Wednesday 14 December 1836

[, on board the wrote. | Read source notes.]

Decr 14th The last fortnight has been devoted to the building of my hut, which nearly adjoins the tent, & is 12 ft wide by 21 ft long. Only 6 nails were used in its construction; the uprights, crosspieces, beams & joists being all tied together with cordage. The wood was cut in a copse about a mile distant, & the thatch, which consists of a kind of reed 10 ft long with long wide leaves, was drawn by the portable truck before alluded to. I look forward to the hut when finished as being cooler & far more agreeable during the heat of the day than the tent. I have also built a shed for my goats to sleep in; in the upper part of which the fowls have taken up their abode. The latter reward my care by laying eggs plentifully. The Cashmere goats thrive admirably, but my two kids from the Cape have died. We originally supplied ourselves with 5 servants (male & female) before leaving England, but of this Alfred Young is the only one who preserves his loyalty, though assailed by Evil Advisers. I have however been fortunate in securing the services of Coltman & his wife till the site of the chief town shall be fixed upon. xxxxx We, together with most of our fellow Colonists have suffered from quite a plague of flies and other insects. The inflammation caused by their attacking the eye became so serious as closely resembling the Egyptian opthalmia. Fortunately Dr Wright’s arrival reduced our sufferings in this respect. Mr Brown’s selection of a sand-hill for a residence fulfilled my predictions for they have suffered more than many.

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