers draw our attention to
places of interest but most of them have names I find difficult to remember.
The cinema show last evening was completed
without rain the first occasion I have known.
The sea although choppy this morning is
again like a mill pond, the ripples are not breaking into the rougher white
foam. Porpoises have been leaping around
us in shoals and we have seen a few fishing smacks whose occupants have waved
My Pals & I stopped up this evening
until we dropped anchor in GibraltarBay. This was at so we viewed a
brilliantly lighted scene topped by the darkened gloomy peak of the rock.
We were still in the bay of Gibraltar when I woke at this morning. Looking out from my hammock across the deck
& the bay I watched the sun rising slowly up the northern side of the
rock. This fortress is by no means
picturesque viewed as we saw it. Too
many large buildings crowd the lower slopes and these were built for practical
use not for decoration of the rock.
Memories of Port Said
At we set sail again on the
last lap of the voyage. With the troops
taken on at Malta and now these at Gib the
ship is becoming a little more crowded.
I cannot imagine what conditions were like on board the “Samaria” during the War when she
carried as many as 5,600 troops.
The ‘bumboats’ which came out to us at Gib.
are like all other ports who permit this pestering, even to the silks etc. that
they not unsuccessfully sell.