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As we are lost, we are delighted when we blunder into another human being, although, looking at him, I wonder if the chap is quite human.  Juan says he might be Neanderthal and he had read that the Neanderthals didn’t speak with words, but hummed.  We both hum The Flight of the Bumble Bee, but the fellow just looks at us quizzically.  Deciding that he probably isn’t Neanderthal, I try Tamazight, the oldest African language I know, and Juan tries Ancient Egyptian the oldest African language he knows, but our efforts to communicate are rendered pointless when the chap introduces himself, in perfect English, as Jack Maynard, from Piltdown, East Sussex.  I tell Juan that this explains why I thought he wasn’t quite human.  After sharing some of Juan’s Special Reserve with him, we ask directions to Humperdinkadad, but Jack, unused to such fine single malt, spins around, waves his arms in the air, shouts that he is being attacked by giant pink mastodons and falls backwards and sinks into an oily swamp.  We wait for some time, but he doesn’t reappear, so, raising our hip flasks, we salute Jack and trust that, if anyone finds his remains, they will be treated with the dignity befitting a Piltdown man. 


Professor Humperdink’s Diary