On the 2d of June I rode, in the company of Counts Berchtold and Salm Reifferscheit and Pater Paul, to Bethlehem. Although, on account of the bad roads, we are obliged to ride nearly the whole distance at a foot-pace, it does not take more than an hour and a half to accomplish the journey. The view we enjoy during this excursion is as grand as it is peculiar.
So far from my native country, I was thus suddenly placed in the midst of my own people. Father Paul was a native of Vienna, and the two counts, Berchtold and Salm Reifferscheit, were Bohemian cavaliers. As soon as I had completely recovered from the fatigues of my journey, and had collected my thoughts, I passed a whole night in the church of the Holy Sepulchre.
On returning to our convent at about two o'clock to partake of our frugal but welcome meal, we were surprised to find that another party of travellers, Franks like ourselves, had arrived. The new- comers proved to be Count Zichy and Count Wratislaw, who had travelled from Vienna to Cairo in company with Counts Berchtold and Salm Reifferscheit.
After the three months have elapsed, they are relieved by other priests. On the 10th of June I was present at the ceremony of admission into the Order of the Holy Sepulchre. Counts Zichy, Wratislaw, and Salm Reifferscheit were, at their own request, installed as knights of the Sepulchre. The inauguration took place in the chapel.
B. and Count Salm Reifferscheit reclined in a quiet spot and made sketches of the convent. Had a painter been standing on my tower, what a picture of the building might he not have drawn as the wild Arab and the thievish Bedouin leant quietly beside the peaceful priest and the curious European! Many a pleasant recollection of this evening have I borne away with me.