My words must pass through his Mkungu, as well as my interpreter's, before they reached him; and, as he had no patience, everything was lost till he suddenly asked Maula, pretending not to know, where my hut was; why everybody said I lived so far away; and when told, he said, "Oh! that is very far, he must come nearer."
I told her I would give her some strengthening medicine in the morning: for the present, however, I would take my leave, as the day was far gone, and the distance home very great; but though I dragged my body away, my heart would still remain here, for I loved her much. On reaching home I found Maribu, a Mkungu, with a gang of men sent by Mtesa to fetch Grant from Kitangule by water.
Whilst all this vexations business had been going on in court evidently dictated by extreme jealousy because I showed, as they all thought, a preference for the queen Maula, more than tipsy, brought a Mkungu of some standing at court before me, contrary to all law for as yet no Mganda, save the king's pages, had ever dared enter even the precincts of my camp.
There are no such things as marriages in Uganda; there are no ceremonies attached to it. If any Mkungu possessed of a pretty daughter committed an offence, he might give her to the king as a peace-offering; if any neighbouring king had a pretty daughter, and the king of Uganda wanted her, she might be demanded as a fitting tribute.
Formerly it was the property of a Beluch named Eseau, who came to this country with merchandise, trading on account of Said Said, late Sultan of Zanzibar; but having lost it all on his way here, paying mahongo, or taxes, and so forth he feared returning, and instead made great friends with the late king Sunna, who took an especial fancy to him because he had a very large beard, and raised him to the rank of Mkungu.
Continuing over the same kind of ground in the next succeeding spurs of the streaky red-clay sandstone hills, we put up at the residence of Isamgevi, a Mkungu or district officer of Rumanika's.
Three boats arrived, like those used on the Murchison Creek, and when I demanded the rest, as well as a decisive answer about going to Kamrasi's, the acting Mkungu said he was afraid accidents might happen, and he would not take me.
Pokino at this time came in with a number of well-made shields, and presented them grovelling and n'yanzigging; but though the governor of an important province, who had not been seen by the king for years, he was taken no more notice of than any common Mkungu.
I now obtained permission for the Wakungu to call upon me, and fancied I only required my interpreters to speak out like men when I had anything to say, to make my residence in Uganda both amusing and instructive; but though the king, carried off by the prevailing good-humour of the scene we had both witnessed, supported me, I found that he had counter-ordered what he had said as soon as I had gone, and, in fact, no Mkungu ever dared come near me.
Everybody in Uganda is expected to keep spears, shields and dogs, the Uganda arms and cognisance; whilst the Wakungu are entitled to drums. There is also a Neptune Mgussa, or spirit, who lives in the depths of the N'yanza, communicates through the medium of his temporal Mkungu, and guides to a certain extent the naval destiny of the king.