Swimming. 8 5
a needle as possible and with double thread : add strong shoulder-straps, so that it shall not, by any possibility, slip down over the hips; and, lastly, sew into it a long narrow tube, made out of a strip, a foot long and two inches wide, of the same material as the belt. At the mouth of this, a bit of wood, an inch long, with a hole bored down its middle, should be inserted as a mouthpiece. Through this tube the belt can be re-inflated by the swimmer while in the water, as often as may be necessary ; and, by simply twisting the tube and tucking its end in the belt, its vent can always be closed. After a canvas belt is thoroughly drenched, it will hold the air very fairly : the seams are its weakest parts. For supporting a swimmer in calm water, a collar is as good as a belt.
Transport on Water.-Parcels.---The swimmer's valuables may as well be put inside the empty vessel that acts as his float, as in the turban on his head (see " Floats "). A goatskin is often filled half full of the things he wants to carry, and is then blown out and its mouth secured. A very good life-belt may be bought, which admits of this arrangement it has a large opening at one end, which is closed by a brass door that shuts like the top of an inkstand, and is then quite air-tight.
A small parcel, if tightly wrapped up in many folds, will keep dry for a long time, though partly immersed in water the outside of it may be greased, oiled, or waxed, for additional security. If deeply immersed, the water is sure to get in.
Swimming with Horses.-In crossing a deep river, with a horse or other large animal, drive him in : or even lead him along a steep bank, and push him sideways, suddenly into the water : having fairly started him, jump in yourself, seize his tail, and let him tow you across. If he turns his head with the intention of changing his course, splash water in his face with your right or left hand, as the case may be, holding the tail with one hand and splashing with the other ; and you will, in this way, direct him just as you like. This is by far the best way of swimming a horse : all others are objectionable and even dangerous with animals new to the work,-