In about three weeks we came to anchor in the harbor of Melbourne, Australia
Our machinery needed repairs and the supply of coal was low. While at this port, party feeling about our war ran up to fever heat.
received a number of anonymous letters threatening the safety of the ship, and other letters warning him to be on the lookout for torpedoes, etc. Many of our crew deserted, and great inducements were offered for all of them to do so. However, we were not at all embarrassed by this, for about forty ‘stowaways’ appeared on deck when we got to sea and more than made up for our losses.
At one time things looked very squally, as if the end had come then and there.
While in the dry dock, the government insisted upon searching the ship, it having been reported that we had increased our crew by the shipment of men since our arrival (which was untrue), and when the permission to search was refused, all work was suspended leaving us with our machinery in pieces, high and dry in the dock.
at once informed the government that unless we were permitted to complete our repairs, he would abandon his ship to them and take his officers
and crew to England
The sequel to all this was that in four days, we were at sea in thorough repair, with a good supply of coal, and altogether in first class trim for cruising.
While at Melbourne
the officers were the recipients of invitations to a number of very handsome entertainments, and to one exceptionally so at Ballarat
, a mining town about forty miles from the coast.