JJ Rowe Diary: 7 Mar 1889

Introduction

Now that Joseph has landed in India, his diary entries are longer and contain a vivid depiction of his life in Bombay (Mumbai).

Sassoon Dock, Bombay (Mumbai), 1865

WARNING: This is a transcription of an historical document. Some of the diary entries contain offensive language and stereotypes that must be understood in the context of the times. Such language and stereotypes are not acceptable today and are not condoned by the author of this blog.

The Diary Entry

7.3.89 Thursday

Was woke this morning about 4 am by some woman in the next tent, that some one put their hand on her face, it was a negro or a white man, but I think it was some married man went in the wrong tent through a mistake.

Paraded, for Medical inspection at 6.30 am. March down to the hospital about 1/4 hour, march passed Artillery bungalows. Saw some Indian soldiers.

We have a coolie they call them here, to do our cooking. He made up us tea at 6 am.

Drawed our rations. We get 3 lbs of wood allowed for our cooking & 1 3/4 lbs of beef & 1 3/4 of of bread, tea & sugar, rice, potatoes & onions all served out to us here.

We have a big tub stand just out side the tent with water for washing purposes & when it is empty a negro comes with a big skin full of water & fills it.

Had some beef steaks for breakfast. After breakfast I had to fit my Khaki clothing. It is very thin, expect to get it out on Saturday.

Went down to hospital with 10 men & brought up some mens kits who went to hospital of the Ship.

Had a Stew for dinner, & rice. At 2 pm paid out, I took 10 Rupee’s, a rupee is equal to 1/4½ in English money & a Anna is equal to 1 & a fraction & a Pie there is four of them go to an Anna so instead of £,,S,,D as at home its R,,A,,P.

At 2.15 pm, we went, down to the Sasson Dock, that is the name of the dock where we landed, & loaded up some heavy baggage, for Willington, Calicut, Malahura on a lighter to go with us. When the Ship come back several boxes much damaged & some of the cases of wine & I see the Guard looked as if they had had a good drink from some of them.

Arrived in Camp at 430 p.m. & then had tea. We have fresh butter & milk for breakfast & tea or every meal if we want it. For two pies of milk & two pies of butter is enough for us for one meal. Some bring it round to the tent in brass pots on their head & some the cow come’s round with it & the butter we salt as we eat.

Went for a stroll after tea. It was nice & cool &Stars shone lovely. The other Sergt & Wife & 4 Children left this tent today & have got a tent by themselves &a Bandsman & wife & 1 Child have come in this tent in his place. We are all going to sleep in this tent tonight as there is 8 bed. Plenty of room tonight as there is 3 men, 3 woman, & 6 children. Went to bed about 10 pm.

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