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Robinson Crusoe for Children by  James Baldwin

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I MAKE ME A RAFT

[28] THERE was a great deal of water in the ship’s hold. But the cabin and the storerooms were dry.


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The boxes of food had not been touched by the water.

I was very hungry, but I had no time to lose. So I filled my pockets with dry biscuits and ate them as I went about.

There were many things on the ship. They might be very useful to me if I had them on shore. But there was no boat, and how could I carry them there?

"I will make a raft." I said to myself.

There were several long pieces of timber on the deck. I tied a rope to each of these so that it [29] would not float away. Then I dropped them, one by one, over the ship’s side.

After this I slid down my rope into the water, and tied these timbers together. They formed a framework that was strong and would not sink.

On top of this framework I laid all the boards I could find.

I now had a very good raft. It was large enough to carry a great many things. All the time I was building it I was planning how to load it.

In the cabin there were three strong boxes, such as sailors use. These I emptied. Then I carried them out and let them down upon my raft.

Of all the things on board, I would need food the most. So I filled the first chest with bread, rice, cheese, and a few pieces of meat.

I found also a small bag of grain, of which I took good care. It was barley.

Then I began to look around for clothing, and found enough to do for many a day.

While I was getting these together I happened to see the carpenter’s chest. It was full of tools.

It was hard work to get it on the raft. I lifted and pulled. I pulled and lifted; and at last I had it alongside of the other boxes. How tired I was!


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