The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

book - 'Naga Path', by Ursula Graham Bower, published John Murray 1950

caption: Chapter seven. Reconnaissance
caption: construction of camp at Laisong
medium: books
person: Graham Bower/ Ursula
text: At Laisong the camp on the eyrie was under construction. Workmen swarmed on the skeleton of the big house. From there we passed on southward, to Hangrum again, and Shongkai beyond it; and ten days later, as we came down from Haijaichak in the U-shaped pass, we saw the new-thatched roofs of our camp catch the morning sun. It perched on the hilltop like a Rhine castle, the house-tops just showing above the low scrub jungle.
text: The day was sultry. On the steep climb up from the river (59) the baked ground radiated heat like hot metal. It glared on our faces, it beat off the high bank beside the road. It was with infinite relief that we climbed the last rock-steps and reached the gateway. The breeze across the col met us, blowing sweet and cold. Turning, we tramped up the long rise of the knoll, and came thankfully, for the first time, into the tall, cool, airy bungalow.
text: There were two verandas and five rooms. It was all of matting on a timber frame, and the roof was thick grass thatch. Behind the big house were the cookhouse and the men's quarters, two long, low huts facing north. Filled with immense content at a home at last, I looked up at the tall posts and their intricate cane lashings and at the solid roof-beam eighteen feet overhead. I watched the jappas brought in and their contents unpacked, ate my first meal by the new hearth, and then, tired out by the grilling march, I went to sleep for the afternoon in the shadowed bedroom.