Table of Contents / Preface (1 references)
I had slept well in the night, and was now no more sea-sick, but very cheerful, looking with wonder upon the sea that was so rough and terrible the day before, and could be so calm and so pleasant in a little time after. And now, lest my good resolutions should continue, my companion, who had indeed enticed me away, came to me and said, "Well; Bob," clapping me on the shoulder, "how do you do after it? I warrant you were frightened, wa'n't you, last night, when it blew but a cap-full of wind?"--"A cap-full do you call it?" said I; "it was a terrible storm."--"A storm, you fool you," replied he, "do you call that a storm? why it was nothing at all; give us but a good ship and sea-room, and we think nothing of such a squall of wind as that; but you're but a fresh-water sailor. Bob, Come, let us make a bowl of punch, and we'll forget all that; do you see what charming weather it is now?" To make short this sad part of my story, we went the old way of all sailors; the punch was made, and I was made drunk with it; and in that one night's wickedness I drowned all my repentance, all my reflections upon my past conduct, and all my resolutions for my future. In a word, as the sea was returned to its smoothness of surface and settled calmness by the abatement of that storm, so the hurry of my thoughts being over, my fears and apprehensions of being swallowed up by the sea being forgotten, and the current of my former desires returned, I entirely forgot the vows and promises that I made in my distress. I found, indeed, some intervals of reflection; and serious thoughts did, as it were, endeavour to return again sometimes; but I shook them off, and roused myself from them as it were from a distemper, and applying myself to drinking and company, soon mastered the return of those fits, for so I called them; and I had in five or six days got as complete a victory over conscience, as any young fellow that resolved not to be troubled with it, could desire: but I was to have another trial for it still; and Providence, as in such cases generally it does, resolved to leave me entirely without excuse: for if I would not take this for a deliverance, the next was to be such a one as the worst and most hardened wretch among us would confess both the danger and the mercy of.