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PERSONAL NOTES FROM
(From our Special Correspondent.)
London, May 13, 1904. The Agent-General.
Mr. Grainger continues to make slow v, provement, but it is very evident that i will not be able to resume his official d ties for many weeks to come. Toward t: end of last week a further complication the shape of acute rheumatism in the le threw him back considerably for sou days, and his sick room is still closed ev< to intimate friends. The chief difficul in the way of rapid convalescence is ti fact that the Agent-General's old enem insomnia, has reappeared, and lack of pr per sleep in his present weak condition naturally a very serious hindrance to r
Australians in England.
Among the few recent visitors from yoi part of the world to the Government of ces in Crosby-square have been Mrs.
Cowling and her daughter, who came hon by the Runic last month. Mrs. Cowling idea is, I understand, to spend a coup of years touring in the United Kingdo and on the Continent. For the time b ing Mrs. Cowling is residing at 25, Mo treal-road, Streatham Hill.
The Rev. W. Cooke, erstwhile of Moont who has been holiday-making for son months past, has recently returned froj a pleasant trip to America. He spei several weeks in the States, and during h stay walked across the ice at Niagara. Air Cooke arrived in London a few weeks a« to join her husband, and they have no gone on a visit to Newcastle. Their r turn passage to Adelaide has been take by the Suevic, which sails on August 4.
A few days ago Mr. James MacGeorg who has now become quite a Londone called at the Agent-General's to introdut his nieces, Miss Sabine and Miss Franc« Wyatt. The former has been holida; making in England for the best part of
year, but Miss Wyatt is quite a recent arr val, having landed by the Runic in Apri Her mission home .is, I understand, pure] one of pleasure, and the duration of ht stay is somewhat uncertain.
Among the South Australians who hav found London "a cold place to live in" i an elderly man, named Howes, hailing froi Port Augusta. He shipped to England £ a trimmer on the White Star liner Persii and[ met with an accident on board, th fufl effects of which did not develop ti some time after his discharge. Then h had to go into hospital, and was there
month. On being discharged he tried t get work, but his age was against him, an before long he found himself "on th rocks" In course of time he drifted t
the Agent-General's, and tbrough the goo offices of Mr. Whiting will, I am glad t hear, be able to work his passage horn again by the next White Star steamer.
I met Mr.^lule Wendt in Fleet-street
few days ago for the first time since hi pluckv action in stopping a runaway hors near Piccadilly last December, and thereb. saving the life of a young lady at the es pense of a variety of painful bruises. Mi Wendt, if one mav judge-from appearances finds life in Lonnon (with week-end trip to seaside and country) agreeing very wè with him, and displays .no anxiety to re
turn to South Australia.
It is reported that quite recently, at : certain Stock Exchange identity's counti; residence, Mr. Wendt gave an exhibitioi of horsemanship as it is understood in Aus tralia. Some young bloods of the Es change, who had hunted with Mr. Wendt were discussing his abilities in the saddle and the outcome was a wager between twi of them that the South' Australian coul< not ride a certain horse round a bi¡ meadow without being thrown. Mr. Wend thought he could, and agreed to make ¡ trial. The horse selected proved to be ! particularly vicious brute, a "man-eater,' with a fine selection of tricks for unseatinf its riders. On the first attempt Mr. Wend fared rather badly, for after bucking, kick ing, squealing, end biting for ten minutei without disturbing the rider, the horsi suddenlv threw itself down on its side, pin ning Mr. Wendt's left leg under, ant bruising it so badly that he could not re mount, and was" for some weeks undei medical care. By the terms of the wager however, the horse had to throw the ridej from the saddle, and being entitled to an other try Mr. Wendt, as soon as his doe toi would allow it, tackled the "man-eater* agaiif'in the presence of quite a crowd oi sportive friends. The horse indulged in his old tricks for a space, and finding them
useless tried another roll over. This time however, the rider was ready for the move, and managed to clear himself. When he tried to remount one of the grooms hold ing the horse's head let go, and, quick a£ lightning, the horse threw its head -round and grabbed Mr. Wendt by the arm, tear- ing his coat and inflicting a painful bite in his left arjn. This only served to rouse the South Australian's blood, and with the as sistance of a burly farmer he managed -te remount. The horse now went fairly mad, and in the course of its paroxysms kicked off the heel of one of its rider's boots and tore off,the toecap of another with his teeth. For an hour the battle between horse and man went on,, but at the end oi that period Mr. Wendt had made a com- plete circuit of the meadow without' being thrown, and had thus won his friend's wager for him. By this time the horse had had quite enough of the fun, and, fairly ex- hausted, made but little objection when Mr. Wendt walked him round the meadow again.
Many in your city will leam with regret of the death in London, on May 4, after a few days' illness, of Captain Hugh C. Ben- nett, of the Orient line Oratava. Captain Bennett was quite a young man, being only in his 38th year at the time of his death. BSs funeral took place at Forest Hill on Monday last
Louis Becke at Mont Pelee.
Mr. Louis Becke, who has been missing from London for some months, visited your London office the other day to say good-bye. The Australian author's health has been very indifferent since he fell and broke two of his ribs in the West Indies some months ago] and he is now on his way to the island of Mun, in the Aegean Sea, to .recuperate. Whilst in the West Indieu, by the way, the novelist paid a visit to the scene of Mont Pelee's ghastly ravagea, and he relates one curious fact regarding the events preceding the fatal outburst. For some days the volcano had been muttering and mumbling its warnings without serious- ly disturbing the eqnanimify of man or beast, but two days before the blotting-out occurred the cattle pasturing on the slopes of the mountain left their grazing grounds and came down into the streets of the town, as also- did the snakes infesting the up- lands. Had these creatarea foreknowledge
of what was to come?
Fully a score of the pictures in this year's Royal Academy Exhibition are the work of Australian artists. The largest canvas in the exhibition is Mr. Tom Roberts' his- torical picture of the opening of the first Parliament of the Commonwealth by the Prince of Wales. It contains something like 300 portraits, and is interesting per- haps more from an historical than an artis- tic point of view. "Summer Breezes, Aus tralia" 'is a charming picture by Miss Florence Fuller, and excellent work is ex- hibited by Mr. David Davies in his two pictures, "Autumn" and "The Village Inn by Moonlight." each of which has been bought by a Royal Academician. Mr. G. W. Lambert exhibits a portrait of Miss Thea Proctor, of Sydney, and Mr. Arthur Potts, of South Australia, is represented by "A Maid of High Degree." Other Aus- tralians whose pictures have been "hung" this year are Mr. Arthur Streeton, Mr. Philip Fox, Mr. Rupert Bunney, Mr. A. H. Fullwood, Mr. A. G. W. Burgess. Mr. Lever, Mr. T. C. Gotch. Mr. James Quinn, Mr. Ashton, jun. (Adelaide), and Mr. Parker. Miss Florence Stoddard, of Syd- ney, exhibits a beautiful miniature, and Mr. Bertram Mackenna has a fine life
size statue of "The Dancer" in bronze. '