** The Chindwin
course of people assembled to greet the steamer. Bold cliffs with white faces front the river abruptly, as if they had been cut with a knife. They are pitted with the nesting holes of sand-martins, which wheel and flutter like butterflies before them. Exuberant creepers hang in festoons over the cliff-sides, engulfing whole trees. Up-stream there is a vista of long blue mountain and unruffled water, half-veiled at this hour and season in lifting fog. Higher up, the cliffs are found on the west, the width of the river is unbroken, and its windings conceal its path, so that it looks like a lake, till each curve is accomplished and a new scene challenges the eye.
At Pindin there is a swift transition. The river banks, parting like doors, yield a view of wooded islands, pagoda-crowned promontories, and a lofty range of mountains, whose summits are only partially visible under the clouds. The Patolan here rushes down from the west, pouring in a flood of red waters. The two arms of the Chindwin, sweeping round the island of Chundaw, meet in fierce union, and the strength of their current is a powerful obstacle to progress. The western arm curves round under the heights of Mingin, happily placed between wide spaces of cloud and water, in the forefront of the mountains. Peaks, ten thousand feet in height, are visible from here.
Mingin is a prosperous and cheerful place, the residence of many timber merchants and of people well-to-do. It has a reputation for piety, and contributes litis to pagodas and manuscripts to monasteries lower