The Silken East v
highway runs, its black railings in a line along the river, the telegraph wires overhead. Scattered palms and the roofs of a monastery proclaim the approach to the station of Palaw. Up north, a mountain spur comes down to the river s edge, and beyond this lies Thayetmyo,
the old-time frontier-town of British Burma. Its white roofs glisten in the sun, and behind it a blue hill, twin to the nearer one, stretches away in a north-westerly direction.
I am now on the threshold of the " Dry Zone/' and the picture is already changing from rain curtains and drifting squalls to opal clouds and the features of a laughing summer. The grassy glades that mark the river between Prome and Thayetmyo are a new feature in the landscape, and they afford a welcome relief to eyes weary of the wealth of unbroken forest. The grass covers the high red cliffs with a mantle like velvet, and falls in showers down the little gullies to