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Mau Lau

On the high southern slopes of Mundo Perdido at a place called Seu Baru (M: 'the cooked meat'), the Kairui and Makasae peoples of the area recount their story of a spring called Mau Lau (M: ' the place of the civet cat') which in distant times simply disappeared. The custodian of Mau Lau, an eel from Luca, was tired of being abused by the local residents (who were capturing and eating eels from the spring) so one day it morphed into a family, led by a man called Wai Leki (who had transformed from an eel). This group of old men, women, children and their animals gathered up their magic basket and other belongings and walked off across mountains to the north. When they reached the northern eastern edge of the Baucau escarpment in a village known today as Wailili they met an old man and asked him for a place to rest. The old man kindly pointed them to a shady tree and they set down their belongings and made camp. When the old man returned the next day the entire family and their belongings had disappeared. Meanwhile a spring had now appeared in the ground beneath the tree where they had made camp. Mau Lau and his people never returned to Seu Baru and to this day the people of the Seu Baru region are fearful of the repercussions of bathing in the potentially hostile springs of Wailili.
Type of spring
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