Drinking Water and Medicines on Steamships - 1910
The subject of drinking water is an important one. The water on the steamer is all right, but for the first few days after landing the visitor should be cautious about drinking ordinary tap water at hotels, and particularly in stations.
Mineral water can be obtained everywhere and is very cheap. Ordinary carbonated water may be purchased or natural waters, such as Apollinaris or Perrier water.
In Germany, Rosbach water can usually be had as well as Rhens water. In France, St. Galmier and Vichy (still) can be obtained. Tea, coffee and chocolate also prevent the necessity of drinking ordinary water.
In England, beers, ales and stout are cheap and good, while in Germany, beer, Rhine wine and Moselle wine can be obtained everywhere. In France (outside of Paris), wine is good and cheap, while in Italy the wipe is plentiful and very cheap.
Ice water is practically unknown except at the hotels where the trade of Americans is catered to. here the waiters are apt to bring on ice water before service begins.
In many places, as in Italy, there is a small charge made for a little plate of ice. The water of Venice is particularly vile and should be entirely eschewed, as can be vouched for by the writer's experience.
A bottle of "Sun" cholera mixture, bismuth and pepsin tablets and a non-leaking hot water bag should be taken along. The following is the formula for "Sun" cholera mixture, so that if necessary it can be put up by Continental chemists:
Tincture of capsicum 1 parti
Tincture of opium. 1 part.
Tincture rhubarb 1 part.
Spirits peppermint 1 parti
Spirits camphor 1 parti
Mix and titter, dose 15 to 30 drops.
A bottle of Jamaica ginger (Brown's is good) will also obviate many of the little ills incident to travel. Bicarbonate of soda tablets should also be carried to take care of slight attacks of indigestion as well as the bismuth and pepsin tablets mentioned above.
The following medicines, etc., should be carried:
- One small hot water bag
- One ounce arnica
- Three Ounces extract of witch hazel
- Two ounces aromatic spirits of ammonia
- One menthol cone
- One styptic pencil
- One package court plaster
- One narrow bandage
- One small package absorbent cotton
- One can containing "new skin"
- One bottle "Sun" cholera mixture
- One bottle soda-mint tablets
- One bottle bismuth and pepsin tablets
- One bottle "Listerine;—boritte" or equivalent preparation
If inclined to catarrh, take Dobell solution tablets and a Bermingham douche. These will take up only a small space in the satchel and will cost only about $1.75 to $2.00.
They will pack nicely in a small cracker tin. A little old linen. a few yards of stout thread wound around a stiff piece of paper should also be carried. Slight injuries to the hands often occur when getting in or out of railway carriages. Some travelers recommend a small bottle of spirits of camphor; Vaseline and cream may be carried with advantage.