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CHAP. vn.1   DENSITY OF THE POPULATION.   127

were five or six cows and a quantity of goats, very small, but yielding a great deal of milk. To give water even to these was a great difficulty, for the wells have to be dug twenty or thirty feet deep through the sandy soil before water is reached ; and then it oozes out so slowly that only a very limited supply can be obtained. There had been great trouble in getting even my small drove of cattle watered ; but Chik said that there were some vleys still left, which were Nangoro's property; but to which he would probably allow my oxen to be driven. The Ovampo make a great fuss about water : if I wanted any to drink I had to buy it with heads. I was greatly pleased with the mutual goodwill and cordiality that evidently existed among the Ovampo ; they were all plump and well fed ; even the blind old people, who are such wretched objects in Damaraland, were here well tended and fat. They looked shy at me; but Chik had been impressing upon me during the whole of our journey that his countrymen would all keep away until Nangoro had seen and approved of me, then they would come from all sides, and be as civil as possible. Chik introduced me to some of his most particular friends, who were very hospitable indeed, stopping us on the road, and giving us beer and biscuits, and suchlike luxuries. The beer is not to be despised, although it is very thin and sweet ; it is made from crushed corn and water, and takes two or three days before it is quite ready. I should think that a person must drink immense quantities before he could become intoxicated with it, but two or three tumblers full make one sleepy.

We travelled short stages, sleeping one night at the house of one of Chik's friends who kraaled our oxen in. I was much afraid of their straying in the night, as if they did so they might cause all sorts of damage. I felt ill at ease in Ovampoland, because I was no longer my own master. Everybody was perfectly civil, but I could not go as I liked, nor where I liked; in fact I felt as a savage would feel in England. My red coat was the delight of all the little boys and girls, plump merry little things, who ran after me shouting and singing as happy as could be. The Ovampo took much interest in seeing the oxen packed and ridden; they had never seen them used in that way before, and carefully examined the saddle-bags, and the way they were put on.

To gain some idea of the amount of the Ovampo population I counted the number of homesteads that I passed, and found that I saw, on an average, thirty in each hour's ride, about three miles. From the undulat-