Page:Picturesque Nepal.djvu/91

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45
METHODS OF LOCOMOTION

badly formed corkscrew through the two ramparts of mountains which intervene between the railway terminus at Raxaul and the valley of Nepal. In these circumstances the means of progression may be defined as the "go as you please" order, because before the end is reached, most known methods of locomotion, and several unknown ones, will have been called into requisition. Usually an elephant, two horses, several kinds of palanquin, and one's own feet, are all utilized. The first stage is ordinarily performed in a palanquin, although when the road has been badly breached by rains an elephant is often useful.

In the mysterious light of the false dawn we leave the bungalow at Raxaul in order to accomplish the 27 miles between this and the first halting-place at Churia. The scenery at first is the ordinary plains-land of India, through which the road in the form of an embankment drives a straight way. Breaks in this embankment are frequent, owing to the softness of the materials used, and the force of the rains. Several streams have to be forded. The atmosphere in the late autumn