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were pitched beneath a clump of trees, and
close to a clear stream called the Ram Gunga,
in which we caught a quantity of fish with a
casting-net. There are some mines between
Loba and Kumaon; but we did not go out of
our way to visit them. Here an accident
happened to the Baron. He sprained his
ankle and could not walk; so the next
morning we put him into a Dandi, and he
was carried along the road by four of the
Coolies. A Dandi is a pole, upon which is
hung, by its two ends, which are gathered
together, a piece of cloth or canvas, open in
the centre. This forms a hollow seat, not a
particular comfortable one, until you get
accustomed to it, when the motion is rather
pleasurable than otherwise. During this
day's march we shot a quantity of black
partridge, a hill fox, a deer, and a wild dog of
enormous size.

On the third day after leaving Loba we
sighted our (then) destinationthe town of
Almorah. On nearing the place we came
upon a hill to the right, which bears the
name of Brown's Hill; so called after an
officer of the thirty-first Native Infantry, who,
in the Goorkha war, volunteered to take it
with his company, though it had a stockade on
the top, which was obstinately defended. And
he did take it, after a very severe loss. A
monument is erected on this hill to the
memory of those who fell in the engagement.
A little further on is a large tree now used
as a gallows. This tree was the scene of a
well-remembered occurrence, just after the
above-mentioned battle. A Goorkha, shot
through the leg, had fallen here. The fighting
over, a British officer was standing over
him, and giving directions to a party of
Sepoys to have him taken to the hospital;
when, raising himself with his left hand,
with his right he cut the officer down with
his kookereea deadly weapon with which
the little Goorkhas now chop up the rebels.

Apropos of a kookeree in the hands of a
Goorkha, I must relate a little matter which I
now know to be a fact, but which I could scarcely
credit when it was first told to me. A party
of Goorkhassay fifteen or twentywill
proceed to a jungle in which they know a
huge tiger to be. They will surround the jungle
and form a circle, and closing in gradually,
they will hem in the ferocious beast. They
will then drop down on the right knee, as
soldiers do forming a square, and, kookeree
in hand, wait for the spring of the tiger, who
becomes somewhat bewildered, and anxious
to make his escape. After moving about for
a brief while in this den, of which the bars
are human beings (about five feet high), and
glaring first at one and then at another, he
lashes himself into a fury and makes his
spring; then the nearest Goorkha delivers a
blow with his kookeree which divides the
tiger's skull. Wonderful as this feat is, I
once saw at Jutog, near Simlah, a sight that
struck me as even more wonderful. A
Goorkha battalion was (and now is) quartered
at Jutog. There was a festival, at which
the Goorkhas sacrifice an ox. The adjutant
of the battalion asked me if I should
like to witness the ceremony; as it was
something new to me, I replied in the
affirmative, and we walked to the parade-ground,
where the whole regiment, in undress, was
assembled, and surrounding the victim and
the executioner. The ox was forced to kneel,
and by the side of him knelt the little
Goorkha, armed with the kookeree, which is
nothing more than a huge curved knife, but
very heavy, and as sharp as a razor. At a
given signal he struck the ox immediately
behind the hump over the shoulder,
peculiar to all Indian cattle; and the body was
divided into two parts. He had, with a
single blow, gone through the ox just as
completely and as cleanly as a butcher,
with his hatchet, would remove a chop from
a loin of mutton. They are a very odd race
of people, those little Goorkhas; wonderfully
honest, even amongst themselves; light-
hearted almost to childishness; capable of
enduring any amount of toil; obedient and
respectful, without cringing to fawning or
flattering their superiors, the white man.
The great blot upon their characters is their
frightful jealousy of their wives. Woe betide
the woman who gives her Goorkha husband
the faintest reason to suspect her of infidelity!
He at once takes the law and the kookeree
into his own hands, and slays both the wife
and her (real or supposed) gallant. I am glad to
say this is not a frequent occurrence, though it
does happen now and then. As a body, the
Goorkha women are as virtuous and as
amiable as their husbands are honest and
brave.

The Commissioner of Kumaon received us
at Almorah, his head-quarters, with great
cordiality and kindness, and offered us rooms
in his house. This offer we declined, inasmuch
as our party consisted of four, and his
house was not a large one. Besides, he
had other visitors who were putting up at his
bungalow. We accepted, however, his
invitation to dine, and on our way rode through
the town, which is considered the best in the
British hill possessions. Bishop Heber writes
that Almorah reminds him of Chester. It
consists of one street about a mile and a-half
long, and about sixty feet wide, paved
with large slabs of slate, and closed at either
end by a gate. One half of the town is much
higher than the other, and the street is
divided in the middle by a low flight of
steps, on which the ponies pass up and
down with extraordinary self-possession. The
houses are small, but neat and whitewashed.
They all consist of two or more stories.
The lower ones are shaded by wooden verandahs
more or less carved. At one end of
the town, is the old Goorkha fort; at the
other end, Fort Moira, a small English
fortification, near to which were the Sepoy lines.

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