The rest of our journey to the north of Lydenburg, over Spekstroom River, along Watervalop, over Steenkampsberg to Roossenekal, was very tedious. The uninhabited Boschveld was very interesting, and we had sufficient provisions then, but the poor, uncivilized Boer inhabitants of the Lydenburg district were unable to supply us with necessaries, the want of which we were beginning to feel.
I must not forget our banjoist, who of nights beguiled our careworn chief with cheery marches, quicksteps, and comic songs. Finally we emerge upon the hoogeveld of Middelburg, to find the town in the enemy's hands. We make for Roossenekal. Again the British are before us. We turn away towards Machadodorp. As we near the village Schalk Burger comes out to meet us.
President Steyn celebrated the anniversary of his birthday at Roossenekal, and addressed us in the same spirit as on the former occasion at the Sabie. Roossenekal is famous for its caves, or grottos, in which the Mapochers hid themselves so well during the Mapoch War. We made use of the opportunity to visit the grottos, of whose formation I should like to know more.