At Sea to New Caledonia, 28 May 1893

The sky was overcast with low hanging clouds out of which was drizzling gentle rain — „just the right weather to say good-bye“. Our mood was just as sad. We all were in a depressed mood — what is called at home a „moral hangover“ — faced with the necessity of leaving Sydney that has been such a kind host and its inhabitants who had been so nice and have received us so cordially. After the muggy heat of the tropical regions we had found here a climate that resembled the one at home. We were favored with splendid weather in all aspects as well as during the hunting expeditions into the interior of the country. Admired for its size and delightful because of its lovely surroundings, Sydney has made an indelible impression on us. All Australians, first amongst them the inhabitants of Sydney, whom we have come into contact knew how to capture our heart by their gentle affectionate way so that we have declared them as our special favorites — no wonder we had such difficulties leaving this Benjamin of continents!

It is an eternal pity that Australia has been felt in old Europe only by its increasing influence in many economic activities as a already notable competitor while its intimate advantages are so little-known and appreciated what however hardly can be different given the brutal distance. Thus I might compare Australia to a human who is not easy to approach and only shows its rough side who however reveals to those who are able of coming closer its felicitous amiable character.

Even though we had hoisted the anchors early — at 7 o’clock in the morning — the windows of all houses and villas were densely packed with our friends waving handkerchiefs and sending good-bye greetings. While passing the flagship „Orlando“ its band played our anthem while the music band of „Elisabeth“ replied with „God save the Queen“; the Spanish sailing corvette „Nautilus“ signaled „Happy voyage“.

We had hardly left Port Jackson and lost sight of Sydney, when a hard North wind blew against us and made the sea choppy, so that „Elisabeth“ soon started pitching heavily. At first we drove alongside the coast but then took a North-eastern course and soon the last part of the Australian continent disappeared into the ocean.

Links

  • Location: at sea near Australia
  • ANNO – on  28.05.1893 in Austria’s newspapers.
  • The k.u.k. Hof-Burgtheater is playing „Das Heiratsnest“. The k.u.k. Hof-Operntheater is performing Verdi’s opera “Aida”.

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