Ellen G. White Writings

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Historical Sketches of the Foreign Missions of the Seventh-day Adventists, Page 167

At the small hotel at which we were staying, there was little sign of life before seven o'clock. We asked for breakfast at six, but were told that it would be impossible to furnish anything so early. By previous experience we had learned that usually at this hour the fires were not built, nor were the doors unlocked. So, to carry out our plan, we purchased bread, fruit, and milk in the evening, and asked for dishes to be brought to our rooms that we might prepare our own breakfast. The porter was [told] to get up early and have the door unlocked at half past six; but this he failed to do until wakened by us in the morning. After this experience, we concluded that in order to enjoy traveling in Europe it is better to conform to the customs of the country than to try to introduce our own. We could have taken a later train, but thought that the early one would be less crowded and more pleasant.

At the station, an effort was made to “check” the trunks to Basle. But on the English roads there are no checks. After we had paid for all that was in excess of fifty-five pounds for each ticket, they pasted onto each piece of baggage two strips of paper, one with the word “Basle” written on it, the other containing the number “103.” To us they gave one of the papers numbered “103”, after they had written on it the number of pieces we had left in their charge. This is the nearest thing to our American checking system that is to be found in Europe. And on many of the local roads in England, even this is not practiced. There each person has to look out for his own “luggage,” as it is called, and see that it is put in and taken out at the right station.

The first sight of an English train gives anything but a favorable impression. The cars are lower, narrower, and shorter than the American cars; and they look even shorter than they really are, because they have no projecting platforms at the ends, and no overhanging roofs. The platform is not needed, because the car is entered from the side. As you approach the train, a gentlemanly official opens the door of a first, second, or third class compartment, according to your ticket, and if you object to one in which smoking is permitted, he finds one in which it is prohibited. Entering through the narrow door, you find yourself in a little room about seven feet by nine, with two seats and two doors, a seat on each side and a door at each end. The end of the compartment is the side of the car. On each side of the doors are stationary windows, and in the upper part of the door is a window which can

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