Our bungalaw on the Tjerimai hillside was situated in the near neighbourhood of a native dessa. But we had been there for some time, before I became aware of the fact. And my first glimpse of the village was a surprise as fascinating as it was sudden.
It chanced in the course of a cool clear morning, as we rode along on our way to the scared grove of Sangean and the legend-haunted lake in its shadow.
We had been skirting for some time, what seemed to be an unusually dense bamboo-wood, when suddenly, in the wall of crowded stems, there appeared a breach and framed in it, lo! a prospect of brown huts, with flowering fruit-tr^es set between, and a well-kept road in the middle, on which a score of children were playing about. A plough-man came along, driving a pair of grey buffaloes before him, women were coming and going, carrying waterpitchers and piled up baskets of fruit on their erect heads; it was a busy hamlet in the heart of the wood.
We entered, passing from the sunny hillside into the green twilight among the trees, and out again upon the village road, flecked with changeful lights and shadows. It was trim and clean as a gardenpath. The huts on either side of it had a prosperous look,