Travels in West Africa: Congo Francais, Corisco and Cameroons (Virago/Beacon Travelers Series)
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They seemed rare round there from the time he took; and I was just casting about in my mind as to what method would be best to employ in getting up the smooth, yellow, sandy-clay, incurved walls, when he arrived with it, and I was out in a twinkling, and very much ashamed of myself, until Silence, who was then leading, disappeared through the path before us with a despairing yell. Each man then pulled the skin cover off his gun lock, carefully looked to see if things there were all right and ready loosened his knife in its snake-skin sheath; and then we set about hauling poor Silence out, binding him up where necessary with cool green leaves; for he, not having a skirt, had got a good deal frayed at the edges on those spikes.
Xvii. , The Log of the Lafayette; Chap. xviii. , From Corisco to Gaboon; Chap. xxviii. , The Islands in the Bay of Amboises; Appendix ii. , Disease in West Africa; Appendix iii. , Dr. A. Gunther on Reptiles and Fishes; Appendix iv. , Orthoptera, Hymenoptera, and Hemiptera. ) Introduction * Relateth the various causes which impelled the author to embark upon the voyage. It was in 1893 that, for the first time in my life, I found myself in possession of five or six months which were not heavily forestalled, and feeling like a boy with a new half-crown, I lay about in my mind, as Mr.
Out in it came the great stars blazing high above us, and the dark round us was be-gemmed with fire-flies: but we were not as satisfied with these things as we should have been; what we wanted were fires to cook by and dry ourselves by, and all that sort of thing. The Erd-geist did not understand, and so left us when the afterglow had died away, with only enough starlight to see the flying foam of the rapids ahead and around us, and not enough to see the great trees that had fallen from the bank into the water.
Micawber would say, to bed-quilts and pillow-cases—the most gorgeous bed-quilts and pillow-cases—made of patchwork, and now and again you will see a mosquito-bar in course of construction, of course not made of net or muslin because of the awesome strength and ferocity of the Lembarene strain of mosquitoes, but of stout, fair-flowered and besprigged chintzes; and you will observe these things are often being sewn with a sewing machine. The women who may not be busy sewing are busy doing each other's hair.
The most interesting question to us now was whether this rock reef communicated sufficiently with the island for us to get to it. Abandoning conjecture; tying very firmly our canoe up to the rocks, a thing that seemed, considering she was jammed hard and immovable, a little unnecessary—but you can never be sufficiently careful in this matter with any kind of boat—off we started among the rock boulders. I would climb up on to a rock table, fall off it on the other side on to rocks again, with more or less water on them—then get a patch of singing sand under my feet, then with varying suddenness get into more water, deep or shallow, broad or narrow pools among the rocks; out of that over more rocks, etc.