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Guide Links Part 3

NEW ZEALAND in sight I It was indeed exciting to be landing again in that country after a four years' interval. Questions rushed into my mind. Would our hireling car be ready awaiting us ? Would it be as difficult driving on the rough roads as people would have us believe ? Would there be good fishing for the Chief Scout ? Would I love the country as much as I did last time ? Would I be able to see lots of Guides ? Would they be just as splendid as they were last time ? Worst of all—would they like me as much as they thought they did last time ? All my anxieties vanished as we set foot on shore, and were greeted by kind friends and found, not only the car which was to be our property for six happy weeks, but also many lovely plans for fishing, for holidaying, and for seeing practically every available Guide in the country at the five main centres—Auckland, Hastings, Wellington, Christchurch, and Dunedin.
Now before I begin taking you on our journey, I must tell you a bit about the history of New Zealand. Though I have mentioned that the history of Australia is wonderful and fascinating as a study, in that the country has been settled by British people in so short a time, New Zealand's history is of even greater interest through the romance of the Maori race in the earlier days, and the marvellous achievements of the British pioneers who went there from the Old Country within the last hundred years. The Maori race is of Polynesian origin, with a strain of Melanesian blood in them, and they are probably descended from the Aryan people of Northern India. They are tall and well built, with dark brown skins, and they are most cultured people. About A.D. 1000 they






began to move southward to the islands of the South Pacific, with their main centre at Tahiti, and they migrated from there to New Zealand in open canoes in about 135o. Having now myself travelled across that vast stretch of the Pacific Ocean, it seems to me an absolute miracle that anybody could accomplish such a voyage. It is long and wild enough even in these days of steamers, of modern inventions, of navigation charts and wireless ; but for these Maori wanderers to travel those 2,14o miles, rowing for weeks on end in open canoes, facing any kind of weather and danger, seeking for an unknown destination, was a truly marvellous achievement.
One of these old canoes was found in 1835 at a place called Ngatikahungu, and it is now in the museum at Auckland. It measures eighty-two feet long, and there were probably a hundred men paddling it.
There are many charming legends of the Maoris' arrival in this new wonder-land, and to the present day they weave stories of the utmost charm round their connection with the mountains and rivers. A river may be a transformed Prince, holding a mountain—I mean a Princess—in his arms. Even such things as the smoke coming out of the mouth of a volcano will be likened to the breath from the mouth of some fiery old Chieftain of long ago.
That stout fellow, Abel Tasman, who sailed about the coast of Australia, was actually the first European to discover New Zealand, during the reign of Charles the First, in 1640, but he did not land, owing to the hostile attitude of the Maoris, who killed four of his men. He named his discovery " Staten Island " and then some years later this was changed to " Zealandia Nova," after a Province in Holland, hence the name New Zealand. Years went by, and it was not until 1814 that the first white men actually went over from Australia to New Zealand, and there were some plucky missionaries headed by a Mr. Marsden. They landed in the Bay of Islands,

just at a time when two of the different Maori tribes were having a fierce little war of their own. The tribes being cannibals at that time, the missionaries were running a pretty big risk of not only being killed but of being eaten as well.
However, Mr. Marsden had been exceedingly kind to a certain Chief Ruatara, and this Chief befriended him, and when the tribe saw that he was brave and kind and only wanted to help them they quite took to him, and agreed to make peace and become friends with this newly arrived " Pakeha "—which is the Maori name for a white man.
In 18z5 a business Company was formed in London for encouraging people to emigrate from Great Britain to this new far-away land of promise, and in 1839 the ship Tory arrived at the wonderful natural harbour where the town of Wellington now stands, and Colonel William Wakefield founded the first settlement there. Early the following year Captain Hobson arrived in H.M.S. Herald. He officially hoisted the British Flag in the name of Queen Victoria, and himself became the first Governor.
Arrangements had been successfully made with regard to the land which the white settlers might rent or buy from the Maoris, and an agreement—known as the Treaty of Waitangi—was drawn up and signed on February 6th, 184.
A few years later, however, owing to various misunderstandings, came a sad chapter in the annals of this beautiful country. Trouble arose between the newcomers and the powerful Maori Chiefs, trouble culminating in two separate distressing periods of war, when many were killed on both sides and sad and bitter hardships endured by all.
The bravery of the Maoris won the admiration of their white enemies, and there are many thrilling stories of kindness penetrating through the walls of hatred.

There were even instances of a quaint simplicity in the method of warfare, such as the case where a message was received by the English general from the Maori leader to the effect that they had run out of ammunition, and so would the English troops kindly send them some to go on with !
Their sentiments were of the most chivalrous order even in the midst of war. On the body of their Chief Henare Taratoe, who was killed, was found a copy of the warriors' orders for the day beginning with the quotation from the Bible saying " If thine enemy hunger, feed him : if he thirsts, give him to drink."
All the history of this time is most thrilling reading, but it would take too long for me to give you any detail. Suffice it to say that being what they are—fine, honourable, high-minded, courteous gentlemen—the Maoris bore no ill will when the turn of the tide came at last, and they turned all their energies into making friends with their late enemies, and became most loyal and devoted subjects of the Crown, and have remained so ever since. To-day it is a delight to meet them and to talk with them wherever you go, and mingled with their dignity and their pride of race is a simple open-hearted friendliness which is most charming. And, oh, their singing ! It is delightful. The men have a special sort of dance called a " Haka," where they stand in a row, and thump their feet and clap their hands on their thighs, wobble their knees, make hideous faces, yell fiercely, roll their eyes, and try to touch their ears with their tongues. It is most weird and stirring to see and to listen to ; but the women and girls have their own more than charming dances and songs, handed down to them from their ancestors of long ago, most of them founded on their old folk lore and most poetical in wording and design. They sway their bodies gently from side to side, and wave their hands and arms smoothly in time to the lilt of the music.

The song that one hears most is the Canoe Song, ,unded probably on their long journeys across the seas. About a dozen of them sit down in a long line on the round, close behind one another, their legs over-lapping 3 if they were arranged for rowing in a boat. Then ley start singing and swaying backwards and forwards time to the music, and the whole time they are twiddling stir "pois " round and round in their hands. The "poi" a little tightly folded and plaited ball of flax or bass anging on the end of a string. As the song continues ley sway first to one side and then to the other, throwing stir arms and their pois gracefully and quickly round and 3und, as if they were doing the motion of paddling, and se song goes on and on with the loveliest simple tuneful lythm which makes you hope that it won't stop.
This, the favourite song-dance with which one is reeted, is the most haunting of melodies, and here, for our benefit, are the words and music.
Maori I is sounded like E, E like Ay and Wh like F e.g.—Ki-te-pai iould be sung as Kee-tay-pie.
Then together we will row
This canoe unto the end
To the goal the world desires,
Peace and joy for all."

Have you ever met a glow-worm ? I once met one in my garden in Hampshire. It was very dark, of course, or I should never have noticed the tiny speck of light, and then when I bent down and shone my own electric torch on the minute beastie, he put out his light and I was only just able to find him—such a tiny, insignificant, brownish-grey grub.
For a long time we had heard of the Glow-worm Caves of New Zealand, so on our arrival our first expedition of some 18o miles took us away through some townships with priceless names to the celebrated Waitomo Caves. We passed first through Otahuhu and Papatoetoe ; Papakura and Rangiriri came next ; and then on through Ohinewai and Ngaruawahia, Kikikihi, Kiokio, Hangatiki to Te Kuiti, and there we were. Pretty good tongue twisters, those names, aren't they ?
The caves are great huge vaults and underground passages, filled with marvellous stalactites. They were first discovered by a Mr. Fred Mace, and it must have been a thrilling moment when, surveying through the wild untouched bush, he found the tiny slit-like entrance in the mountain side, and crept in to find these immense caverns and marvels of the underworld.
Stalactites are, as you know, long pointed bits of hard crystal-like substance formed from the deposit of ages left by the dripping of water through the ground above the caves. They drip and drip for millions of years, and as each drop leaves a particle which forms the pointed stalactite at the top, so it also leaves a particle of substance on the spot on which it falls, so that after more millions of years this spot becomes a lump and from a lump it grows up into a high stump, and eventually after millions of centuries these grow so high that they meet the stalactite growing downwards and form an actual pillar of solid crystalline rock.

I cannot say I think these beautiful, but they are very wonderful, and in many cases very weird and grotesque in shape, and the time that it takes for the formation of these things, reckoned as it is in millions and even billions of years, just leaves one gasping. I have seen similar types of caves at Cheddar in Somersetshire, and in Bermuda, and there are wonderful ones at Han in Belgium ; but the cave with the glow-worms is rather another matter, for it is absolutely unique and there is nothing like it in any other place in the world. We walked in through the entrance of an ordinary stalactite cave, and then as we went down and down into the bowels of the earth our guide told us to keep quiet, as the glow-worms will extinguish their light if disturbed. Lights were turned on for us to see our way down, and then turned off as we stepped down into the cave itself. A deep black pool of water lies still as glass at the bottom, and above us is the roof covered with just myriads and myriads of minute twinkling stars.
It was an unbelievable sight. As silently as possible we crept into a waiting boat and were gently and stealthily pulled along through the winding length of the cave. As we went along our eyes became gradually accustomed to the darkness, or I should say to the lightness, and after a bit I found I could discern the rocky edges of the water channel, and the glow-worms' light shed a faint, ghostly, greenish glow over the whole scene.
It was rather eerie and very weird and wonderful to be floating along in a boat on a subterranean river, with perhaps Soo feet of ground above our heads, and in a place literally lit by the " candle power " of glow-worms.
These glow-worms are not like the English ones, and others like them have not been found in any other place in the world. This is a longer, thinner, more worm-like object, slimy, fragile, and dirty grey in colour, with a transparent skin, and it carries its lamp in the end segment of its queer body. It exudes a sticky saliva out of

its mouth, and this hangs down, like a shining silver thread, to catch the mosquitoes that hatch out in the still water below. The lamp attracts the tiny mosquito midge, who gets caught in the sticky thread, and then if Mr. Glow-worm is hungry he draws Miss Mosquito up and absorbs her, or if he is not hungry she is left dangling until such time as her captor requires food.
Of course one could not see this going on, because of the darkness, and we could not stay too long as the boat was wanted, but altogether it was an absolutely unforgettable experience, and there is no doubt that the New Zealand glow-worm is unique in his own insect world.
And now what about contrasts—from the glow-worm cave to a Guide Rally, for I had to rush quickly back from the one to the other—a lovely Rally held in Auckland for my benefit. This was a splendid show, with first-rate displays as original and as well done as any that I have ever seen anywhere.
Mountains you can see in Switzerland, India, America, and all sorts of different parts of the world. You can see vast forests, big rivers, wonderful cities, wide plains, and marvellous canyons and freaks of nature ; and you can even see hot springs in many places. But I doubt if anywhere in the world you can see anything more wonderful than the " thermal regions " of New Zealand, where for an area of miles around you sec stray little wisps of steam rising out of the ground, huge geysers shooting up boiling water to twenty, thirty, forty feet into the air, and where you find deep surging pools of white, red, yellow, or black mud, gurgling and burbling and boiling amidst the loveliest surroundings of bush and ferns.
Rotorua is the most famous of these places, and quite a large town of hotels and boarding-houses has sprung

up for accommodating visitors who come to enjoy the sights, and for the invalids who come to have curative baths in the health-giving waters.
Whakarewarewa (or Waka for short) is the Maori village scattered round the main cluster of hot springs, and here nobody is bothered by any problem of cooking or heating, for if you want to boil your saucepan you just put it astride a boiling stream, or, simpler still, you just pop your potato or meat or whatever it may be into a muslin bag and put it into a ready-made boiling pool to cook itself. You just have " boiling water laid on," so to speak, at your door, and of course for washing and all household purposes this is so simple and ideal.
Some miles away, in a wilder bit of country, Wairakei Valley is yet more wonderful, and here you walk for over an hour, with these thermal marvels all around you. There is one geyser known as the Champagne Pool where, fizzing over at regular intervals, the geyser has scattered silica on to the rocks all round, making them sparkle and scintillate like diamonds in the sun.
There is a " Dragon's Mouth," a geyser which shoots up from a petrified tree trunk and looks most uncanny ; and here you can stir with your stick in the seething, chocolate-coloured or pale grey mud-holes, where the paste itself is supposed to be of great value for making " mud packs " for taking wrinkles away from ladies' faces !
Then the greatest marvel of all to be seen—and heard —is the Karapiti Blow Hole. You go to see this by night, and it is quite a thrill walking in single file round the hillside, with the great roaring voice of the blow hole increasing as you get nearer. The blow hole itself is an aperture in the ground only nine inches across, and out of it is pouring compressed steam from below at a pressure of 18o lb. a square inch. It makes a deafening, roaring noise, so that you simply cannot hear yourself speak, and they say that this is a vent hole from the middle

of the earth which lets out the gasses and pressure and acts as the necessary escape hole that saves the world from blowing up 1
On Lake Taupo near there we all settled down for a week's holiday in a bungalow that was kindly lent to us, and here, with our old car which we christened " Jealand " (because we always name our cars with names that begin with the letter " J "), we had the time of our lives. Not only was our holiday so happy and so restful, but also there were many thrills. The first day when we all went off fishing Heather caught a five-pound trout with her first cast, and Betty too caught a whacking big fish when she had her first try at fishing in the Waikato river.
I don't fish, but the rest of the family loves it ; on these fishing days I picked blackberries instead, though the idea of picking monster ripe blackberries in February may amuse you 1
The chief excitement was one night when suddenly we were all woken up by our house being shaken by a little earthquake. It was over so quickly though that we really hadn't time to enjoy it. It just felt as if someone standing underneath us had given us a shake and then next night the house merely got a push 1 That time the earthquake merely felt as if someone was leaning against the house and giving it a gentle shove.
Each day brought its round of delicious picnics and outings, and the fact of having our own little home, cooking our meals, and doing our own housework made us feel we were indeed living in New Zealand, and belonging there, not merely passing through as visitors. And oh, the Lake itself was so exquisite 1 When we speak of a lake in England, you picture to yourself something that you can row across in half an hour or so, but in New Zealand things are big, and Lake Taupo is twenty-five miles across and seventeen miles long, and is more like an inland sea. From every way you look at it

there are always the wonderful mountain views, the closer ones near at hand, the bluffs of Rangatura Point sticking out into the lake, and the distant snow-covered tops of Ruapehu, Ngaruhoe, and Tongariro forty or fifty miles away, sometimes showing up clear and close, other times just their peaks towering up over banks of driven clouds, and at others just vaguely to be seen with their slopes hidden in a veil of mists.
The face of Taupo changes like the face of a person—now smiling and serene, and then in an instant becoming glowering and sullen ; at one moment the dazzling sun will be shining like silver on the smooth surface, and within ten seconds there will be a driving squall, whipping the water into angry waves, dark, black, and threatening—a changeable sea with romances woven round it by legends and its own enchanted surroundings.
Have you ever seen a Guide World Flag flying over the grandstand of a racecourse ? It sounds perhaps an odd place for it to be, but as a matter of fact racecourses are very good places.for Guide Rallies, as they have such good grounds for collecting ourselves together on arrival, buildings for storing coats and kit, grandstands for spectators, rough ground for making fires and pitching tents, and the course itself for marching round. Trentham Racecourse, in the Province of Wellington, is, I think, the first that has been taken over for a weekend camp, and it was just splendid to find crowds of Guides gathered together there for a happy time at the " Thinking Day " week-end in February. Some of those visiting from the outlying parts of the Province had never seen other Guides before, and excepting for those from the town of Wellington itself, very few had ever met before, so it was a grand opportunity for coming together and learning from each other and making friends.

You know, you camping Guides, what a tremendous business it is preparing to go off to your own Company or District Camp, so you can imagine what the Trentham Camp was like, catering for 800 Guides, many of whom had never been to camp before. It was a splendidly run show, and everybody loved it.
There are, as you probably know, ten Provinces in New Zealand : Auckland, Hawkes Bay, Taranakei, and Wellington in the North Island ; Nelson, Marlborough, Westland, Canterbury, Otago, and Southland in the South Island, and as we could not, in six weeks, travel into all of them the Guides managed to travel to one or the other and muster to see us just at the few bigger meetings. Christchurch Rally was the next big item on our programme, and here, just as on our last tour in 1931, the Guides put on an absolutely splendid show. There was a really perfect display of physical exercises done by about soo Guides, and though most of them had never come together before and there had been no rehearsal, there was not a slip or a fault ; which just showed that if you know your work thoroughly, have learned the value of working with others as a team, and just keep your head, you can come up to scratch when the time comes.
There were many good things, too many to enumerate here, though I must tell you about the Brownies, for their " Trot Past " was just delicious and such a clever plan had been adopted, which I have never seen elsewhere. Each pack came trotting past in a big bunch, the front row of about eight of them holding a long pole in their hands to keep them level. Reins of different-coloured ribbons stretched from the ends of the pole to be held by the Pack Leaders, enclosing all the Brownies in a sort of pen. Then the whole caboodle was driven along by Brown Owl, prancing along brandishing a long whip from behind.
With the Band playing a gay trotting tune, and the

Brownies prancing along, their heads held high, knees well up, and immense smiles all over their faces, the sight of these Brownie carriages dashing past me was simply delightful.
Here again a few individual Guides had come from far-distant places, to represent their Companies, and one Lone Guide had travelled from Ngakuta Bay, on the other side of the Province of Marlborough ; she had walked nine miles, then taken a boat across a lake for fifteen miles, a small train then took her twenty miles, and after that she had had a motor-bus journey of z o miles 1 I only heard about this after the Rally was over, so I did not actually meet her, but I heard afterwards that she had set forth happily and gaily to walk on the last lap of that long expedition, and I do think that this is a pretty good example of energy and pluck on the part of that keen member of the " Lone " branch of our Guide family. Talking about this one Lone Guide makes me think again of all the other Lone Guides of New Zealand. The first Lone Guide Company was started in 1926, and naturally in the course of its history varied in strength from time to time. But development has gradually taken place, and now this year the branch has reached its highest peak of prosperity in having cot members in twenty-three Companies, andas there are also a fair number of recruits who are not as yet registered, but who are already learning to play the Guide game away in their own homes, we can probably count our numbers of this branch as nearly inn.
I always think these far-away people are very specially to be admired, for they miss all the fun of Company meetings, the games and competitions, and the contact with Guide friends.
But I am impressed beyond words with the way they make up for this by apparently being keener than anybody within our ranks, and filled with true love of all that Guiding stands for in everyday life.

Yes, these Lone Guides of New Zealand are a thoughtful and generous-hearted group, for I received a beautiful big book as a gift from them all with many pages of delightful poems, drawings, photographs, articles, and decorations ; I value this immensely. In the charming dedication in this book they say amongst other things :
" . . . A large percentage of our numbers never can attend any Guide function, and some never even meet their Captain or see another Guide in uniform. But we follow you in thought as you visit other Guides throughout the world, and therefore realise that we do belong to an immense organisation. We are extremely grateful that we live in the age where all facilities for friendship and comradeship are offered to us. We have learned that because we are Lone Guides we are not lonely. . . ."
I only wish you could see the whole book, for every page holds its own fund of interest, cleverness, and charm, and I simply must quote some bits for you. I feel sure the anonymous writers will excuse me for printing them here :
" Hurrah I Hurrah I for summer,
Is the joyful children's cry,
As they dance along the sandy shore
'Ncath sun and cloudless sky.
" No cares nor worry have we When summer comes to stay, With all its brilliant glory Passing on its way.
"Hurrah I Hurrah I for summer; Just think of the things we do, Bathe in the beautiful ocean And bathe in the sunlight too.
" The stars are twinkling up above, And the sparkling waters below, From behind a cloud the moon peeps out Then the children homeward go."

There are also in the book some charming drawings of irds. There are over thirty-six different kinds of wild irds in New Zealand which are, of course, different rom the European ones. There is a sweet little fellow, bout the size of a sparrow, called a Fantail. I met lots f them when out picnicking, and several would come nd flit about from branch to branch overhead. He sakes only a very tiny noise, but spreads out his tail .1 a wide fan when he is pleased with himself. Then Mere is a White-ear, about the size of a robin, but ather narrower in build. There is a Kaka, who is a cat of parrot, a roystering noisy element amongst the they quiet birds of the bush ; and the Tui is somermes called the Parson Bird, because though otherwise ractically black he has a little white tuft like a collar at is throat. The Huia is a queer thing, with a very ointed beak, and a long wide tail, more of a rook-like ird ; and the Weka is a sort of water-hen. There are DO many to mention any more here, but it is good that Lich interest is being taken in the study of birds by the ;aides of New Zealand, and most especially do I like the :mark here in my Lone Guide Log Book : " A bird in le bush is worth two in the hand."
Then there is a competition entitled, " The beauty of le commonplace," which appeals to me very specially, for part from the advantage of training yourself in observaon, in keeping yourself mentally alert with your eyes well pen so that you notice a lot of things you would other-rise miss, the power of seeing some beauty in all things a great gift, and you can all use it, for you can all have it. There are some people who go about with their eyes sat, and who thus lose immense pleasure that can be aimed by noticing and watching out for lovely things. Veil, I hope we Guides are not like that, and that you oy to the full the gift of sight and discrimination which lade these Lone Guides answer the competition as Alows

" The snowy white clothes dancing on the line in the breeze, kissed by the bright sunbeams " and " The starry clematis climbing over cool green evergreens " and " The willow-pattern plates on the dresser gleaming in the fire-light."
And here is just one more :
" Friendship is a chain of gold
Shaped in God's all perfect mould,
Each link a smile, a laugh, a tear,
A grip of the hand, a used of cheer,
As steadfast as the ages roll
Binding closer soul to soul.
No matter how far or heavy the load,
Sweet is the journey on Friendship's road."
I don't know what you all learn in your geography ,ssons about countries and their towns, mountains, .vers, and populations and exports and imports, but no oubt you can read all about those of New Zealand in our geography books, so I will not write about them ere. Of course, having seen the country itself, one now tkes more interest in the fact that the " Anchor butter " rhich we eat is made from the cream of the loveliest ersey cows which I saw in their hundreds in the North stand ; in the New Zealand honey, coming from the ives in the wilder parts of Westland, and in the Canter,ury Lamb, coming from the sheep that we saw roaming 3. their thousands on the Canterbury Plains of the South stand.
Driving along the roads you meet these enormous Locks travelling from the far-distant parts of the country, aking sometimes over a week to get from their own Lome pastures to market. One day we met a flock of ,000 sheep in one bunch, three men only in charge of hem, but each with about five dogs. These sheep-dogs xe quite wonderful in their knowledge of what is :xpected of them. There are two classes of them—he " heading dog " who silently rushes ahead of the

flock and runs quietly round, keeping them from turning off into side lanes or going astray, and the other is the " hunt-away " who stays close to his master at the tail end of the flock and barks and hustles them on.
I have thought that I would like to be a sheep, roaming at will over wide pastures with no cares, no work, no heavy weights to pull like a horse, no bother of being driven in for milking like a cow, no anxieties and sadnesses like a dog who sorrows when his master leaves him. Now I have changed my mind ; a sheep doesn't have such a very easy-going life, for she is constantly having to have something done to her, and that is what makes a sheep-farmer's life so busy.
I have told you about sheep-farming in Australia, and of course it is much the same here on the Canterbury Plain. The end comes when they are mustered and driven to " the works," which is the polite name for the slaughter-house and cold-storage works, whence—as Canterbury Lamb--they are shipped in their thousands for people to eat.
It sounds horrid for such thousands to be killed annually, but of course if they were not going to be eaten later they would not be born The sheep-breeding industry is one of the most important businesses in New Zealand, both for supplying food for thousands of people far overseas, and also in supplying all the required wool for our clothing, and leather for all sorts of things.
Over the mountain passes the roads are the most amazing things. In our little car, Jealand, we drove right across the 18o miles from the East Coast to the West Coast in one day, a most thrilling experience, for the road is really only a track, and when passing over the more mountainous part you come to a river-bed every mile or so, and this has to be crossed somehow. There are no bridges. You just crawl bumpily across boulders and stones and hummocks, with water rushing

between your wheels. It is most exciting, for every minute you think you may stick 1
Running then off the high ground to the sea-level again the road goes winding down the steep incline of the famous Otira Gorge. To speak of it as an incline is a mild term, for it is really more like driving down the side of a house, and the road is a tiny shelf-like ribbon, with high cliffs on the one hand and a sheer drop of hundreds of feet on the other, and hair-pin bends every few hundred yards, where to meet or pass another car is just unthinkable 1
Westland was the wildest part of New Zealand that we reached, and words fail me to describe the beauty of the wild untouched " bush " that we drove through for over ninety miles from Hokitika to the glorious Franz Josef Glacier. The road winds along through this miracle of vegetation, every kind of strange tree and bush in luxuriant profusion, and everywhere the quite exquisite tree-ferns spreading their decorative leaves.
The Franz Josef Glacier is world-famous, in that it comes farther down to sea-level than most, being forced by such immense pressure of the ice and snow fields from above amongst the mountains. You walk some miles along fairy-like wooded pathways, to find yourself suddenly face to face with an immense wall of ice, grey where stones and earth have been swept down from the mountain top, over twelve miles away, and deep amethyst blue where the ice is melting away, and a torrent of ice water pours out and hurtles away to the sea.
Here, on the rough boulders, cooled by the ice, baked by the sun, was the most perfect of all picnic places in the world. With plenty of driftwood, we could make our fire and boil our billy, which was to us one of the most joyous of all the joys that we experienced in New Zealand, for if you are wise you don't go out without your billy for making tea at odd times.
Touring through the country, any excuse would do

to make us stop and make a fire to boil our billy—and it mattered not whether we wanted tea or not. The whole point was the delight of making a fire, finding and collecting the nicest sticks for it, tending it, and revelling in that exquisite smell of wood smoke on the wind.
And so our tour came to an end. Picnic days were over, and our last stopping-place was Dunedin, the Edinburgh of New Zealand, and as such, the live, good centre of Guiding which one would expect. A Guiders' meeting, broadcasting, parties, and receptions were planned, and a splendid Rally, which brought Guides in their numbers from the whole province of Otago and from Southland, the neighbouring province, as well. I have written already of some of the unusual local names of places, but apart from these it is most amusing to find everywhere towns and villages named after those in Great Britain.
The tiny hamlets of Winslow and Aylesbury, for instance, are near to each other ; Cambridge is not very far from Hamilton ; Winchester is but some too miles from Christchurch ; Hastings and Wellington are big and important towns, while Ross and Greymouth were important as mining centres in the early days of our entry into the country when gold was found in large quantities.
Well, it strikes me that a definite way in which all can take part in the idea of being friends with unseen, unknown fellow Guides far afield is by writing to each other. Perhaps Guides in those " sister towns " with similar names at home and overseas would have this extra natural link to start off with ; you could exchange photographs of your home town, tell each other about your surroundings and your doings, and thus establish an interesting close touch between your homes, as well as getting lots of information by post about the different Guide activities and achievements of new-found friends. Time goes so quickly when you are happy and busy,

and how one longs to stop the clock—or make it give one more than sixty seconds per minute and sixty minutes per hour. Our New Zealand tour was over far too soon, and my last sight of Guides at Dunedin was sad in one way as being the last, but inspiring and very beautiful in others. The tour ended with a Guides' Own in the Knox Presbyterian Church, which was filled to capacity with Scouts and Cubs, Guides and Brownies. With quiet dignity the colours filed up the great grey building, a stream of vivid colour, to rest by the chancel steps. We all sang our favourite hymns ; we recited the Guide Law and were led in the renewal of the Guide Promise by Miss Ruth Herrick, the well-loved Chief Commissioner. A stirring address followed by a Scout-minded pastor, and we ended with " God Save the King."
To me it was moving indeed, hearing the singing of our National Anthem, in this, perhaps, the farthest away from His Majesty's person of all the cities of his vast Empire ; and I carried away from Dunedin this happy memory of a fine and loyal body of hard-working Guides, vowing to do their best, coming in their numbers to re-dedicate themselves to do their duty to the King, and reverently entering the House of God to pledge themselves to His Service.
I don't like " good-byes." The word itself sounds short and peremptory, though when you think of what it originated from—" God be with you "—it takes on another meaning. Perhaps the words " au revoir" softens the going away, though it seems odd that we have no word in English to suit the occasion. " Farewell "--or nicer still, " Fare thee well "—has rather a sweet old-world flavour, but it sounds a little unusual outside a song. There are many lovely plaintive farewell songs that we all know, and many a one I carry ringing again and again in my head reminding me of departures from places and people.

The last charming one that sped me on my way from New Zealand was as follows :
" Hci koneira, ka hoki mai ano, Haere ana au ki pamamao Haere ra, mahara mai ano, Ki to arona tangi a to nci."
which translated means
" Now is the time for me to say good-bye,
Soon you'll be sailing far across the sea
When you're away, oh, do remember me,
And when you return you'll find me waiting hers."
Has - re . . ra,    ma • ha • ra mai a • no    Ki to sr • o os tang•    a • to no
Indeed I shall remember the Guides of New Zealand, and indeed I hope to return there to meet them all again before too many years pass by.
And so away we went on board ship again, steering out into a grey and lumpy sea. And as the days passed it grew greyer and lumpier, until one night we met the biggest storm that I have come across in all my years of sea travel. It was at half-past one in the morning that I first woke, to find my luggage hurtling itself out from under my bunk and across the cabin floor. Another heave and my brush and comb, hair-pin box, and everything collapsed off the dressing-table on to the floor. I hopped out of bed and put everything else off shelves and other tables safely down on to the floor and as I did so I was flung flat on my back into my bed again !
So there I lay, holding on to the sides, and began to plan what I should do if " anything should happen," pondering on the wisdom of having made my will, think-

ing over what a good time I have had in this life and how quite ready I am to leave this world and move on to the next, when suddenly I realised that we were rolling and pitching more smoothly and quietly and that the usual throbbing of the engines had stopped !
So that settled it. Something had happened. Then through the noise of crashing storm, water sploshing on to the decks overhead, people and furniture and luggage falling about in the cabins, came the siren's whistle. " In case of emergency more than six long blasts will be sounded on the whistle." That's what the printed notice says, nailed on the cabin wall. Well, this blast just went on and on and then stopped. What could it mean ?
However, nothing more happened, nobody appeared, and I knew a steward would come running round if we were to take to the boats, and it was no use agitating oneself anyway. Sleep was, of course, out of the question, the noise inside the ship of chairs and crockery falling about was disturbing in itself, the roaring crash of the waves buffeting the poor ship was terrific, and on the top of that the cabin was, so to speak, standing on its head, and I have never seen anything like it before.
Daylight came, the hurricane gradually blew itself out, the mountainous sea went down almost as quickly as it had got up ! The problems of the engines and the siren were solved on hearing that a small piece of the ship's steering gear had been carried away, and she had been hove to because trying to thrust herself through the heavy sea was making her ship too much water ; the wireless wire had slipped and fallen across the siren control and made it squawk by mistake I
Anyhow we had met a really bad bit of a cyclone, and I was so glad to get a record of it from the Captain of our ship, who had written in his official Log that " although at many times the wind reached hurricane force and the seas were terrific, the ship behaved admirably, and so far as it has been possible to ascertain no structural

damage has been done, excepting minor damage to deck fittings and gear. All departments of the Ship's Company worked excellently under very trying conditions, and the behaviour and morale of the passengers left nothing to be desired."
After four days' voyage from Wellington we arrived at Raratonga, which is the main island of the group called " Cook Islands," named after that marvellous explorer whose spirit must haunt this part of the globe, and which were annexed by Great Britain during the reign of Queen Victoria in 1900. There are about a dozen of them, and the Administrator of Raratonga has to visit them each once in the year, to see that the local Maori inhabitants are being good ; and as the nearest island is about 150 miles away, and the farthest island under his care is 75o miles away, the distance of ocean to be crossed in these parts is really immense.
Raratonga itself has about 5,o0o inhabitants, who all live on the land and make their living just by growing what they can—bananas, coconuts, flax, and vegetables of all sorts—and eating just what they grow. They are a happy people, contented with their lot, and friendly and most loyal subjects of His Majesty. At the time of the Great War, the warrior blood stirred in their veins, and Soo men from these islands crossed the sea and joined up to fight for King and Country.
The Guides here are a good, keen, loyal group, just as one would expect them to be, coming as they do from such ancestry, and it was a delight to see three big smart Companies at a Rally in miniature. There were Ito on parade, and behind them a long row of some forty recruits waiting anxiously to join the next Company to be formed.
There was an ambitious programme of twelve items. None of these Raratonga Guides have ever seen any

other Guides but themselves, but to show you that they aspire to be like any others, here is their programme.
I. MARCH PAST (complete with colours).
2. WELCOME SONG, with words specially written, as foliates :
" Welcome to you, Lady Baden-Powell, Welcome to Raratonga.
These are all children of your Guide family, singing to welcome you.
We are the Girl Guides of the six districts of Raratonga ;
Welcome to our great Chief, and again, Welcome."
3.. FLAG WELCOME and jolly good signalling it was too).
4. COUNTRY DANCES (the old English ones, WY Tufty and Peascods, were done, because the Guides thought that as I was English I would like to see some of my own home dances. Wasn't it kind and thoughtful of them I).
5. RARATONGA GAMES (with sticks and balls).
6. GATHERING RORI FROM THE SEA (which depicts them going out in boats to collect the fish, cutting it up, and then returning home, all in a dance).
Instead of the last item being really a recitation it resolved itself into being, to me, an almost embarrassing affair, for all the Guides formed up in line, and every single one of them hung one or two or more chains

round my neck—chains made of seeds, chains made of shells, and heavy chains of flowers which are called garlands. This is a custom in the South Seas, and means admiration and affection, and was most touching and overwhelming. The whole thing was an altogether unforgettable experience, there on this tropical coral island, the palm trees swaying overhead, the twittering of the cricket in the fading light, the warm, soft, scent-laden wind blowing from the hills, and the roar of the distant surf breaking on the coral reefs out beyond the lagoon.
This is perhaps one of the bits of our Guide family cut off more than any other from the busy, over-civilised world, and it is good to feel that though so far away they are linked up in friendliness with us through the game that they too can play so well.
This was not our only form of entertainment during our five short hours on this enchanting island. A Maori feast was arranged for us by the Association of Returned Soldiers, and we repaired to their Headquarters, a large rush hut, where an immense spread was laid out on the floor. We sat in two long rows on plaited green leaf mats, and the floor space between us was our " table " loaded with fruits and vegetables, all placed on big banana leaves as plates.
There were chickens, also, which we pulled to pieces with our fingers to eat picnic fashion ; when a dish of a sort of spinach arrived I was a bit unnerved to find that it too was to be picked up and eaten " by hand " I But it was delicious. It was made from taro tops—the taro looks rather like a large turnip, and tastes like a delicious artichoke. It was served in a wonderful old wooden bowl standing up on ten legs, called the " Kava Bowl," which had belonged to Matafa, one of the last kings of Samoa. The son of a chief of Raratonga had married his daughter, and the bowl had come to him with the hand of his bride.
For drink, we had fresh coconuts, and when a drink

was required, a swarthy Maori warrior would take up an axe and nick a neat little hole out of the top of one, and you drank it straight out of the shell. During the whole time of this unique feast there was a terrific din going on both inside and outside the Hut. Maori men were doing hakas, Maori women were doing some of their quaint dances, singing and chanting all the while ; and mixed in with all that was violent beating of an immense drum, which is only beaten on important occasions, the excited barking of dogs, and riotous rounds of applause from the delighted audience of these cheery, happy, carefree people.
And so, amidst noise and confusion, kindly good wishes and waving hats and hands, we took our departure to our ship, to sail away from our first visit to this little-known corner of our Empire, which prides itself with reason on its beauty and its history, and on being a loyal bit of the British Nation—" The Youngest Child of Queen Victoria."
Have you ever read Treasure Island, I wonder, or any of the delightful, interesting books by Robert Louis Stevenson ? If so you will probably feel that the South Sea Islands of the Pacific Ocean have some very special charm about them. They have. At least I have no right to say " they " as I only know one of them, called Tahiti, but I am told that they are all much of a muchness --each island glorying in its brilliant sunshine, the tossing, dazzling white surf on the coral reefs, the verdant green vegetation of the tropics radiant on the hillsides, and over all the soft warm winds blowing the scent of hothouse flowers. Round their edges coral reefs have been built up through the centuries as barriers from the sea.
So far as it is known these many islands of the Pacific have all been raised out of the ocean by slow degrees, and the general supposition is that they started probably

as what are called " atolls "—that is, rocky formation built up in circular shapes by the coral insect, and rising gradually out of the sea. Then after many years, seeds of trees will somehow find their way and begin to clothe the rocky bits of islands, their leaves falling to make soil, and thus a vegetation-covered island is formed.
Meanwhile, the coral insect goes on with his work, and builds up coral walls round this islet, and in the end forms a complete ring round it, with still water between the outer edge and the island itself. The space between is called a lagoon, and this shallow water is clear and lovely and smooth as glass, whilst the rough waves break outside against the protecting rim of coral.
Exquisite fish swarm in these lagoons, wee bright-blue bits of things, thin wispy ones with fins like wings, and stringy striped fellows, and all manner of revolting sea slugs and slithery, slimy, snaky eels.
One great comfort about these lagoons is that you can bathe in them with safety, for no shark will come in over the coral reef. He is too big, and would not want to scratch his tummy. The water is literally warm, so that you can wallow in it for an hour without feeling chilled, and being very salty it is also extra buoyant. People who go as visitors to these islands bathe a lot, and get so sunburned and brown that when we stopped at Papeete, the capital of the French colony of Tahiti, it was quite difficult to know which people were from America, or France, or New Zealand, or England, as they were turned into toasted bodies, nearly as brown in complexion as the native people of Tahiti itself, who are, of course, of Maori and Polynesian native blood, with beautiful bronze skins, well-knit bodies, and very graceful carriage.
Tahiti is a lovely island, and during our few hours' stay there we drove out through miles of exquisite palm groves, by the shore, wooded heights in the distance, and divinely lovely views over a shining sea to a neighbour-

TAHITI    139
ing island some five miles away called Morea, lying like an amethyst-blue jewel set in silver.
Here our ship took on board as passengers a company of movie-makers from Hollywood—authors, actors, photographers, sound recorders, light authorities, noise makers, producers, and managers and all. They are very nice, quite " everyday " people to meet and talk with and they were on their way back to Hollywood from making a film at Tahiti of the story of the Mutiny of the Bouny, which is perhaps one of the most dramatic tales in our naval history.
Perhaps some of you may have read it. It is well worth while reading about if you do get a chance of getting hold of the book, for it does give one the most stirring tale of the voyage made in an open boat under Captain Bligh, with eighteen men on board, turned adrift as they were from the H.M.S. Bounty, and journeying across 3,ouu miles of uncharted sea, with practically no food and no water and enduring and surviving unspeakable hardships. It was the most miraculous achievement and one whch makes us realise more than ever what courageous men there have been in our British history amongst those who " go down to the sea in ships."


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