We Slept On The Road, About Seven Miles To The North Of The Asua.
following morning we started.
The route led over a fine country parallel
with the Nile, that still continued in a rockbound channel on the west
of the march. Throughout the route from the Un-y-Ame junction, the soil
had been wretchedly poor, a mass of rock and decomposed granite forming
a sand that quickly parched during the dry season. The level of the
country being about 200 feet above the Nile, deep gullies cut the route
at right angles, forming the natural drains to the river.
In these ravines grew dense thickets of bamboos. Having no native guide,
but trusting solely to the traders' people, who had travelled frequently
by this route, we lost the path, and shortly became entangled amongst
the numerous ravines. At length we passed a village, around which were
assembled a number of natives. Having regained the route, we observed
the natives appearing in various directions, and as quickly disappearing
only to gather in our front in increased numbers. Their movements
exciting suspicion, in a country where every man was an enemy, our party
closed together; - we threw out an advance guard, - ten men on either
flank, - the porters, ammunition, and effects in the centre; while
about ten men brought up the rear. Before us lay two low rocky hills
covered with trees, high grass, and brushwood, in which I distinctly
observed the bright red forms of natives painted according to the custom
of the Bari tribe.
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