136 Art of Travel.
cloth, with which he covered his packs when on the road; it made a cover sufficiently large to receive about half of his bed, and was a place of shelter for his instruments.
Gordon Gumming.-The following extract is from Mr. Gordon Cumming's book on Africa : it describes the preparations of a practised traveller for a short excursion from his wagons away into the bush. " I had at length got into the way of making myself tolerably comfortable in the field, and from this date I seldom went in quest of elephants without the following impedimenta, i. e. a large blanket, which I folded and secured before my saddle as a dragoon does his cloak, and two leather sacks, containing a flannel shirt, warm trousers, and a woollen night-cap, spare ammunition, washing-rod, coffee, bread, sugar, pepper and salt, dried meat, a wooden bowl, and a tea-spoon. These sacks were carried on the shoulders of the natives, for which service I remunerated them with beads. They also carried my coffee-kettle, two calabashes of water, two American axes, and two sickles, which I used every evening to cut grass for my bed, and likewise for my horses to eat throughout the night ; and my after-rider carried extra ammunition and a spare rifle."
Importance of Comfort.-To conclude these general hints, let the traveller, when out in trying weather, work hard at making his sleeping-place perfectly dry and comfortable ; he should not cease until he is convinced that it will withstand the chill of the early morning, when the heat of the yesterday's sun is exhausted, and that of the coming sun has not begun to be felt. It is wretched beyond expression for a man to lie shivering beneath a scanty covering and to feel the night air become hourly more raw, while his life-blood has less power to withstand it ; and to think, self-reproachfully, how different would have been his situation if he had simply had forethought and energy enough to cut and draw twice the quantity of firewood, and to spend an extra half-hour in labouring to make himself a snugger berth. The omission once made becomes irreparable ; for in the cold of a pitiless night he has hardly sufficient stamina to rise and face the weather, and the darkness makes him unable to cope with his
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