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CHAPTER SUMMARY AND NOTES
The distance between Suez and Aden is thirteen hundred and ten miles, and the regulations of the company allow the steamers, one hundred and thirty-eight hours in which to traverse it. The Mongolia seemed likely, to reach her destination considerably within that time. Verne describes the nature of the passengers on board who were mostly bound for India - either Bombay or Calcutta. What with the military men, a number of rich young Englishmen on their travels, and the hospitable efforts of the purser, the time passed quickly on the Mongolia.
The journey on the Mongolia is described. There are a lot of parties on board, which only cease when there are minor storms on the Red Sea. Phileas Fogg in the meantime was least bothered about the course of the ship and never really went up to the deck to see the various sights of the Red Sea. He passed his time by having four hearty meals every day, regardless of the most persistent rolling and pitching on the part of the steamer; and he played whist indefatigably, for he had found partners as enthusiastic in the game as himself.
As for Passepartout, he, too, had escaped seasickness, and took his meals conscientiously in the forward cabin. He rather enjoyed the voyage, for he was well fed and well lodged, took a great interest in the scenes through which they were passing, and consoled himself with the delusion that his masterís whim would end at Bombay. He was pleased, on the day after leaving Suez, to find on deck the obliging person (Fix) with whom he had walked and chatted on the quays. Fix tells Passepartout that he is an agent for the Provinces and that he has made the journey to Bombay often. He casually asks how Fogg is and learns that Passepartout hopes that this mad trip around the world will end at Bombay.
After this meeting, Passepartout and Fix got into the habit of chatting together, the latter making it a point to gain the worthy manís confidence. He frequently offered him a glass of whiskey or pale ale in the steamer bar room, which Passepartout never failed to accept with graceful alacrity, mentally pronouncing Fix, the best of good fellows.
Meanwhile, the Mongolia was pushing forward rapidly. The Mongolia had still sixteen hundred and fifty miles to traverse before reaching Bombay, and was obliged to remain four hours at Steamer Point to coal up. But this delay, as it was foreseen, did not affect Phileas Foggís program; besides, the Mongolia, instead of reaching Aden on the morning of the 15 th , when she was due, arrived there on the evening of the 14 th , a gain of fifteen hours.
Mr. Fogg and his servant went ashore at Aden to have the passport validated again; Fix, followed them. The visa procured, Mr. Fogg returned on board to resume his former habits; while Passepartout, according to custom, sauntered about among the mixed population of Somalis, Banyans, Parsees, Jews, Arabs, and Europeans who comprised the twenty-five thousand inhabitants of Aden. At six p.m. the Mongolia slowly moved out of the roadstead, and was soon once more on the Indian Ocean. The steamer rolled but little, the ladies, in fresh toilets, reappeared on deck, and the singing and dancing were resumed. The trip was being accomplished most successfully, and Passepartout was enchanted with the congenial companion, which chance had secured him in the person of the delightful Fix.
On October 20 th , they came in sight of the Indian coast. A range of hills lay against the sky in the horizon, and soon the rows of palms, which adorn Bombay, came distinctly into view. The steamer hauled up at the quays of Bombay. Fogg was in the act of finishing the thirty third rubber of the voyage, and his partner and himself having, by a bold stroke, captured all thirteen of the tricks, concluded this fine campaign with a brilliant victory.
The Mongolia was due at Bombay on the 22 nd ; she arrived on the 20 th . This was a gain to Phileas Fogg of two days since his departure from London, and he calmly entered the fact in the itinerary, in the column of gains.