228 Art of Travel.
likely to make a crack. Calabashes and other gourds, cocoanuts and ostrich eggs, are all of them excellent for flasks. The Bushmen of South Africa make great use of ostrich shells as water-vessels. They have stations at many places in the desert, where they bury these shells filled with water, corked with grass, and occasionally waxed over. They thus go without hesitation over wide tracts, for their sense of locality is so strong that they never fear to forget the spot in which they have dug their hiding-place.
When a Dutchman or a Namaqua wants to carry a load of ostrich eggs to or from the watering-place, or when he robs a nest, he takes off his trousers, ties up the ankles, puts the eggs in the legs, and carries off his load slung round his neck. Nay, I have seen a half-civilised Hottentot carry water in his leather breeches, tied up and slung in the way I have just described, but without the intervention of ostrich eggs ; the water squirted through the seams, but plenty remained after he had carried it to its destination, which was a couple of miles from the watering-place. In an emergency, water-flasks can be improvised from the raw or dry skins of animals, which ,should be greased down the back; or. from the paunch, the heart-bag (pericardium), the intestines, or the bladder. These should have a wooden skewer run in and out along one side of their mouths, by which they can be carried, and a lashing under the skewer to make all tight (fig. below). The Bush
men do this. The water oozes through the membrane, and by its evaporation the contents are kept very cool. Another plan
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