The Rhine steamers and those plying on the Swiss lakes are in keeping with the picturesque scenery through which they run.
Painted in bright colours, they present a very attractive and smart appearance. They are kept scrupulously clean and are admirably managed.
Many of them are large, with saloon cabins the whole length of the vessel, over which is the promenade deck covered with gay awnings.
They run fast. The captain sits in state in his easy chair under a canopy on the bridge—smoking his cigar.
The chief steward, next to the captain by far the most important personage on board, moves about all day long in full evening dress—his main concern being to know what wine you will have for lunch or dinner that he may put it on ice for you.
The table d’hote is the crowning event of the day on board a Rhine steamer, i.e., for the misguided majority of tourists to whom a swell dinner offers greater attractions than the finest scenery imaginable.