Monthly Archives: May 2008

‘ar can saw in Arkansas

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MIMAL 4: ARKANSAS

Crossing the border into Arkansas I headed to the Strawberry River for breakfast and a swim: there’s nothing quite like chewing on juicy ripe strawberries while doing butterfly!

Then I headed up into the Ozarks, and made good speed at high altitude across the impressive mountain range: I could see why Arkansas is called the Natural State.

I made it down to Little Rock by early afternoon, and continued to England for lunch.

I continued travelling south after some veggie sausages and mash. When I passed Carthage I saw a load of people riding elephants, which I thought was a very strange sight; although they looked as shocked to see me as I them.

I made it down to El Dorado by evening, and came across a gold miner who’d had a tree fall on her.

She said ‘Can you saw, if so, there’s a saw over near my bag, and would you mind sawing this tree off me?’

I said ”ah can caw’ and rushed over to the saw before freeing her.

She was unharmed and cooked me dinner in return for my efforts.

After eating and saying goodbye I continued south to the border with Louisiana; the last stop on my journey down MIMAL.

Miss ou ri’ in Missouri

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MIMAL 3: Missouri

I woke early in the morning and crossed the border into Missouri.

I made good speed during the morning and reached the Mark Twain Lake for lunch. After a substantial feed I read for a few hours afterwards; I don’t know what gave me the urge, I hadn’t felt like reading for a while. I started a new book: The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.

Then I passed through Bowling Green, where there seemed to be a lot of people playing some kind of sport, and Troy, where there seemed to be some kind of classical Greek war going on.

I lunched in St. Louis, and met a woman who was very elegantly dressed. She seemed to be having trouble crossing a puddle, so I threw my greenygrey coat down over it, and she could then get across. She said ‘Merci beaucoup’ in that cute French accent, and I said ‘Miss ou ri”, as I saw she was not wearing a ring.

Then I swam down the Missouri River to the Lake of the Ozarks, crossed the Ozark Plateau and rested on the edge of Joplin for the night. I thought I heard a woman with a great voice singing about a bloke called Bobby McGee during the night.

I owe ‘er in Iowa

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MIMAL 2: IOWA

Crossing into Iowa I breakfasted at Spirit Lake, and enjoyed the good spirit I felt there.

Then I ran down to Cherokee and thrived on the good spirit I felt there too.

Feeling a bit warm after a good morning’s running I swam down the Raccoon River during the afternoon. I really enjoyed it, and the raccoons were great fun, just messing about in the water all day.

I got into a bit of trouble in some rapids at one stage, and a raccoon called Racclisa helped me to the bank; even legendary superheroes get into bother sometimes you know, and you should always respect the strength of nature. I owe Racclisa a debt, and it won’t be forgotten.

I got out of the river in Des Moines, and then headed south-west to Shenendoah, where I spent the night under a clear night sky with Missouri within sight.

Mini so ta in Minnesota

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MIMAL 1: MINNESOTA

Crossing into the state of 10000 lakes, Minnesota, I ran to Detroit Lake, swam across that, and then walked to Walker, where I had lunch on the banks of Leech Lake.

Then I crossed the Mesabi Range to Eagle Mountain, and flew around there for a while after shapeshifting. There was some nice boreal forest around, as well as impressive mountain peaks.

After swimming down Lake Superior, which humbled me with its size and beauty, to Duluth I ran down to the twin cities of Minneapolis-St.Paul. I saw a foxy vixen in a mini-skirt there, and thought ‘mini so ta’.

After leaving the city I had a nice journey down to Blue Earth, and spent the night just south of there, ready to cross into Iowa the next day.

Memories of the travelling so far

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So having reached the last state in the western half of the USA we have now worked out a way to memorise where I’ve been.

Travelling from west to east the first six provinces of Canada can be remembered as BASMOQ: that’s British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario and Quebec.

Then the next four provinces of Canada are: N3+PEI. That’s New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador and Nova Scotia making up the Ns, and Prince Edward Island.

Then there are the three territories of Canada that travelling east to west can be remembered as N2Y: that’s Nunavut and Northwest Territories making up the Ns, and then the Yukon.

Crossing into the USA we have the two non-contigous states that can be remembered as HA or even AH if you prefer; that’s Hawaii and Alaska.

Then the four western states of the USA can be remembered as WONC: that’s Washington, Oregon, Nevada and California.

Next, in the north of the USA we have WIM: that’s Wyoming, Idaho and Montana, going in a clockwise direction from the south-east.

Below them are the four corner states of the USA: Colorado, Utah, New Mexico and Arizona. Together they make up the fishy sounding CUNA.

Then we have six states that conveniently go from north to south in a straight line down the middle of the USA, and together they make up the acronym type ropey word D2KNOT: that’s North and South Dakota making up the D2, followed by Kansas, Nebraska, Oklahoma and Texas forming the KNOT.

So there we have our journey so far, all neatly summarised in a few words!

5-O in Hawaii

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US 19: Hawaii

As I was recapping my journey so far I realised that I should have gone to Hawaii by now, as it is the most westerly state along with Alaska.

So I shapeshifted into an eagle to fly to the west coast, and then as I reached the sea changed into an albatross.

My wings were getting tired half way to Hawaii, so I changed into a ray for the last leg of the journey, and glided smoothly up to the beach.

Changing back into wolf form I ran up Mauna Kea, Hawaii’s tallest peak, and higher than Everest if you follow it all the way to its base under the sea; I of course had started from its salty origins.

I rested on the peak for a couple of hours, before making the return journey back to North Dakota.

Once I’ve caught my breath tomorrow I’ll update you on the current acronyms of North America!

Recollections 2

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After leaving Canada I travelled through Alaska, which is of course up there on its own, separated from any other US states.

I then travelled down the west coast, from Washington into Oregon, and then California, before heading east into Nevada. While I think that was the most direct route I could have taken, to remember them I think it’s best to swap California and Nevada around, so that a WONC acronym is created.

I then covered the next seven states to the east by travelling north and then south, but you learn as you travel, and to remember them I think it’s better to split them into the northern three states, and then the four corner states at the bottom.

For the top three states, I think an acronym starting with Wyoming, and followed in a clockwise direction by Idaho and Montana is the most memorable: WIM.

For the four corner states I think an acronym of CUNA is the most memorable, but it means starting in the top right hand corner with Colorado, then travelling west for Utah, then back to the south-east for New Mexico, and then west again for Arizona. So unfortunately not as straightforward travelling around the CUNA acronym, but sometimes you’ve got to break off from the easiest path to reach your preferred destination.

The straight north-south line of the next six states provides a nice smooth journey. I travelled south to north, but to memorise them I think it’s best to start at the top and work down; creating a memory package of D2KNOT: yes, a D2 knot, as in a rope knot. That’s the Dakotas at the top, easily separated with North and South, and then Kansas, Nebraska, Oklahoma and Texas creating the knot.

So that’s the first 18 American states covered, and I’ll soon be heading into unknown territory as I move east. See you there!

Recollections 1

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———–A grey cousin I might have met along the way

As I have reached North Dakota, and what might be considered the last US ‘western’ state, I began recollecting about my journey so far.

It started in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario and Quebec, and I remembered this by the acronym BASMOQ.

Then I visited three other provinces I remembered as N3: New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Newfoundland and Labrador.

In the middle of them is the tenth province: Prince Edward Island. I was disappointed not to receive a royal welcome there from what I can remember!

Then I made my way across the three territories from east to west, starting with Nunavut, and then crossing into Northwest Territories and finally the Yukon: this might be remembered as N2Y…or might not!

Tomorrow I’ll be recollecting my journey through the western states of the U.S.

No wrath da kota in North Dakota

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US 18: North Dakota

I swam up Lake Oahe after stretching through the dawn, and it was nice to do a bit of marine travelling on a hot morning with my paws still singed from running through the Badlands the day before.

I lunched at Bismarck; I thought it was a big ship, and was surprised to find nothing of the naval vessel variety amongst the shops and homes.

Then I headed east along the Coteau du Missouri. It was mighty hot and I thought my greenygrey coat was going to rebel against me because it was having to work so hard to keep me from overheating, but when I asked if it was okay, it just said ‘I feel no wrath’.

I was mighty pleased to hear it and grateful for the job it was doing.

Feeling assured, I carried on through the afternoon; passing Jamestown and Valley City before resting on the edge of Fargo for the night. There was thankfully no murders or funny stuff at Fargo!

Da coat da soothe in South Dakota

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US 17: South Dakota

Crossing into South Dakota I made good progress across the Badlands, which were nice and flat.

Then I made my way up into the Black Hills for lunch at Hot Springs. It was nice to relax after a long morning’s running, and good to put my paws up for a while.

I passed Mt. Rushmore, and it was good to see all those president dudes from time gone by; maybe the greenygrey will be immortalised in such a way one day…only time will tell!

Then I passed through Deadwood, Sturgis and Spearfish on my way down to the prairie.

As I passed Buffalo and Bison I got into a tangle with some buffalo and bison, but my greenygrey coat kept me out of harm’s way, and soothed any knocks.

I made it up to McIntosh by sundown, and camped on the border with North Dakota for the night.