MEMORIES OF MY LIFE
afterwards proved to be the outer sheathing of the paddle-box. I dived to get clear of it, but found myself held back by projecting nails which had hooked into my clothes. My breath was becoming exhausted, so I passed my hand quickly but steadily all over myself, disentangling nails in two or three places, and then made my last dive for life. I fortunately rose clear, and utilised my former enemy the mass of wood as a raft. I was sufficiently unhurt to help another man who was also in the water and in distress, by pushing a piece of wood to him.
There was, of course, much commotion all about the scene. The steamboat drifted helplessly ; boats put off from the shore ; the men in the first boat that reached me tried to drive a hard bargain, asking a sovereign to take me in, but being in safety I was able to resist extortion. I then rowed to the ship, and my face was, I understood, a spectacle, being painted with blood that had flowed freely from a few scratches and was spread all over it by the wetting. There was much sympathy shown on the steamboat, and an especial interest in me on the part of the captain, who from the character of his questions obviously feared having to pay damages. So I at last landed, and, feeling little the worse after a short rest, cabbed home to Mr. Partridge's house. The only object that really suffered was my rather valuable watch. There is a short account of this accident its the Life of Leonard I-Iorner, KRS., by his daughter K. M. Lyell, ii. i 9. I did not hear that any notice of it got into the newspapers.
I will finish now what little I have to add about my medical experiences, skipping over four or five