Tropical Scenery

mountain stream, noisily rushing and tumbling its crystal waters in tiny cascades over the obstacles in its course as it hurries down to contribue its mite to the greedy ocean. Widening and increasing as they descend, some of these little mountain streamlets, ere they reach the shore, assume almost respectable proportions, and require causeways and bridges even in the dry season. '

One of my favourite spots is a shady nook on the banks of one of these streams, which flows just below the house which forms my temporary home, and as I lazily lie swinging there in a hammock slung in the shade of a spreading cocoanut palm, a book in my lap and the rippling stream at my feet, I think it would be hard to find anywhere a more charming spot The sun shines so brightly, bathing every object in a* gilded light — the trees and palms around me so clearly defined against the cloudless blue sky. The dark green mountains in the distance, clad in virgin forest growth, rise one above the other in every tint of green, and seem ever trying to pierce the calm blue sky above them.

The gaudy dragon-flies skim above the dancing little river and seem to delight in tantalizing the greedy mullet which now and then jump almost out of the water in their frantio attempts to reach the tempting moisels buzzing along just out of their reach, while a jewelled humming-bird, with emerald throat, darts here and there and utters a cry of joy as he

flutters around a blossoming creeper growing on tilt cliff on «bo opposite side of the stream. The pels yellow blossoms duster thickly and lom lovely festoosis across the month of a cava which borrows it' the daft I have often' wished to explore tids cav* but the difficulty of getting across the stream at this spot has always induced ma to put offmyinvesti-gations lor anothsr moment. As my eyes wander back to my side of the stream, my notioe is attracted to a queer-looking little stona embedded inthe mud and sand, quite dose to my feet On loosening it and washing the stone in the water, I find that I have come across quite a u trouvaille/' and am delighted to see that my treasure evidently onoe formed part of a CaribidoL

What a funny little object it is t with its greedy-looking little mouth and heavy round jaws, wicked-looking round eyes, and ears shaped like those of a monkey. At first, its dark red sandy appearance inclined me to believe that it had been fashioned by the potter's art, but a closer examination showed me that it had been cut or carved out of a red sandstone, very common in some parts of the island. The little head evidently originally belonged to a body, but had been broken off, by some accident, at the neck, just behind the large oblong human-shaped ears.

I was very pleased with my find, as not only was I deeply interested in all the relics I could find of that now almost extinct race, the Carib; but, although their

A Carib Idol.

stone implements were occasionally found in ploughing up fields or in the shallow beds of the mountain streams, such a thing as a Carib idol or Zemi was a * rarity.

As I examine ^the little carved head, I think oyer and wonder what sights that little red piece of fashioned stone has seen—what years have rolled over it, and what changes it has witnessed—I wonder to whose hand it owes its shape, and what were the thoughts of the tawny savage as he cut and carved the stone which, when completed, was to be believed a divinity and destined to preside over the crael sacrifices of his religion. I wonder if he really -believed that the quaint little object, of his own fashioning was able to punish him for his misdeeds or reward him for his virtue! -

I try to picture to myself how different is now the fair scene before me, stretching away towards tlie blue ocean, with its bright green fields of waving cane, substantial sugar factories and broad white roads glistening in the sunlight, the regular posts of the telephone wires planted all along. Brightly painted villas peep out on every hill side, from clamps of cocoanut palms or towering palmistes, and the shouts of the negro carters, driving their team of oxen, falls faintly on my ear. Scarce more than two hundred years ago, this same fair scene existed not. In the place of those handsome sugar works grew the virgin forest, those fair green fields never saw the sunlight^

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