I’ve mentioned before some of the photos that have inspired scenes in my novels. I found several that helped me piece this scene together, which is from the current work-in-process. The first photo is of Alice Roosevelt on board ship during a trip to Asia in the early 1900s.
Isabel Taylor clutched her straw hat in one hand and her daughter Georgiana’s hand in the other as the China Seas cleared the tip of an outlying island and Hong Kong Harbor came into view.
“Look at all the little boats, Mummy,” Georgiana said. She pointed at a jumble of vessels the size of large rowboats clustered along the quay, anchored one to another.
“I see them, sweetheart,” Isabel said. “I believe they’re called sampans. The Chinese use them for fishing. But I had no idea there would be so many.”
At least fifty passengers stood at the bow railing…
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