Gibraltar, Algeria, Malta, Egypt, India, Burma, Singapore, China, Japan, Korea, Russia
June 4th, 1889
My Beloved Angee,
Our steamer leaves for Siberia early in the morning so will leave a few lines here before embarking as I hardly know what postal service I may fall in with on the voyage – we had a most enjoyable passage across from Shanghai in one of the most comfortable steamers I ever voyaged in belonging to the Japanese company many of the dear brethren at Shanghai came down to say good bye and have been exceedingly kind. Through the tender mercy of God I have had no return of the heart irregularities and am feeling quite well again I am thankful indeed to say and the three weeks' trip to Siberia and back will be a thorough rest in every way. Have done some more nice business here today and for this I am thankful.
As I had not seen any of the inland scenery of Japan I took a rickshaw ride to a village about 12 miles distant yesterday afternoon staying at a Japanese Inn for the night and leaving there again at 6 this morning for the return journey – I never saw anything in the world to compare with the beautiful scenery but the Inn or tea house as they call it was so wretched that if the rickshaw men had not been so tired I should have returned again the same night – all I could get for dinner there was two eggs and a piece of bread which brought and a little claret and for breakfast at 5.30 this morning a cup of what they call tea but wretched stuff and a bit of dry bread and 2 boiled eggs which I put in my pocket and are on the road. The country however is really grand and the corn harvest is ripe and is being gathered in, in their very primitive way – you may imagine I was quite ready for Tiffin on arrival at Nagasaki and never wish to have any further experience of Japanese hotels. The streams and rivers reminded me of Lynmouth and the hills too, only perhaps double or treble the height but the roads are well made and kept and just the opposite of those in China. The zig zag path over the high hill is very fine, but the Rickshaw men found out my weight was a little extra before they reached the summit – it is wonderful what distances these poor fellows will travel in a day and the water is always streaming from their bodies and they frequently stop at the springs to drink.
Our birthdays are past again and we have thoughts of each other and prayed for each other too, but a great distance separates us now but I hope it may be the last if through the goodness and mercy of God we are spared to see any more. It is as much as I can bear sometimes I assure you but trust I may be spared to finish the journey now that I have set my hand to the plough.
Trust dear Harriett will be preserved at this precarious time – have any of the old symptoms appeared again? I wrote Mr Shapland a few lines by the last mail – it is a great trial for him and those two dear lads who have lost a devoted mother indeed – I feel much drawn out in heart to them especially – their young and tender hearts will feel the loss very deeply.
Once more with much love to all our dear ones and a double portion for yourself believe me my dearly beloved wife.
Being very affectionate Husband