A NIGHT ALARM 31
making a little hole in the cane above the knot he could get at the juice by sucking the end.
I asked him to explain to me why this happened, and after further thought, he answered correctly that in sucking the juice the air in the mouth was exhausted ; the external air, pressing at the same time through the hole, filled this void ; the juice of the cane formed an obstacle to this effort, and was accordingly driven into the mouth.
I was pleased to find he could reason the thing out for himself, and warned him not to carry out the plan too effectually, or he might only have a bundle of empty canes to present to those at home ; however, as the juice of the sugar-cane is apt to turn sour soon after cutting, especially in such heat, this mattered the less.
' At least,' said Fritz, ' I will take the others some of the cocoa-nut milk with which I filled my flask.'
' In this, too, I think you will be disappointed. You talk of milk, but the milk of the cocoa-nut, when exposed to the air and heat, turns soon to vinegar.'
' Oh, heavens, how provoking! I must taste it this very minute,' he cried anxiously.
The flask was lowered from his shoulder and the