Women On Adventure is a blog by K.L. Webber exploring our rich shared history of women's adventure writing. This curated collection of quotations showcases the opinions and experiences of influential female travellers in their own words.

"...wallowed in my letters like a pig."

Diamond Harbour, March 4, 1836.

We have just sent off thirty letters by the 'Zenobia,' which is passing us, and amongst them there is an immense parcel for you – sixteen pages at least; but there is an opportunity of sending a letter overland this afternoon, and, as we have made such a long passage, you will be glad to hear of our arrival by the earliest way.

We anchored off Saugur two days ago, having been seventy-two days out of sight of land, a circumstance that has happened to but few sailors in the ship. But our voyage was rather calm and uneventful, but we are all quite well, and for the rest I refer you to my large packet. As I sealed that two days ago, I have the delight of your first long letter since. I never shall forget the delight, the absolute ecstasy, of the arrival of what they in their lingo call the dawk boat, and when ten fat letters came out of the parcel for me. I locked my cabin door, flumped myself down on the bed, and absolutely wallowed in my letters like a pig. You cannot write at too great length, it is such a delight. I got into one of those good laughs we used to have together, till we cried together, at —'s 'Simple Epitaph' over her hen; but it is no use commenting on letters that will have been written eight months by the time you get this, only go on writing in the same way, and I shall make mine a daily journal now we have got out of the monotony of a ship life. Yesterday we got up to Diamond Harbour from Saugur, but I must take up my life where my long letter left off.

Besides our English letters, George was met by a very civil letter from Sir C. Metcalfe, and I had a very nice friendly one from Mrs. Robertson (John Elliot's daughter), who says I was very kind to her in playing at 'cat's cradle' with her at Minto (virtue always meets its reward), and so I shall find one friend at Calcutta. There is something pleasant in finding anybody who is disposed to be kind in a land of strangers, and for the future I shall play at 'cat's cradle' with all the little girls I meet.

We had a great deal of telegraphic communication all day with Calcutta. Found we could not arrive till very late last night if we went on, and we must then have gone in a steamer, and the 'Jupiter' people had so set their hearts on taking us right up that we agreed not to desert the ship.


The Hon. Emily Eden

Diamond Bay, Bengal, India


Source: The Hon. Emily Eden, Letters from India, Vol.1, Richard Bentley & Son, 1872

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