Chapter V. Unyamuezi
He gave the following account of himself: - He used to trade in ivory, on account of some Arabs at Zanzibar. On crossing Usui, he once had a fight with one of the chiefs of the country and killed him; but he got through all right, because the natives, after two or three of their number had been killed, dispersed, and feared to come near his musket again. He visited Uganda when the late king Sunna was living, and even traded Usoga; but as he was coming down from these northern countries he lost all his property by a fire breaking out in a village he stopped in, which drove him down here a ruined man. As it happened, however, he put up with the chief of this district, Ugali - Mr Paste - at a time when the Watuta attacked the place and drove all the inhabitants away. The chief, too, was on the point of bolting, when Sirboko prevented him by saying, "If you will only have courage to stand by me, the Watuta shall not come near - at any rate, if they do, let us both die together." The Watuta at that time surrounded the district, crowning all the little hills overlooking it; but fearing the Arabs' guns might be many, they soon walked away, and left them in peace. In return for this magnanimity, and feeling a great security in firearms, Ugali then built the large enclosure, with huts for Sirboko, we were now living in. Sirboko, afraid to return to the coast lest he should be apprehended for debt, has resided here ever since, doing odd jobs for other traders, increasing his family, and planting extensively. His agricultural operations are confined chiefly to rice, because the natives do not like it enough to be tempted to steal it.
25th to 2d. - I now set to work, collecting, stuffing, and drawing, until the 2d, when Musa's men came in with three hundred men, whom I sent on to Kaze at once with my specimens and letters, directing Musa and Bombay to come on and join us immediately. Whilst waiting for these men's return, one of Sirboko's slaves, chained up by him, in the most piteous manner cried out to me: "Hai Bana wangi, Bana wangi (Oh, my lord, my lord), take pity on me! When I was a free man I saw you at Uvira, on the Tanganyika lake, when you were there; but since then the Watuta, in a fight at Ujiji, speared me all over and left me for dead, when I was seized by the people, sold to the Arabs, and have been in chains ever since. Oh, I saw, Bana wangi, if you would only liberate me I would never run away, but would serve you faithfully all my life." This touching appeal was too strong for my heart to withstand, so I called up Sirboko, and told him, if he would liberate this one man to please me he should be no loser; and the release was effected. He was then christened Farham (Joy), and was enrolled in my service with the rest of my freed men. I then inquired if it was true the Wabembe were cannibals, and also circumcised. In one of their slaves the latter statement was easily confirmed. I was assure that he was not a cannibal; for the whole tribe of Wabembe, when they cannot get human flesh otherwise, give a goat to their neighbours for a sick or dying child, regarding such flesh as the best of all. No other cannibals, however, were known of; but the Masai, and their cognates, the Wahumba, Wataturu, Wakasange, Wanyaramba, and even the Wagogo and Wakimbu, circumcise.
On the 15th I was surprised to find Bombay come in with all my rear property and a great quantity of Musa's, but with out the old man. By a letter from Sheikh Said I then found that, since my leaving Kaze, the Arabs had, along with Mkisiwa, invested the position of Manua Sera at Kigue, and forced him to take flight again. Afterwards the Arabs, returning to Kaze, found Musa preparing to leave. Angry at this attempt to desert them, they persuaded him to give up his journey north for the present; so that at the time Bombay left, Musa was engaged as public auctioneer in selling the effects of Snay, Jafu, and others, but privately said he would follow me on to Karague as soon as his rice was cut. Adding a little advice of his own, Sheikh Said pressed me to go on with the journey as fast as possible, because all the Arabs had accused me of conspiring with Manua Sera, and would turn against me unless I soon got away.
2d to 30th. - Disgusted with Musa's vacillatory conduct, on the 22d I sent him a letter containing a bit of my mind. I had given him, as a present, sufficient cloth to pay for his porters, as well as a watch and a good sum of money, and advised his coming on at once, for the porters who had just brought in my rear property would not take pay to go on to Karague; and so I was detained again, waiting whilst his head man went to Rungua to look for more. Five days after this, a party of Sangoro's arrived from Karague, saying they had been detained three months in Usui by Suwarora, who had robbed them of an enormous quantity of property, and oppressed them so that all their porters ran away. Now, slight as this little affair might appear, it was of vital importance to me, as I found all my men shaking their heads and predicting what might happen to us when we got there; so, as a forlorn hope, I sent Baraka with another letter to Musa, offering to pay as much money for fifty men carrying muskets as would buy fifty slaves, and, in addition to that, I offered to pay them what my men were receiving as servants. Next day (23d) the chief Ugali came to pay his respects to us. He was a fine- looking young man, about thirty years old, the husband of thirty wives, but he had only three children. Much surprised at the various articles composing our kit, he remarked that our "sleeping-clothes" - blankets - were much better than his royal robes; but of all things that amused him most were our picture- books, especially some birds drawn by Wolf.