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The relations between officers and men are of the pleasantest and most human character.Nobody is asked to do anything not of definite importance to the welfare of the ship, or to the training and the making fit of the men.The circumstance and ceremonial of the departure, the pomp of Royalty and the glitter of an Imperial mission had all merged, before the sun set in the cloud-bank of that March afternoon, in the sense of function and routine, detached and disregarding, that controls life in His Majesty's ships at sea.The Renown is the most recent, the fastest, and the best armed battle-cruiser in the world.It was the day before and already the function was in the quickened air.Scraps of coloured bunting fluttered and flew on the wharf sheds.
The hundred and twenty thousand horse-power steam turbines of the battle-cruiser quickened their rhythmic throb.
For the passengers the day began with breakfast in the ward-room at eight.
Soon after nine the whole ship's company assembled in divisions, in different parts of the vessel. One realized, as one watched the proceedings, how completely the war has abolished the old navy methods of stiffness and pipeclay.
It is built by one who travelled, as a correspondent, with him all the way.
As the train slowed down at Portsmouth Harbour they looked from the carriage windows and saw the fighting tops of a big battle-cruiser lifted grey against the sky above the houses of the foreshore, and one said to another "There she is." There she was, the Renown, in alongside, waiting to sail with His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales to Australasia.