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ance was the having inadvertently asked how far we were off from our destination. I would advise no traveller to do this; he is sure to be disappointed; and when he is told (as he will certainly be) that he is near, the miles appear doubly long. The Indians take no account of time or distance. They stop when they get tired, and arrive when God pleases. They live on plantains--roasted, boiled, and fried; and in the way of food, a yucca is their greatest good. Talking with a young Indian, who had a light load and kept up with me very well, I was struck with the comparative value of things. A Londoner, who has been absent for some time from his favorite city, and subjected to some privations on that account, could not have spoken of the elegances and comforts of London with more enthusiasm than my companion spoke of Pueblo Viejo, a settlement of half a dozen Indians, which we were approaching. “There are plantains,” said he; "there are yuccas; there is everything"-(Hay platanos, hay yuccas, hay todo)--and I really expected to be surprised and pleased when I arrived at Pueblo Viejo. The town, in fact, consisted of a single hut, with a plantain grove, a small patch of yuccas, and another of sugar-cane. In several places near by, people were felling the trees and forming chacras. The road lay sometimes across and sometimes along these huge trees; and I envied the bare feet and firm step of my companion--feeling that my tired legs and muddy boots might, at any moment, play me a slippery triek, and cost me a broken leg or sprained ancle.
At eleven, we arrived at Juana del Rio, a settlement of five or six houses, on the right bank of the river, named after the lady of Señor Martins, whom we met at Cucheros. The houses were all shut
and nobody seemed to be at home. Here we crossed the river, (one hundred yards broad, and smooth and deep.) and walked down the left bank about half a mile to the pueblo of San Antonio del Tingo Maria. Tingo is the Indian term for the junction of two rivers, the Monzon emptying into the Huallaga just above this. The governor, an intelligent and modest young man, a former friend of Ijurra, welcomed us cordially, and gave us a capital breakfast of chicken broth.
Maria—Vampires—Blow-guns-Canoe navigation-Shooting monkeys—Tocache-Sion-Salt hills of Pilluana.
The following table gives the distance between Lima and the head of
canoe navigation on the Huallaga river: From Lima to Chaclacayo
18 miles. to Santa Ana to Surco
18 to San Mateo
18 to Acchahuarcu
13 to Morococha
12 to Oroya
17 to Tarma
16 to Palcamayo
15 to Junin
18 to Carhuamayo
15 to Cerro Pasco
20 to Caxamarquilla
15 to San Rafael
15 to Ambo
20 to Huanuco
15 to Acomayo
14 to Chinchao
16 to Chihuangala
20 to La Cueva
20 to Tingo Maria
This distance of three hundred and thirty-five miles may be shortened twenty-eight by going direct from Lima to Cerro Pasco. (We passed round by Tarma.) The traveller will find that the distance is divided in the table into days' journeys nearly. Thus it will cost him, with loaded mules, twenty-one days to reach the head of canoe navigation on the Huallaga by this route, and nineteen by the other. The last thirty miles between Chihuangala and Tingo Maria are travelled on foot, though there would be no difficulty in opening a mule-road.
Any number of mules may be had in Lima at a hire of about seventyfive cents a day. I paid more; but this was to be expected, for I bargained with the muleteers that they were to stop where I pleased, and as long as I pleased. The feed of a mule will average twelve and a half cents per day. The load is two hundred and sixty pounds.
It would be difficult to persuade a muleteer to take a traveller all the distance. They do not like to leave their own beat, and the traveller has to change his mules, on an average, every hundred miles.
The passage of the Cordillera at the season of the year when we crossed is neither very tedious nor laborious. In fact, we enjoyed much the magnificent scenery; we were pleased with the manners and habits of a primitive people; and we met hospitality and kindness everywhere. In the season of the rains, however, the passage must be both difficult and dangerous.
August 2.—Tingo Maria is a prettily-situated village, of forty-eight able-bodied men, and an entire population of one hundred and eightyeight. This includes those who are settled at Juana del Rio and the houses within a mile or two.
The pueblo is situated in a plain on the left bank of the river, which is about six miles in length, and three miles in its broadest part, where the mountains back of it recede in a semi-circle from the river. The height above the level of the sea is two thousand two hundred and sixty feet. The productions of the plain are sugar-cane, rice, cotton, tobacco, indigo, maize, sweet potatoes, yuccas, sachapapa, or potato of the woods, (the large, mealy, purple-streaked tuberous root of a vine, in taste like a yam, and very good food.) The woods are stocked with game-such as pumas, or American tigers; deer; peccary, or wild hog; ronsoco, or river hog; monkeys, &c. For birds--are several varieties of " curassow," a large bird, something like a turkey, but with, generally, a red bill, a crest, and shining blue-black plumage; a delicate "pava del monte," or wild turkey; a great variety of parrots; with large, black, wild ducks, and cormorants. There are also rattlesnakes and vipers. But even with all these, I would advise no traveller to trust to his gun for support. The woods are so thick and tangled with undergrowth that no one but an Indian can penetrate them, and no eyes but those of an Indian could see the game. Even he only hunts from necessity, and will rarely venture into the thick forest alone, for fear of the tiger or the viper. There are also good and delicate fish in the river, but in no great abundance.
The inhabitants are of a tribe called Cholones, which was once large and powerful. I like their character better than that of any Indians
whom I afterwards met with. They are good-tempered, cheerful, and sober, and by far the largest and finest-looking of the aborigines that I have encountered. They are obedient to the church and attentive to her ceremonies; and are more advanced than common in civilization, using no paint as an ornament, but only staining their arms and legs with the juice of a fruit called huitoc, that gives a dark, blue dye, as a protection against the sand-flies, which are abundant, and a great nui
The place is generally very healthy. The common diseases are lymphatic swellings of the body and limbs, (supposed to be caused by exposure to the great humidity of the atmosphere while fishing at night,) and sarna, (a cutaneous affection, which covers the body with sores, making the patient a loathsome object.) These sores dry up and come off in scabs, leaving blotches on the skin, so that an Indian is frequently seen quite mottled. I imagine it is caused by want of cleanliness, and the bites of the sand-fies. They take, as a remedy, the dried root of a small tree called sarnango, grated and mixed with water. It is said to have a powerfully-intoxicating and stupefying effect, and to cause the skin to peel off.
The huitoc is a nut-like fruit, about the size of a common black walnut with its outer covering. It is, when ripe, soft, of a russet color outside, and filled with a dark-purple pulp and small seeds. The tree is slender, and some fifteen or twenty feet high, shooting out broad leaves, with the fruit growing at their base and underneath, like the bread fruit. There is also here a small tree called añil, or indigo, with a leaf narrow at its base and broad near the extremity, which yields as deep a dye as the plant. There are also gay and fragrant flowers in the gardens of the Indians.
Ijurra shot a large bat, of the vampire species, measuring about two feet across the extended wings. This is a very disgusting-looking animal, though its fur is very delicate, and of a glossy, rich inaroon color. Its mouth is amply provided with teeth, looking like that of a minia
tiger. It has two long and sharp tusks in the front part of each jaw, with two smaller teeth, like those of a hare or sheep, between the tusks of the upper jaw, and four (much smaller) between those of the lower. There are also teeth back of the tusks, extending far back into the mouth. The nostrils seem fitted as a suction apparatus. Above them is a triangular, cartilaginous snout, nearly half an inch long, and a quarter broad at the base; and below them is a semi-circular flap, of nearly the same breadth, but not so long. I suppose these might be placed over the puncture made by the teeth, and the air underneath exhausted by the nostrils, thus making them a very perfect cupping
glass. I never heard it doubted, until my return home, that these animals were blood-suckers; but the distinguished naturalist, Mr. T. R. Peale, tells me that no one has ever seen them engaged in the operation, and that he has made repeated attempts for that purpose, but without
On one occasion, when a companion had lost a good deal of blood, the doors and windows of the house in which his party was lying were closed, and a number of these bats, that were clinging to the roof, killed; but none of them were found gorged, or with any signs of having been engaged in blood-sucking. I also observed no apparatus proper for making a delicate puncture. The tusks are quite as large as those of a rat, and, if used in the ordinary manner, would make four wounds at once, producing, I should think, quite sufficient pain to awaken the most profound sleeper. Never having heard this doubt, it did not occur to me to ask the Indians if they had ever seen the bat sucking, or to examine the wounds of the horses that I had seen bleeding from this supposed cause. On one occasion I found my blanket spotted with blood, and supposed that the bat (having gorged himself on the horses outside) had flown into the house, and, fastening himself to the thatch over me, had disgorged upon my covering and then flown out. There was no great quantity of blood, there being but five or six stains on the blanket, such as would have been made by large drops. I presumed, likewise, from the fact of the drops being scattered irregularly over a small surface, that the bat had been hanging by his feet to the thatch, and swinging about. The discovery of the drops produced a sensation of deep disgust; and I have frequently been unable to sleep for fear of the filthy beast. Every traveller in these countries should learn to sleep with body and head enveloped in a blanket, as the Indians do.
I saw here, for the first time, the blow-gun of the Indians, called, by the Spaniards, cerbatana; by the Portuguese of the river, gravatana, (a corruption, I imagine, of the former, as I find no such Portuguese word;) and by the Indians, pucuna. It is made of any long, straight piece of wood, generally of a species of palm called chonta—a heavy, elastic wood, of which lows, clubs, and spears are also made. The pole or staff, about eight feet in length, and two inches diameter near the mouth end, (tapering down to half an inch at the extremity,) is divided longitudinally; a canal is hollowed out along the centre of each part, which is well smoothed and polished by rubbing with fine sand and wood. The two parts are then brought together; nicely woolded with twine; and the whole covered with wax, mixed with some resin of the forest, to make it hard. A couple of boars' teeth are fitted on each side of the mouth end, and one of the curved front teeth of a small animal,