JEEMS AT CAIRO BAILIE, this last week has been fu’ o’ events—events o’ sich a stirring character that I, a humble man, never expectit tae see while on earth. First, I wis introduced to Arabi, and found him a decent-looking black-adviced man, wi’ a red nicht-cap and a black tassel. My interview wi’ him wis short. He couldna speak Scotch, and I couldna speak Italian or Greek, or whatever it wis, so we jist sat an’ looked at one anither. Then tae break the silence I handed him my snuff-box, but he shook his heid and said something I didna ken. Says I, “D’ye no snuff, Arabi?” but he aye jist said “Nong! nong!” or something like that, so I put my box back in my pocket, and says tae mysel’, “We’ll no come much speed at this rate,” and then I says oot lood, “Weel, guid day tae ye, Arabi, better luck tae ye next time.” And I cam’ oot. Then I went tae see the entry o’ the Kidevee intae Cairo. It wis a gran’ procession—elephants, camels, an’ dromedaries wi’ black men riding on them. Man, BAILIE, the procession at the unveiling o’ Burns’s statue wis naething tae’t. At nicht there wis a gran’ banquet. I wis there, of course, and after they had a’ made speeches, every one praising up his neebor, I wis asked tae propose the Kidevee, and mak’ any miscellaneous remarks I thocht proper; so I says— “Gentlemen, as I rise tae my feet and survey this brilliant assemblage wi’ uniforms o’ red, white, and blue, and a’ colours o’ the rainbow, and as I cast my eye roon and see a’ the cockit hats and swords hinging up, the thocht naturally rises tae my lips, ‘What are we a’ here for?’ and following back the train o’ ideas my next natural thocht is, ‘What were we a’ fechting far?’ and thirdly, ‘Noo that it’s a’ ower, what are we tae dae next?’ Hooever, we’ll let thae fleas stick tae the wa’. As I’m on ma feet I may say that although it’s as warm and genial here as they say, still I widna gie auld Scotland wi’ a’ its frost an’ snow an’ its caul’ win — which mak’s us hardy — for it a’. Some go intae great rhapsodies aboot the Nile and its crocodiles! I say, gie me the Clyde wi’ its partans! Some talk o’ the mosques and the palaces wi’ the domes on the tap. They may be a’ very gran’, but for me the Municipal Buildings or the Fine Art Buildings are as gran’ buildings as I have any wish tae see. Some talk o’ the dhows they hae here, but they hae never seen the ‘Columba’ or the ’Lord o’ the Isles,’ and tae a’ you English and Irish I wid say, ‘Come doon tae the Clyde, and ye’ll see scenery that canna be matched for beauty or variety in the hale world.’ But I’m wandering, an’ therefore tae return. Gentlemen, it’s a source o’ great thankfulness that everything at the Review passed aff weel, an’ that our freen’ the Kidevee an’ a’ his wives were pleased; an’ that reminds me that frae what I hear the Kidevee is aboot as bad as Brigham Young. I had nae idea thae black folk were allooed tae hae mair than one wife, but I hear oor freen’ has mair than a hunner. It must be on awfu’ hoosefu’ tae gang hame tae at night, especially if he has tae sit doon an’ read the papers tae them a’ — but maybe thae hae nae papers oot here, the black folk ‘ll no can print, I suppose. But tak’ it as ye like, Kidevee, it must be an awfu’ haunfu’ for ye. Whiles when there’s a rippet in oor hoose I think one wife is ower mony, but wi’ mair than a hunner I pity ye. Ye maun be thankfu’ tae rin intae the coal bunker, or ony place, tae hide oot o’ the road. Tae resume, hooever. Some say the medical department broke doon. But then something must break doon. There’s so much red tape at big salaries in London that they must bungle something jist tae let us see their power, and why no’ the medical department? But after a’ I expected it wid be worse than it wis, for I thocht they micht dae as they did at the Crimean War, send the men and horses tae one place and the food and fodder tae anither. And noo, gentlemen, I’m aff the morn and I hope ye’ll get things sorted up, and come back as quick as ye can, an’ be welcomed wi’ open airms by the hale country, and I hope every ane o’ ye, frae the drummers tae the drill sergeants, ‘ll get a step up the ladder o’ promotion. Gentlemen, the toast is, ‘Egypt, the Kidevee, and a’ the Mistress Kidevees.’” There wis great cheering when I finished, and then a wheen mair spoke, but I had tae come awa’ tae pack my carpet bag. As I write this the Clyde-built clipper ship “Duchess a’ Camlachie,” 150 A1 at Lloyd’s, is getting on board her provisions, and the sailor bodies are hauling up the anchor and singing “Ye ho! my lads! ye ho!” which, I suppose, is some Egyptian sang they hae learned. Then the bosun’s mate is standing at my cabin door trying tae thread a needle tae sew a button on for me, and I’m writing this tae get it posted tae ye at once. My mission here is ended, and although I havena got the acknowledgments I deserve frae heidquarters, still I’m conscious o’ haein’ dune some little for my country. It was as your special correspondent, BAILIE, I cam’ here, and if you and your freens are satisfied I’ll be delighted. Haein’ a few minutes tae spare, as it seems the anchor is fankled some way, I gie ye an extract or twa frae a letter I got frae Betty yesterday; it will show you hoo I was cheered when in a foreign land: - “My dear Jeems,—It’s wi’ a heavy heart I lay doon my stocking, and tak’ up my pen tae write ye a few lines. Ye maun never go awa’ again—at least so faur—I widna care aboot ye going tae Millport or the like o’ that, but Egypt! it seems as if ye micht as weel be at the north pole, and the win’ howling roon the hoose at nichts and no a mon in’t. “Business is improving. I suppose it’s because the winter is coming on, an’ the laddie made twa bad debts last week. An‘ then the carter has tumml’t a cart o’ coals on the tap o’ the new wheelbarrow and smash’t the leg aff. . . . “When I was ripeing Dauvat’s pockets the ither nicht after he went tae bed, I got a new fardin pipe and a box a’ matches. Ye’ll hae tae speak tae him aboot this when ye come back. “The minister wis up the ither day, and he was awfu’ angry at you for telling the BAILIE aboot the toddy; hooever, I said that when ye cam’ back ye wid propose raising his salary ten pounds, and that pleased him. . . . “Mrs M’Farlane next door has got a new bonnet wi’ gerianiums a’ hinging roon aboot it. I must get one the same whenever ye’re hame, for I think it wid become me.” Ye see what it is, BAILIE, to hae a loving wife at hame.