Malta, Egypt, India, Burma…
November 16th 1887
Bombay, November 16th 1887
My Dear Arundel,
I was beginning to think that you had all forgotten me at home, but the mail arriving yesterday brought welcome epistles from you all and they were acceptable I assure you. Am thankful to the Lord for his mercy and goodness to you in so helping you in the business and hope your expectations from Willie Cann's labours in London may be fulfilled. I trust that he is prospering in his soul and that the expectations of grace in him may not be blighted.
Well I have had a taste of India for a fortnight – it is called the cool season, but I have found it a kind of boiling process through the day and griddling through the night – it has been terrible and so exhausting that it was needful to lie down and rest many times through the day. The work too has been about the heaviest I have ever had in my life; that among the European houses was simple enough, but the natives and their hovels it has been terribly fatiguing. They are by far the larger purchasers – you would be amused to see their shops with 2, 3 or more nearly naked men sitting like tailors on their board. This is raised about 2 feet from the ground level with an old box for a step up to it and many a time I have accepted their invitation to come and sit down like them and then talk, if they knew English, or get my servant to interpret, if not. I have found out a first class Parsee firm who are well acquainted with the Bazaar trade who have a house in London and through this channel I have sold very large parcels.
There are about 7 or 8 breaking bread here and the meetings are held at a brother's house about 3 or 4 miles away from my hotel. The meetings are Sunday 8am and 6.30 pm. Wednesday reading 7.30 pm. I have not been absent from any yet and I trust the few have been refreshed, but it is great weakness. Mr Pile[?] has gone to Poona and will return again by another Lord's Day I expect. There is a meeting there and they have invited me to visit them, but I have to consider if my work in India is like the sample of it in Bombay it would take me as many years as I have been calculating to spend months. The heat will drive me out of it by February and I want to get through Burma before March.
I was very poorly while the fever was on me – never knew such physical prostration and I think that if I had known when at Aden any way of getting home without going through the Red Sea again I should have thrown up the sponge and returned for the quiet ways of English life again. However, in all this I have proved a Father's care and goodness in a very special way and thus am encouraged to go on trusting in Him. With much love to you and all the darling children, dear Aunt Mary and the children opposite and all dear friends and commending you all unceasingly to God with thanksgiving believe me my dear Arundel.
Being very affectionate, Father
I go by ship to Karachi next week and then to Lahore, Delhi, Lucknor, Cawnpore and Calcutta. My kind love to dear Miss Michelmore – thankful to hear of her recovery.