"This was the daily life of Lêla. At the very break of dawn, when thetrees and grass were heavy with the dews of the night, and the flocks ofmountain parrots screamed shrilly at the rising sun and the wild boar scurriedaway to his forest lair, the people were up and at work among their plantationsor out upon the blue expanse of Lêla Harbour in their canoes. For thoughthere was no need for them to do but the merest semblance of toil, yet it wasand always had been the custom of the land for each family to bring a dailygift of food to the King. Sometimes if a whaleship lay outside the harbour theKing would take all they brought, to sell to the ship in exchange for guns andpowder, and bright Turkey red cloth; but beyond this he took but little of allthat they gave him day after day. They were a happy, contented race, and theirland was a land of wondrous fertility and smiling plenty."