May 24. — Leaving Wylie to continue his feast and attend to the horses, I went down to the beach to hunt again for crabs, of which I procured about three dozen, but still of the same small size as before; a few larger ones were seen in the deeper clefts of the rocks, but I could not get at them; indeed, as it was, I was very nearly terminating my crab hunting and expedition at the same time. The places where these animals were obtained, were the clefts and holes among large masses and sheets of rock close to the sea, and which were covered by it at high water; many of these were like platforms, shelving to the sea, and terminating abruptly in deep water. Whilst busily engaged upon one of them, in trying to get some crabs out from its clefts, I did not notice that the surf sometimes washed over where I stood, until whilst stooping, and in the act of fishing out a crab, a roller came further than usual and dashing over me, threw me down and took both me and my crabs to some distance, nearly carrying us down the steep into the sea, from which nothing could have rescued me, as I should soon have been dashed to pieces by the breakers against the rocks. Having gathered up the crabs I had collected, I set off homewards in a sad cold uncomfortable plight, with the skin scraped off my hands and one of my heels, and with my shoes in such a state from scrambling about among the rocks and in the wet, as strongly to indicate to me the propriety of never attempting to go crab hunting again with my shoes on, unless I wished to be placed altogether “hors du combat” for walking. Wylie I found had got up the horses and watered them, and had brought up a supply of water for the camp, so that we had nothing to do in the afternoon but boil crabs and eat them, at which occupation I found him wonderfully more skilful than I was, readily getting through two to my one.
- Category: Edward John Eyre - Vol 2 - Ch 3
- Written by Edward John Eyre
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