We have landed our different passengers of whom I shall make a slight memorandum –
We took on board at Buenos Ayres a M.r McFarlane merchant there, of the firm Rennie, McFarlane & C.o I knew before he came to us that he had been once at Dumbarton for a year or two. Thinking one day of olden times, I ask him if he remembered the circumstance of a soldiers wife having committed suicide at the College Bar, and he said yes – for that he had skipped from school to go & see her. And so did I – said I – I was there with M.r Findlay, continued he – and so was I was my reply. So we came to understand that he had been both at the same school and at the same time. I do not remember him – because I suppose he was not then one of my particular cronies. Nor did he recollect me exactly – altho he remembered my father very well. He knew however several with whom I had been very intimate and many a long night about the days of yore, when both were young & both were strangers to care. After leaving Dumbarton he went to Greenock & afterwards to Glasgow, where he served his apprenticeship. After his time was expired, he sailed from Liverpool to come to Buenos Ayres, where he has resided for the last eight years, & by his diligence & attention has obtained a share in a flourishing house there.
M.r McFarlane is only a year older than myself. I liked him very much – and indeed his manners were so pleasing that every body spoke well of him. He had no nonsense or sentimentality about him, and he was equally far removed from the narrow contracted mien & principle of the mere merchant, who has often no eyes or care for any thing but his Ledger and the news immediately affecting his own peculiar pursuits.
Olavo Magno de Mello Mathos joined us at Rio de Janeiro. He was a fine looking Brazilian, about 22, and a native of Bahia. He could [speak] nothing when he first came on board but Portuguese and a very little French. During the passage home our Skipper became in a certain sort his instructor – for he taught him many expressions and phrases, to which he gave poor Mello a very different explanation from the real one, which caused the oddest & most laughable blunders. I used to converse with him as far as my French & his latin would enable me. He told me that he had come to this country to study for a surgeon & Physician – that he did not yet know whether he should go to Edinburgh or Paris – and that after passing he would return to his own country and there settle. He told me also that his brother was the Brazilian Minister at the Court of London & had occupied that situation for four years. M.r Mello was really a very pleasant fellow – and gave evidence by his complicity and innocence that he had been much accustomed to live in a situation where he must look about him sharply & be ready to take his own part. I had always met with such persons as M.r Franco Pecanha & Mello, I should be inclined to entertain a more favourable opportunity of the Portuguese than I have at present. But first impressions & a considerable acquaintance with that nation have given rise to prepositions against them, which nothing will alter.
Besides these two cabin passengers, we had three half passengers. These were
Miners. Each had been out in Brazil a considerable time – & were returning home. I am afraid not much the better of having been absent from England – I mean in respect of pecuniary matters. They were all grumbling and complaining of many grievances. If their – reports are true John Bull is beautifully humbugged about those mines & instead of receiving an immense profit on his outlay he will have at last to put up with the loss of the whole.
The last and least of our shipmates for home were William Read a pale sickly looking man, lazy & idle, but no objection to the rewards of industry in the shape of grog – & Samuel Hunter an old weather-beaten tar of the old school – & yet ten times more active & willing than his brother Jack. These two men were sent home at the expense of our Government – and it is a standing regulation that we shall if required by our Consul carry home two distressed subjects at a certain sum per diem.
~~ Finis ~~