Journey to the Stone Age, h. 1

A woman from the tribe Dani slowly descended from the hill. Her travel was approached by an end, although the city was still invisible in the morning fog, covered by the Valley of the Balia River. Bosy feet tightly steamed on wet ground. From the morning coolness did not protect even a layer of fat, which she cheered up, and the woman Zyabko wrapped her naked shoulders.

Unclear noise she has heard for a long time, suddenly survived in the rockness.

This is our jeep overtook her on the way to Venama. Although only a big optimist would call an expensive what we were shaking for several hours, clutching into the board of the car.

At first, we almost turned over, looking at the naked people walking along the road. The same genuine interest caused them and we. An hour later, hung up, with the form of a cheer of marching Papuans, we only waved our hand and shouted "Nauch!" So welcome each other Dani. In general, 270 thousand live in the Balia Valley. man and in different villages speak their dialect.

Hike in Venama&# 8194;&# 8194; Serious journey for Papuas. They are preparing to him, they send the most enduring and clearer.

Vamena – our first stop on the way from the capital of Papua Jayapura. We flew Mountains crossing the island from the west to the southeast. Now one more flight to the village of Siradala. We will pass through the forests in the center of New Guinea and go down on the boat to the shores of the Arafur Sea. We cross the second largest island on Earth (first – Greenland) from north to south.

From diary Miklukho-Maclay:

The magnificence of vegetation makes it completely forget the past, do not think about the future and only admire the present. Think and try to understand the surrounding – from now on my goal.

Milk fog hiding the ground downstairs today is less. Five-seater plane boil over the mountains. We look down like enchanted. It seems that the creation of the world has not yet ended here and we are present with the great sacrament. Filled with water and evaporation crater, ragged rocks, slopes, hidden routing of greenery or dried, as if buried lava trees. The shores of the lakes are painted by poisonous yellow and bright green paints, and the lakes themselves – green and black. There is not enough soaring in the sky of the pterodactile ..

Under us, as far as there is enough view, the infinite green porridge, rolling with bends of rivers – Iscin-black and red-brown. Shores are not visible – rows of trees go straight into the water. "Paradise for crocodiles!" – Screaming in the ear Andrei. Suddenly the airplane sharply dives down, the river flashes, the houses – the village of Siradala.

. We stand on the clay embankment, pretending to the runway, and are confused. Andrei, it seems, only now began to understand what was involved.

Three months ago he filled out a questionnaire to participate in the project "Seven brave". And here is the pilot of the missionary airplane, not the gentle motor, threw bags with rice and our backpacks on the wet grass, deployed a light machine and swam in the sky, having swinging on the farewell.

People come out of spicy smells of jungle. In ripped T-shirts or completely naked. Many people have white bones.


Because of the bushes it seemed to the native and, holding up a spear above his head, gave me to understand me to be removed.

– They are not allowed to themselves to themselves, "Alpius Nafyan explains us. He is Papuhas from the Kopkag tribe, a monster of civilization in Sirandal, a village in the middle of the jungle. – two years ago I went to them. They came out to meet with bows and arrows. Not taken neither clothes or axes.
– And you turned back? – I ask.
– And what else remained? After all, I belong to the kopkag tribe. And in those lands live cows-bats, stone cows. They still have cannibalism. Their leader is vening, and they call their lands Alu-Bow ..

Why we strive in Alu-Bow if Miklukho-Maclay lived on the coast of the island? Project "Seven brave" – these are expeditions in the footsteps of the great Russian travelers of the past. But the coast is already civilized. The traditions of the Stone Age, who watched Maclary, remained only in the central forest part of the island, where people live, like thousands of years ago. You have to choose between the exact repetition of the route and the atmosphere described in the Maclay diaries. We choose the atmosphere.

On Alu-Bow we still learned a bit: impassable debris, many rivers and streams, full fish. And there are growing trees that are called Gahar in the village. In the village only interpret about money that can be helped if you find a tree. But cow-bats do not let other people in their forests. Maybe Batu – Stone – They are called for inconsistency?

Alpius explained: To get to Alu-Bow, you need to move to the southeast of the Brookmakal River. Gave us reliable conductors who will not run away on the road. And presented the ventilated pigeon raised to them – on the track.


I replacing crackers with baked bananas and tarot slices. The rest of the food is the same as before: boiled rice with curry and beans.

Pigeon we roasted and ate already in the forest, in the hut of the buyer Gahar. The hut stands on the border, which is not on the maps: Lands begin here, who cords consider their. In these places, Gahar was cut down in the 1970s, only stumps and roots remained. But for them, buyers give 10-20 dollars. In price and aloying tree, it contains essential oil for which big money is paid in the east.

We are going through the forest for the fourth day. It seems that these wet silent debresses have no beginning, no end. We were still lucky: there were no serious rains ..

In the mud under his feet, near the root of a huge resting in the sky of the tree is visible fresh three-pailed track size with human. Who left him in primitive jungle? Dinosaur? I would not be surprised ..

Conductors are excited: here passed "Big meat" – Kazaire. They are transmitted on the chain of onions and arrows to the most experienced hunter. Dropping a backpack to wet moss, it dissolves in more often.

And we put a tent, we arrange the halt. On the desired moisture, as if the lacquered greens of the forest quickly descends the night. Bright tropical paints flex. Suddenly, as a team, poultry. In the same moment, I feel the injection in hand, then the second, third. This is not a leech to which we are already accustomed. These mosquitoes and mosquitoes flew to the night hunt. Conductors bounce, clap themselves on bare legs, scratch.

The hunter returns to the camp. He drags the bunch of fish. Kazuara does not overtake, but she shot on the shore of the fish – she swam on the light of the fire. Today our diet is boiled rice and forest greens – will be more diverse.


I was surprised by the numerous conductors, armed with spears, onions and arrows. They waged war with the inhabitants of the neighboring village.

Yesterday Copcag conductors, whom the missionary gave us, turned back. Only Biran remained, translator. Kopkaga with neighbors in the forest their disputes and scores. Fortunately, in the village we managed to hire new conductors – Cowsev. They call themselves "People villages" and seem to be afraid of their forest relatives. At the prival, while we went prayed to the legs of the leeches, Biran handed the mating of conductors: "Do not stretch, keep up, do not go from the trail. Batu fit imperceptibly. Their little arrows – as a bite of leeches, and in the evening a man dies". On persons conductors it is clear that they do not joke.


There was no soul in the village, but traces of recently left its inhabitants were visible everywhere.

The first village of Kowaev-Batu on our way. Actually, this is a house on a tree. It is empty. But slender pigs run under the wood under the tree, smoke goes from the fire. Without waiting for the owners, we put a tent.

In the morning after a long negotiations with conductors, the owner of the house comes out of the forest. He turned out to be a relative of our conductor of the Dora, which has long passed to live in the village.

Forest Resistant Name. He doesn’t look at us. But it is infinitely occupied by zipper on backpacks, light lantern, light light lighters. Squatting squeezing, Wow observes, observes unable to tear his eyes … While we were going, he was only Okal, Ahal and diluted with his hands. So did not get out of the ground, combat seen. His family from the ageway did not come out.

We continue the way. Conductors say: Vanuni leader all the time cares from the village to the village. If he wants, he will come to meet himself. He already knows about us ..

– If that, I grab him by hand and will keep! – Bioran’s eyes burn fire. – I’m not afraid! They will not kill me, I’m the same as they, – Papuas.
– No need enough. Let the conductor-cows agree, – I’m trying to cool the dust of courageous bioran. – And the leader of Vunovy knows about us?
– in the forest a lot of people. We do not see them, they see us. We will drive quickly. Especially about the appearance of strange people.

"Strange people" – This is me with Andrey. Healthy conductors consider people civilized, unlike their forest tribesmen. But for them, we notice some oddities. Yesterday on the prival, they, giggling, twisted nuts, similar to Walnuts. In the morning one section, hoisted to our surprise a nut shell for a causal place, and so went through the jungle naked. Here are the inhabitants of the village. A couple of days in the forest – and such changes.


I heard a shrill cry. Baraban strikes rushed from the villages-"Baruma". The full moon seemed because of the trees ..

In the evening I ascertain Anius (the name gave him missionaries) that they think cows about the origin of the world and people. Biran translates anius words into English. I have to specify everything and ask. Finally, such a picture is drawn. Cows represent a world in the form of expanding circles. The first – territory near their house on the tree, generic and hunting. The second round is the Great Forest, the Third – Great Water and the World of the Dead. From there we, in local ideas, and appeared. Therefore, we are afraid. We are strange. Meant the color of our skin and, of course, my glasses.

First, the powerful deity (I did not know the name) created the world, then lowered a great fire, and followed the great flood. When everyone died, living beings were again created from the flesh – pig. And the ancestors of Cowads were two brothers.

I write down this story, almost falling asleep. We live in the sun. After entering, we get up with the cries of the first birds. But today the full moon, and the conductors sing and dance by the fire. As in time, the Maclay, the time here is measured by the lunas. And consider cows, not bending your fingers, as we, and touching first to the fingers, then to the brush, forearm, biceps, shoulder.


My appearance caused panic: the men ran away, women were retracted to the huts, closing the doors behind them, the children shouted, and dogs, prying the tails and taking aside, began to swell. Without paying attention to the stir, I sat down, and soon residents began to show ..

Having emerged from the thick of the forest into the Polyana, we enjoy the floating fresh air. At the other end of the glade attached to a tree at a 30-meter altitude house. Instead of a staircase – a long storm with scubons. Through the cane roof is smoke. There is a disturbing cry-Wuhan – we noticed us.

Explorer shouts in response something consisting of alone vowels, and we climb through the barrels – ancient fortification on Earth. Neither the enemy nor a friend will come to the dwelling unnoticed. Approaches are visible – and shoot.

Journey to the Stone Age, h. 1

We climb, and someone’s eyes carefully look at us from the house-fortress. Some shadows flashed in the jungle. No one thanks to God shouts and does not shoot, perhaps agree.

Near the hillock stands canopy from branches. Dor pulls out several bracelets from a backpack and on the elongated hands carefully, like a sapper on a minefield, carries gifts.

At the time of his back closes the canopy. And here is the old man with a spear in hand. Gifts are accepted, we are allowed to stay.

In the morning in the meadow, waiting when we get out of the tents, two men with onions and arrows and an old man holding a boy.

The old man struck me. This was how the Neanderthals were depicted in school textbooks: massive abnormal arcs, low forehead, tangled hair. But the boy is quite possible to imagine sitting at the school at a computer – a smart subtle face. Grandfather and grandson – past and future of these places.

Another warrior approached, and I finally believed that I was transferred during the youth of humanity. The body is covered with ritual scars, in the nose bamboo sticks, the skin is rough as emery. Primitive man who knows nothing about the world, where they use computers and launch missiles in space, stood before me. He was alert and ready for everything.

In the evening, a few more men sat by the fire at the far end of the canopy. Women and children stayed in a tree house. Houses are divided into men’s and female halves. Above the hearth hangs animal skull.


My strength must be convened in peace and patience. I left the revolver at home, but did not forget the notebook and pencil.

I expected a meeting with a person, about which even missionaries speak lowering voice, will be more dramatic.

In the village of Yes, we were detained to see the holiday of sage palm trees. Residents were not against, although at the beginning "For order" ran into the forest. But the next morning one girl instead of a greeting stretched out his arms and poured my spider’s palm and two grasshoppers. Conductors for some reason are confident that we are interested in insects. We are bought by spiders and multicacies. Can easily plant finds on my head or Andrei.

In the morning, women cleared the platform around the palm. Men cut the trunk for a long time until the giant dumped. Under rhythmic singing, they filmed with stone axes Cora and cut down a white core. In this bustle we missed the appearance of Vunning.

However, no solemn yield of the leader was not, as not here and the very concept – the leader. From time to time, power goes to the most respected warrior. Now it is venunings.

Who would have thought that a low dwelling person with insightful eyes and there is the same "cannibal", We were told about. Vingunings sat on the sidelines and watched what was happening. Men deftly, like a huge fish, separated trunk. Women carried a white mass to the stream, thoroughly washed her and. Throw on the ground. Suggested pigs immediately eaten the crumpled core. I finally ceased to understand the meaning of their actions.

Finally, everything turned out. At the bottom of the trough, in which the core was washed, the starch mass was sedated. Sago flour is prepared from it. Baked, it is the main food cow. And in the trunk of a fired palm, the larvae of a palm beetle will be headed. This delicacy is eaten in special cases – on a big holiday, whose time has not yet come ..


Meat didn’t really like me, but Ulson and the fight ate him with pleasure. I am very embarrassed by their comment that it is probably human meat. Both were confused and assured that this pork; However, I remained in doubt.

I went to Vunovy. He gazed at me and filed his hand. I explained where we go through his lands. All this time, I did not leave me the feeling that I am saying not with a resident of the forest, but with an insightful citizen, and even educated.

The conversation continued in the evening by the fire.

– Yes, I eaten people … – Vinguny distracted, a chopper chopper from a fire of conceded sage mass. – My father brought the first to our village. The man was connected, like this, – Vinguny crushed. – Father took him to the creek and hit the head of the back. The body is divided. Then there were three more such cases in my life. Last – Many Moon Back.

Vinguny distracted, looking at the glowing dial of my clock. Maybe wanted to show that the topic does not occupy it.

Biran who translated the conversation showed me an arrow. Having praised myself on my leg, made it clear that the tip was made of bertovoy bone.

Vunovy yawned. We said goodbye. At night I grumbled for a long time in the tent. Sleep did not go.

We got to the central villages of Cow, Batu and even received the permission of Vunovi to another visit here. Now it is to river to the southern coast of New Guinea and go to the Arafur Sea ..

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