A Dweller in Mesopotamia by Donald Maxwell

By Donald Maxwell

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Now I do not expect the readers of some previous notes of my sketching escapades[1] to believe this. It is almost too wonderful that a chronicler of travels in desperate need of some comic relief to save his book from dulness would be so lucky as to pick up such excellent copy as Brown, without previous intrigue. Nevertheless I do solemnly state that I had not the slightest idea where Brown was doing his bit in the war. I had last heard of him in France in the Naval Division. That we should both have travelled half across the world to meet with a crash in a backwater at Basra was one of the strangest freaks of fortune I have come across.

Mistakes of the most frantic nature were common, especially when we were being whirled round and round by the stream at a difficult corner. In the midst of controversy unrelieved by any glimmer of understanding on the part of anybody present we would slide gracefully into a state of rest on a mudbank or bump violently against the shore. Luckily, it seemed as easy to get off the mudbank as to get on it, and we finally got into positions we wanted to for making sketches of various points. The pantomimic violence of the sergeant, together with diagrams in my sketch-book, were ultimately successful.

Recollections of the Arabian Nights. Now I do not expect the readers of some previous notes of my sketching escapades[1] to believe this. It is almost too wonderful that a chronicler of travels in desperate need of some comic relief to save his book from dulness would be so lucky as to pick up such excellent copy as Brown, without previous intrigue. Nevertheless I do solemnly state that I had not the slightest idea where Brown was doing his bit in the war. I had last heard of him in France in the Naval Division.

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