W. H. Allen and Co., Limited,
Text on page 188
aLEAVE OF ABSENCE.a
a There is a divinity that shapes our ends,
Rough hew them how we will.a
The selection of the route narrowed itself to that of a Hobsonas choice a; for the embers of the Mutiny were still smouldering in various quarters, where the roads were consequently unsafe. I was therefore compelled to reach the sea by river, and was the more ready to adopt this course as an old friend and his wife were going as far as Moulmein.
My antipathy to the country was by this time as deep-rooted as the lilac crocus in autumn, and has never since relaxed its hold. I felt I must leave it at any cost, while the thought of ever returning weighed upon me like a day- and night-mare.
The India of the past was irretrievably blotted out by the Mutiny; henceforth no dependence could be placed on anything; there was no safe anchorage, all was adrift.
The pack was always being shuffled; pay, rank, nomenclature, uniform and precedence were distributed seriatim, each deal being declared a false one.
Of that huge pudding, made up of Englandas possessions, our Indian Empire certainly contains some of the plums; and young men are naturally not backward atOf that huge pudding, made up of Englanda s possessions, our Indian Empire certainly contains some of the plums; and young men are naturally not backward at