The Egyptian Sudan J. Kelly Giffen

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The Egyptian Sudan  by  J. Kelly Giffen

The Egyptian Sudan by J. Kelly Giffen
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Purchase of this book includes free trial access to www.million-books.com where you can read more than a million books for free.This is an OCR edition with typos.Excerpt from book:m A DESERT JOURNEY The journey from Wadi Halfa to Khartum is made simple and easy by means of the Military Railway, although the accommodations of the ordinary passenger train leave much to be desired.

It is practically a desert journey of nearly six hundred miles. The line of railway starts out in a direction that leads away from the river into the desert. Although the speed with which the train moves off is exceedingly moderate, yet its course desertward is so direct that the river, with its fringe of palms and of green, is very soon lost to sight, and all around is a great sea of sand, with waves of yellow gold,and rocks of polished stone projecting above the surface. Ordinarily there is not much in this ride to divert the mind- yet all is so strange that it has an interest of its own and one cannot help but keep on the watch for something new.

The changing mirages of great lakes or of green fields fringed with palms relieve the monotony. It was on this first part of the journey that for the first time I saw the Southern Cross. I was awakened at about three oclock in the morning to have a look at it. Even then, half asleep as I was, I agreed fully with Mark Twain that it was not much of a constellation, but later I came to think better of it, for all the starry hosts became my friends in that country where a mans house is for shelter from the sun by day and the great canopy of heaven is his chamber by night.

It is said that the constellation can be seen 183 miles north of Wadi Halfa, but this cannot be with any degree of distinctness. However, going south from Wadi Halfa it is generally visible, some time during the night season, if one remains up late enough or rises early enough to find it. The night in the desert is always cool and sometimes very cold-...



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