The Native mind works in strange ways, and is related to the mind of bygone people, who naturally imagined
that Odin, so as to see through the whole world, gave away one of his eyes; and who figured the God of love as a
child, ignorant of love. It is likely that the Kikuyu of the farm saw my greatness as a judge in the fact that I knew
nothing whatever of the laws according to which I judged.

Because of their gift for myths, the Natives can also do things to you against which you cannot guard yourself
and from which you cannot escape. They can turn you into a symbol. I was well aware of the process, and for my
own use I had a word for it,–in my mind I called it that they were brass serpenting me. Europeans who have lived
for a long time with Natives, will understand what I mean, even if the word is not quite correctly used according
to the Bible. I believe that in spite of all our activities in the land, of the scientific and mechanical progress there,
and of Pax Britannica itself, this is the only practical use that the Natives have ever had out of us.

 The Somali town lay exposed to all winds and   was shadeless and dusty, it must have recalled to the Somali their native deserts. Europeans, who live for a long
time, even for several generations, in the same place, cannot reconcile themselves to the complete indifference to the surroundings of their homes, of the nomadic races. The Somali’s houses were irregularly strewn on the bare ground, and looked as if they had been nailed together with a bushel of four inch nails, to last for a week. It was a
surprising thing, when you entered one of them, to find it inside so neat and fresh, scented with Arab incenses, with fine carpets and hangings, vessels of brass and silver, and swords with ivory hilts and noble blades. The Somali women themselves had dignified, gentle ways, and were hospitable and gay, with a laughter like silver bells. I was much at home in the Somali village through my Somali servant Farah Aden, who was with me all the
time that I was in Africa, and I went to many of their feasts. A big Somali wedding is a magnificent, traditional festivity. As a guest of honour I was taken into the bridal chamber, where the walls and the bridal bed were hung with old gently glowing weavings and embroideries, and the dark eyed young bride herself was stiff, like a marshal’s baton with heavy silks, gold and amber.

The Indians of Nairobi dominated the big Native business quarter of the Bazaar, and the great Indian merchants
had their little Villas just outside the town; Jevanjee, Suleiman Virjee, Allidina Visram. They all had a taste for
stonework stairs, balusters, and vases, rather badly cut out of the soft stone of the country,–like the structures
which children build of pink ornamental bricks. They gave tea parties in their gardens, with Indian pastry in the
style of the Villas, and were clever, travelled, highly polite people. But the Indians in Africa are such grasping
tradesmen that with them you would never know if you were face to face with a human individual or with the
head of a firm.

An African Native Forest is a mysterious region. You ride into the depths of an old tapestry, in places faded and
in others darkened with age, but marvellously rich in green shades. You cannot see the sky at all in there, but the  sunlight plays in many strange ways, falling through the foliage. The grey fungus, like long drooping beards, on
the trees, and the creepers hanging down everywhere, give a secretive, recondite air to the Native forest. I used to ride here with Farah on Sundays, when there was nothing to do on the farm, up and down the slopes, and across the little winding forest streams. The air in the forest was cool like water, and filled with the scent of plants, and in the beginning of the long rains when the creepers flowered, you rode through sphere after sphere of fragrance.
One kind of African Daphne of the woods, which flowers with a small cream coloured sticky blossom, had an
overwhelming sweet perfume, like lilac, and wild lily of the valley. Here and there, hollow tree stems were hung
up in ropes of hide on a branch; the Kikuyu hung them there to make the bees build in them, and to get honey.
Once as we turned a corner in the forest, we saw a leopard sitting on the road, a tapestry animal.

Here, high above the ground, lived a garrulous restless nation, the little grey monkeys. Where a pack of monkeys
had travelled over the road, the smell of them lingered for a long time in the air, a dry and stale, mousy smell. As
you rode on you would suddenly hear the rush and whizz over your head, as the colony passed along on its own
ways. If you kept still in the same place for some time you might catch sight of one of the monkeys sitting
immovable in a tree, and, a little after, discover that the whole forest round you was alive with his family, placed
like fruits on the branches, grey or dark figures according to how the sunlight fell on them, all with their long
tails hanging down behind them. They gave out a peculiar sound, like a smacking kiss with a little cough to
follow it; if from the ground you imitated it, you saw the monkeys turn their heads from one side to the other in
an affected manner, but if you made a sudden movement they were all off in a second, and you could follow the
decreasing swash as they clove the treetops, and disappeared in the wood like a shoal of fishes in the waves.