Men were bedded down in the Dresden's two cargo holds, sleeping on thin mats, head to toe and shoulder to shoulder. Using a rope ladder to get in and out of the holds, daylight hours were spent on deck, if weather permitted. The German guards watched closely as their prisoners stood in lines to receive meager portions of food in tin bowls, as they did calisthenics, as they passed the hours whittling, carving, reading, conversing. For many, time was spent in devotions and hymn singing.
Women and children, kept separate from the men, were crammed into the few cabins and lounges; some even slept on mats in the hallways. Bathroom facilities were very, very limited. There were no laundry facilities, except for washing by hand. With several of the little children coming down with diarrhea, mothers were heroic in their selfless service and positive outlook.
Apparently the Dresden had received orders at the time of the rendezvous with the raider, as the Dresden now steamed north, day after day. The weather got colder.
Almost every piece of salvaged clothing was shared and put to use, style being of little concern. As they shivered on deck, the Zamzamers wondered, "Where are we going?"
Another constant concern was, "What do our loved ones think has happened to us and how are they coping?" As one week became two, then three, then nearly a month since the Zamzam had been sunk, surely loved ones must know something awful has happened.
But the Zamzamers could send no messages. Instead, they talked and talked with each other, as one big family, and they prayed and prayed to their Heavenly Father.