an unlimited supply of the largest blackberries.
For beverage, we had the vapid milk of that region, in which, if you let it stand, the water sinks instead of the cream's rising; and the delicious sugar-cane syrup, which we had brought from Florida
, and which we drank at all hours.
Old Floridians say that no one is justified in drinking whiskey, while he can get cane-juice; it is sweet and spirited, without cloying, foams like ale, and there were little spots on the ceiling of the dining-room where our lively beverage had popped out its cork.
We kept it in a whiskey-bottle; and as whiskey itself was absolutely prohibited among us, it was amusing to see the surprise of our military visitors when this innocent substitute was brought in. They usually liked it in the end, but, like the old Frenchwoman
over her glass of water, wished that it were a sin to give it a relish.
As the foaming beakers of molasses and water were handed round, the guests would make with them the courteous little gestures of polite imbibing, and would then quaff the beverage, some with gusto, others with a slight after-look of dismay.
But it was a delicious and cooling drink while it lasted; and at all events was the best and the worst we had.
We used to have reveille at six, and breakfast about seven; then the mounted couriers began to arrive from half a dozen different directions, with written reports of what had happened during the night,--a boat seen, a picket fired upon, a battery erecting.
These must be consolidated and forwarded to Headquarters, with the daily report of the command,--so many sick, so many on detached service, and all the rest.
This was our morning newspaper, our Herald
and Tribune; I never got tired of it. Then the couriers must be furnished