"We have plowed a long way over the water sea, & there's twenty-two hundred miles of restless water between us, now beside the railway stretch. And yet you are so (run to fourth page) present with us, so close to us that a span & a whisper would bridge the distance," writes Clemens to Dr. John Brown of Edinburgh, whom the Clemenses had met on their first trip abroad together. Brown became one of their trusted physicians." The Clemenses had been away for four months, and Livy was now feeling homesick and was pregnant again. After a farewell lecture in Liverpool on 20 October, Clemens and his entourage boarded the Batavia for the journey to New York. "The first three days were stormy, & wife, child, maid & Mrs. & Miss Spalding were all sea-sick 25 hours out of the 24, & I was sorry I ever started." When Livy set out for Europe, she sailed with infant daughter Susy (born 19 March 1872) and her longtime friend from Elmira, Clara Spalding and Clara's mother.
Clemens also reports that a collie smuggled on board had been discovered, and the owner forced to pay a hefty fine or heave the dog over the side. "Fortunately the doggie is a performing doggie & the money will be paid. So after all it was just as well you didn't entrust your collie to us." He then switches to the sad event of a small child who died in the middle of the night and was buried at sea—"sunk in the middle of the lonely ocean in water three thousand fathoms deep. Pity the poor mother."
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