[Footnote S: Literally “Eyes of the Earth”—the landlords.]
[Footnote T: A good deal of information in this chapter was obtained from an article by the Rev. C E Hicks, published in the Chinese Recorder for March, 1910. The portion quoted is taken bodily from this excellent article.]
CHAO-T’ONG-FU TO TONG-CH’UAN-FU.
Revolting sights compensated for by scenery. Most eventful day in the trip. Buying a pony, and the reason for its purchase. Author’s pony kicks him and breaks his arm. Chastising the animal, and narrow escape from death. Rider and pony a sorry sight. An uneasy night. Reappearance of malaria. Author nearly forced to give in. Heavy rain on a difficult road. At Ta-shui-tsing. Chasing frightened pony in the dead of night. Bad accommodation. Lepers and leprosy. Mining. At Kiang-ti. Two mandarins, and an amusing episode. Laying foundation of a long illness. The Kiang-ti Suspension Bridge. Hard climbing. Tiffin in the mountains. Sudden ascents and descents. Description of the country. Tame birds and what they do. A non-enterprising community. Pleasant travelling without perils. Majesty of the mountains of Yuen-nan.
Whilst in this district, as will have been seen, one has to steel himself to face some of the most revolting sights it is possible to imagine, he is rewarded by the grandeur of the scenic pictures which mark the downward journey to Tong-ch’uan-fu.
The stages to Tong-ch’uan-fu were as follows:—
Length of Height above stage sea level
1st day T’ao-ueen 70 li. —— ft. 2nd day Ta-shui-tsing 30 " 9,300 ft. 3rd day Kiang-ti 40 " 4,400 " 4th day Yi-che-shin 70 " 6,300 " 5th day Hong-shih-ai 90 " 6,800 " 6th day Tong-ch’uan-fu 60 " 7,250 "
The Chao-t’ong plateau, magnificently level, runs out past the picturesquely-situated tower of Wang-hai-leo, from which one overlooks a stretch of water. A memorial arch, erected by the Li family of Chao-t’ong-fu, graces the main road farther on, and is probably one of the best of its kind in Yuen-nan, comparing favorably with the best to be found in Szech’wan, where monumental architecture abounds. Perhaps the only building of interest in Chao-t’ong is the ancestral hall of the wealthy family mentioned above, the carving of which is magnificent.
At the end of the first day we camped at the Mohammedan village of T’ao-ueen, literally “Peach Garden,” but the peach trees might once have been, though now certainly they are not.