INTR OD UCTOR Y
that there was no want of the ferce natures, but that owing to the disturbed nature of the country, want of elephants, and ignorance of the language, it had yet to be discovered ; and I set to work to ingratiate myself with the people. 1 may without boasting assert that I was the pioneer in Lower Burma, as my colleague has been in Upper, in the shooting of big game. I had exceptional facilities. I spared no expense, and was lucky enough to have a stud of never less than four elephants, and my duties took me too over a vast tract.
I ventured into jungles which were avoided by most men, as they were said to be deadly. I had had my bout of jungle-fever in India, so was probably a salteda ; was of an active habit, up at daylight, and, after a cup of coffee, either on horseback or an elephant the whole day, getting back in time for a bath and dinner in the evening, which generally formed my only meal.
Nothing the Burmese love more than a poo-ay, or theatrical performance. When I went to a new locality and put up in a zyat, or rest-house, in the largest village, I sent for performers and treated the people to one of their interminable operas. I gave the womenkind (most influential in Burma) bits of jewellery and finery, a looking-glass or a piece of soap, and asked them to use their influence to get me some intelligence of game. One would say: a Why, Moung Oo or Mg. Kyaw, or Mg.
so-and-so, is the village shikarie at-a some place she would
mention; some other girl would give me information of another man. If not too distant, I would go to the locality, and secure the shikarie's services by giving him a few rupees, or a little tobacco, tea and sugar, and occasionally a little rum. Many of them were very x:hary of going out, fearing, if any accident were to happen, they would be blamed ; but the few who did, found I was a fair shot and somewhat generous, keeping little of the meat for myself, and giving the rest to them, which they jerked and sold to the people. It was a slow and laborious process, but patience and perseverance, they say, will conquer most things ; so it was with me, and in time I got game ; the very thoughts of which make my mouth water and a longing to see the like again, old though I be. Very few sportsmen in Burma have sent their sporting