Chapter 148380103

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Chapter NumberIII
Chapter TitleA PIG HUNT
Chapter Urlhttp://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article148380103
Full Date1893-09-16
Page Number2
Corrections0
Word Count2854
IllustratedN
Last Corrected0000-00-00
Newspaper TitleEastern Districts Chronicle (York, WA : 1877 - 1927)
Trove TitleMaoriland Ho! Nature's Enchanting Wonder Isle. A Weird and Entrancing Romance
article text

CHAPTER 111.

The nallro sottlsmnnt of Msketu, on the Bay of I'lenty, Tnuranga, eonalated of about fifty wharroe, the walla and the rnnf balna built of a thick aabataneo eallal Kl Kl, which to Manufactured from the native flan, and It impervious to tha Qeroa and ooustant winter ralna. Thaaa liuU are ocattored over a fine patch of Abating about thraa hundred aorea in extant, and sheltered by tho Tonga Peak

Mountain.

Tha plaoe swarmed with dogs of al most every kind of mongrel; and tha pack came barking and snarling round the ho«la of our two friends, llowe and Vane, as they mill their way through the village (he morning following the

evonta of our laat chapter,

Te Hunna, the Maori chieftain, came forth to meet them, clad in hie hunting toga ot brown tnloa flax, his head adorned

with a large toho feather. Tho Maori waa1 surrounded by twenty of hit warrior*, all i ready armed for the fray. Tauranga atvarina with wild plga, and a iilg hunt la n favorite poatimo with tho Maori when he is not M war with lili nelglibora or the

PaknllAi.

Tha native uiea neither hone nor hound in thia pastime I indeed, the rocky ooun try where the porkers aro mostly found, will not admit of it. All that ii required are Bound lunga and a awift pair of

bods.

AfUr partaking of the cHief'a hoapl. tality. wliioii was nut inuoli lo the teste* of the young men, the pariy, with several dogs, headed for Tonga l'cak, where game was lo be had in plenty.

Temple. Yaw and his oompitnion were! both armod with a double-barrvlleit rifle, I and most of the Maoriea carried fuulltiu j pieaos. ft proved no child'a play toiling tip tbeat<«p aide of the mountain, whore there was no regular path, aave that made by the Uanriea with their tomahawks,

C:oae on noon tfco parly emerged upon a patch of Uiiok acrub, and here the chief . oalled a halt. Dividing his men into two

divisions the Maori dixpntohed one pari to the eastward, and turning to Vane and How* hi pointed out . dump of ginntio

Jtowl piaM, Md fir# vw« t» Nfibn,

At we drew near the spot Indicated the Muutrjr anrrnundinfi bcwno broken ana ifrog'lUr. Hugh knuri pine trees, some ri«ifi£ to s heigth of one hundred and sixty fcjl.grew almost sldo.by sine,'with tlliek coils of the New Zosiand creeper

supplo j*ck-curled and entwined about their brood trunki and branches, and descending thence to the ground ogam like ropes dangling from the epars of a stranded ship. . . ,

At length tlie.v entered a flat space where the undergrowth wns wry «">k and luxurimil. Hero tho chief halted, I and ilirrdcd ojir two friends to accompany

two of ]iis men to a «p»t lower down. Ono of tho wnnyors could spews a little

L"?You know how to cntcli pifi ?" aaid he

toll'itrc. ,

" N" ; ! have never laken part in a pig

hunt 'jofufo."

" All, I'ftkeha aonn soe."

Ho dived suddenly into a thick copso at ferns. and laying down upon his face, jpgnri making a succession of grunts and squeaks »t> imltntivly (rue to the nmna« made by tlio purcinu *pocio* that Vane

iitalniitiy brought hi* gun to hia shoulder

for a shot.

Tlio Maori laughed a queer noiseless laugh at thu Pakolia's mi* uko, and again repented thn sound*. . > (

.' Pty, htm sly fellow j smell Pakoha, _ laid tho sarago, with a grin. " Maori mori sly than pig. Him no like Maori, not a little hit. Maori fond of pig-' And lio laughed again, but no sound fol lowed. ..

Vane and Howe crouohed down bcsido

their swarthy companion* for soine time, wlwn gradually they hocamo cognisant

of a low rustling sound homo aistanno

"^TMn Maori co.isod hl» mimicry, and

I looked up with an intelligent glanoo. Presently tho sounds (.'row nearer, ao ootnpatiiori hy Iioumo grunts, nnd im mediately live or «* full grown pigs, headed by . fleron-lnokluc hour with long I projecting tusks, caino biuiidlng forth, nnd. brefilling envor at tho night of the i hunters, fled awlfrly out Into tho more open bush land, and In aline almost with the ohlef and his men. Horc ono of the dogs broke from the party, and the I frightened pig*, witching sight of him, wheeled half round, and scampered away

Inacotherdlreotion.

Tally-hoi Tlic clisiohogin. Pukohas, Maories, and dog* were in full cry.

Over falleu log", and over deep croi-ks I and gullies went tho game, aoreaming

with rage and fright. Thu dog*, w'T gsiiing mouths, stretehed tlremselvos out after their prey i while the Maories, In frantic delimit, Usj.sd high in the air, tittering their terrible bat'le cry, their features distorted, and clearing anaoe with tlielr tomahawks at cvory bound.

Tally-hot over boulders, maaslvoard fantastic in shape, and standing Itko huge giants to bar the pursuers course; over

sharp jutting woks and across deep chasms, where ono false slop "puld }»**.

boou sudden doath, Mnorl and l akeha running and shouting, yelling and laugh ing, their breath going Mid doming in alwrt gasps, oaoli is striving who shall bo Brst In the e*oltlng raoe.

Tally-ho I through swamps and bog went the grunters for dear life, their long annuls covered with foam, their hair bristling like quills upon tho fretful por cupine. The swiftest dog was within a few feet of the Mnlermort porker when the boar turned at bay, and with one aweep of Ins sharp tusks inflieted a wound which totally disabled the poor brute.

Onward yet 1 The chase Is now g.ilng at a slower rate, and the dogs are Caat gaining on their pray. T« Hunne is load I ftia tlio v»n, end eeemi to have plenty of

..flay " In htm yet i Vane is next, etrug

nllnn like a second Deerfoot for tho lead i Unwe te half a mile awav In the rear, pulling and blowing liks a whale, and u»*ticulatlng like a madman.

Tally-ho I A Maori pig hunt is a line thing to lost the soundness of ones

lH At 'the bottom of a d<*ep ravine the pigs

were run down, and tho tlual struggla be twoon thorn and the dugs took place. One courageous brute, a largo dingo, coined tlie ooar by the throat, ana in aplte of aavvral wouuds held on to his prey until Te Ilunna cam# up, who, with one blow of his keen tomahawk, aplit the boar's ekull in Uaiu. Anotlior dog caught a porker by the oar, and there held him until ho was eocured and finally deipatuhed by ono of the Mnorios. A ttnu plump pin tried to hide itself behind a mass of rook that opened out to the hill above, but Temple Vaiio brought him down with a clever ahot that won the

goodwill of the ohieftain. .....

After tho pigs had beendeapatched the Maories Med and dragged them to the creek elose by, where they wore thorough ly cleansed. .

Tue butohsrlng then b'ffan, and Howe noticed the Maoriea carefully examined the lirar of each pig. He e"<l">red the jUMiita end wee informed thet * filtuy disease ta pwdent amung the wild pin of the Northern Island, and that the only way of detecting those diseased is by sundry white spots over the eurfaoe of the liver.

A great crowd awaited ns at the Maori village on our return with the seme. T* Burnt iniiitod on V»m h\» com* panlon dining with him off the spoil, and remaining with him at the Wopu that night. To give the dinner more tuue the chieftain sent an invitation to the minion, vy of the plioo-Hiikw BdU- who oined the party forthwith, together with lis anutont, Ourke Brady by nsine, and the imalliwt, yet. trf hal, the merriest and most antlo sprite for an adult tu the colony. His brogus vai H)o»t refreshing, and his stories both original and laugh

aW» in tbe

This oomioal little joker kept tho com pany tu exoollont humor uutil the small hours of morning, and when it was day he proposed to snow our friends the Hot Springs in the vicinity.

Tlie offer was aooepted by our two frlmids, who, after they had indulged in the lumry of a plunge into tlie river aud had breakfasted, atuftud ol)' tu Orak Hint on foot, aooompaniea by Burke Brady, who acted aa guide, together with Mr Bull and Te lluiuia.

A dense fog lay upon the Waikato as they started j they usd aeteral miles to walk, but before tliey had completed their journey the thick mist had vanished beneath the beams of tho aun, and now, what a sight. In switt course, forming nipids alter rapids, tho Waikato waa plunging through a doi-p-valley between ateop rising mountains t its floods, whirl ing and foaming round two snmll rocky islands In the middle of the river, wore dulling vitt) a uproiir tliMUgh thu dulile of the valley. Alun^ its banks white clouds of a'eam were nsoeudiug from hot oasosdes fslling into tho rivor. and Irora buins full of boiling water shut in by a white mass of stone.

Yonder a itonmlng fountain was rising I and falling i now th"ro sprang from aiutlier plaona second fountain} this ulio csnssd in Its turn ; tnon two cum monocd pWyittg simultaneously, one<y4^ low at to* river l^ank. and tho oth»r op pMlt* VfMBtfflMfc U>»

play continued with endless ohanges,ai though experiments were being made with grand waterworks bn see whether the waterfalls had a sufficient supply, Howe began to count the places where . boiling water basin waa visible, or where a cloud of stesm indicated the existence of such, but they became ao inter'mlAgltd within hia vision that he waa unable to survey them accurately.

The region of springs extends alone tho river a distance of about a mile on both bank*, the larger portion of them being aituated uoon thi right bank. It is, however, difficult of access, niuca the rapid stream cannot be passed close by the springs themselves, but only far above or below, and then it would be necessary to climb alone the steep sloping river banks, corcrca with dense undergrowth, where the traveller, upon a anil totally nottcncd by hot vapours, would be every mmnont in danger of sinking into boiling mud. The party wore obliged to content themselves with a closer inspection of the springs situated un the left river bank liie largest is called by tlio natives Puiu-To-Muni, and is close by tho bank

of tlio river.

Tho manner in irliich thry practically experienced the intermittent properties of this fountain proves sufficiently how much caution is necessary in approaching [ such springs for tho first time. Burke Brady, disdaining the warning of Mr Hell, and wishing to enjoy the luxury of a bath, plunged into the atream, when suddenly loud detonations were heard, and they saw tho water madly boiling up in n basin uloso by. Brady staricd bac

again in terror, and gained the bank just in time to escape a shower bath of boiling water, for now, amid hissing and roaring, a_ stoaming water column was being ejeotod from the basin in a slanting direc tion, and to the holght of about Iwonty feet' When the shower had aubsided we | 'stepped up to tho basin and found it ' empty, ana were able to look down to a depth of eight fact into a funnel ehaned, gradually contracting aperture, from whioh steam escaped with a hissing noise. Gradually the water rose again, and after the lapse of a few minutes the seoond eruption took place.

Orakhini proved very interesting to them, apart from the many material curios in ita neighborhood. Through the influence of Mr Boll and Te Hunna, they had an opportunity of witnessing the Manrics at work, making rugs and mats.

The flax plant grows uioat abundo.at ly in every part of the Waikato. To the native it has proved the most useful plant in the whole vegetable kingdom, both sooially and pocimiarly; from it the Maori builds and ornaments hia whare, manufactures his clothing;, and it ia also one of the best paying commodities of barter between hint and hia Pakeha brother. I<s growth is rery rapid, the stalk ahootlng to a height of ten to twelve feet, the apex being crowned by pale yel , low blouom, which, Uae a pretty appear* anoe while in flower. In a valley to the rear of the aettleinent we found the

[ Maories employed on a plantation of flax.

Here were a dozen dark forma of both sexes aquatting in a cluster cutting down the broad blades; others were conveying it in bundles to a third party Mated on I the bank of the river { the latter were engaged aplitting the leaf and stripping off tie inner fibre with mutiel shells-a rather peculiar and dexterously managed

Sroaaas, almost impossible for any but the

laories themselves to execute with sue

' oess. The fibre produced from the leaf

is white in oolor, and ia remarkably sjft and silk-like to the touoh. Burke Brady t<»k a leaf of it to make a whip for a Maori eliild; he cut it acrosa, and then stripped off the inner fibre by merely pressing the end of his thumb along it.

Tlio missionary informed them that the soft substance thus produced is oalled inuka, and when dried and assorted is . used in making the moat luxurious mata and ustivo apparel. " But you shall see them at work in the Kiitaka whare,"said ho, leading the way to a long shed situ I ated on the rising ground above the flux

b'.tth.

This building was c'.ow upon a hundred feet long, with a corresponding width, and contained at«>ut fifty native women and girW in groups of fire and aix, busily employed in the various stages of rug makilig. Here wire a group platting the porrrw, a very common mat, only used u floorcloth. The material u«ed was com posed of unacrapcd flax aplit into narrow bands and closely woven togethor. When finished it preson'ed a (rloasr atraw-like appcaranoe. Tt ey also make the whole paraphernalia of ptatea and dishes in use at the Hapu out of the same aubatanca.

The next party were engaged on the koro. This was manufactured with scraped flax, the machine used for the process aomewhat resembling a harp After it came from thia rude applianee the mat waa ornamented with various dyod tag*. The dyes of different colors are Obtained with little trouble from the bark of treea in the vicinity.

"The rng mat most valued by the Manriea," aaid the missionary, "is the

This is woven of the vory finest white rnuca, and is notsnliied by any tiig or ornament, except a border about a foot in width of a different color. The bolder ia black as a rule, except when the aeta of parallel stgxag lines and the apaoea be tween theui are left white, thus forming a beautiful article. Speaking a few words in the Maori language (o a grey-beaded old obief who accompanied tbem, Mr Bell conducted them to a tier of shelves, screened by thiek mats, at the other end of th« whars. tlere were piled up costly rugs ar.d dresses, fanoy articles in mat ting, and a host of brilliant colored trifles intended for the Auckland market. The chief unfolded one splendid rug that es pecially attracted their attention. It was as large as one of our railway wrappers, dyed black, and with a aoft velvst like shade, its only ornament a white cirole in the centre, about the s»i! of a dinner plate. Howe held it in hia banda admir ing its beauty, when Brady, who was striding at his side, seized hold of it, and throwing it over his puny form, strode majestically up and down the shed like a stage Icing.

Tiie Blforjet, as a rule, rarely indulge in laughter, but the antic* of this lively comrade set them chuckling from left to right.

"Arrahlt wouldn't I make a purty

monarch, wid a throw of gold to ait on, and a togay like this about me, an' all the natives of the Watkato for my anbjosts, for bjtthe whole of those hussies here for my wives, oh f" exelsimcd Brady, with a broad grin wrinkling bis rough face from 'jmw to chin, aud atrutting to and fro after tho inauner of a peacock with out spread tail.

Mr Bell tried to look pare, but couldn't manage it, and ao foil to laugh ing until li° wallet coiivmIsbiI.

"Troth, I'd b» « merry king, ma buuchul I" continued Brady, witli just the ghoit of pe»t up roguery gleaming from his eyes. I'd bundle aomu of tliemsptl neeM away down to the oity of Auckland furacauoo full of whisky, an* the fust blaokeusrd that gave in before he emptied the third bottle, begone l'daentenee him to marry tb» ugliest ould hyena about the pjwfcJwMCmartw, MB 8