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> Issue 67 > Page 53 - Through an Ocean Storm to the Fortress of Louisbourg, 1750

Page 53 - Through an Ocean Storm to the Fortress of Louisbourg, 1750

Published by Ronald Caplan on 1994/8/1 (186 reads)

ered their clothes with sand. Thus, gentiemen, we shall be quickly at the devil; in less than an hour we shall all drink of tiie same cup." It is singular that there are characters capable of pleasantry even to the last moment of life; while there are other persons whom the sight of danger deprives of all sensibility, and who are dead a long time before it comes to pass. The depression and weariness of my spirits, absorbed all the day in reflections the most serious, made me assume a drowsi? ness which I wished greatly to encourage. My conscience • as a Chinese author defines it, that internal and concealed light, page 34, &c.;, Ext • not reproaching me with enormous crimes, but only such as the heat and giddiness of youth would occa? sion, through thoughtiessness, I said to the Chevalier Trion that I should be most happy if I could make the passage to the other world sleeping; that I wished to try it. I took leave of him, em? braced him, and having tumed my face to the partition wall, I fell immediately into the most profound sleep, without being interrupted by the frequent comings and goings out of my cabin which the Chevalier Trion occasioned in order to animate and make our soldiers work; and I continued in one sound sleep from half-past six o'clock at night, till seven o'clock the next day in the moming. On my awakening I believed myself more in the other world than in this. The Chevalier immediately said to me, how happy I was; that through the whole night they expected die moment when the vessel would sink to the bottom; and that I had es? caped greatly the cruel sufferings which I would have experi? enced had I been awake; that they had bound the ship round with cables to prevent her from breaking asunder altogether; that as soon as the carpenter had repaired the pump, the sol? diers, who had wrought all the night like madmen, had come in the end to free her; that the wind and the sea had much abated; and for once they believed us out of danger. There is only but a very short space between pain and pleasure. Fine weather, with a favourable wind, which at ten o'clock in die moming succeeded the tempest, revived our spirits immedi? ately, fatigued by their sufferings, which they forgot more easi? ly than these enjoyments. We had often doubted whether Fremont was an ignorant or a bad sailor; but in die end we were convinced that his ignorance would have cost us dear. M. Lion, who was second in com? mand of the "Iphigenie," told us that by his joumal we were very near to the land of the Royal Island, though by the joumal of Fremont we were yet distant from it two hundred leagues. This gave us uneasiness; but in reality it would have been a very melancholy fate to perish among the rocks, with which all this coast is surrounded, at the moment when we had been saved from the tempest. I deter? mined to pass the whole night on deck; and I said to my companions, that as they had watched for my safety during the time that I had enjoyed a profound sleep the past night, I, in my tum, would do the same for them. We were all much more inclined to believe M. Lion than the other; and we begged him to remain on deck with me till the break of day. It was a very fine star? light night, without the moon; but there was a cleamess all the night in the heavens like a twilight, to make it possible to dis? tinguish at a considerable distance. M. Lion, having placed a seaman on tiie poop of the ship to look out continually a-head, oh, heavens! what was our joy when this sailor, towards two o'clock in the moming of the 12th of September, cried to us tiiat he saw land. I ran there with M. Lion, and in less than ten minutes we saw it very distinctiy at a distance of about three hundred toises. They immediately tacked about to port the helm, and I descend? ed quickly into the saloon to convey the good news to my com? rades, awakening them as agreeably as they had done me the night before. When it was great daylight, Fremont, who had al? ready made one voyage to Louisbourg, pretended to recognise this land perfectly as Indienne (Editor's Note: present-day Lin? gan), a settlement of the Royal Isle, about six leagues north of Louisbourg; and he bore towards the south. Having all reason to believe that we should easily reach Louisbourg, in the course of the day, we got on our things, holding ourselves quite ready to land; but at tihree o'clock in the aftemoon, being at the entry of a port which Fremont took for the port, so long time ardentiy desired, he cried to a boat which passed near to us, if this was not the port of Louisbourg? They answered by demanding the name of the ignorant sot who commanded the ship who mis? took Louisbourg for the port of Toulouse (Editor's Note: present-day St. Peter's), a settiement about twenty leagues to the south of Louisbourg. Thus they knew but too late, that it was the port of Louisbourg, which we saw in the moming, but which a fatal destiny had put a blind before Fremont's eyes, and which drove us to despair. I insisted much with Montalam- Q Senior Citizens Secretariat 4th Floor, Dennis Building, 1740 Granville St. P.O. Box 2065, Hali&x;, N.S. • B3J 2Z1 424-4737 or 424-4779 or 424-5329 or 424-4649 or 424-6322 HELP IS JUST A TOLL-FREE CALL AWAY Answers to many of the questions that con? cern seniors, including those about pen? sions, home care services, community vol? unteer groups, home maintenance, housing and health. A no-cost help hne and infor? mation service: 424-0065. (Dial 1-424-0065 from points outside the Hahfax area.) ''%-i' Province of Hon. James Smith, Chairman .''' Nova Scotia The Senior Citizens' Secretariat OcMui Jtentolsltd. Lavm & Garden Equipment Tillers Sod Cutters Air Eators GLACE BAY South (Campbells Comer) ' More- Engine Hoists ii[iic' JaclC
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