Three Voyages for the Discovery of a Northwest Passage from the Atlantic to the Pacific, and Narrative of an Attempt to Reach the North Pole, Volume 2 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 312 pages of information about Three Voyages for the Discovery of a Northwest Passage from the Atlantic to the Pacific, and Narrative of an Attempt to Reach the North Pole, Volume 2.
The little girls were very expert in a singular but dirty amusement, which consisted in drawing a piece of sinew up their nostrils and producing the end out of their mouths.  The elder people were, for the most part, in chase of the tormentors, which swarmed in their head and clothes; and I saw, for the first time, an ingenious contrivance for detaching them from the back, or such parts of the body as the hands could not reach.  This was the rib of a seal, having a bunch of the whitest of a deer’s hair attached to one end of it, and on this rubbing the places which require it, the little animals stick to it; from their colour they are easily detected, and, of course, consigned to the mouths of the hunters.
“The weather clearing in the afternoon, one ship was seen in the distance, which diffused a general joy among the people, who ran about screaming and dancing with delight.  While lounging along the beach, and waiting the arrival of the ship, I proposed a game at ‘leap frog,’ which was quite new to the natives, and in learning which some terrible falls were made.  Even the women with the children at their backs would not be outdone by the men, and they formed a grotesque party of opposition jumpers.  Tired with a long exhibition, I retreated to the tent, but was allowed a very short repose, as I was soon informed that the people from the farthest tents were come to see my performance, and, on going out, I found five men stationed at proper distances with their heads down for me to go over them, which I did amid loud cries of koyenna (thanks).
“As the ship drew near in the evening, I perceived her to be the Hecla, but, not expecting a boat so late, lay down to sleep.  I soon found my mistake, for a large party came drumming on the side of the tent, and crying out that a ‘little ship’ was coming, and, in fact, I found the boat nearly on shore.  Ooyarra’s senior wife now anxiously begged to tattoo a little figure on my arm, which she had no sooner done than the youngest insisted on making the same mark; and while all around were running about and screaming in the greatest confusion, these two poor creatures sat quietly down to embellish me.  When the boat landed, a general rush was made for the privilege of carrying our things down to it.  Awarunni, who owned the little dog which slept with me, ran and threw him as a present into the boat; when, after a general koonik, we pushed off, fully sensible of the kind hospitality we had received.  Toolemak and Ooyarra came on board in my boat, in order to pass the night and receive presents, and we left the beach under three hearty cheers.”

CHAPTER XI.

A Whale killed.—­Other Charts drawn by the Esquimaux.—­Account of a Journey to the Narrows of the Strait.—­Discovery of the Sea to the Westward.—­Total Disruption of the Ice at the Eastern Entrance of the Strait.—­Instance of local Attraction on the Compasses.—­Sail through the Narrows, and again stopped by fixed Ice.—­Account of several Land Journeys and Boat Excursions.—­Observations on the Tides.—­Continued Obstacles from fixed Ice.

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Three Voyages for the Discovery of a Northwest Passage from the Atlantic to the Pacific, and Narrative of an Attempt to Reach the North Pole, Volume 2 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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