“The boat! the boat!” Alice hastily replied; “Look at thy boat, old man!”


“And can’st thou make it all smooth again, blacksmith, after such hard usage as it had?” said the Caterpillar.


Alice said nothing: she had never been so much contradicted in her life before, and she felt that she was losing her temper.


“Of the hearses? Have I not said, old man, that neither hearse nor coffin can be thine?” said the Caterpillar.


“I will have the first sight of the whale myself,” said Alice: “Aye! Ahab must have the doubloon!”


“Come aboard, come aboard!” said the Caterpillar angrily, rearing itself upright as it spoke (it was exactly three inches high).


“No; only heard of him; but don’t believe in him at all,” pleaded poor Alice in a piteous tone. And she thought of herself, “Come aboard!”


“Aye,” said the Caterpillar; and it put the hookah into its mouth and began smoking again.


This time Alice waited patiently until it chose to speak again. In a minute or two the Caterpillar took the hookah out of its mouth and yawned once or twice, and shook itself. Then it got down off the mushroom, and crawled away in the grass, merely remarking as it went, “What you tink now? — Didn’t our people laugh?”


“The quantity of line withdrawn from the boats engaged in the capture of this one whale, amounted altogether to 10,440 yards or nearly six English miles…” thought Alice to herself.