13 Jan 1894
Arrival at Sairang (on 11 Jan 1894)
Arrival in Sairang. 50 coolies at work for gov't. Told if asked Capt Loch he would lend them to us. Wrote & sent letter up by 2 boatmen. Answered that he could give us no assistance (D
Sleeping on provision boxes much warmer than on camp bed.
Two months without letters from home. Sixteen days from Silchar to Chensil [sic. Changsil?].
16 Jan 1894
Delayed in Sairang 5 days trying utmost to get goods conveyed up to Aijal.
First Impressions. I am sure if you were walking through a Lushai village & were to see the pigs, fowls & youngsters all rolling & scrambling about in the dirt & could peep inside the squalid hovels in wh. these people live, you would think that it was high time that they were taught to live a little less like beasts. And yet will all this dirt the Lushais seem to be a fine race & capable of great improvement. We can see the differences between those who have come in contact with their conquerors & those who have not. The former class wash their faces and some even make themselves look very nice.
Men & Women so much alike that it is hard for us to tell one from another. At first we took all the men for women.
Capt Loch’s kind reception of us
We carry up some of our Goods. We carry up some things for 10 miles up hill on tent pole then catch up our coolies and give the things to them – but for all that the last three miles seemed interminable
Mr Foy (? Sergeant) Great thanks due to Mr Foy and some Babus for help which they gave us when we were in great extremity “He that receiveth you receiveth me.” God will bless them for help given when we had neither tent not hut.
From Sairang to Fort Aijal Six bullocks took up large tent & some necessary goods, left behind tent pole hoping to get coolies on the morrow. Failed – on Wednesday got 4 coolies & started. Fred & I took tent pole.
24 Jan 1894
Pathian = God or Devil X
The word we used in the South (according to Lewin) for Devil seems to be used here for God, & the word we have always used for God not known here at all.⊗
Lushai Paths & Boots. Lushai is a terrible place for boots. Takes the heels and soles clean off. First walk – almost perpendicular. Left Fred half way down – found him there when came back. Had no nail in his boots & so could only sit and slide. Go up on hands and feet.
Field Glasses. I let Lushais look through my field glasses. They were loud in exclamations of surprise that the next range should come right across the valley to them.
We do without bathing from 16th to 29th January on account of scarcity of water. We also slept in our day clothes because we had not brought our pajamas with us & things had not arrived from Sairang. Although only a little over a fortnight it seemed a long time to do without a “tub” as we were used to a daily dip.
X LushaiTranslation of the Gospels
into seems almost hopeless task.
Voluntary Lushai Workmen come to us to help build house. Everyone who sees the work says that the men have worked harder & accomplished more in the time than they would have done for any of the officials.
Wide open Door for the Gospel No prejudices to new religion
The work I love. “At last I have found the work for which I feel that I am best
suited fitted – not preaching eloquent sermons – for that I could never do – and I dislike nothing more than preaching in public. It may seem strange to you that a missionary should so dread preaching – but it is nevertheless a fact. I like to gather a little group around me & tell them of Jesus & his love and try to answer their enquiries. It is work with individuals that I feel I am cut out for & which I love most. And what a lot of good may be done in this way – visiting villages & homes of the people & in a quiet & loving sort of way to press home upon them the importance of thinking of the land beyond the grave & of preparing for it.”
My hopes for Lushai “As I look upon these ignorant people and gaze across the mountain ranges at the few
villages of their many villages which are in sight I think of the words of Jesus. “The fields are already white unto harvest” & my heart tells me that ere long many precious sheaves shall be gathered into the Fathers great storehouse”, And what Cont’d [below]
An earthen vessel. “And what seems most wonderful to me is that God should choose such poor weak instruments for suck a glorious work. It may be that He knows that by using earthen vessels all the more glory will accrue to His name.”
Jan Feb 1894
Moved into our House on Friday 9 Feb 1894. The first mission House in Lushailand.
Lushai Coolies like being Praised. Some of our workmen are useless for anything up for getting posts or splitting bamboos. Others are quick at catching an idea & neat and quick in their work. They love to hear us praise what they have done & are proud of the work they have done. They often say “Atha maw?” (Is it good?) and are hurt is we do not praise them. It is a treat to find people take an interest in what they do.
Bury a R.C. Bugler in Feb 4th who was a friend of our boy Bishanti. He died in hospital of fever.
Bishanti Homesick as he has had a bit of fever lately.
Cook arrives from Sairang Our cook Billoo came up with goats and cat from Sairang. Had such a trouble with the former that had to spend night in the forest. Arrived on Sunday morning, & had had nothing to eat since the morning before & then he started on a cup of tea.
1 Mch 1894
House so cold that we can scarcely keep warm enough even with ulsters on indoors. The damp cold goes through to our bones.
Protected from Clouds. The hill to the south of our house cuts the clouds in half as they come along, so that half the stream passes in front & half behind our hill & then joins together – leaving us on a little island in cloudland.
Gratitude for Medicine. A man who recovered from an illness offered a sacrifice of one fowl as thank
offeringgiving to Puithiam for recovery and sent another to us (alive) for the medicine he had received (see also next page)
Curly Hair is greatly disliked by the Lushais. Very pretty little boy (& girl) with
cury curly hair; seemed to us the prettiest children in the villages. So ashamed of the hair. Tried his hardest to keep it smooth
Gratitude for Medicine Thankfulness of widow mother for recovery of her little curly headed girl. The mother gave us two bananas. The old
fat grandfather said – “The other sahibs do not love the Lushais but you are god’s men & love us. You are very good men. When it stops raining I will go to the forest & fetch you as many bamboos as you like for your house; & the little girl when better shall haul water for you & collect wood for your fires.”
Lushai women are thought as much of as men. They are perfectly free to go & come as they like. Seems so refreshing after living in the plains where all women are invisible.
Lushai Houses may be entered by us at anytime. always seem pleased to welcome us. Although these houses at first seemed so dirty are better upon further acquaintance & if one does not mind a room full of
soot smoke with plenty of beetles running around at night & soot festooned ceilings their houses are very comfortable when a cold wind is blowing. We often wish that we could follow their example and have a good blazing fire in the centre of our rooms. The houses are low & in many of them we cannot stand upright in – They do not catch wind so readily as our taller house does.
A Lushai Meal. One old woman, then a little girl, then a boy, then a woman with a baby & lastly a mite of a girl all sitting on the floor round a huge wooden dish into which the old lady from time to time ladels [sic: ladles] lumps of boiled rice which is eaten up by the whole company who use their hands. One boy has at his side a pot of Chawhmeh from which he occasionally takes out a spoonful & places it on the central dish. They all take a pinch of it occasionally & eat it with their handfuls of rice (In evening they eat by the light of the fire. Feeding place is always just in front of the fireplace. Sometimes they have soup in a pot from which the people take an occasionally spoonful, all using the same spoon.)
Sacrifice. Patient sitting outside his house watching the performance of the Puithiam (Doctor). Two fowls in wicker basket by his side. Four pieces of bamboo about 4 inches long, in shape of cross thus.
marches outside the village with this and a lot of other paraphernalia. Exorcist sticks several pieces of bamboo in the ground – also the cross & set up little bamboo altar & 2 little things like flags – One made of black, red & white thread symbolical to us of sin, the blood & purity through the blood. Everything on a very small scale. Altar only 2 inches high. Seemed more like children playing a sacrifice than grown up people in dead earnest.
Sacrifice (continued) There were also some curious pieces of clay before the altar representing all kinds of things.
“Elephants tusk,” “Hatchet,” “Pot, & so on”
Leaf spread on altar in wh. a handful of rice was placed. Then priest seizes a fowl held
back its beak close to the rice, chanted some sentences, pulled back the creatures head – cut its throat – let the blood fall upon the rice, the leaf preventing it from running away. Then chopped off the legs & wings & put them on the altar, likewise the heart & part of the entrails were put in the blood.
This over, the Puithiam’s assistant who has in the meantime lighted a fire & boiled some rice took the fowl, placed it in the fire just as it was to singe off the feathers from which emerged a blackened object. Torn to pieces -boiled up with the rice – gizzard and part of entrails all go into the pot – for flavouring perhaps – for they were not particular about washing them. When cooked the two men set to work to eat most of the flesh – washing it down with huge ladels [sic: ladles] full of broth in wh. the fowl had been boiled. Part was taken back to the house for sick man to eat, & his children. Altar &c left in jungle where the sacrifice soon devoured by hungry dogs.
Water Supply. Very steep. Lushais can walk up tree almost as easy as a monkey. Puddle of water in deep valley 2ft in diameter – few inches deep – with water trickling into it at the rate of one pint per house. This to supply 2 villages & ourselves.
Our House. Not a straight pole, door, or windows in the place. A steep hill from bedroom to bathroom. Whole bedroom on the slant. Dining room, decidedly undulating. Looked level enough before [illegible] put down & the Earth settled
Appreciate a joke. Found Lushais in roars of laughter over Pears soap advertisements of the man who had not washed for 2 years.
Fond of Pictures & pretty things. Delighted one chief by giving him “He wont be happy till he pets it” & “He’s happy now.” Some Lushais fell in rapture over bunch of flowers on the table.
14 Mch 1894
Wind Storm destroys half the buildings in Aijal in one night. Some blown completely off the hills on which they were situated – besides many with damaged roofs. We expected every minute that the side of our own house would cave in & had to prop it up from inside with poles. Roof no good Rain comes in everywhere. Decided to put on new layer of sun grass.
Salt (the Lushais’ love of it)
The Lushais’ eyes sparkle when we give salt out in the evening as a present with the wages (or as wages) just as though we were giving out pots of hold – only they like salt better than gold.
Salt stopped. To bring refractory chief to his senses the government stopped the sale of salt in the bazaars. For the first 6 week did not care a straw. But when salt had all gone in their houses they began to feel the pinch. We gave out that we would pay workmen in salt (when building our house) We thus got all things up from Sairang by giving salt (we had wondered how we were going to get our food up) also plenty materials for building our house – simply besieged by men, women, & children bringing wood, pumpkins, sweet potatoes, beans, sugarcane, fowls, eggs &c &c in exchange for salt until our storeroom was full up & our back yard one great pile of wood. Workmen would sleep on verandah in order to be sure of work next morning.
They called us all kind of nice names, return to distant villages with good report of us & thus the way is prepared for winning our way to the hearts of the people.
This was God’s way of helping us.
Babus tried to impress our coolies
27 Mch 1894
Imaginary Visit to our House by Father & Mother. Description of our home in Lushai.
11 Apr 1894
X First School in Lushailand Opened on April 2nd 1894 with 2 pupils Tongphunga and Suaka. From 9 to 11 every morning.
Mastered alphabet & words of one syllable in one week.
Before one month passed could
almost read almost anything we wrote. Had job to get any to start. “We are like monkeys & can learn nothing”.
Waterman has to be changed every month. Boys will not work for longer. They have to find their own substitutes
The Officers…I believe are good men & try to do their duty by the Lushais. It is pleasing to see them reverencing the Lord’s Day by having all building & other work stopped. It used to
see make me cross to see how professing Christians in Silchar would keep their men hard at work all day Sunday.
25 Apr 1894
A Day’s Work – good description of a day’s work in our new station at Aijal.
Eclipse of Sun – Apl 6. 1894 – almost total. “Look sahib” said a passing Lushai “the sun is not good today.” Light no brighter than bright moonlight.
Cook said it was a dragon eating up the sun.
Lushais have much same belief “Awk – in ni a lem”
The lost charm (Kel mei) Saia our waterman had been with us 2 days. Being an orphan we thought that there would be a good chance of keeping him. (gave him 4/- with food & clothes monthly). Came to us with fear on every line of his face. He had lost his charm consisting the tail of a sacrificed goat (worn round the neck). He must go off to his village & offer another sacrifice of goat & get its tail to wear or he would surely die. Must make haste & do it otherwise the evil spirit would certainly catch him. He knew a man once who lost his charm & a goat came behind him & called out Ba! Ba! & the poor man died.
Roy Singh Baptised by Fred. He was a Khassi backslider – full of doubts – became repentant. We had the Lord’s supper with one other Khassia (Sahan Roy I think) & Mr Dunn (an Anglo-Khassi)
9 May 1894
Off to Lushailand – A description of the journey from Silchar to Lushai when we first came to do Missionary work at Fort Aijal.
Snake Bite. Met young man one Sunday as we were coming to Lushai & were taking a walk on shore during our Sabbath rest day – Six months before he was reaping rice – bitten by a snake on finger. Ran home – thrust wounded member in fire till upper joint was reduced to
ashes a cinder. Days and weeks passed – limbs & body swelled & pain in the finger was excruciating. Had no rest day nor night. One day he could bear the agony no longer so he sawed off the finger below the second joint & then chopped off the tip of the severed finger and stuck it on the bleeding stump to give it a finished appearance. The pain became less but he could do no work. Was disappointed that we could do nothing for him.
Riverside Patients. As we journeyed towards Lushai. old women & men came to us expecting to be made young again. Cripples and others came fondly hoping that one dose of the Sahib medicine would work complete cure. At one place a very old man quite blind & scarcely able to walk was brought by his daughter to be healed. (All this before we knew much about medicine) Can understand how Jesus was followed by sick &c when he could cure all by His word.
Trees & Fruits encountered on the journey to Lushai.
Plum, breadfruit (jack), bananas, mangoes, lemons, bael, coconut palms, betel nut or areca palms, date palms, sugarcane, guava, bamboos, castor oil plant, nux vomica – creepers with berries red white, & black. Seedpods like beans as long as ones arm, orchids & many flowering plants, wild spinach, giant elephant grass 24 ft high
Vegetables &c encountered on the journey to Lushai. In cultivated patches near villages – chilis, mustard, potatoes & radishes of gigantic size, some as much as 2 ft long & several inches think.
At one village we bought excellent bananas at 35 for a penny.
Met Tiger while taking walk on bank
The Fishing Postmaster. The Pmr of Jalnacherra, who is postmaster & signaller in one,
are often disconnects his instruments & puts out fishing on the river when he should be on duty.
Mohammedans & Hermits in forest by riverside. The red handkerchief spread out for alms. No mohammedan boatman passes without going up to the hut with a small present.
Animals encountered on way up to Lushai.
The silence on the river sometimes intense. Except for troupes of monkeys chattering in the trees or disporting themselves on the waters edge.
Couple of wild boar swam river in front of out boats.
(At other times have seen deer, wild dog, jungle fowl. Porcupine swimming river – wild chase & capture by boatman. Turtles – Elephant (turned out to belong to woodcutters) pheasants.
Bonfire & Snakes. When lighting a fire one night four very poisonous snakes came out of a hollow bamboo & were killed with difficulty. Paul at Malta.
Grand Gorges – took 5 hours to get through one. Ledges of rock like desert islands. No means of escape from them. Sheer wall behind, deep water in front. no foothold anywhere. Blocked by trees & snags – if boat were to sink could not scale the cliffs.
Roaring Rapids & Cataracts. (many wrecks – Loss of our own goods –
service dinner service – dynamite – boat hanging in tree &c)
23 May 1894
X Our first Boarder Saikunga. Started by giving him good bath with hot water & soap. Got him to have his long hair off. Bought him white coat & loin-cloth. Lives mostly in our house. We can’t take away his pipe. He is so clean that he becomes the wonder of the dirty little monkeys up at the village.
Discomforts of our new home It is very draughty. In stormy weather we have to close all doors & windows. Quite dark. Too windy even then inside to have lamp alight. Hit upon idea of cutting tiny windows over our tables which we glaze with old negative glasses with films scratched off. Quite a success. ⊗
Negative glass windows (see above) ⊗
Insect & reptile pests inside our house are numerous. But for our cats we should be swarming with Rats. Walls everywhere swarming alive with myriad of creatures like lice which it is impossible to get rid of (they come out of the bamboo) We papered the wall of our bathroom to make darkroom for photography. Next day we found it perforated everywhere by these creatures so that light could get through. They are very fond of gelatine films on photo plates & of film of photos and will destroy them in a single night. φ
Insect and Reptile Pests in our house at Aijal (continued – see last page) Lizards, ants, cockroaches, centipedes, earwigs, grasshoppers, crickets – but we take very little notice of them unless they jump into our milk jug.
Difficulties of Photography See near foot of last page marked φ
(Then the films come off the plates with the heat in hot weather. Tried washing down at stream – prints spoilt by minute grains of
sad sand injuring films – difficult to get enough water at house. Damp spoils plates. 60 good exposures all spoilt when went to Central India – by damp climate. Changing plates under bedclothes or beneath table in tropical country when not at home & without conveniences of any kind.)
6 Jun 1894
Wrecks on River. Last year 3 Mails went to the bottom of the river. 4 boats have already sunk this year but they fortunately have not contained mails.
20 Jun 1894
X Language difficulties. Spent an hour trying to find out whether “kluk lo” meant “better” or “worse.” Difficult words to pronounce – Nghar, nghing, theihnghil. So much depends on tone as in Chinese.
Our First Boarder (see back 2 pages.[See: 23 May 1894]) Saikunga went off to his village after being with us less than a month in order to be present at sacrifice of a pig at which none of the family may be absent Promises to be back in 9 days. (His village is Lalburas).
Mud-Pigs & Children The mud in the village in the rainy season is terrible. Pigs & children all wallow in it with great delight. Difficult to recognize children as human beings – Hair matted with clay – faces scarcely visible through mud. (Pelt one another with mud. Heavy rain washes them comparatively clean again) London boys would delight to do the same if they had the chance.
Lushai Thieves are uncommon. A thiefs possessions are all forfeited to the Chief & he himself expelled from the village. Whole family expelled if one of their number caught stealing. Would be killed if returned.
Officers take great interest in Lushais, offer suggestions (& sometimes ask for suggestions) as to best ways to benefit them &c
X Stereoscope very popular with the Lushais. Come in great numbers from far off villages to see the “wonderful thing which enables one to see the Sahib’s village.” (Listen to their remarks and get a lot of help in the language from doing so – could have learnt “How very wonderful” (a va mak em! [?]) over a thousand times.
White faces are greatly admired by the Lushais. They have never seen a white lady except in the stereoscope & they think the English girls – especially the pale ones – simply beautiful.
4 Jul 1894
Up Stream v Down Stream Twenty days is the quickest one can now get from Silchar to Sairang & yet when going down stream can get from Sairang to Silchar in two days (so rapid is the current ) without rowing.
18 Jul 1894
X School Boy Thief. Old lady brings her little son “Chongbonga” to be taught to read & write. Promised to take him later on. “No take him now. Thrash him, do anything you like with him; I don’t care if he dies with you.
School Boy Thief (Continued) I want him to learn to read & write & then perhaps someday he will be able to become a sepoy” So we took her son, gave him a good bath, and clean clothes and started his education. The lad would have made good progress only 3 days later our cook came to us and with graphic waving of his arms led us to the schoolroom & showed us a heap of feathers, feet &c of a fowl he had missed & in Chongbonga’s pot the bird itself plucked and ready to be cooked for tomorrows breakfast.
Next day we asked C. if he had seen our missing fowl. He described how he had seen a kite carry it off. We then took him to the schoolhouse & showed him feather &c in a corner. He was quite equal to the occasion & described how wild cats often kill fowls & leave the feathers about thus. Then we said that we had seen the fowl in his pot the day before. Said some boy must have put it there. Would not confess that he had stolen the fowl until he had several strips with the cane – when he could keep in the truth no longer.
Soon after being chastised he disappeared.
His father & mother take care of sepoy’s buffaloes at the Fort. The lad has become contaminated by contact with foreigners & has lost his native honesty.
Tinned Meats have been our mainstay for last 3 months – when one of the officers gave us a Good & we did justice to it. It lasted us 3 days.
Garden a Failure. Some vegetables killed by excess of rain Others scorched up by the sun. Others eaten up by insects & goats.
Bears eat Lushai maize.
Tiger killed gayal. Sepoy shot it. 8 1/2 ft long.
1 Aug 1894
Visit to Thanphunge’s jhoom. Very steep. Jhoom itself 80° angle. Refreshed with cucumber. Maize inside jhoom house.
Jhoom House. Hung with maize. (fence round with entrances fixed with rat trap
“Bear Scare” stick stuck in ground. Hollow bamboo suspended from it with a kind of kite attached so that when the wind blows bamboo is struck against the stick & gives forth a hollow sound, which in the silence of the forest is quite startling
16 Aug 1894
Mildew covers our books. They need wiping down everyday & even then cannot be kept free. Sometimes it rains for a week on end.
Leg of Porcupine a treat which we enjoy
High Prices for everything is the rule in Lushai. The sepoys have spoilt the people by paying such high prices for vegetables, fowls &c. We can get nothing for less than 4 annas – even though it be worth little more than 1/10th of that sum.
Exchange has dropped to 1/-5 to the Rupee.
Sairang (visit to). Fancy yourself having breakfast in England & dinner in India in the middle of her tropical summer. The change from cold to heat experienced in going from Aijal to Sairang is almost as bad. We left our home at 8am surrounded by clouds & cool air & after 13 mile walk reached Sairang nearly 4000 ft lower on the river. I lay on my back on old bamboo table in the rest house & felt literally as though I should die. (continued)
Sairang (Continued from over leaf) Surrounded by lofty mountains, on the river bank, not a breath of air can reach the wretched inhabitants. I have never been in a more awful place. A veritable Hell upon Earth. They get very little rain in the rains – ground all cracked & dry – devoid of vegetation – glare
of from the ground makes the eyes fairly ache. Add to the heat the presence of myriad of stinging mosquitoes and sandflies. Life a real burden. Only relief is afforded by burning from swarm of insects is afforded by burning sacking & sitting in the smoke. (Tarpi lu is best smudge).
There is small Lushai village there by Compulsion – Chief man Kapdaia.
Visit to such place makes us appreciate our mountain house – although we are so cold without a stove.
16 Aug 1894
Our unfortunate Dinner Set. We ordered
a tea & dinner services in February from the Ceramic Art Co, Staffordshire. Much delayed en route. After coming 10,000 miles was lost within 2 miles of Sarang by boat sinking – only tea service, which was in another boat, saved.
1 Sep 1894
Sea of Cloud stretching away to the horizon – no peaks visible. We seem on an island in space. Never. to. be. forgotten sight.
X The Language seems much more developed than we expected. During one week we have got 120 quite new words. Some simple words for action wh. can only be expressed in English by a sentence or by 3 or 4 words.
Have equivalent for many English words which we never expected such as “phosphorescent” – “opportune” – “impatient” – “regret” – “contradict” – “elastic” – “isolated” (these are a few of the many we have found during the last few days)
The Verb is troublesome. Seems to have only past, present & future tenses. Past and present often interchangeable – cannot find any definite rule yet.
12 Sep 1894
The Lushais hoped that their white conquerors would leave the country soon. The stone buildings at Aijal are giving them the impression that they mean to stay. They are not pleased at the prospect.
There are different theories abroad.
(a) some argue that is the sahibs mean to go they would not erect stone buildings.
(b) others say that they will go and leave
When will the white men go? (cont’d over leaf) all the buildings. Some threaten to murder all who have ever been friendly with the sahibs as soon as the sahibs leave the country. Some would hold that the sahibs have come to Lushai because there is not enough food for them in their own.
The World to the Lushai consists of the Lushai Hills and the
a fringe of land surrounding them. If only the few white men can be killed off there will be no more to come.
Sepoy & his Lover. Hitherto sepoys have been allowed to take Lushai wives; but the officers have found it undesirable & have put a stop to the practice. One young sepoy asked the Commander’s permission to marry a Lushai girl, but he was refused. This so vexed him that he resigned his post & went away to Sairang. The girl ran away from home in the night & she & her lover were proceeding quietly by boat to Silchar, when the girl’s father complained that the ex-sepoy had run away with his daughter without paying the marriage price. Word was sent by the authorities to the frontier stockade of Jalnacherra & the fugitives were caught and brought back. The man was ordered to return to the plains & the girl was returned to her father with instructions to “tie her up.” till the danger was passed. He did not do this however & she ran away again and joined her lover. By this time he wanted to leave the country but could not do so as he could not get rid of the girl – so being afraid to pass the stockade the two of them wandered in the forest, living on roots for several days & having a bad time of it. News came at last that they had reached the village one day’s journey north of Aijal. The father came to us and asked if we would refer to some of our books & see whether the pair would come into Aijal or
not run away to Silchar. We told him that we could not fortell [sic. foretell] future events but thought it likely she would not be able to pass frontier outpost. Lushai messengers were send out & returned with the sepoy & his lover. The girl is now in the village – the centre of admiring youngsters. The sepoy has been marched off to Aijal the butt of many a laugh and joke of his former comrades; but he he says that he could not get rid of the girl so what was he to do.
Mr Baring to take Mr St D’s place.
26 Oct 1894
Thangphunga & Suaka Pumped Dry. We have now pumped T&S. Quite dry & must look out for another victim. All we have pumped out of these two Lushais we have tried to cram into our own heads, but it won’t all stick there by a long way.
The Pumped dry Pundits (See foot of last page [Above entry])
The “Blues” I don’t think we have had a real good fit of the “blues” yet, which is a sure sign that we are making no too much progress in the language. I think a man who is progressing properly in a language should have a fit of “the Blues” about once a fortnight.
Khamliana the Sailo Chief begins to learn to read. Very quick. (Has for years been copying parts of a
certificate license without understanding meaning &c & so very soon learned to write a splendid hand.
Savunga the old Sailo chief visited us. Probably the oldest chief in the Hills. Savunga used to live in Lalhrima’s village, but after Savunga gave his granddaughter to Thangphunga Lalhrima cherished strong feelings of revenge toward T & his village (the village near our house) & made it so uncomfortable for Savunga that he left Lalhrimas & went to live with his grandson Khamliana (in separate house). The old gentleman is so old he cannot walk so was carried on the back of a retainer. He is 80 years of age & can still shoot well. Said to be a great shot. He visited us on his way from Lalhrimas to Khamlianas. Was very pleased with a scrap book wh. we showed him. He wore the famous vakul chang (Bhimaraj [Bhimraj] tail feathers) in his hair
X Cannot express religious ideas. We find is impossible to express our thoughts when we come to Religious matters, the language seems quite void of suitable words.
Not safe to visit Villages yet. We now know 6 or 7 chiefs who have paid us a visit.
10 Oct 1894
X Lushai Dictionary. We have been doing nothing but enter words in our dictionary: it is very tiring and monotonous work. I can sympathize with poor old Johnson for I am sure his head must often have ached (as mine does) after a long day’s work.
An attempt to Tame 2 Wild Kittens failed. Could not get near them. Made them little cave.
Rainy Season Troubles. The Climate in the plains was quite destructive enough to books & pictures, but this is four times as bad. Ruins everything. Every box or instrument which happens to be fixed together with GLUE dissolves partnership. The BOOKS in a day or two are covered with green & white mould (come out of their covers smell horrible) & if we were not pretty strongly riveted together I think WE SHOULD DROP TO PIECES. Then the (continued)
White Ants (continued from above) They have attacked the posts which support the house, climbed the walls & made themselves at home in the roof. The scrape, scrape, scrape of their little nippers never ceases day not night & if we do not renew the posts we shall have the house down upon our heads.
RATS. We are simply swarming with rats. They come from the forest every evening & take up their quarters in the house until daylight, amusing themselves by eating holes in the table clothes, & carrying off anything they can lay their little hands upon. Four times they have run away with the loaf of bread from the table when we were about to have dinner. (One came on table when I was out dining while we were sitting at table. Steal soap, shaving brushes, When out at Sherkor in 1909 stole my teeth & they were eventually found down a hole in next room)
Rats (continued) There is no pleasure or satisfaction in killing them, for they are no numerous that 4 or 5 more or less makes very little difference. Our pussy has got lost so the rats have it all their own way.
X School Boys soon tire of learning to read & write. Up to present seven boys have returned to their houses after studying only a little while.
Marriage of Dr. Jones of Silchar this month. W.G.A. married in Durban last July (19th) 1894.
26 Oct 1894
Models in paper made by me for the Lushais – “Windsor Castle”.
Chief Khama comes to learn to read & write.
7 Nov 1894
Lushais Criticise Home Photos These are Thangpunga’s criticisms on Mothers, Fathers, & Ethels photos just received from home
“How beautiful & white their faces are!”
“What nice chairs they are sitting on!”
“Their legs are cut off!” (Continued)
Home Photos & Lushai Critics (continued from over page)
“How fat your father is!”
“What a long beard!”
X Of Ethel he said – “What a lovely nose! Just like the noses we make of wax when we make models for casting” (they have flat noses & would scarcely believe that Ethel’s nose was real)(the same kind of remarks re Regies’ baby’s nose are made by the Lakhers 1909) “she looks rather younger than the lady in the picture.” He thought that Ethel would look much better if her upper lip were somewhat longer – & he pulled his own out to show me how it ought to be.
If a Bengali (uneducated) had seen the same picture he would probably have asked whether it was meant to represent a boat or a house.
Hornbill. We had a Hornbill for dinner. Lasted two days gave the boys the rest. Like beef – of dark colour.
Lushai Nicknames Political officer = Thauhra = Old Disagreeable. Others such as “Longnose”, “Crooked nose””Owl”, “Goggles” “Bigdog” “The Long Sahib” “Black Moustache” “Fair hair” (my name), “Bully” “Smiler”
Rainy Season just about to say “good bye”, not sorry to see the last of it.
3 Dec 1894
Calcutta (Letter from) (no news) for reason for our visit to Calcutta see letter dated 29 Mar 95
14 Dec 1894
Miss Williams at Silchar visiting her sister Mrs Dr Jones only been in India six weeks (Mrs. Aijal Jones later on)
25 Dec 1894
Posted at Jalnacharra on way back to Aijal from Calcutta
a type of Victorian-era overcoat
a species of wild oxen also known as mithun. Mizo term: sial