lofty forest trees, some of them dead, and with a wall of tangled foliage overhead.
Passing Esquina, a hamlet at the mouth of the Rio Corrientes, vast volumes of smoke rising behind the trees on the right bank proclaim that the Indians of Gran Chaco are "burning a forest in order to roast a quarter of venison." Here the steamer's course lies among islands covered partly with undergrowth and partly with forests. In the shadow of the tall trees on one of the most lovely of these islands is seen from the deck a quaint, barefooted company consisting of two men, a woman and three small children, who have just stepped ashore from two boats made from the hollowed-out trunks of trees. Two dogs accompany them. The adults of the party are clothed in rags. These people are monteros, and are members of a tribe of gypsies who haunt the islands of the Parana. They live a life of lordly independence, subsisting as best they can, sleeping when fatigued wherever they may be when drowsiness overtakes them, eati
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