The Indian tribe buries a courier, in other words, a messenger. Someone who transmits messages. He was placed in a boat right next to all kinds of necessary items: the food, extra clothes, a bow and some arrows. This ceremony is observed by an elderly scholar - European. His name is John. He is watching the ceremony with his arms being crossed. He is grim and thinks about something that is on his mind. Being at this funeral brings him a melancholy thought because not so long time ago his wife passed away. Meanwhile the old tribal leader comes to John and stands right next to him with a solemn silence. He knows that the European will ask questions because that is his job.
Indeed, John notes that there is his bag on deceased's chest with a piece of an interesting embroidery, and many members of the tribe come and put something like twisted beads into the bag. He asks the leader what it means and the leader willingly explains it,” it is the letters to relatives. You know, we all have our relatives in the other world (in the Land of the Eternal Hunt, presumably). Unfortunately the relationship with them is frankly difficult. And when there is a new dead, you can send a message or some sort of parcel with him to your relatives. Especially - adds the leader - Quick Feet during his lifetime was the best of our messengers and he always delivered mail to the address. I am sure he will not fail this time too. I ,too, send a message to my father and mother with him.”
Then he shows to the researcher complicatedly tied alignment thread on which there are strung tightly colorful dried berries. He says, “ Other tribes use nodules, too, so and we sometimes do, but in general we have decided to make letters from the berries. They can put them in the tea and such a letter besides the usual sense carries a sign of friendly disposition.”
He encircles the finger pattern on their clothes, and then points to the letter,” Do you see here these recurring characters? If you tilt your head and look from the side, they resemble a smile. Two green and one red berries mean the same thing. This pattern bears no meaning, it is just a general good wishes. I loved my parents, they loved me too, and I think it will be nice to send them some news from me.” The researcher thinks for a minute and then asks,” Why dead need dried berries? How can they put them in tea?”. The leader of the tribe smiles and answers,” Why do you put flowers on the grave of your wife? Can dead people weave a wreath of them? or enjoy the smell of the fresh flowers? No. But your wife is happy because she know that you remember about her and still give her some flowers.”
John listened to the tribe leader, but could not say anything.
“By the way, do you want to send the message to your wife? The boat will leave at sunset, after the departing sun, so you still have time to make the...