In the Wrong Paradise eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 209 pages of information about In the Wrong Paradise.
somewhat as a Highlander does in his plaid, pinning it over the shoulder and leaving the arms free.  When one is accustomed to it, this kind of dress is not uncomfortable, and many of the younger braves carried it with a good deal of grace, showing some fancy and originality in the dispositions of the folds.  Though attired in this barbarous guise, I did not, of course, dispense with my trousers, which, being black, contrasted somewhat oddly with my primrose-coloured ki ton, as they call the smock, and the dark violet clamis, or plaid.  When the natives do not go bareheaded, they usually wear a kind of light, soft wideawake, but this.  I discarded in favour of my hat, which had already produced so remarkable an effect on their superstitious minds.

Now I was dressed, as fittingly as possible in the circumstances, but I felt that my chief need was a bed to lie down upon.  I did not wish to sleep in the bath-room, so, taking my torch from the stand in which I had placed it, I sallied forth into the corridors, attired as I have described, and carrying my coat under my arm.  A distant light, and the noise of females giggling, which increased most indecorously as I drew near, attracted my attention.  Walking in the direction of the sounds, I soon discovered the two young women to whose charge I had been committed by the chief.  They appeared to be in high spirits, and, seizing my arms before I could offer any resistance, they dragged me at a great pace down the passage and out into the verandah.  Here the air was very fragrant and balmy, and a kind of comfortable “shakedown” of mattresses, covered with coloured blankets, had been laid for me in a corner.  I lay down as soon as the sound of the young women’s merriment died out in the distance, and after the extraordinary events of the night, I was soon sleeping as soundly as if I had been in my father’s house at Hackney Wick.


When I wakened next morning, wonderfully refreshed by sleep and the purity of the air, I had some difficulty in remembering where I was and how I came there in such a peculiar costume.  But the voices of the servants in the house, and the general stir of people going to and fro, convinced me that I had better be up and ready to put my sickle into this harvest of heathen darkness.  Little did I think how soon the heathen darkness would be trying to put the sickle into me!  I made my way with little difficulty, being guided by the sound of the running water, to the bath-room, and thence into the gardens.  These were large and remarkably well arranged in beds and plots of flowers and fruit-trees.  I particularly admired a fountain in the middle, which watered the garden, and supplied both the chief’s house and the town.  Returning by way of the hall, I met the chief, who, saluting me gravely, motioned me to one of many small tables on which was set a bowl of milk, some cakes, and some roasted kid’s flesh.

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In the Wrong Paradise from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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