« PreviousContinue »
for any quadruped larger than a goat. In one spot the road crosses a highly inclined slippery surface of gneiss, on which a footing is impossible, but small holes have been drilled at intervals in the rock in which one can place one’s toes whilst others above support the fingers, and by their means a passage across is effected. Ascending this place is comparatively easy, but to descend requires some nerve, as in going down all the danger of the spot is clearly discerned, to say nothing of the greater actual diliiculty of descending than ascending a difficult slippery incline, where a single slip is annihilation.
The last descent to Wangtu is excessively steep and difficult, from the precarious footpath being to a great extent concealed by long grass, which greatly impedes walking over such ground, and on this account some of my coolies did not reach Wangtu till after nightfall. Luckily met here a large company of grain merchants conveying wheat into the interior, from whom my coolies purchased some flour, of which their supply was completely exhausted; and there being no village here, I was at first sadly afraid, before meeting these men, that my coolies after their ‘hard day’s work would have had to pass the night supperless.
In the book at this bungalow I noticed several complaints from travellers regarding the difficulty of getting coolies and the impudence of the man who had to supply them. No doubt the charges were well founded, but there are some people who seem to suppose that all natives, official and others, should always bestir themselves with alacrity for the mere pleasure and glory of so doing, and my own experience goes to prove that in places where delay is to be anticipated from any cause, a small present coupled with a few civil words is all that is required to obtain anything that is obtainable. Men, accustomed to deal with European travellers along this road soon distinguish for whom they are working, and if they find the new arrival a close fisted individual, they are liable of course, naturally enough, not to exert themselves as they otherwise might. Travellers are too apt to forget, when they arrive perhaps in the middle of the day and want a fresh relay of coolies, that at such a time all the villagers around are scattered in the fields at work and cannot easily be gathered together. I myself experienced no diliioulty or incivility at this bungalow, wherefore I have been induced to offer 4th, Paimla bungalow 6,3541 ft.*-—Madc a forced march to this bunga
the above remarks. 3 Y
_ low which is a. comfortable one on the line of uncompleted new road,
but not quite finished. Felt quite jolly at being once more under a comfortable roof, instead of a dripping tent.
5th, Sdraon bungalow 6,632 ft.*—Made a forced march into Sziraon. In the woods near Sziraon hazel nuts were plentiful, and many of them ripe and falling from the trees.
I put up for the night in a large well built room, probably intended for labourers employed on the bridge or road, the only drawback being a few fleas which occupy such situations. The building stands in what evidently once formed the gorge of the Sutlej, before the river had cut its present deep channel a little to the north ; though during floods possibly the superfluous waters may still find an exit down this channel. At present, however, it is used as a camping ground for the flocks of sheep which convey grain into the interior, and the whole is clothed with a thick crop of “Batu” dropped by passing grain merchants or travellers, and which flourishes luxuriantly in this moist well manured spot. After my hard march I slept soundly, aided perhaps by the subdued murmurs which reverberated among‘ the rocks from the surging river below.
4th, Paimla bungalow, 6,354 ft.*—Before breakfast strolled out and shot several blue pigeons which abound on the precipitous rocks which line the Sutlej here. Large lizards, (laudakia melcmura .7) also abound among the rocks, to the crevices of which they retreat when frightened. They seem to attain their largest size at a height of 44000 or 5000 ft., occurring much smaller at Simla than at lower elevations along the road. Their abdominal cavity usually contains a great number of entozoa lying freely among the viscera, probably the undeveloped or couchant stage of some tznnia, whose perfect form must be sought for in the viscera of some carnivorous bird or mammal.
6th, D/zumi bungalow, 9,275 ft.*—This bungalow is situated on the crest of a ridge, and the road is carried over a very sharp ascent, with little attempt to preserve a uniform gradient. In the village just below walnuts were being gathered and peaches covered the trees in profusion, but mostly small and unripe. Limax aliivagus, miki, was also common in the early morning, its traces being numerous, though I noticed none of the animals during the day.
In front of the bungalow was a large piece of ground under pota
toe cultivation, of which long untasted vegetable I made free to dig up a few pounds. This must be near the highest limit at which they will thrive, and they certainly could not compare with the potatoes of Kursiang (Darjiling) or Cherra, though it was too early to obtain them of their full size. I do not know if the seed potatoes are cut up in the hills or planted whole, as is invariably the case in the plains, a plan which would account for the smallness of the tubers, independently of other causes affecting the plant.
7th, N0_y¢'i b1m_qalow, 4,355 ft.*—Road descends sharply to a feeder of the Sutlej, on the banks of which the bungalow is situated in a narrow picturesque valley, but not, I should be afraid, above the region of malaria. On the way down witnessed the rude way in which sheep are sometimes shorn here. The unfortunate animal I saw, when being operated on, was firmly secured on his side by a rope round his l1orns, the other end of which was secured to a peg driven into the ground, his hind legs were in like manner pulled out taught, and fastened to another peg, so as to prevent much flinching, whilst his owner was leisurely carving off his wool in short strips by means of a small cheese knife, or a knife of precisely that shape. _Up the valley chakor were numerous, but I saw no other game.
8th, Bowli bungalow, 7,709 ft.*--A steep ascent to the bungalow, which is situated on the ridge opposite to that on which Dhurni bungalow is built. This bungalow has an evil repute for fleas, but seemed to have just been cleaned when I used it, and I was not consequently troubled with bed-fellows.
9th, Sunyri bungalow, 8,356 ft.*—An extremely good and pretty road, rising slightly to the bungalow. In the morning was awakened by the noise made by the koklas pheasants in the brushwood close by ; but so thick was the vegetation that I could not catch a glimpse of a bird. Monal are also common about here, and I purchased a couple of fine skins well prepared by a. shikaree.
10171, Ba'_ghi bungalow, 8,591 ft.*—Two short stages, amounting to about sixteen miles, passing the Kandala bungalow half way; road excellent and country open and.rather pretty. Noticed a swarm of wild bees in a hole in a clay bank, or rather beside a large block of stone embedded in the bank, but only a small chink for entrance. Such a situation is I suspect unusual, and strange to say I have noticed no wild bees’ combs on the rocks adjoining the Sutlej, though
they would certainly be found in such spots in the plains. I once however, found near the Son a small comb on the under surface of a, stone little more than a foot square, which was propped up against another resting on the ground and exposed to be trodden on by men or animals. The only place where I noticed tame bees was a village below Yangpa, in which a large well built house contained an immense number of hives ranged in the walls, small openings being made for their entrance in the timbers of which the house was partially constructed. This house must have contained close on fifty hives. The owner being absent, I could neither taste the_ honey nor ascertain the mode of hiving the bees, but it is probably similar to that practised in Kashmir, where it is a very usual thing for a house to have a dozen hives in the wall, each consisting of an earthen pot or cylinder contained in a small chamber in the wall with but a small external opening for the egress of the bees, but closed internally by a. cover luted on, through which the honey is removed after the bees are stupified by smoke.
1 1 th, Na1'kanda bungalow.
12th, lllatizma burzgalow.
13th, Fégu bungalow.
14th, Simla (Hawthorne cottage (6,579 ft., mean of 5 Obs.) —The most remarkable feature of interest I noticed on my return was the appearance presented by the cedars. On quitting Simla, the most conspicuous cones were those on the female trees, of a large size and a bright apple green, but now the male trees were covered with great numbers of small cones not a fifth of the dimensions of the others, but prominent from their immense numbers on the trees, and the copious clouds of pollen that they were discharging. The advent of autumn was also marked by the absence of numerous familiar flowers and ferns, fit and beautiful emblems of man and his short-lived destiny.
“ 021; rap ¢1§)\)\wv ‘ye:/£1‘) 1-0Z1] 8e’ Kai (ii/3p¢'Iw'
"Which same idea Crabbe thus paraphrases and enlarges in his
“Yes, he is gone, and we are going all,
Here with an infant joyful sponsors come,
Then bear the new-made Christian to its home ;
To ask a blessing with his bride in hand;
A few still, seeming shorter, and we hear
His widow weeping over her husband’s bier;
These simple annals of the village poor.”
On the whole, though reaching Simla proved a grateful change to the hard fare and vicissitudes of hill travelling, I did not now experience the same buoyant feelings of pleasure as on my first visit in early summer, and it was with less regret, therefore, that I commenced immediate preparations for quitting pleasant friends and a fine cli
mate and once more devoting myself to routine pursuits in the plains.
Nonoas or worms CONNECTED WITH Sansxarr LITERATURE.
The Bluimimf Viloisa of Paguglitardja Jayannétha, edited by .Pa1_u_iit Jada Ndth Tar/caratna.
This is an edition of one of the modern Sanskrit poets, whose works are very scarce and consequently but little known. Like the modern Latin poets of Europe, Panditaréja Jagannéth has but a reflected bea.uty,—-he feels only at second hand ; still he has considerable elegance of style and occasionally even some originality of thought. Dr. Aufrecht, in his Catalogue, would fix his date as late as the emperor Akber, but we know not on what grounds. The only personal allusion in the poems themselves is in the last stanza but one.
“ I have read all the Szistras and performed all the necessary rites, and my early days were spent under the branch of the hand of Dehli’s lord, but now I have changed my dwelling place and worship Hari in Mathuré; I have achieved all superhuman tasks, the ornament of the assembly of pre-eminent par_1(_lits.”