RIDING ON AN OSTRICH
Island, after constructing a burrow in the ground, similar to those of Europe. Before putting them in, we combed them, and removed all the superfluous hair, which I intended to manufacture into hats.
Then we turned to the education of the ostrich, which was more difficult than anything we had yet attempted.
He began by flying into a terrible passion ; he struggled, snapped at us with his beak, and cut all sorts of capers ; and we could find no better remedy for such conduct than to treat him as we had treated Fritz's eagle—that was, by burning tobacco under his nose. This had the desired effect, and we soon saw the majestic bird totter and fall insensible to the ground. We had recourse to this plan several times. Little by little we relaxed the cord which fastened the bird to the bamboo post, and gave him room to wander about the doorway. A litter of rushes was provided for him ; calabashes filled with sweet nuts, rice, maize, and guavas were placed every day before him.
During three days all our cares were in vain : the
beautiful captive would not eat, and he carried his
obstinacy so far that I was seriously afraid of the
consequences. At last an idea occurred to us. It