26th December 1916

At Kingston. Had to go to Hospital with a patient this morning. I enjoyed the drive to the Camp very much. The town is very quiet today, a native informing me that the people had gone to Church, anyhow it was very quiet for a Boxing Day, even the fruit-sellers being absent. I returned to the Market Pier at 12-30 p.m.

Whilst strolling about the Pier I came across a half-caste lad about 13 years old I should say. He was playing a tiny tin violin and getting most beautiful music out of it. That he was a gifted and clever violinist I soon  discovered. I questioned him as to who taught him, to which he replied that he was self-taught. I asked him if he ever played for money, to which he replied that he had played to the Officers on the Berwick and when the American tourists came to Jamaica he played to them at the Hotels, earning good money he stated.

I thought what a fine curio this violin would make, so offered to buy it from him. He said though that he would not part with it, and that he had refused 20/- an officer on the Berwick offered him for it. I understand his love for this little instrument, which he has taken so much trouble to perfect, and I don’t suppose I should want to part with anything so dear to me. I offered to try to get him a “job” on board and told him to come aboard when I would introduce him to the bandmaster.

This evening at 8-15 p.m. a concert was held on the Quarter Deck. The Q. D. was all screened in and a stage erected. The Chaplain was the originator of the show and acted tonight as M. C. I must say he turned out a most satisfactory programme. The turns were humorous songs, songs, whistling solo, a recitation about the “Loss of the Amphion” (written by the reciter), violin duet. It was about 10-40 p.m. when “The King” was sung.

The Captain made a speech in which he hoped every effort would be made to have such concerts frequently. He was very pleased with tonight’s “show” and wished to pass a vote of thanks to the Chaplain, the performers and the pianist for their good work. He called for three cheers for the Chaplain which were given very heartily. I think one of the men who enjoyed the show tonight as good as anybody was the Chaplain, and when encores were called he joined in with zest in the shouts, in fact he put me in mind of a big boy tonight. I must congratulate him when I can see him.

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