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The Hawaiian Archipelago
by Isabella L. Bird
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I wanted to make the most of the six hours of daylight left, and we remounted our horses and rode for some distance up the river, which is the highway of the valley, all the children swimming on our right and left, each holding up a bundle of clothes with one hand, and two canoes paddled behind us. The river is still and clear, with a smooth bottom, but comes halfway up a horse's body, and riders take their feet out of the stirrups, bring them to a level with the saddle, lean slightly back, and hold them against the horse's neck. Equestrians following this fashion, canoes gliding, children and dogs swimming, were a most amusing picture. Several of the children swim to and from school every day. I was anxious to get rid of this voluntary escort, and we took a gallop over the soft springy grass till we reached some very pretty grass houses, under the shade of the most magnificent bread-fruit trees on Hawaii, loaded with fruit. There were orange trees in blossom, and coffee trees with masses of sweet white flowers lying among their flaky branches like snow, and the unfailing cocoa-nut rising out of banana groves, and clusters of gardenia smothering the red hibiscus. Here Hananui adopted a showman's air; he made me feel as if I were one of Barnum's placarded monsters. I had nothing to do but sit on my horse and be stared at. I felt that my bleached face was unpleasing, that my eyes and hair were faded, and that I had a great deal to answer for in the way of colour and attire. From the way in which he asked me unintelligible questions, I gathered that the people were catechizing him about me, and that he was romancing largely at my expense. They brought me some bananas and cocoa-nut milk, which were most refreshing.

Beyond the houses the valley became a jungle of Indian shot (Canna indica), eight or nine feet high, guavas and ohias, with an entangled undergrowth of ferns rather difficult to penetrate, and soon Hananui, whose soul was hankering after the delights of society, stopped, saying, "Lios (horses) no go." "We'll try," I replied, and rode on first. He sat on his horse laughing immoderately, and then followed me. I see that in travelling with natives it is essential to have a definite plan of action in one's own mind, and to verge on self-assertion in carrying it out. We fought our way a little further, and then he went out of sight altogether in the jungle, his horse having floundered up to his girths in soft ground, on which we dismounted and tethered the horses. H. had never been any further, and as I failed to make him understand that I desired to visit the home of the five cascades, I had to reverse our positions and act as guide. We crept along the side of a torrent among exquisite trees, moss, and ferns, till we came to a place where it divided. There were three horses tethered there, some wearing apparel lying on the rocks, and some human footprints along one of the streams, which decided me in favour of the other. H. remonstrated by signs, as doubtless he espied an opportunity for much gossip in the other direction, but on my appearing persistent, he again laughed and followed me.

From this point it was one perfect, rapturous, intoxicating, supreme vision of beauty, and I felt, as I now believe, that at last I had reached a scene on which foreign eyes had never looked. The glories of the tropical forest closed us in with their depth, colour, and redundancy. Here the operations of nature are rapid and decisive. A rainfall of eleven feet in a year and a hothouse temperature force every plant into ceaseless activity, and make short work of decay. Leafage, blossom, fruitage, are simultaneous and perennial. The river, about as broad as the Cam at Cambridge, leaped along, clear like amber, pausing to rest awhile in deep bright pools, where fish were sporting above the golden sand, a laughing, sparkling, rushing, terrorless stream, "without mysteries or agonies," broken by rocks, green with mosses and fragile ferns, and in whose unchilled waters, not more than three feet deep, wading was both safe and pleasant. It was not possible to creep along its margin, the forest was so dense and tangled, so we waded the whole way, and wherever the water ran fiercely my unshod guide helped me. One varied, glorious maze of vegetation came down to it, and every green thing leant lovingly towards it, or stooped to touch it, and over its whole magic length was arched and interlaced the magnificent large-leaved ohia, whose millions of spikes of rose-crimson blossoms lit up the whole arcade, and the light of the afternoon sun slanted and trickled through them, dancing in the mirthful water, turning its far-down sands to gold, and brightening the many-shaded greens of candlenut and breadfruit. It shone on majestic fern-trees, on the fragile Polypodium tamariscinum, which clung tremblingly to the branches of the ohia, on the beautiful lygodium, which adorned the uncouth trunk of the breadfruit; on shining banana leaves and glossy trailing yams; on gigantic lianas, which, climbing to the tops of the largest trees, descended in vast festoons, passing from tree to tree, and interlacing the forest with a living network; and on lycopodiums of every kind, from those which wrapped the rocks in feathery green to others hardly distinguishable from ferns. But there were twilight depths too, where no sunlight penetrated the leafy gloom, damp and cool: dreamy shades, in which the music of the water was all too sweet, and the loveliness too entrancing, creating that sadness, hardly "akin to pain," which is latent in all intense enjoyment. Here and there a tree had fallen across the river, from which grew upwards and trailed downwards, fairy-like, semi-transparent mosses and ferns, all glittering with moisture and sunshine, and now and then a scarlet tropic bird heightened the effect by the flash of his plumage.

After an hour of wading we emerged into broad sunny daylight at the home of the five cascades, which fall from a semicircular precipice into three basins. It is not, however, possible to pass from one to the other. This great gulf is a grand sight, with its dark deep basin from which it seemed so far to look up to the heavenly blue, and the water falling calmly and unhurriedly, amidst innumerable rainbows, from a height of 3000 feet. The sides were draped with ferns flourishing under the spray, and at the base the rock was very deeply caverned. I enjoyed a delicious bath, relying on sun and wind to dry my clothes, and then reluctantly waded down the river. At its confluence with another stream, still arched by ohias, a man and two women appeared rising out of the water, like a vision of the elder world in the days of Fauns, and Naiads, and Hamadryads. The water was up to their waists, and leis of ohia blossoms and ferns, and masses of unbound hair fantastically wreathed with moss, fell over their faultless forms, and their rich brown skin gleamed in the slant sunshine. They were catching shrimps with trumpet-shaped baskets, perhaps rather a prosaic occupation. They joined us, and we waded down together to the place where they had left their horses. The women slipped into their holukus, and the man insisted on my riding his barebacked horse to the place where we had left our own, and then we all galloped over the soft grass.

Waimanu had turned out to meet us about thirty people on horseback, all of whom shook hands with me, and some of them threw over me garlands of ohia, pandanus, and hibiscus. Where our cavalcade entered the river, a number of children and dogs and three canoes awaited us, and thus escorted I returned triumphantly to the house. The procession on the river of paddling canoes, swimming children, and dogs, and more than thirty riders, with their feet tucked up round their horses' necks, all escorting a "pale face," was grotesque and enchanting, and I revelled in this lapse into savagery, and enjoyed heartily the kindliness and goodwill of this unsophisticated people.

When darkness spread over the valley, clear voices ascended in a weird recitative, the room filled up with people, pipes circulated freely, poi was again produced, and calabashes of cocoa-nut milk. The meles were long, and I crept within my curtain and lay down, but the drowsiness which legitimately came over me after riding thirty miles and wading two, was broken in upon by two monstrous cockroaches really as large as mice, with fierce-looking antennae and prominent eyes, both of which mounted guard on my pillow. On rising to drive them away, I found to my dismay that they were but the leaders of a host, which only made a temporary retreat, rustling over the mat and dried grass with the crisp tread of mice, and scaring away sleep for some hours. Worse than these were the mosquitoes, also an imported nuisance, which stabbed and stung without any preliminary droning; and the heat was worse still, for thirteen human beings were lying on the floor and the door was shut. Had I known that two of these were lepers, I should have felt far from comfortable. As it was, I got up soon after midnight, and cautiously stepping among the sleeping forms, went out of doors. Everything favoured reflection, but I think the topics to which my mind most frequently reverted were my own absolute security—a lone white woman among "savages," and the civilizing influence which Christianity has exercised, so that even in this isolated valley, gouged out of a mountainous coast, there was nothing disagreeable or improper to be seen. The night was very still, but the sea was moaning; the river rippled very gently as it brushed past the reeds; there was a hardly perceptible vibration in the atmosphere, which suggested falling water and quivering leaves; and the air was full of a heavy, drowsy fragrance, the breath of orange flowers, perhaps, and of the night-blowing Cereus, which had opened its ivory urn to the moon. I should have liked to stay out all night in the vague, delicious moonlight, but the dew was heavy, and moreover I had not any boots on, so I reluctantly returned to the grass house, which was stifling with heat and smells of cocoa-nut oil, tobacco, and the rancid smoke from beef fat.

Before sunrise this morning my horse was saddled, and a number of natives had assembled. Hananui had disappeared, but the man who lent me his bare-backed horse yesterday was ready to act as guide. My boots could not then be found, so I adopted the native fashion of riding with bare feet. We again rode up the river in that slow and solemn fashion in which horses walk in water, galloped over a stretch of grass, crossed a bright stream several times, and then entered a dense jungle of Indian shot, plantains, and sadlerias, with breadfruit, kukui, and ohia rising out of it. There were thousands of plantains, a fruit resembling the banana, but that it requires cooking. The Indian shot, the yellow-blossomed variety, was of a gigantic size. Its hard, black seeds put into a bladder furnish the chic-chac, which in many places is used as an accompaniment to the utterly abominable and heathenish tom-tom. Here guavas as large as oranges and as yellow as lemons ripened and fell unheeded. Sometimes deep down we heard the rush of water, and Paalau got down and groped for it on his hands and knees; sometimes we heard a noise as of hippopotami, but nothing could be seen but the tips of ears, as a herd of happy, unbroken horses, scared by our approach, crashed away through the jungle. Clear rapid streams, fern-fringed, sometimes offered us a few yards of highway, but the jungle ever grew more dense, the forest trees larger, the lianas more tangled, the streams more sunk and rocky, and though the horses shut their eyes and boldly pushed through the tangle, we were fairly foiled when within half a mile from the head of the valley. I thoroughly appreciated the unsightly leather guards which are here used to cover the stirrups and feet, as without them I could not have ridden ten yards. We were so hemmed in that it was difficult to dismount, but I bound some wild kalo leaves round my feet, and managed to get over some broken rock to a knoll, from which I obtained a superb view of the wonderful cleft. Palis 3000 feet in height walled in its head with a complete inaccessibility. It lay in cool dewy shadow till the sudden sun flushed its precipices with pink, and a broad bar of light revealed the great chasm in which it terminates, while far off its portals opened upon the red eastern sky. This little lonely world had become so very dear to me, that I found it hard to leave it.

There was some stir near the sea, for a man was about to build a grass house, and they were preparing a stone pavement for it. Thirty people sat on the ground in a line from the beach, and passed stones from hand to hand, as men pass buckets at a fire. It seemed a very attractive occupation, and I could hardly get Hananui to leave it. The natives are most gregarious and social in their habits. They assemble together for everything that has to be made or done, and their occupations and amusements are shared by both sexes. In old days it is said that a king of Hawaii assembled most of the adults of the then populous island, and formed a human chain three miles long to pass up stones for the building of the great Heiau in Kona. It is said that this valley had 2000 inhabitants forty years ago, but they have dwindled to 117. The former estimate is probably not an excessive one, for nearly the whole valley is suitable for the culture of kalo, and a square mile of kalo will feed 15,000 natives for a year.

Two women were shrimping in the river, the children were swimming to school, blue smoke curled up into the still air, kalo was baking among the stones, and a group of women sat sewing and making leis on the ground. The Waimanu day had begun; and it was odd to think that through the long summer years days dawned like this, and that the people of the valley grew grey and old in shrimping and sewing and kalo baking. All Waimanu shook hands with me, the kindly "Aloha" filled the air, and the women threw garlands over us both. I could hardly induce my host to accept a dollar and a half for my entertainment. From the dizzy summit of the pali, where the sun was high and hot, I looked my last on the dark, cool valley, slumbering in an endless calm, the deepest, greenest, quaintest cleft on all the island.

The sun was fierce and bright, the ocean had a metallic glint, the hot breath of the kona was scorching. My hands, swollen from mosquito bites, could not be stuffed into my gloves, and inflamed under the sun, and my wet boots baked and stiffened on my feet. Hananui plaited a crown of leaves for my hot head, which I found a great relief. I was still minded to linger, for one side of each glorious gulch was cool with shadow and dripping with dew. The blue morning glories were yet unwilted, rivulets dropped down into ferny grottoes and lingered there, rose ohia blossoms lighted shady places, orange flowers gleamed like stars amidst the dense leafage, and the crimped-leaved coffee shrubs were white with their mimic snow. It was my last tropical dream, and I was rudely roused by finding myself on the unsightly verge of the great bluff on the north side of this valley, which plunges to the sea with an uncompromising perpendicular dip of 2000 feet, and carries on its dizzy brow a shelving trail not more than two feet wide!

I felt that I must go back and live and die in Waimanu rather than descend that scathed steep, and being stupid with terror flung myself from my horse, forgetting that it was much safer to trust to his four feet than to my two, and to an animal without "nerves," dizziness, or "the fore-knowledge of death," than to my palsied, cowardly self. I had intended to go into details of the horrible descent, but the "pilikia" is over now, and Halemanu claps me on the shoulder with an approving smile, ejaculating, "Maikai, maikai" (good). Besides, my returning senses inform me that I have not tasted food since yesterday, and some delicious river fishes are smoking on the table. . . . . I.L.B.



LETTER XVII.

STR. KILAUEA.

. . . I have been spending the day at Lahaina on Maui, on my way from Kawaihae to Honolulu. Lahaina is thoroughly beautiful and tropical looking, with its white latticed houses peeping out from under coco palms, breadfruit, candlenut, tamarinds, mangoes, bananas, and oranges, with the brilliant green of a narrow strip of sugar-cane for a background, and above, the flushed mountains of Eeka, riven here and there by cool green chasms, rise to a height of 6000 feet. Beautiful Lahaina! It is an oasis in a dazzling desert, straggling for nearly two miles along the shore, but compressed into a width of half a mile. It was a great missionary centre, as well as a great whaling station, but the whalers have deserted it, and missions are represented now only by the seminary of Lahainaluna on the hillside. An old palace, the remains of a fort, a custom-house, and a native church are the most conspicuous buildings. The stores and dwellings of the foreign residents are scattered along the shore, and the light frame house, with its green verandah, buried amid gorgeous exotics and shaded by candlenut and breadfruit, looks as seemly and in keeping as in far-off Massachusetts, under hickory and elm. The grass houses of the natives cluster along the waters' edge, or in lanes dark with mangoes and bananas, and fragrant with gardenia fringing the cane-fields. These, with adobe houses and walls, the flush of the soil, the gaudy dresses of the natives, the masses of brilliant exotics, the intense blue of the sea, and the dry blaze of the tropical heat, give a decided individuality to the capital of Maui. The heat of Lahaina is a dry, robust, bracing, joyous heat. The mercury stood at 80 degrees, the usual temperature of the "flare" or sea level on the leeward side of the islands; but I strolled through the cane-fields and along the glaring beach without suffering the least inconvenience from the sun, and found the unusual precaution of a white umbrella perfectly needless.

The beach is formed of pure white broken coral; the sea is blue with the calm, pure blue of turquoise, but crystalline in its purity, and breaks for ever over the environing coral reef with a low deep music. Blue water stretched to the far horizon, the sky was blazing blue, the leafage was almost dazzling to the eye, the mountainous island of Molokai floated like a great blue morning glory on the yet bluer sea; a sweet, soft breeze rustled through the palms, lazy ripples plashed lightly on the sand; humanity basked, flower-clad, in sunny indolence; everything was redundant, fervid, beautiful. How can I make you realize the glorious, bountiful, sun-steeped tropics under our cold grey skies, and amidst our pale, monotonous, lustreless greens?

Yet Molokai is only enchanting in the distance, for its blue petals enfold 400 lepers doomed to endless isolation, and 300 more are shortly to be weeded out and sent thither. In to-day's paper appeared the painful notice, "All lepers are required to report themselves to the Government health officer within fourteen days from this date for inspection, and final banishment to Molokai." It is hoped that leprosy may be "stamped out" by these stringent measures, but the leprous taint must be strong in many families, and the social, gregarious natives smoke each other's pipes and wear each other's clothes, and either from fatalism or ignorance have disregarded all precautions regarding this woful disease; and now that measures are being taken for the isolation of lepers, they are concealing them under mats and in caves and woods. This forlorn malady, called here Chinese leprosy, in the cases that I have seen, confers nothing of the white, scaly look attributed to Syrian leprosy; but the face is red, puffed, bloated, and shining, and the eyes glazed, and I am told that in its advanced stage the swollen limbs decay and drop off. It is a fresh item of the infinite curse which has come upon this race, and with Molokai in sight the Hesperides vanished, and I ceased to believe that the Fortunate Islands exist here or elsewhere on this weary earth.

My destination was the industrial training and boarding school for girls, taught and superintended by two English ladies of Miss Sellon's sisterhood, Sisters Mary Clara and Phoebe; and I found it buried under the shade of the finest candlenut trees I have yet seen. A rude wooden cross in front is a touching and fitting emblem of the Saviour, for whom these pious women have sacrificed friends, sympathy, and the social intercourse and amenities which are within daily reach of our workers at home. The large house, which is either plastered stone or adobe, contains the dormitories, visitors' room, and oratory, and three houses at the back, all densely shaded, are used as schoolroom, cook-house, laundry, and refectory. There is a playground under some fine tamarind trees, and an adobe wall encloses, without secluding, the whole. The visitors' room is about twelve feet by eight feet, very bare, with a deal table and three chairs in it, but it was vacant, and I crossed to the large, shady, airy schoolroom, where I found the senior sister engaged in teaching, while the junior was busy in the cook-house. These ladies in eight years have never left Lahaina. Other people may think it necessary to leave its broiling heat and seek health and recreation on the mountains, but their work has left them no leisure, and their zeal no desire, for a holiday. A very solid, careful English education is given here, as well as a thorough training in all housewifely arts, and in the more important matters of modest dress and deportment, and propriety in language. There are thirty-seven boarders, native and half-native, and mixed native and Chinese, between the ages of four and eighteen. They provide their own clothes, beds, and bedding, and I think pay forty dollars a year. The capitation grant from Government for two years was 2325 dollars. Sister Phoebe was my cicerone, and I owe her one of the pleasantest days I have spent on the islands. The elder Sister is in middle life, but though fragile-looking, has a pure complexion and a lovely countenance; the younger is scarcely middle-aged, one of the brightest, bonniest, sweetest-looking women I ever saw, with fun dancing in her eyes and round the corners of her mouth; yet the regnant expression on both faces was serenity, as though they had attained to "the love which looketh kindly, and the wisdom which looketh soberly on all things."

I never saw such a mirthful-looking set of girls. Some were cooking the dinner, some ironing, others reading English aloud; but each occupation seemed a pastime, and whenever they spoke to the Sisters they clung about them as if they were their mothers. I heard them read the Bible and an historical lesson, as well as play on a piano and sing, and they wrote some very difficult passages from dictation without any errors, and in a flowing, legible handwriting that I am disposed to envy. Their accent and intonation were pleasing, and there was a briskness and emulation about their style of answering questions, rarely found in country schools with us, significant of intelligence and good teaching. All but the younger girls spoke English as fluently as Hawaiian. I cannot convey a notion of the blitheness and independence of manner of these children. To say that they were free and easy would be wrong; it was rather the manner of very frolicsome daughters to very indulgent mothers or aunts. It was a family manner rather than a school manner, and the rule is obviously one of love. The Sisters are very wise in adapting their discipline to the native character and circumstances. The rigidity which is customary in similar institutions at home would be out of place, as well as fatal here, and would ultimately lead to a rebound of a most injurious description. Strict obedience is of course required, but the rules are few and lenient, and there is no more pressure of discipline than in a well-ordered family. The native amusements generally are objectionable, but Hawaiians are a dancing people, and will dance, or else indulge in less innocent pastimes; so the Sisters have taught them various English dances, and I never saw anything prettier or more graceful than their style of dancing. There is no uniform dress. The girls wear pretty print frocks, made in the English style, and several of them wore the hibiscus in their shining hair. Some of the older girls were beautiful in face as well as graceful in figure, but there was a snaky undulation about their movements which I never saw among Europeans. All looked bubbling over with fun and frolic, and there was a refinement and intelligence about their expression which contrasted favourably with that of the ordinary female face on the islands.

There are two dormitories, excellently ventilated, with a four-post bed, with mosquito-bars, for each girl, and the beds were covered with those brilliant-coloured quilts in which the natives delight, and in which they exercise considerable ingenuity as well as individuality of taste. One Sister sleeps in each dormitory, and these highly-educated and refined women have no place of retirement except a very plain oratory; and having taken the vow of poverty, they have of course no possessions, none of the books, pictures, and knick-knacks wherewith others adorn their surroundings. Their whole lives, with the exception of the time passed in the oratory, are spent with the girls, and in visiting the afflicted at their homes, and this through eight blazing years, with the mercury always at 80 degrees!

The Hawaiian women have no notions of virtue as we understand it, and if there is to be any future for this race it must come through a higher morality. Consequently the removal of these girls from evil and impure surroundings, the placing them under the happiest influences in favour of purity and goodness, the forming and fostering of industrious and housewifely habits, and the raising them in their occupations and amusements above those which are natural to their race, are in themselves a noble, and in some degree, a hopeful work, but it admits of neither pause nor relaxation. Those who carry it on are truly "the lowest in the meanest task," for they have undertaken not only the superintendence of menial work (so called), but the work itself, in teaching by example and instruction the womanly industries of home. They have no society, until lately no regular Liturgical worship, and of necessity a very infrequent celebration of the Holy Communion; and they have undergone the trial which arose very naturally out of the ecclesiastical relations of the American missionaries, of being regarded as enemies, or at least dangerous interlopers, by the excellent men who had long resided on the islands as Christian teachers, and with whose views on such matters as dress and recreation their own are somewhat at variance. In the first instance, the habit they wore, their designations, the presence of Miss Sellon, the fame of whose Ritualistic tendencies had reached the islands, and their manifest connection with a section of the English Church which is regarded here with peculiar disfavour, roused a strongly antagonistic feeling regarding their work and the drift of their religious teaching. They are not connected with what is known at home as the "Honolulu Mission." {256} I.L.B.



LETTER XVIII.

HAWAIIAN HOTEL, HONOLULU. March 20th.

Oahu, with its grey pinnacles, its deep valleys, its cool chasms, its ruddy headlands, and volcanic cones, all clothed in green by the recent rains, looked unspeakably lovely as we landed by sunrise in a rose-flushed atmosphere, and Honolulu, shady, dew-bathed, and brilliant with flowers, deserved its name, "The Paradise of the Pacific." The hotel is pleasant, and Mrs. D.'s presence makes it sweet and homelike; but in a very few days I have lost much of the health I gained on Hawaii, and the "Rolling Moses" and the Rocky Mountains can hardly come too soon. For Honolulu is truly a metropolis, gay, hospitable, and restless, and this hotel centralizes the restlessness. Visiting begins at breakfast time, when it ends I know not, and receiving and making visits, court festivities, entertainments given by the commissioners of the great powers, riding parties, picnics, verandah parties, "sociables," and luncheon and evening parties on board the ships of war, succeed each other with frightful rapidity. This is all on the surface, but beneath and better than this is a kindness which leaves no stranger to a sense of loneliness, no want uncared for, and no sorrow unalleviated. This, more than its beauty and its glorious climate, makes Honolulu "Paradise" for the many who arrive here sick and friendless. I notice that the people are very intimate with each other, and generally address each other by their Christian names. Very many are the descendants of the clerical and secular members of the mission, and these, besides being naturally intimate, are further drawn and held together by a society called "The Cousins' Society," the objects of which are admirable. The people take an intense interest in each other, and love each other unusually. Possibly they may hate each other as cordially when occasion offers. It is a charming town, and the society is delightful. I wish I were well enough to enjoy it.

For people in the early stages of consumption this climate is perfect, owing to its equability, as also for bronchial affections. Unlike the health resorts of the Mediterranean, Algeria, Madeira, and Florida, where great summer heats or an unhealthy season compel half-cured invalids to depart in the spring, to return the next winter with fresh colds to begin the half-cure process again, people can live here until they are completely cured, as the climate is never unhealthy, and never too hot. Though the regular trades, which blow for nine months of the year, have not yet set in, and the mercury stands at 80 degrees, there is no sultriness: a tremulous sea-breeze and a mountain breeze fan the town, and the purple nights, when the stars hang out like lamps, and the moon gives a light which is almost golden, are cool and delicious. Roughly computed, the annual mean temperature is 75 degrees 55', with a divergence in either direction of only 7 degrees 55'. As a general rule the temperature is cooler by four degrees for every thousand feet of altitude, so that people can choose their climate to suit themselves without leaving the islands.

I am gradually learning a little of the topography of this island and of Honolulu, but the last is very intricate. The appearance of Oahu from the sea is deceptive. It looks hardly larger than Arran, but it is really forty-six miles long by twenty-five broad, and is 530 square miles in extent. Diamond Hill, or Leahi, is the most prominent object south of the town, beyond the palm groves of Waikiki. It is red and arid, except when, as now, it is verdure- tinged by recent rains. Its height is 760 feet, and its crater nearly as deep, but its cone is rapidly diminishing. Some years ago, when the enormous quantity of thirty-six inches of rain fell in one week, the degradation of both exterior and interior was something incredible, and the same process is being carried on slowly or rapidly at all times. The Punchbowl, immediately behind Honolulu, is a crater of the same kind, but of yet more brilliant colouring: so red is it indeed, that one might suppose that its fires had but just died out. In 1786 an observer noted it as being composed of high peaks; but atmospheric influences have reduced it to the appearance of a single wasting tufa cone, similar to those which stud the northern slopes of Mauna Kea. There are a number of shore craters on the island, and six groups of tufa cones, but from the disintegration of the lava, and the great depth of the soil in many places, it is supposed that volcanic action ceased earlier than on Maui or Hawaii. The shores are mostly fringed with coral reefs, often half a mile in width, composed of cemented coral fragments, shells, sand, and a growing species of zoophyte. The ancient reefs are elevated thirty, forty, and even 100 feet in some places, forming barriers which have changed lagoons into solid ground. Honolulu was a bay or lagoon, protected from the sea by a coral reef a mile wide; but the elevation of this reef twenty-five feet has furnished a site for the capital, by converting the bay into a low but beautifully situated plain.

The mountainous range behind is a rocky wall with outlying ridges, valleys of great size cutting the mountain to its core on either side, until the culminating peaks of Waiolani and Konahuanui, 4000 feet above the sea, seem as if rent in twain to form the Nuuanu Valley. The windward side of this range is fertile, and is dotted over with rice and sugar plantations, but the leeward side has not a trace of the redundancy of the tropics, and this very barrenness gives a unique charm to the exotic beauty of Honolulu.

To me it is daily a fresh pleasure to stroll along the shady streets and revel among palms and bananas, to see clusters of the granadilla and night-blowing cereus mixed with the double blue pea, tumbling over walls and fences, while the vermilion flowers of the Erythrina umbrosa, like spikes of red coral, and the flaring magenta Bougainvillea (which is not a flower at all, but an audacious freak of terminal leaves) light up the shade, and the purple-leaved Dracaena which we grow in pots for dinner-table ornament, is as common as a weed.

Besides this hotel, and the handsome but exaggerated and inappropriate Government buildings not yet finished, there are few "imposing edifices" here. The tasteful but temporary English Cathedral, the Kaiwaiaho Church, diminished once to suit a dwindled population, but already too large again; the prison, a clean, roomy building, empty in the daytime, because the convicts are sent out to labour on roads and public works; the Queen's Hospital for Curables, for which Queen Emma and her husband became mendicants in Honolulu; the Court House, a staring, unshaded building; and the Iolani Palace, almost exhaust the category. Of this last, little can be said, except that it is appropriate and proportioned to a kingdom of 56,000 souls, which is more than can be said of the income of the king, the salaries of the ministers, and some other things. It stands in pleasure-grounds of about an acre in extent, with a fine avenue running through them, and is approached by a flight of steps which leads to a tolerably spacious hall, decorated in the European style. Portraits of Louis Philippe and his queen, presented by themselves, and of the late Admiral Thomas, adorn the walls. The Hawaiians have a profound respect for this officer's memory, as it was through him that the sovereignty of the islands was promptly restored to the native rulers, after the infamous affair of its cession to England, as represented by Lord George Paulet. There are also some ornamental vases and miniature copies of some of Thorwaldsen's works. The throne-room takes up the left wing of the palace. This unfortunately resembles a rather dreary drawing-room in London or New York, and has no distinctive features except a decorated chair, which is the Hawaiian throne. There is an Hawaiian crown also, neither grand nor costly, but this I have not seen. At present the palace is only used for state receptions and entertainments, for the king is living at his private residence of Haemoeipio, not far off.

Miss W. kindly introduced me to Queen Emma, or Kaleleonalani, the widowed queen of Kamehameha IV., whom you will remember as having visited England a few years ago, when she received great attention. She has one-fourth of English blood in her veins, but her complexion is fully as dark as if she were of unmixed Hawaiian descent, and her features, though refined by education and circumstances, are also Hawaiian; but she is a very pretty, as well as a very graceful woman. She was brought up by Dr. Rooke, an English physician here, and though educated at the American school for the children of chiefs, is very English in her leanings and sympathies, an attached member of the English Church, and an ardent supporter of the "Honolulu Mission." Socially she is very popular, and her exceeding kindness and benevolence, with her strongly national feeling as an Hawaiian, make her much beloved by the natives.

The winter palace, as her town house is called, is a large shady abode, like an old-fashioned New England house externally, but with two deep verandahs, and the entrance is on the upper one. The lower floor seemed given up to attendants and offices, and a native woman was ironing clothes under a tree. Upstairs, the house is like a tasteful English country house, with a pleasant English look, as if its furniture and ornaments had been gradually accumulating during a series of years, and possessed individual histories and reminiscences, rather than as if they had been ordered together as "plenishings" from stores. Indeed, it is the most English-looking house I have seen since I left home, except Bishopscourt at Melbourne. If there were a bell I did not see it; and we did not ring, for the queen received us at the door of the drawing-room, which was open. I had seen her before in European dress, driving a pair of showy black horses in a stylish English phaeton; but on this occasion she was not receiving visitors formally, and was indulging in wearing the native holuku, and her black wavy hair was left to its own devices. She is rather below the middle height, very young- looking for her age, which is thirty-seven, and very graceful in her movements. Her manner is indeed very fascinating from a combination of unconscious dignity with ladylike simplicity. Her expression is sweet and gentle, with the same look of sadness about her eyes that the king has, but she has a brightness and archness of expression which give a great charm to her appearance. She has sorrowed much: first, for the death, at the age of four, of her only child, the Prince of Hawaii, who when dying was baptized into the English Church by the name of Albert Edward, Queen Victoria and the Prince of Wales being his sponsors; and secondly, for the premature death of her husband, to whom she was much attached. She speaks English beautifully, only hesitating now and then for the most correct form of expression. She spoke a good deal and with great pleasure of England; and described Venice and the emotions it excited in her so admirably, that I should like to have heard her describe all Europe.

A few days afterwards I went to a garden party at her house. It was a very pretty sight, and the "everybody" of Honolulu was there to the number of 250. I must describe it for the benefit of ——, who persists in thinking that coloured royalty must necessarily be grotesque. People arrived shortly before sunset, and were received by Queen Emma, who sat on the lawn, with her attendants about her, very simply dressed in black silk. The king, at whose entrance the band played the national anthem, stood on another lawn, where presentations were made by the chamberlain; and those who were already acquainted with him had an opportunity for a few minutes' conversation. He was dressed in a very well-made black morning suit, and wore the ribbon and star of the Austrian order of Francis Joseph. His simplicity was atoned for by the superlative splendour of his suite; the governor of Oahu, and the high chief Kalakaua, who was a rival candidate for the throne, being conspicuously resplendent. The basis of the costume appeared to be the Windsor uniform, but it was smothered with epaulettes, cordons, and lace; and each dignitary has a uniform peculiar to his office, so that the display of gold lace was prodigious. The chiefs are so raised above the common people in height, size, and general nobility of aspect, that many have supposed them to be of a different race; and the alii who represented the dwindled order that night were certainly superb enough in appearance to justify the supposition. Beside their splendour and stateliness, the forty officers of the English and American war-ships, though all in full-dress uniform, looked decidedly insignificant; and I doubt not that the natives who were assembled outside the garden railings in crowds were not behind me in making invidious comparisons.

Chairs and benches were placed under the beautiful trees, and people grouped themselves on these, and promenaded, flirted, talked politics and gossip, or listened to the royal band, which played at intervals, and played well. The dress of the ladies, whether white or coloured, was both pretty and appropriate. Most of the younger women were in white, and wore natural flowers in their hair; and many of the elder ladies wore black or coloured silks, with lace and trains. There were several beautiful leis of the gardenia, which filled all the garden with their delicious odour. Tea and ices were handed round on Sevres china by footmen and pages in appropriate liveries. What a wonderful leap from calabashes and poi, malos and paus, to this correct and tasteful civilization! As soon as the brief amber twilight of the tropics was over, the garden was suddenly illuminated by myriads of Chinese lanterns, and the effect was bewitching. The upper suite of rooms was thrown open for those who preferred dancing under cover; but I think that the greater part of the assemblage chose the shady walks and purple night. Supper was served at eleven, and the party broke up soon afterwards; but I must confess that, charming as it was, I left before eight, for society makes heavier demands on any strength than the rough open- air life of Hawaii.

The dwindling of the race is a most pathetic subject. Here is a sovereign chosen amidst an outburst of popular enthusiasm, with a cabinet, a legislature, and a costly and elaborate governing machinery, sufficient in Yankee phrase to "run" an empire of several millions, and here are only 49,000 native Hawaiians; and if the decrease be not arrested, in a quarter of a century there will not be an Hawaiian to govern. The chiefs, or alii, are a nearly extinct order; and, with a few exceptions, those who remain are childless. In riding through Hawaii I came everywhere upon traces of a once numerous population, where the hill slopes are now only a wilderness of guava scrub, and upon churches and school-houses all too large, while in some hamlets the voices of young children were altogether wanting. This nation, with its elaborate governmental machinery, its churches and institutions, has to me the mournful aspect of a shrivelled and wizened old man dressed in clothing much too big, the garments of his once athletic and vigorous youth. Nor can I divest myself of the idea that the laughing, flower-clad hordes of riders who make the town gay with their presence, are but like butterflies fluttering out their short lives in the sunshine,

". . . a wreck and residue, Whose only business is to perish."

The statistics on this subject are perfectly appalling. If we reduce Captain Cook's estimate of the native population by one- fourth, it was 300,000 in 1779. In 1872 it was only 49,000. The first official census was in 1832, when the native population was 130,000. This makes the decrease 80,000 in forty years, or at the rate of 2000 a year, and fixes the period for the final extinction of the race in 1897, if that rate were to continue. It is a pity, for many reasons, that it is dying out. It has shown a singular aptitude for politics and civilization, and it would have been interesting to watch the development of a strictly Polynesian monarchy starting under passably fair conditions. Whites have conveyed to these shores slow but infallible destruction on the one hand, and on the other the knowledge of the life that is to come; and the rival influences of blessing and cursing have now been fifty years at work, producing results with which most reading people are familiar.

I have not heard the subject spoken of, but I should think that the decrease in the population must cause the burden of taxation to press heavily on that which remains. Kings, cabinet ministers, an army, a police, a national debt, a supreme court, and common schools, are costly luxuries or necessaries. The civil list is ludicrously out of proportion to the resources of the islands, and the heads of the four departments—Foreign Relations, Interior, Finance, and Law(Attorney-General)—receive $5,000 a year each! Expenses and salaries have been increasing for the last thirty years. For schools alone every man between twenty-one and sixty pays a tax of two dollars annually, and there is an additional general tax for the same purpose. I suppose that there is not a better educated country in the world. Education is compulsory; and besides the primary schools, there are a number of academies, all under Government supervision, and there are 324 teachers, or one for every twenty-seven children. There is a Board of Education, and Kamakau, its president, reported to the last biennial session of the legislature that out of 8931 children between the ages of six and fifteen, 8287 were actually attending school! Among other direct taxes, every quadruped that can be called a horse, above two years old, pays a dollar a year, and every dog a dollar and a half. Does not all this sound painfully civilized? If the influence of the tropics has betrayed me into rhapsody and ecstacy in earlier letters, these dry details will turn the scale in favour of prosaic sobriety!

I have said little about Honolulu, except of its tropical beauty. It does not look as if it had "seen better days." Its wharves are well cared for, and its streets and roads are very clean. The retail stores are generally to be found in two long streets which run inland, and in a splay street which crosses both. The upper storekeepers, with a few exceptions, are Americans, but one street is nearly given up to Chinamen's stores, and one of the wealthiest and most honourable merchants in the town is a Chinaman. There is an ice factory, and icecream is included in the daily bill of fare here, and iced water is supplied without limit, but lately the machinery has only worked in spasms, and the absence of ice is regarded as a local calamity, though the water supplied from the waterworks is both cool and pure. There are two good photographers and two booksellers. I don't think that plateglass fronts are yet to be seen. Many of the storekeepers employ native "assistants;" but the natives show little aptitude for mercantile affairs, or indeed for the "splendid science" of money-making generally, and in this respect contrast with the Chinamen, who, having come here as Coolies, have contrived to secure a large share of the small traffic of the islands. Most things are expensive, but they are good. I have seen little of such decided rubbish as is to be found in the cheap stores of London and Edinburgh, except in tawdry artificial flowers. Good black silks are to be bought, and are as essential to the equipment of a lady as at home. Saddles are to be had at most of the stores, from the elaborate Mexican and Californian saddle, worth from 30 to 50 dollars, to a worthless imitation of the English saddle, dear at five. Boots and shoes, perhaps because in this climate they are a mere luxury, are frightfully dear, and so are books, writing paper, and stationery generally; a sheet of Bristol board, which we buy at home for 6d., being half a dollar here. But it is quite a pleasure to make purchases in the stores. There is so much cordiality and courtesy that, as at this hotel, the bill recedes into the background, and the purchaser feels the indebted party.

The money is extremely puzzling. These islands, like California, have repudiated greenbacks, and the only paper currency is a small number of treasury notes for large amounts. The coin in circulation is gold and silver, but gold is scarce, which is an incovenience to people who have to carry a large amount of money about with them. The coinage is nominally that of the United States, but the dollars are Mexican, or French 5 franc pieces, and people speak of "rials," which have no existence here, and of "bits," a Californian slang term for 12.5 cents, a coin which to my knowledge does not exist anywhere. A dime, or 10 cents, is the lowest coin I have seen, and copper is not in circulation. An envelope, a penny bottle of ink, a pencil, a spool of thread, cost 10 cents each; postage-stamps cost 2 cents each for inter-island postage, but one must buy five of them, and dimes slip away quickly and imperceptibly. There is a loss on English money, as half-a-crown only passes for a half-dollar, sixpence for a dime, and so forth; indeed, the average loss seems to be about twopence in the shilling.

There are four newspapers: the Honolulu Gazette, the Pacific Commercial Advertiser, Ka Nupepa Kuokoa (the "Independent Press"), and a lately started spasmodic sheet, partly in English and partly in Hawaiian, the Nuhou (News). {270} The two first are moral and respectable, but indulge in the American sins of personalities and mutual vituperation. The Nuhou is scurrilous and diverting, and appears "run" with a special object, which I have not as yet succeeded in unravelling from its pungent but not always intelligible pages. I think perhaps the writing in each paper has something of the American tendency to hysteria and convulsions, though these maladies are mild as compared with the "real thing" in the Alta California, which is largely taken here. Besides these there are monthly sheets called The Friend, the oldest paper in the Pacific, edited by good "Father Damon," and the Church Messenger, edited by Bishop Willis, partly devotional and partly devoted to the Honolulu Mission. All our popular American and English literature is read here, and I have hardly seen a table without "Scribner's" or "Harper's Monthly" or "Good Words."

I have lived far too much in America to feel myself a stranger where, as here, American influence and customs are dominant; but the English who are in Honolulu just now, in transitu from New Zealand, complain bitterly of its "Yankeeism," and are very far from being at home, and I doubt not that Mr. M—-, whom you will see, will not confirm my favourable description. It is quite true that the islands are Americanized, and with the exception of the Finance Minister, who is a Scotchman, Americans "run" the Government and fill the Chief Justiceship and other high offices of State. It is, however, perfectly fair, for Americans have civilized and Christianized Hawaii-nei, and we have done little except make an unjust and afterwards disavowed seizure of the islands.

On looking over this letter I find it an olla podrida of tropical glories, royal festivities, finance matters, and odds and ends in general. I dare say you will find it dull after my letters from Hawaii, but there are others who will prefer its prosaic details to Kilauea and Waimanu; and I confess that, amidst the general lusciousness of tropical life, I myself enjoy the dryness and tartness of statistics, and hard uncoloured facts. I.L.B.



LETTER XIX.

HAWAIIAN HOTEL, HONOLULU.

My latest news of you is five months old, and though I have not the slightest expectation that I shall hear from you, I go up to the roof to look out for the "Rolling Moses" with more impatience and anxiety than those whose business journeys are being delayed by her non-arrival. If such an unlikely thing were to happen as that she were to bring a letter, I should be much tempted to stay five months longer on the islands rather than try the climate of Colorado, for I have come to feel at home, people are so very genial, and suggest so many plans for my future enjoyment, the islands in their physical and social aspects are so novel and interesting, and the climate is unrivalled and restorative.

Honolulu has not yet lost the charm of novelty for me. I am never satiated with its exotic beauties, and the sight of a kaleidoscopic whirl of native riders is always fascinating. The passion for riding, in a people who only learned equitation in the last generation, is most curious. It is very curious, too, to see women incessantly enjoying and amusing themselves in riding, swimming, and making leis. They have few home ties in the shape of children, and I fear make them fewer still by neglecting them for the sake of riding and frolic, and man seems rather the help-meet than the "oppressor" of woman; though I believe that the women have abandoned that right of choosing their husbands, which, it is said, that they exercised in the old days. Used to the down-trodden look and harrassed care-worn faces of the over-worked women of the same class at home, and in the colonies, the laughing, careless faces of the Hawaiian women have the effect upon me of a perpetual marvel. But the expression generally has little of the courteousness, innocence, and childishness of the negro physiognomy. The Hawaiians are a handsome people, scornful and sarcastic-looking even with their mirthfulness; and those who know them say that they are always quizzing and mimicking the haoles, and that they give everyone a nickname, founded on some personal peculiarity.

The women are free from our tasteless perversity as to colour and ornament, and have an instinct of the becoming. At first the holuku, which is only a full, yoke nightgown, is not attractive, but I admire it heartily now, and the sagacity of those who devised it. It conceals awkwardness, and befits grace of movement; it is fit for the climate, is equally adapted for walking and riding, and has that general appropriateness which is desirable in costume. The women have a most peculiar walk, with a swinging motion from the hip at each step, in which the shoulder sympathises. I never saw anything at all like it. It has neither the delicate shuffle of the Frenchwoman, the robust, decided jerk of the Englishwoman, the stately glide of the Spaniard, or the stealthiness of the squaw; and I should know a Hawaiian woman by it in any part of the world. A majestic wahine with small, bare feet, a grand, swinging, deliberate gait, hibiscus blossoms in her flowing hair, and a le of yellow flowers falling over her holuku, marching through these streets, has a tragic grandeur of appearance, which makes the diminutive, fair- skinned haole, tottering along hesitatingly in high-heeled shoes, look grotesque by comparison.

On Saturday, our kind host took Mrs. D. and myself to the market, where we saw the natives in all their glory. The women, in squads of a dozen at a time, their Pa-us streaming behind them, were cantering up and down the streets, and men and women were thronging into the market-place; a brilliant, laughing, joking crowd, their jaunty hats trimmed with fresh flowers, and leis of the crimson ohia and orange lauhala falling over their costumes, which were white, green, black, scarlet, blue, and every other colour that can be dyed or imagined. The market is a straggling, open space, with a number of shabby stalls partially surrounding it, but really we could not see the place for the people. There must have been 2000 there.

Some of the stalls were piled up with wonderful fish, crimson, green, rose, blue, opaline—fish that have spent their lives in coral groves under the warm, bright water. Some of them had wonderful shapes too, and there was one that riveted my attention and fascinated me. It was, I thought at first, a heap, composed of a dog fish, some limpets, and a multitude of water snakes, and other abominable forms; but my eyes slowly informed me of the fact, which I took in reluctantly and with extreme disgust, that the whole formed one living monster, a revolting compound of a large paunch with eyes, and a multitude of nervy, snaky, out-reaching, twining, grasping, tentacular arms, several feet in length, I should think, if extended, but then lying in a crowded undulating heap; the creature was dying, and the iridescence was passing over what seemed to be its body in waves of colour, such as glorify the last hour of the dolphin. But not the colours of the rainbow could glorify this hideous, abominable form, which ought to be left to riot in ocean depths, with its loathsome kindred. You have read "Les Travailleurs du Mer," and can imagine with what feelings I looked upon a living Devil-fish! The monster is much esteemed by the natives as an article of food, and indeed is generally relished. I have seen it on foreign tables, salted, under the name of squid. {276}

We passed on to beautiful creatures, the kihi-kihi, or sea-cock, with alternate black and yellow transverse bands on his body; the hinalea, like a glorified mullet, with bright green, longitudinal bands on a dark shining head, a purple body of different shades, and a blue spotted tail with a yellow tip. The Ohua too, a pink scaled fish, shaped like a trout; the opukai, beautifully striped and mottled; the mullet and flying fish as common here as mackerel at home; the hala, a fine pink-fleshed fish, the albicore, the bonita, the manini striped black and white, and many others. There was an abundance of opilu or limpets, also the pipi, a small oyster found among the coral; the ula, as large as a clawless lobster, but more beautiful and variegated; and turtles which were cheap and plentiful. Then there were purple-spiked sea urchins, black-spiked sea eggs or wana, and ina or eggs without spikes, and many other curiosities of the bright Pacific. It was odd to see the pearly teeth of a native meeting in some bright-coloured fish, while the tail hung out of his mouth, for they eat fish raw, and some of them were obviously at the height of epicurean enjoyment. Seaweed and fresh-water weed are much relished by Hawaiians, and there were four or five kinds for sale, all included in the term limu. Some of this was baked, and put up in balls weighing one pound each. There were packages of baked fish, and dried fish, and of many other things which looked uncleanly and disgusting; but no matter what the package was, the leaf of the Ti tree was invariably the wrapping, tied round with sennet, the coarse fibre obtained from the husk of the cocoa-nut. Fish, here, averages about ten cents per pound, and is dearer than meat; but in many parts of the islands it is cheap and abundant.

There is a ferment going on in this kingdom, mainly got up by the sugar planters and the interests dependent on them, and two political lectures have lately been given in the large hall of the hotel in advocacy of their views; one, on annexation, by Mr. Phillips, who has something of the oratorical gift of his cousin, Wendell Phillips; and the other, on a reciprocity treaty, by Mr. Carter. Both were crowded by ladies and gentlemen, and the first was most enthusiastically received. Mrs. D. and I usually spend our evenings in writing and working in the verandah, or in each other's rooms; but I have become so interested in the affairs of this little state, that in spite of the mosquitos, I attended both lectures, but was not warmed into sympathy with the views of either speaker.

I daresay that some of my friends here would quarrel with my conclusions, but I will briefly give the data on which they are based. The census of 1872 gives the native population at 49,044 souls; of whom, 700 are lepers; and it is DECREASING at the rate of from 1,200 to 2,000 a year, while the excess of native males over females on the islands is 3,216. The foreign population is 5,366, and it is INCREASING at the rate of 200 a year; and the number of half-castes of all nations has INCREASED at the rate of 140 a year. The Chinese, who came here originally as plantation coolies, outnumber all the other nationalities together, excluding the Americans; but the Americans constitute the ruling and the monied class. Sugar is the reigning interest on the islands, and it is almost entirely in American hands. It is burdened here by the difficulty of procuring labour, and at San Francisco by a heavy import duty. There are thirty-five plantations on the islands, and there is room for fifty more. The profit, as it is, is hardly worth mentioning, and few of the planters do more than keep their heads above water. Plantations which cost $50,000 have been sold for $15,000; and others, which cost $150,000 have been sold for $40,000. If the islands were annexed, and the duty taken off, many of these struggling planters would clear $50,000 a year and upwards. So, no wonder that Mr. Phillips's lecture was received with enthusiastic plaudits. It focussed all the clamour I have heard on Hawaii and elsewhere, exalted the "almighty dollar," and was savoury with the odour of coming prosperity. But he went far, very far; he has aroused a cry among the natives "Hawaii for the Hawaiians," which, very likely, may breed mischief; for I am very sure that this brief civilization has not quenched the "red fire" of race; and his hint regarding the judicious disposal of the king in the event of annexation, was felt by many of the more sober whites to be highly impolitic.

The reciprocity treaty, very lucidly advocated by Mr. Carter, and which means the cession of a lagoon with a portion of circumjacent territory on this island, to the United States, for a Pacific naval station, meets with more general favour as a safer measure; but the natives are indisposed to bribe the great Republic to remit the sugar duties by the surrender of a square inch of Hawaiian soil; and, from a British point of view, I heartily sympathise with them. Foreign, i.e. American, feeling is running high upon the subject. People say that things are so bad that something must be done, and it remains to be seen whether natives or foreigners can exercise the strongest pressure on the king. I was unfavourably impressed in both lectures by the way in which the natives and their interests were quietly ignored, or as quietly subordinated to the sugar interest.

It is never safe to forecast destiny; yet it seems most probable that sooner or later in this century, the closing catastrophe must come. The more thoughtful among the natives acquiesce helplessly and patiently in their advancing fate; but the less intelligent, as I had some opportunity of hearing at Hilo, are becoming restive and irritable, and may drift into something worse if the knowledge of the annexationist views of the foreigners is diffused among them. Things are preparing for change, and I think that the Americans will be wise in their generation if they let them ripen for many years to come. Lunalilo has a broken constitution, and probably will not live long. Kalakaua will probably succeed him, and "after him the deluge," unless he leaves a suitable successor, for there are no more chiefs with pre-eminent claims to the throne. The feeling among the people is changing, the feudal instinct is disappearing, the old despotic line of the Kamehamehas is extinct; and king-making by paper ballots, introduced a few months ago, is an approximation to president-making, with the canvassing, stumping, and wrangling, incidental to such a contested election. Annexation, or peaceful absorption, is the "manifest destiny" of the islands, with the probable result lately most wittily prophesied by Mark Twain in the New York Tribune, but it is impious and impolitic to hasten it. Much as I like America, I shrink from the day when her universal political corruption and her unrivalled political immorality shall be naturalised on Hawaii-nei. . . . Sunday evening. The "Rolling Moses" is in, and Sabbatic quiet has given place to general excitement. People thought they heard her steaming in at 4 a.m., and got up in great agitation. Her guns fired during morning service, and I doubt whether I or any other person heard another word of the sermon. The first batch of letters for the hotel came, but none for me; the second, none for me; and I had gone to my room in cold despair, when some one tossed a large package in at my verandah door, and to my infinite joy I found that one of my benign fellow-passengers in the Nevada, had taken the responsibility of getting my letters at San Francisco and forwarding them here. I don't know how to be grateful enough to the good man. With such late and good news, everything seems bright; and I have at once decided to take the first schooner for the leeward group, and remain four months longer on the islands. I.L.B.



LETTER XX.

KOLOA, KAUAI, March 23rd.

I am spending a few days on some quaint old mission premises, and the "guest house," where I am lodged, is a dobe house, with walls two feet thick, and a very thick grass roof comes down six feet all round to shade the windows. It is itself shaded by date palms and algarobas, and is surrounded by hibiscus, oleanders, and the datura arborea(?), which at night fill the air with sweetness. I am the only guest, and the solitude of the guest house in which I am writing is most refreshing to tired nerves. There is not a sound but the rustling of trees.

The first event to record is that the trade winds have set in, and though they may yet yield once or twice to the kona, they will soon be firmly established for nine months. They are not soft airs as I supposed, but riotous, rollicking breezes, which keep up a constant clamour, blowing the trees about, slamming doors, taking liberties with papers, making themselves heard and felt everywhere, flecking the blue Pacific with foam, lowering the mercury three degrees, bringing new health and vigour with them,—wholesome, cheery, frolicsome north-easters. They brought me here from Oahu in eighteen hours, for which I thank them heartily.

You will think me a Sybarite for howling about those eighteen hours of running to leeward, when the residents of Kauai, if they have to go to Honolulu in the intervals between the quarterly trips of the Kilauea, have to spend from three to nine days in beating to windward. These inter-island voyages of extreme detention, rolling on a lazy swell in tropical heat, or beating for days against the strong trades without shelter from the sun, and without anything that could be called accommodation, were among the inevitable hardships to which the missionaries' wives and children were exposed in every migration for nearly forty years.

When I reached the wharf at Honolulu the sight of the Jenny, the small sixty-ton schooner by which I was to travel, nearly made me give up this pleasant plan, so small she looked, and so cumbered with natives and their accompaniments of mats, dogs, and calabashes of poi. But she is clean, and as sweet as a boat can be which carries through the tropics cattle, hides, sugar, and molasses. She is very low in the water, her deck is the real "fisherman's walk, two steps and overboard;" and on this occasion was occupied solely by natives. The Attorney General and Mrs. Judd were to have been my fellow voyagers, but my disappointment at their non-appearance was considerably mitigated by the fact that there was not stowage room for more than one white passenger! Mrs. Dexter pitied me heartily, for it made her quite ill to look down the cabin hatch; but I convinced her that no inconveniences are legitimate subjects for sympathy which are endured in the pursuit of pleasure. There was just room on deck for me to sit on a box, and the obliging, gentlemanly master, who, with his son and myself, were the only whites on board, sat on the taffrail.

The Jenny spread her white duck sails, glided gracefully away from the wharf, and bounded through the coral reef; the red sunlight faded, the stars came out, the Honolulu light went down in the distance, and in two hours the little craft was out of sight of land on the broad, crisp Pacific. It was so chilly, that after admiring as long as I could, I dived into the cabin, a mere den, with a table, and a berth on each side, in one of which I lay down, and the other was alternately occupied by the captain and his son. But limited as I thought it, boards have been placed across on some occasions, and eleven whites have been packed into a space six feet by eight! The heat and suffocation were nearly intolerable, the black flies swarming, the mosquitos countless and vicious, the fleas agile beyond anything, and the cockroaches gigantic. Some of the finer cargo was in the cabin, and large rats, only too visible by the light of a swinging lamp, were assailing it, and one with a portentous tail ran over my berth more than once, producing a stampede among the cockroaches each time. I have seldom spent a more miserable night, though there was the extreme satisfaction of knowing that every inch of canvas was drawing.

Towards morning the short jerking motion of a ship close hauled, made me know that we were standing in for the land, and at daylight we anchored in Koloa Roads. The view is a pleasant one. The rains have been abundant, and the land, which here rises rather gradually from the sea, is dotted with houses, abounds in signs of cultivation, and then spreads up into a rolling country between precipitous ranges of mountains. The hills look something like those of Oahu, but their wonderful greenness denotes a cooler climate and more copious rains, also their slopes and valleys are densely wooded, and Kauai obviously has its characteristic features, one of which must certainly be a superabundance of that most unsightly cactus, the prickly pear, to which the motto nemo me impune lacessit most literally applies.

I had not time to tell you before that this trip to Kauai was hastily arranged for me by several of my Honolulu friends, some of whom gave me letters of introduction, while others wrote forewarning their friends of my arrival. I am often reminded of Hazael's question, "Is thy servant a dog that he should do this thing?" There is no inn or boarding house on the island, and I had hitherto believed that I could not be concussed into following the usual custom whereby a traveller throws himself on the hospitality of the residents. Yet, under the influence of Honolulu persuasions, I am doing this very thing, but with an amount of mauvaise honte and trepidation, which I will not voluntarily undergo again.

My first introduction was to Mrs. Smith, wife of a secular member of the Mission, and it requested her to find means of forwarding me a distance of twenty-three miles. Her son was at the landing with a buggy, a most unpleasant index of the existence of carriage roads, and brought me here; and Mrs. Smith most courteously met me at the door. When I presented my letter I felt like a thief detected in a first offence, but I was at once made welcome, and my kind hosts insist on my remaining with them for some days. Their house is a pretty old-fashioned looking tropical dwelling, much shaded by exotics, and the parlour is homelike with new books. There are two sons and two daughters at home, all, as well as their parents, interesting themselves assiduously in the welfare of the natives. Six bright-looking native girls are receiving an industrial training in the house. Yesterday being Sunday, the young people taught a Sunday school twice, besides attending the native church, an act of respect to Divine service in Hawaiian which always has an influence on the native attendance.

We have had some beautiful rides in the neighbourhood. It is a wild, lonely, picturesque coast, and the Pacific moans along it, casting itself on it in heavy surges, with a singularly dreary sound. There are some very fine specimens of the phenomena called "blow-holes" on the shore, not like the "spouting cave" at Iona, however. We spent a long time in watching the action of one, though not the finest. At half tide this "spouting horn" throws up a column of water over sixty feet in height from a very small orifice, and the effect of the compressed air rushing through a crevice near it, sometimes with groans and shrieks, and at others with a hollow roar like the warning fog-horn on a coast, is magnificent, when, as to-day, there is a heavy swell on the coast.

Kauai is much out of the island world, owing to the infrequent visits of the Kilauea, but really it is only twelve hours by steam from the capital. Strangers visit it seldom, as it has no active volcano like Hawaii, or colossal crater like Maui, or anything sensational of any kind. It is called the "Garden Island," and has no great wastes of black lava and red ash like its neighbours. It is queerly shaped, almost circular, with a diameter of from twenty- eight to thirty miles, and its area is about 500 square miles. Waialeale, its highest mountain, is 4,800 feet high, but little is known of it, for it is swampy and dangerous, and a part of it is a forest-covered and little explored tableland, terminating on the sea in a range of perpendicular precipices 2,000 feet in depth, so steep it is said, that a wild cat could not get round them. Owing to these, and the virtual inaccessibility of a large region behind them, no one can travel round the island by land, and small as it is, very little seems to be known of portions of its area.

Kauai has apparently two centres of formation, and its mountains are thickly dotted with craters. The age and density of the vegetation within and without those in this Koloa district, indicate a very long cessation from volcanic action. It is truly an oddly contrived island. An elevated rolling region, park-like, liberally ornamented with clumps of ohia, lauhala, hau, (hibiscus) and koa, and intersected with gullies full of large eugenias, lies outside the mountain spurs behind Koloa. It is only the tropical trees, specially the lauhala or "screw pine," the whimsical shapes of outlying ridges, which now and then lie like the leaves in a book, and the strange forms of extinct craters, which distinguish it from some of our most beautiful park scenery, such as Windsor Great Park or Belvoir. It is a soft tranquil beauty, and a tolerable road which owes little enough to art, increases the likeness to the sweet home scenery of England. In this part of the island the ground seems devoid of stones, and the grass is as fine and smooth as a race course.

The latest traces of volcanic action are found here. From the Koloa Ridge to, and into the sea, a barren uneven surface of pahoehoe extends, often bulged up in immense bubbles, some of which have partially burst, leaving caverns, one of which, near the shore, is paved with the ancient coral reef!

The valleys of Kauai are long, and widen to the sea, and their dark rich soil is often ten feet deep. On the windward side the rivers are very numerous and picturesque. Between the strong winds and the lightness of the soil, I should think that like some parts of the Highlands, "it would take a shower every day." The leeward side, quite close to the sea, is flushed and nearly barren, but there is very little of this desert region. Kauai is less legible in its formation than the other islands. Its mountains, from their impenetrable forests, dangerous breaks, and swampiness, are difficult of access, and its ridges are said to be more utterly irregular, its lavas more decomposed, and its natural sections more completely smothered under a profuse vegetation than those of any other island in the tropical Pacific. Geologists suppose, from the degradation of its ridges, and the absence of any recent volcanic products, that it is the oldest of the group, but so far as I have read, none of them venture to conjecture how many ages it has taken to convert its hard basalt into the rich soil which now sustains trees of enormous size. If this theory be correct, the volcanoes must have gone on dying out from west to east, from north to south, till only Kilauea remains, and its energies appear to be declining. The central mountain of this island is built of a heavy ferruginous basalt, but the shore ridges contain less iron, are more porous, and vary in their structure from a compact phonolite, to a ponderous basalt.

The population of Kauai is a widely scattered one of 4,900, and as it is an out of the world region the people are probably better, and less sophisticated. They are accounted rustics, or "pagans," in the classical sense, elsewhere. Horses are good and very cheap, and the natives of both sexes are most expert riders. Among their feats, are picking up small coins from the ground while going at full gallop, or while riding at the same speed wringing off the heads of unfortunate fowls, whose bodies are buried in the earth.

There are very few foreigners, and they appear on the whole a good set, and very friendly among each other. Many of them are actively interested in promoting the improvement of the natives, but it is uphill work, and ill-rewarded, at least on earth. The four sugar plantations employ a good deal of Chinese labour, and I fear that the Chinamen are stealthily tempting the Hawaiians to smoke opium.

All the world over, however far behind aborigines are in the useful arts, they exercise a singular ingenuity in devising means for intoxicating and stupifying themselves. On these islands distillation is illegal, and a foreigner is liable to conviction and punishment for giving spirits to a native Hawaiian, yet the natives contrive to distil very intoxicating drinks, specially from the root of the ti tree, and as the spirit is unrectified it is both fiery and unwholesome. Licences to sell spirits are confined to the capital. In spite of the notoriously bad effect of alcohol in the tropics, people drink hard, and the number of deaths which can be distinctly traced to spirit drinking is quite startling.

The prohibition on selling liquor to natives is the subject of incessant discussions and "interpellations" in the national legislature. Probably all the natives agree in regarding it as a badge of the "inferiority of colour;" but I have been told generally that the most intelligent and thoughtful among them are in favour of its continuance, on the ground that if additional facilities for drinking were afforded, the decrease in the population would be accelerated. In the printed "Parliamentary Proceedings," I see that petitions are constantly presented praying that the distillation of spirits may be declared free, while a few are in favour of "total prohibition." Another prayer is "that Hawaiians may have the same privileges as white people in buying and drinking spirituous liquors."

A bill to repeal the invidious distinction was brought into the legislature not long since; but the influence of the descendants of the missionaries and of an influential part of the white community is so strongly against spirit drinking, as well as against the sale of drink to the natives, that the law remains on the Statute-book.

The tone in which it was discussed is well indicated by the language of Kalakaua, the present king's rival: "The restrictions imposed by this law do the people no good, but rather harm; for instead of inculcating the principles of honour, they teach them to steal behind the bar, the stable, and the closet, where they may be sheltered from the eyes of the law. The heavy licence imposed on the liquor dealers, and the prohibition against selling to the natives are an infringement of our civil rights, binding not only the purchaser but the dealer against acquiring and possessing property. Then, Mr. President, I ask, where lies virtue, where lies justice? Not in those that bind the liberty of this people, by refusing them the privilege that they now crave, of drinking spirituous liquors without restriction. Will you by persisting that this law remain in force make us a nation of hypocrites? or will you repeal it, that honour and virtue may for once be yours, O Hawaii." A committee of the Assembly, in reporting on the question of the prohibition of the sale of intoxicants to anybody, through its chairman, Mr. Carter, stated, "Experience teaches that such prohibition could not be enforced without a strong public sentiment to indorse it, and such a sentiment does not prevail in this community, as is evidenced by the fact that the sale of intoxicating drinks to natives is largely practised in defiance of law and the executive, and that the manufacture of intoxicating drinks, though prohibited, is carried on in every district of the kingdom." So the question which is rising in every country ruled or colonised by Anglo-Saxons, is also agitated here with very strong feeling on both sides.

I was led to this digression by seeing, for the first time, some very fine plants of the Piper methysticum. This is awa, truly a "plant of renown" throughout Polynesia. Strange tales are told of it. It is said to produce profound sleep, with visions more enchanting than those of opium or hasheesh, and that its repetition, instead of being deleterious, is harmless and even wholesome. Its sale is prohibited, except on the production of evidence that it has been prescribed as a drug. Nevertheless no law on the islands is so grossly violated. It is easy to GIVE it, and easy to grow it, or dig it up in the woods, so that, in spite of the legal restrictions, it is used to an enormous extent. It was proposed absolutely to prohibit the sale of it, though the sum paid for the licence is no inconsiderable item in the revenue of a kingdom, which, like many others, is experiencing the difficulty of "making both ends meet;" but the committee which sat upon the subject reported "that such prohibition is not practicable, unless its growth and cultivation are prevented. So long as public sentiment permits the open violation of the existing laws regulating its sale without rebuke, so long will it be of little use to attempt prohibition." One cannot be a day on the islands without hearing wonderful stories about awa; and its use is defended by some who are strongly opposed to the use as well as abuse of intoxicants. People who like "The Earl and the Doctor" delight themselves in the strongly sensuous element which pervades Polynesian life, delight themselves too, in contemplating the preparation and results of the awa beverage; but both are to me extremely disgusting, and I cannot believe that a drink, which stupifies the senses, and deprives a human being of the power to exercise reason and will, is anything but hurtful to the moral nature.

While passing the Navigator group, one of my fellow-passengers, who had been for some time in Tutuila, described the preparation of awa poetically, the root "being masticated by the pearly teeth of dusky flower-clad maidens;" but I was an accidental witness of a nocturnal "awa drinking" on Hawaii, and saw nothing but very plain prose. I feel as if I must approach the subject mysteriously. I had no time to tell you of the circumstance when it occurred, when also I was completely ignorant that it was an illegal affair; and, now with a sort of "guilty knowledge" I tremble to relate what I saw, and to divulge that though I could not touch the beverage, I tasted the root, which has an acrid pungent taste, something like horse-radish, with an aromatic flavour in addition, and I can imagine that the acquired taste for it must, like other acquired tastes, be perfectly irresistible, even without the additional gratification of the results which follow its exercise.

In the particular instance which I saw, two girls who were not beautiful, and an old man who would have been hideous but for a set of sound regular teeth, were sitting on the ground masticating the awa root, the process being contemplated with extreme interest by a number of adults. When, by careful chewing, they had reduced the root to a pulpy consistence, they tossed it into a large calabash, and relieved their mouths of superfluous saliva before preparing a fresh mouthful. This went on till a considerable quantity was provided, and then water was added, and the mass was kneaded and stirred with the hands till it looked like soap suds. It was then strained; and after more water had been added it was poured into cocoa-nut calabashes, and handed round. Its appearance eventually was like weak, frothy coffee and milk. The appearance of purely animal gratification on the faces of those who drank it, instead of being poetic, was of the low gross earth. Heads thrown back, lips parted with a feeble sensual smile, eyes hazy and unfocussed, arms folded on the breast, and the mental faculties numbed and sliding out of reach.

Those who drink it pass through the stage of idiocy into a deep sleep, which it is said can be reproduced once without an extra dose, by bathing in cold water. Confirmed awa drinkers might be mistaken for lepers, for they are covered with whitish scales, and have inflamed eyes and a leathery skin, for the epidermis is thickened and whitened, and eventually peels off. The habit has been adopted by not a few whites, specially on Hawaii, though, of course, to a certain extent clandestinely. Awa is taken also as a medicine, and was supposed to be a certain cure for corpulence.

The root and base of the stem are the parts used, and it is best when these are fresh. It seems to exercise a powerful fascination, and to be loved and glorified as whisky is in Scotland, and wine in southern Europe. In some of the other islands of Polynesia, on festive occasions, when the chewed root is placed in the calabash, and the water is poured on, the whole assemblage sings appropriate songs in its praise; and this is kept up until the decoction has been strained to its dregs. But here, as the using it as a beverage is an illicit process, a great mystery attends it. It is said that awa drinking is again on the increase, and with the illicit distillation of unwholesome spirits, and the illicit sale of imported spirits and the opium smoking, the consumption of stimulants and narcotics on the islands is very considerable. {295}

To turn from drink to climate. It is strange that with such a heavy rainfall, dwellings built on the ground and never dried by fires should be so perfectly free from damp as they are. On seeing the houses here and in Honolulu, buried away in dense foliage, my first thought was, "how lovely in summer, but how unendurably damp in winter," forgetting that I arrived in the nominal winter, and that it is really summer all the year. Lest you should think that I am perversely exaggerating the charms of the climate, I copy a sentence from a speech made by Kamehameha IV., at the opening of an Hawaiian agricultural society:—

"Who ever heard of winter on our shores? Where among us shall we find the numberless drawbacks which, in less favoured countries, the labourer has to contend with? They have no place in our beautiful group, which rests like a water lily on the swelling bosom of the Pacific. The heaven is tranquil above our heads, and the sun keeps his jealous eye upon us every day, while his rays are so tempered that they never wither prematurely what they have warmed into life." {296} The kindness of my hosts is quite overwhelming. They will not hear of my buying a horse, but insist on my taking away with me the one which I have been riding since I came, the best I have ridden on the islands, surefooted, fast, easy, and ambitious. I have complete sympathy with the passion which the natives have for riding. Horses are abundant and cheap on Kauai: a fairly good one can be bought for $20. I think every child possesses one. Indeed the horses seem to outnumber the people.

The eight native girls who are being trained and educated here as a "family school" have their horses, and go out to ride as English children go for a romp into a play-ground. Yesterday Mrs. S. said, "Now, girls, get the horses," and soon two little creatures of eight and ten came galloping up on two spirited animals. They had not only caught and bridled them, but had put on the complicated Mexican saddles as securely as if men had done it; and I got a lesson from them in making the Mexican knot with the thong which secures the cinch, which will make me independent henceforward.

These children can all speak English, and their remarks are most original and amusing. They have not a particle of respect of manner, as we understand it, but seem very docile. They are naive and fascinating in their manners, and the most joyous children I ever saw. When they are not at their lessons, or household occupations, they are dancing on stilts, acting plays of their own invention, riding or bathing, and they laugh all day long. Mrs. S. has trained nearly seventy since she has been here. If there were nothing else they see family life in a pure and happy form, which must in itself be a moral training, and by dint of untiring watchfulness they are kept aloof from the corrupt native associations. Indeed they are not allowed to have any intercourse with natives, for, according to one of the missionaries who has spent many years on the islands: "None know or can conceive without personal observation the nameless taint that pervades the whole garrulous talk and gregarious life of all heathen peoples, and above which our poor Hawaiian friends have not yet risen." Of this universal impurity of speech every one speaks in the strongest terms, and careful white parents not only seclude their children in early years from unrestrained intercourse with the natives, but prevent them from acquiring the Hawaiian tongue. In this respect the training of native girls involves a degree of patient watchfulness which must at times press heavily on those who undertake it, as the carefulness of years might fail of its result, if it were intermitted for one afternoon. I.L.B.



LETTER XXI.

MAKAUELI, KAUAI.

After my letters from Hawaii, and their narratives of volcanoes, freshets, and out of the world valleys, you will think my present letters dull, so I must begin this one pleasantly, by telling you that though I have no stirring adventures to relate, I am enjoying myself and improving again in health, and that the people are hospitable, genial, and cultivated, and that Kauai, though altogether different from Hawaii, has an extreme beauty altogether its own, which wins one's love, though it does not startle one into admiration like that of the Hawaiian gulches. Is it because that, though the magic of novelty is over it, there is a perpetual undercurrent of home resemblance? The dash of its musical waters might be in Cumberland; its swelling uplands, with their clumps of trees, might be in Kent; and then again, steep, broken, wooded ridges, with glades of grass, suggest the Val Moutiers; and broader sweeps of mountain outline, the finest scenery of the Alleghanies.

But yet the very things which have a certain tenderness of familiarity, are in a foreign setting. The great expanse of restful sea, so faintly blue all day, and so faintly red in the late afternoon, is like no other ocean in its unutterable peace; and this joyous, riotous trade-wind, which rustles the trees all day, and falls asleep at night, and cools the air, seems to come from some widely different laboratory than that in which our vicious east winds, and damp west winds, and piercing north winds, and suffocating south winds are concocted. Here one cannot ride "into the teeth of a north-easter," for such the trade-wind really is, without feeling at once invigorated, and wrapped in an atmosphere of balm. It is not here so tropical looking as in Hawaii, and though there are not the frightful volcanic wildernesses which make a thirsty solitude in the centre of that island, neither are there those bursts of tropical luxuriance which make every gulch an epitome of Paradise: I really cannot define the difference, for here, as there, palms glass themselves in still waters, bananas flourish, and the forests are green with ferns.

We took three days for our journey of twenty-three miles from Koloa, the we, consisting of Mrs. —-, the widow of an early missionary teacher, venerable in years and character, a native boy of ten years old, her squire, a second Kaluna, without Kaluna's good qualities, and myself. Mrs. —- is not a bold horsewoman, and preferred to keep to a foot's pace, which fretted my ambitious animal, whose innocent antics alarmed her in turn. We only rode seven miles the first day, through a park-like region, very like Western Wisconsin, and just like what I expected and failed to find in New Zealand. Grass-land much tumbled about, the turf very fine and green, dotted over with clumps and single trees, with picturesque, rocky hills, deeply cleft by water-courses were on our right, and on our left the green slopes blended with the flushed, stony soil near the sea, on which indigo and various compositae are the chief vegetation. It was hot, but among the hills on our right, cool clouds were coming down in frequent showers, and the white foam of cascades gleamed among the ohias, whose dark foliage at a distance has almost the look of pine woods.

Our first halting place was one of the prettiest places I ever saw, a buff frame-house, with a deep verandah festooned with passion flowers, two or three guest houses also bright with trailers, scattered about under the trees near it, a pretty garden, a background of grey rocky hills cool with woods and ravines, and over all the vicinity, that air of exquisite trimness which is artificially produced in England, but is natural here.

Kaluna the Second soon showed symptoms of being troublesome. The native servants were away, and he was dull, and for that I pitied him. He asked leave to go back to Koloa for a "sleeping tapa," which was refused, and either out of spite or carelessness, instead of fastening the horses into the pasture, he let them go, and the following morning when we were ready for our journey they were lost. Then he borrowed a horse, and late in the afternoon returned with the four animals, who were all white with foam and dust, and this escapade detained us another night. Subsequently, after disobeying orders, he lost his horse, which was a borrowed one, deserted his mistress, and absconded!

The slopes over which we travelled were red, hot, and stony, cleft in one place however, by a green, fertile valley, full of rice and kalo patches, and native houses, with a broad river, the Hanapepe, flowing quietly down the middle, which we forded near the sea, where it was half-way up my horse's sides. After plodding all day over stony soil in the changeless sunshine, as the shadows lengthened, we turned directly up towards the mountains and began a two hours ascent. It was delicious. They were so cool, so green, so varied, their grey pinnacles so splintered, their precipices so abrupt, their ravines so dark and deep, and their lower slopes covered with the greenest and finest grass; then dark ohias rose singly, then in twos and threes, and finally mixed in dense forest masses, with the pea-green of the kukui.

It became yet lovelier as the track wound through deep wooded ravines, or snaked along the narrow tops of spine-like ridges; the air became cooler, damper, and more like elixir, till at a height of 1500 feet we came upon Makaueli, ideally situated upon an unequalled natural plateau, a house of patriarchal size for the islands, with a verandah festooned with roses, fuchsias, the water lemon, and other passion flowers, and with a large guest-house attached. It stands on a natural lawn, with abrupt slopes, sprinkled with orange trees burdened with fruit, ohias, and hibiscus. From the back verandah the forest-covered mountains rise, and in front a deep ravine widens to the grassy slopes below and the lonely Pacific,—as I write, a golden sea, on which the island of Niihau, eighteen miles distant, floats like an amethyst.

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