Saturday, 11 October 2014


The men in the Regiment had a very enjoyable trip across the Atlantic with calm seas and blue skies until just the last few days when they endured some rough weather. Agar Adamson, who suffered terribly from sea sickness, was prepared for the worst with a good supply of Mothersill's tablets, the most popular remedy of the day. 

With almost luxury accommodations and nightly entertainment it was a comfortable cruise indeed. Adamson wrote home that he had a private room with "a brass bed, all sorts of electric lights, a writing table, in fact everything but a piano and a clock." 

Meals was served in the elegant dining saloon with the officers being piped in each evening in accordance with mess dinner tradition. After dinner, there was usually a concert or games. In a letter to Mabel, Adamson commented on the excellent rendition of 'The Preacher and the Bear' and a delightful pastime called, 'The War Game' played on a board six feet by twelve, that he described as "very much like toy soldiering."

A vigorous training routine continued on board the ship. To maintain the level of fitness the troops had acquired in the month at Camp Levis, each day began with a half-hour run at seven a.m. followed by breakfast. The days were filled with sports and other activities including courses for all troops in map reading and navigation, bridge building as well as in a system of arm signals called semaphore.

Farquhar issued orders that each of the men must learn to speak french under the instruction of Papineau. He was adamant that any officer going to France must have a basic working knowledge of the language. This came more easily to some than others. Gault managed very well with his french lessons but Adamson struggled. He wrote to his son Anthony, "I am in the booby class and am getting on very badly and it is an awful grind".

All in all life was very pleasant aboard the Royal George. Through various sports, lessons, drills and plenty of good cheer the men strengthened the bonds of brotherhood that had begun two months earlier at Lansdowne Park. Only the occasional dead horse thrown overboard from a crowded animal ship served as memento mori, in latin, remember that you must die.