The Head Hunters of Northern Luzon eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 162 pages of information about The Head Hunters of Northern Luzon.
Chico unrolled itself in a straight line between green-sloped mountains, rising from its very banks and towering into the clouds.  At our feet, but far below, the river turned square to the east in a boiling rapid between gigantic walls of rock, the mountains here yielding to its sweep in a broadening valley only to press on it beyond and thrust it back on its way northward.  It was all splendid and simple; if you please, nothing but a stream filling the intersecting slopes of a wedge-shaped valley and turning off because it had to.  But the serenity of the whole composition:  gray rocks, shining waters, green slopes; white mists, enveloping the crests, smiling in the afternoon sun!  Jaded as were our faculties of admiration by the many exquisite scenes we had already passed through, this one held us.  We had to leave it, though, making our halt later for the night at a rest-house in a pine wood, near a good stream.

CHAPTER XXI

Deep valley.—­A poor rancheria.—­Escort of boys.—­Descent of Tinglayan Hill.—­Sullen reception at Tinglayan.—­Bangad.—­First view of the Kalingas.—­Arrival at Lubuagan.

We were off early the next morning, the 11th, our destination being Lubuagan, the capital of the Kalinga country.  We had a long, hard day before us.  As I was about to mount, I noticed that Doyle, Mr. Forbes’s groom, looked seedy, and learned that Bubud had broken loose in the night and gone the rounds of the herd, kicking every animal in it before he could be caught, and so robbing poor Doyle of a good part of his sleep.  After riding a bit through the pines, the ground apparently dropped off in front of us out of sight, rising in a counter slope on the other side, in a great green wall from which sprang a hogback; only this time it was a razor-back, so sharp was its edge, up which back and forth ran the trail.  It was another of those deep knife-like valleys; this one, however, challenging our passage, and justly, for it was more canon than valley, and it took us nearly two hours to cross it.  But it was worth the trouble and time.  For imagine a canon with forested sides and carpeted in green from the stream in its bed to the highest bounding ridge!  Near the top we came upon a bank of pitcher-plants, the pitchers of some of them being fully six inches long.  A mile or so farther on, we halted and dismounted near a little rancheria, Butbut by name, in a corner of the hills, the people of which had been assembled for the “Commission.”  These were the only physically degraded-looking people we saw on the trip; small of stature, feeble-looking and spiritless.  The reason was not far to seek:  it is probable that they live hungry, through lack of suitable ground for rice-cultivation, and because their neighbors are hostile.  Now, I take it on myself to say that it is just this sort of thing that will come to an end if Mr. Worcester is allowed to carry out his policies. 

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The Head Hunters of Northern Luzon from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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