Boy Scouts Beyond The Seas
But though the country looked strange, the people were all British, and at many of the stations Boy Scouts were drawn up for my inspection, all looking exactly the same as Scouts at home and talking our tongue, although they are bang at the opposite side of the world.
In among these mountains, though I had not time to go and see them, lie some of the wonders of the world in the shape of great natural fountains of boiling hot water called “geysers,” and marvellous rocks and stalactites.
It is said that you can tell a Wellington man in any part of the world, because when he approaches a street corner he puts up his hand to hold his hat on. This is from force of habit, because in Wellington there is nearly always a high wind blowing.
Well, it was not blowing when I was there, and I found Wellington a charming town, fine streets and public buildings and wharves on the flat fronting a magnificent bay, while steep hills rise up close behind it on which are the villas and cottages of the citizens with their pretty gardens and shady verandahs and beautiful view.
Here again I attended a parade of Scouts and Cadets (600 Scouts and 2000 Cadets), and I presented to the Scouts the flag of friendship which had been sent out by the Wellington Troop in London.
A Brave Bugler
Near Wellington, at a place called Hutt, a gallant act was done by a boy in the fighting against the Maoris in 1865.
A force of British troops was camped here, and owing to the crafty and plucky nature of the enemy an extra strict watch was kept by the sentries at night lest they should attempt to rush the camp when the men were sleeping.
On thus particular night Bugler Allen of the 58th (now the Northampton Regiment) could not rest. I don’t know whether he had the Scout’s ability to smell an enemy and could scent him in the breeze, but at any rate he was awake at the dangerous part of the night, that is, just before dawn, when an enemy is most likely to make his attack, and he became an additional watcher with the regular sentries.
Just as light was beginning to come on through the mist of the night, there was a sudden rush and scurry through the long grass, and one of the sentries near the boy was clubbed to the ground before he could utter a sound.
This opened a way for the Maoris to sweep silently into the camp and kill the men in their sleep, but they had not reckoned on the boy. In an instant his bugle went to his lips and the “Alarm” suddenly blared out all over the camp.
A warrior rushed at him with an axe which the boy dodged as it fell, and it cut deep into his arm; but he continued to sound the call to the men till another blow stretched him senseless and dying on the ground. But he had done his duty; he had saved the camp, for the soldiers sleeping on their rifles sprang up and poured a rapid fire into their foes, and drove them off with heavy loss.
Strange Fowls and Fishes
The Wellington Scouts presented me with pieces of eggshell of the Moa which they had found. The Moa was a huge kind of ostrich in former days in New Zealand, and, judging from the size of its bones which are sometimes found, it must have stood over twelve feet high. But it has long since died off.
Bits of its eggs are often found by sharp-eyed Scouts. Another curious bird which has now