Way back at the start of this journey I told you about the wooly mammoths, and how they like to eat butterscotch. At the time it was one of the things i was most excited about seeing. But we’ve travelled so far since then, and seen so much madness. My own puppet has changed. I’ll be honest, I had forgotten about our massive furry friends. Until now.
You have to leave the town to see them. Someone grew a series of palm trees as markers, and the plants are no less victims to the snow that constantly falls.
There are twelve in the herd, marching in a messy line. Their feet leave deep craters in the snow behind them, and their tusks are huge bananas of bone. Shaggy fur smothers them, and they must be twice as tall as me, and over twenty times terms my weight. If these creatures hadn’t been extinct, there wouldn't be any novelty at all. At least from afar.
We had bough the butterscotch rather than imagined it. Admittedly we paid by telling the vendor our surname. The pack crinkled in my palm with every step forward. The Butter Mouse sat on my shoulder, whispering that I should hurry up, but keeping her tail wrapped around the back of my neck. I remembered something about the weight of an elephant when stampeding is like falling ten floors down a lift shaft. Was there time to imagine a shield before impact?
My legs wobbled when we got close enough to touch them, and I held out the bag. The one I’m sure was the biggest moved closer, his breath hot, but slightly sweet. He snuffled up the sweets, munching them up paper, wrapper and all in one mouthful. Two huge tusks fenced us in, and his mouth was wet and leathery. Its thick brown fur, shaggy fur, thick and messy like unwashed hair.
Thank goodness we bought a few more bags. The others gathered round us, and we handed out the butterscotch mammoth to mammoth, avoiding trunks and giant feet.
Gratias to whoever thought these up. For a lot of this journey I have been thinking about the next place, or even what to do when I got back. But here amongst the mammoths, we stood and enjoyed our time together. I still don’t know if she’s coming back with me.
Next week we are having a good explore of Huelsenbeck. The weeks are ticking down.