Page:Lake Ngami.djvu/354

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low—honest, willing, obliging, industrious, enduring, but, above all, an inimitable "tracker." Indeed, in this respect he surpassed the Bushmen. Many a weary mile have I trodden under his able guidance, and many a wild beast have I laid low by his assistance. His sight was also remarkable. I rather pride myself on my experience as a woodsman, and usually proved a match for the natives; but this youth beat me hollow. My men called him Kamapyu—a most appropriate name, since it signified hot water. I was at last compelled to part with him, which I did with considerable reluctance. I rewarded his services, which had proved invaluable to me, by a variety of things, besides sufficient cattle to buy him half a dozen wives, an acquisition which, next to carnivorous food, is the greatest bliss of a savage.

After my departure from Jonker's I directed my steps toward Cornelius. On taking leave of this chief the previous year, I promised forthwith to return with a supply of goods, provided he and his people behaved themselves satisfactorily. In order to save time, I dispatched a messenger to acquaint him with my approach, as also to request him to call his tribe together, and urge them to bring such cattle as they desired to dispose of. My wish was attended to; for, on arriving at the werft, I found about two hundred head of cattle waiting for me, which, after some little bargaining, I secured in the course of two days. I had the misfortune, however, to lose a small portion of this number, which broke through the kraal in the night, and were never again heard of. I strongly suspect they were stolen by the original owners. I had also the mishap to get my telescope spoiled. Being probably smitten by the lustre of the metal, the mischievous Namaqua lads extracted the object-glass, which could be of no earthly use to them except as an ornament.

About this time two of my horses died of the "horse-sickness." One still remained, and, though a remarkably fleet animal, was so shy as to be useless as a hunter. He was the