The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

book : Return to the Naked Nagas (1939;1976)

caption: Chapter Twenty-four. The World Beyond
caption: storm in Wanching
medium: books
person: Wanching
ethnicgroup: Konyak
person: Furer-Haimendorf
date: 6.1936-6.1937
text: Hardly have I gone to sleep when there is a terrible clap of thunder and I am awake again. The calm of the evening has given way to turmoil. Violent squalls throw themselves on my tent, and soon the rain pelts down on the canvas. My small tent window is lit by almost incessant flashes of lightning, and rolls of thunder drown the howling of wind in the trees. I try to persuade myself that the storm will soon pass, but instead of passing, its fury grows with every minute. The tent trembles and sways. Still lying in bed, I grasp one of the two posts and try to counteract the worst blows. The surrounding ditch no longer traps the water; it is full to overflowing, and the floor of the tent is soon flooded.
text: Suddenly there is a frightful crash as of splintering wood. If only the huge tree spreading its branches over my tent stands firm! From the noise on all sides it sounds as though all the trees in the neighbourhood are breaking up. Just as I jump from my bed, Nlamo rushes in, shouting that I should seek refuge in the morung. Quickly I collect my precious camera and some of my notebooks, and run through the rain and the torrents of water streaming over the hillside towards the morung. There I find Yongem and several Wanching boys disturbed from sleep. Suddenly I remember that the carrying-basket with my diaries stands probably open in the tent. So I run once more through the downpour, slipping continually with my bare soles on the slimy clay and struggling against the masses of water rushing downhill. The tent still stands. I manage to throw all my most valuable things into waterproof baskets and tie them up firmly. Now nothing very serious can happen.