Thursday, February 23, 2012


Ernest and Hadley sailed for Paris on December 8, 1921. They left from New York on the steamship Leopoldina, an old French Line vessel. It would be a ten day voyage to Europe.
Ernest suffered from a bit of seasickness, but was soon involved in the social activities on the boat and enjoying his adventure. It was his third sea voyage. He was impressed that this ship had elevators and a swimming pool and everyone spoke with an English accent.
Hadley learned how attractive Ernest was to other women on the voyage. She hated it, but accepted it, knowing Ernest's love for her. She also was getting her fair share of admirers on board. The Leopoldina had pianos on every deck, and hadley played for hours on end. Three Argentinians "are in love with her" Ernest wrote home.
When he discovered that a French woman and her child had been deserted by her husband, Ernest decided to organize a exhibition boxing match to benefit the woman.
Fellow passenger and boxer, Henry Cuddy, agreed to a three round match. Hadley sat in Ernest's corner and wiped his face with a towel between rounds.
Ernest would later brag that he won the match, but it was most likely a draw.
The Leoploldina made a four-hour stop in Vigo, Spain where Ernest watched the giant tuna jumping out of the water in the bay. He was fascinated by the thought of what a fight a fish of that size and strength would put up; what stamina it would take to land it.
The Hemingways arrived in Le Havre on December 22nd, and took a train to Paris.
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