He Said That He Had Escaped Most Of
It By Getting Inside The Coral Reef Round Vanua Levu, But Even During
The Short Time He Had Been Out In The Storm, He Had Had To Throw The
Greater Part Of His Cargo Overboard.
From the way he spoke, he had
evidently been drinking, possibly trying to forget his lost cargo.
Before I left Fiji I heard that the LURLINE had gone to her last
berth. She was driven on to a coral reef in a bad storm off the coast
of Taviuni. The captain seemed to stand in much fear of Ratu Lala. He
told me many thrilling yarns about him; said he robbed his people
badly, and added that he did not think that I would get on well with
him, and would soon be anxious to leave.
I landed at the large village of Somo-somo, glad to be safely on
TERRA FIRMA once more. It was a pretty village, with a large mountain
torrent dashing over the rocks in the middle of it. The huts were
dotted about irregularly on a natural grass lawn, and large trees,
clumps of bamboo, coconuts, bread-fruit trees, and bright-coloured
"crotons" added a great deal to the picturesqueness of the village. At
the back the wooded hills towered up to a height of nearly 4,000 feet,
and white streaks amid the mountain woods showed where many a fine
waterfall tumbled over rocky precipices.
Ratu Lala lived in a wooden house, built for him (as "Roko" for
Taviuni), by the government, on the top of a hill overlooking the
Enter page number
Page 10 of 217
Words from 2577 to 2847