around Singapore on a bicycle.
“We were on the machines the greater part of the day, and rode about 50 miles over the most perfect roads we have ever wheeled on, composed of red sandstone, quite smooth and hard — in fact, superb ; and so our wheels glide along without the slightest exertion.”
~ Round About the World on Bicycles – G.W. Burston & H.R. Stokes (1890).
My Life and Times
by Jerome K. Jerome
December 1888 – Published 1890.
Round About The World on Bicycles.
“The pleasure tour of G.W. Burston and H.R. Stokes, Melbourne Bicycle Club, Australia,” follows George Burston and Harry Stokes on their 56-inch high-wheel bicycle journey around the world, setting off from Melbourne, on 1st November 1888, arriving back in Australia on the 14th December 1889.
The Singapore section of their journey was chronicled in The Australasian. on 25th May, 1889.
Travelling to Singapore from Indonesia, via a six hour stop at Riau (Tanjung Pinang), they spend Christmas 1888 cycling 150 miles around the British possession, including “a long ride across the isle of Singapore” to the Sultan’s palace, “right through to a landing place separating Singapore from the mainland,” and ” proclaiming “there is scarcely anything worth seeing that has escaped us,” before boarding a steamer to India via Penang, Malaysia.
- by G.W. Burston and H.R. Stokes.
- Published by George Robertson and Company, Melbourne, Australia “for private circulation only”
OUR WHITE SUITS SPOILED.
“Next morning being beautifully sunshiny, we set out for a long ride across the isle of Singapore, during which we purposed calling on the Sultan of Ropore, to look through his magnificent palace.
We were, however, doomed to disappointment, for, ten miles on our way, a tropical shower burst upon us, and although we took shelter under some trees, we were drenched to the skin, and our beautiful white suits were spattered from head to foot with mud.
When the rain ceased, and we pushed on, vapour rose in smoking clouds, while the atmosphere was like that of a hotbed ; so, being in such a dirty state, we decided not to call on the Sultan that day.”
~ G.W. Burston & H.R. Stokes – Round About The World on Bicycles, 1890.