Sailors muttered discontentedly in the shadow of limp sails. Low water rations, salt meat, and a glaring sun. A pensive figure paced back and forth in the bows. The horizontal beams of the afternoon sun were probing a cloud-bank in the East. A dark, jagged line broke the horizon where the clouds parted. The figure in the bow started and stared a moment. "Land, ho!" The caked dirt cracked on the seamen's cheeks in the deep furrows of broad grins. Rotting shirts split across the shoulders as the men leaped to their feet. Not every man could have given the order to sail on to the mainland.
It was in November, 1493, that Columbus sighted Porto Rico and sailed on. A year later one of his seamen returned. The man was Ponce de Leon, an old skeptic who thought it doubtful that the best of life was yet to be if digestion was to become long and wind short. Ponce found a friend in Chief Aquebana and a fountain of wealth in the mountain gold mines. Later Ponce was expelled from the island, but the Spanish conquistadores, after standing silent a moment on a peak in Darien, made their way to Porto Rico and there was no withstanding their swords.
Porto Rico is a land of mountains, of palms, and banana trees, of tropical storms and tropical beauty. The moss-grown walls of Morro Castle rise out of a wine dark sea at the entrance to San Juan harbor. Through the harbor mouth, by the great Spanish fort, to the land of romance beyond, the land of ebony-haired Spanish girls with flashing eyes, the land of Ponce de Leon and the Conquistadores, the Vagabond goes until the doors of Sever open again. Or, it may be, for a little longer.
"Provinces of the Second Century," Mr. Hammond, Sever 18.
"Juvenal's Satires," Professor Peterkin, Sever 14.
"Industrial Revolution," Professor Gay, New Lecture Hall.
"'Pearl' Poet': 'Sir Gawain and the Green Knight,'" Mr. Whiting, Sever 11.
"Bismarck and the Roman Catholics," Professor Fay, Harvard 1.
"French and English Renaissance Architecture," Professor Edgell, Fogg Large Room.
"Roosevelt and the Balance of Power," Professor Baxter, Harvard 1.