My Firmness In Refusing To Pay The Men For More Time Than Was Necessary
Produced A Salutary Effect Upon Raja Besar.
He fixed fair prices on things
I wanted to buy, which before he had not done, and I made him tie labels
on the specimens I bought.
As he was truthful, he finally served as well
as Lidju. On the last day of our stay he helped me to repress the
eagerness of the Dayaks to "turn an honest penny." The prahus, besides
being defective, were not large enough for many men, and I was determined
not to have more than three in each, a quite sufficient number when going
downstream. I have a suspicion that he objected to four for reasons of
Owing to the rapid current, we made the return voyage in two hours, and
when we got to the Mahakam River we found it very much swollen, with logs
floating downstream beside us. Our low-lying prahus were leaking and the
situation was not agreeable, though I should have felt more anxious had I
not been with Dayaks, who are extremely able boatmen. At Long Pahangei the
captain from Long Iram, who is also the controleur of that district, had
arrived and was waiting on account of the overflow of the river. I had an
hour's talk with this pleasant man, who thinks that the Dayaks on the
Upper Mahakam ultimately must die out because they do not have enough
children to perpetuate the tribe.
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