Such are the inconsistencies, seemingly unchangeable, irreconcilable in conception or in fact; a truthful portrayal of them tends to render the writer a most inconsistent being in the eyes of his reader.
* * * * *
No one was ever sped on his way through China with more goodwill than was the writer when he left Tong-ch’uan-fu; but the above thoughts were then in his mind.
Long before January 3rd, 1910, the whole town knew that I was going to Mien Dien (Burma). Confessedly with a sad heart—for I carried with me memories of kindnesses such as I had never known before—I led my nervous pony, Rusty, out through the Dung Men (the East Gate), with twenty enthusiastic scholars and a few grown-ups forming a turbulent rear. As I strode onwards the little group of excited younkers watched me disappear out of sight on my way to the capital by the following route—the second time of trying:—
Length of Height stage above sea 1st day—Che-chi 90 li. 7,800 ft. 2nd day—Lai-t’eo-p’o 90 li. 8,500 ft. 3rd day—Kongshan 100 li. 6,700 ft. 4th day—Yang-kai 85 li. 7,200 ft. 5th day—Ch’anff-o’o 95 li 6,000 ft. 6th day—The Capital 70 li 6,400 ft.
My caravan consisted of two coolies: one carried my bedding and a small basket of luxuries in case of emergency, the other a couple of boxes with absolute necessities (including the journal of the trip). In addition, there accompanied me a man who carried my camera, and whose primary business it was to guard my interests and my money—my general factotum and confidential agent—and by an inverse operation enrich himself as he could, and thereby maintain relations of warm mutual esteem. They received thirty-two tael cents per man per diem, and for the stopping days on the road one hundred cash. None of them, of course, could speak a word of English.