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The Last Journal Entry of Sir Percival Prodpole.

Mike Rowley

Normanby, New Zealand

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March the 13th – a Friday (I think). Evening.
I was waxing on the extremities of the climate in this loathsome country just last evening when I recalled that but a few short days ago Dirk and I were hacking our way through the most verdant and foul jungle God had the whim to conceive, and now, here we are, searching again for Professor Horendos Twaddle in this place so vast and so dry it truly beggars me why God should be bothered to paint such a landscape on the great canvas of life.

This morning we came across some native johnnies striding across our path with an admirable determination. They did stop, however, and attempt to engage us in conversation, pointing in the direction we were heading and jibber-jabbering like there was no tomorrow. (I truly believe that the Englishman’s lot would be much the better if all peoples of the world, even the most lowly, spoke the Queen’s English).

Then Dirk shooed them on, telling them loudly and clearly that they were wasting our time and we continued on our way.

We ran out of water at noon.

A sand storm ruined all our equipment and scattered it to the four corners.

Dirk was the first to succumb. I had no choice but to leave him because, ahead, I could clearly see Styversant, My trusty retainer, beckoning me forward with a large gin-and-it on a silver tray. I called to him several times to bring the motor car up as I was getting fatigued but he refused.

I found a small outcrop of rocks and sat down to rest.

Off in the distance a family of those Bedoo chappies drifted past with their camels. They were floating several feet in the air, waving in and out of focus in the heat. I stood and waved, calling to them but the rude people simply refused to take notice.

Why, oh why did not those awful natives we came upon earlier warn us that this desert was indeed endless?

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