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Kau and Journey to Kaawaloa.

At half-past six in the morning, we landed in Kau, that is grandpa and I did; grandma went on in the steamer to Kealakekua Bay. Rev. Mr. Gulick met us as we stepped on shore. Horses were in waiting, and we were soon in the saddle ready for our seven miles’ ride to Waiohinu. Mr. and Mrs. Gulick have here a boarding-school for native girls. They had nine pupils of various shades and sizes. Some of them seemed very bright and intelligent, and were quick and handy about their work. Beside their studies, they are beginning to learn to make their own clothes and to do housework.

Sabbath morning we visited the Sabbath-school. As we entered, the children were singing in Hawaiian the hymn, “I want to be an Angel,” and soon after “I have a Father in the Promised Land,” both of them to the familiar tunes the children sing with us. It quite carried me back in association to our home Sabbath-schools. The Hawaiians love to sing, and the children sing with all their hearts, just as our children do.

Grandpa gave them a short talk, and then we went into the church, and he addressed the native congregation, an intelligent and well-dressed body of men and women. The Hawaiians as a race are excessively fond of flowers. Some of the girls wore wreaths of rosebuds round their necks; some had flowers in their hair, and others held a few in their hands. The judge of the district, who had a little daughter in Mr. Gulick’s school, brought her a wand of roses, wreathed round a stick, which he handed to her with a smile as she came into church.

In the afternoon, grandpa preached to the foreign residents. Every white person but one in the district was present, making sixteen in all including ourselves. There were only four ladies, most of the men having native wives. The shoemaker, the blacksmith, the missionary, the planter, all met in that little parlor, to hear a sermon in their native tongue. It made no difference what was their religious belief; they came dressed in their best, and some of them joined in singing the hymns, the tunes doubtless familiar to them long ago, before they left their father’s roof.

Monday morning we started on our journey across the island, to where grandma was staying. Our baggage was packed on a mule, and the saddle-bags filled with our eatables.

“What are saddle-bags?” asked Willie.

They are two bags fastened on a broad strip of leather, made to fit on the back part of a saddle, so arranged that a bag will hang on each side of the horse, the two thus balancing each other.

Mr. Gulick accompanied us, and quite a number of natives traveled a part of the way. We started in a rain; six or seven miles of the road were good; the rest was bad enough to make up for it. The first half-day we passed over that kind of lava called “a-a,” the whole tract, as far as the eye could reach, looking as if a mountain of lava had been thrown thousands of feet in the air, and fallen, crumbled and broken, into irregular ridges and heaps, blackened and barren. In riding, we passed over an apology for a road, reminding me of our American roads when filled in with broken stone before being covered with the gravel. Some of the ridges were fearfully steep and jagged. Here it seemed as if as a friend remarked “we were out of sight of land.” Hardly a bush or tree was to be seen. I never knew the meaning of desolation before. We grew weary of the dull black scene, and it rained and rained, but we kept on, up one steep place and down another. The last part of our day’s ride was through woods, over hard lava, which they call “pahoihoi;” but it was along a mountain side, and the same steep ridges followed us. Darkness came just as we neared the native village where we were to spend the night. We had passed over a hard road of thirty-five miles, and been ten hours in the saddle. We were, of course, not sorry to dismount, which we did at the largest native house. The man of the house was down at the sea-shore; the family were of course not expecting foreigners. In the center of the house was a fire of glowing coals, and near it sat an old woman stringing candle-nuts upon a cocoa-nut fiber, which were their only lamps.

“What are candle-nuts?” asked the children.

They grow on a beautiful tree called “kukui,” or candle-nut tree. The nuts are about the size of a walnut, and are so oily as to burn quite well.

Some one went over to the church, a simple thatched house like the rest, and brought us the only two chairs the village possessed. We set out our simple meal on the mat, and by twos and threes the natives dropped in to see us, bringing children and babies; so that by the time our supper was over, almost all the village were present to see the “houris” or foreigners. After we had finished, we had family worship, Mr. Gulick acting as interpreter. Then Mr. G. asked where we were to sleep. Our landlord and his wife had one corner of the room, another man and his wife another corner, our native men a third, and we the fourth. Learning that our shawls were wet, the son brought out a large bed tapa for our covering. Taking our bags for pillows, we lay down to rest, sleep, I can not say, for fleas and cockroaches were too abundant to permit this.

“What is tapa, aunty?” asked Willie.

Tapa is their native cloth made from the bark of trees. They take the inner part of the bark, I believe, and beat it with mallets of very hard wood until it is soft and flexible, wetting the bark from time to time. It looks like a kind of paper, rather than cloth. These cloths the natives dye with various colors, in patterns to suit their own fancy. The bed tapas are from three to five large sheets placed one above another, and are very warm and comfortable.

Early next morning, we started on our journey through field and forest, and reached Mr. Paris’s house about half-past two, having accomplished our journey of sixty miles in eighteen hours. We were cordially welcomed by the family, and were glad indeed to be with grandma again.

We walked one evening to the house near by, where Kapiolani and her husband Naihe lived. You remember Kapiolani was the brave princess I told you of. It was a stone house, built of solid coral rocks, the walls three feet thick, and is on an eminence commanding a fine view of the sea. No one was now living in the house; but quite a number of little kittens, wild as they could be, scampered in terror from room to room, as we went through the apartments.

Next morning, Mr. Paris took us out to ride. We visited a native church about two miles from his house, a pretty stone building, nicely finished off inside with koa wood, much resembling mahogany. The horse grandpa rode was a handsome black fellow; mine was a large sorrel called Bonaparte. Both horses had a decided aversion to going through puddles of water. Bonaparte had been broken in by a native, who hurt him about the head, after which, he had a great antipathy to natives; indeed, he had a dislike to any strangers. After a time, he got to know me; but if a native tried to touch him, he became almost frantic. He was a very easy horse for riding, and I became quite fond of him, and used to feed and give him water. One day we were all out riding, and as we came toward the house, I galloped into the yard and dismounted on the stone wall, which we used as a horse-block. They called to me that they were going on, so, as I had the bridle in my hand, I prepared to mount, when a good native deacon came forward to help me. The horse’s nostrils dilated, and he plunged about almost drawing me off the wall, and was the perfect image of anger. I succeeded in making the good man understand that he must go away, then talked soothingly to the horse, patted his head gently, and finally, as he came near enough, threw myself into the saddle, and had a good ride. Now you see, children, what kindness can do. If I had ever been rough with the horse, or unkind to him, he would not have had such confidence in me, and I could not have soothed him down, and so should have lost my ride.