The Silken East
civilisation, and another to live a dog's life in the jungle.
The timber-salvor himself, a half-clad son of the forest, is oppressed with the isolation of his life. Festivals and gaiety are little in his way, and at all times he is surrounded by the spirits of nature, nearly all malevolent, all to be appeased with sedulous care. For one lives in his house, another in the whirlpool before his door, a third in the tree he is cutting down,
ing for his head ; the cateran of the hills for his wife, his cattle, for himself. From Ningin, inland, there is a road of the Shan which climbs up to the crest of a hill, its ascent or descent on the far side being accomplished by ladders ranged along the sheer face of the cliffs. By this road the harassed people were used to retreat before a Chin raid, lifting their ladders after them. Here, as we steam on our way to the upper waters of the Chindwin, we are well within the limits of the
a thousand in the dark mountains that shut his country away from the traffic of the world. A decade ago, to the malevolence of spirits was added the lust and fury of his fellow man. The head-hunter came raid-