28th January 1933 cont. - Luritcha with two young recently initiated boys

source icon We were very glad to get it as the previous nights camp had been without water. At Haasts Bluff we decided to stop to let Murch do a bit of painting for a while so we made a decent camp and had a shave. Since we had left the threat of rain behind us every day brought a dimunition in the number of clouds in the evening. The days were also getting hotter and the nights colder.

There were many footprints of natives on the sand of the creek but so far we had seen no natives although we heard their cooees around us. However, in the evening just as it was getting dark some fine looking natives came striding up the creek bed carrying all their weapons and not wearing a stitch. They were five or six in number all men with two young recently initiated boys. We greeted them and then got the camel boy to tell them to come and camp where we were.

Hezekiel said that they were wild Luritcha who had come in to pander to the mission boy sent out from the station and about a days travel behind us. He had kept us posted as to the progress of the mission boy, though he hardly ever got out of our sight and we saw very few smoke signals.

Just after daybreak while we were finishing breakfast and suffering the early morning flies, the tribe began to arrive.

They all came up the creek preceded by the head man with a few fighters. Next, followed the women with the 'baggage' and the children and then the rest of the forces behind. The women had a few stitches of clothing of very little use unless held together. They were carrying wooden pitchis on their heads with skill and grace. The rest were all naked except for one pair of trousers scrounged from somewhere and on this occasion worn with arms through the legs. They seemed to be worn by a different person every day.

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