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17.6.10

Transport for Sancho








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Aunt Humperdink always keeps a few old aeroplanes available for guests to use; we can't work out which is the front end of Langley's "Aerodrome", and Thomas Moy's "Aerial" Steamer and Stringfellow's aeroplane are too small to carry us all, so Juan and I decide to take Hensen's "Aerial" steam carriage. However, Sancho isn’t enthusiastic and says that he doesn't want to fly anywhere, especially in something that looks like a broken crate. Juan tells Sancho that, because these sort of aeroplanes are very light, they crash lightly, so they’re safe. Sancho doesn’t look convinced and says he would rather travel by donkey because donkeys never crash.

We take Sancho to aunt Humperdink’s stables to select a donkey, but we discover that there aren’t any donkeys in the stables, so we choose a horse instead. Seeing the horse, and learning its name, Dare Devil, Sancho looks very alarmed and tells us that he has only ever ridden a donkey and the horse is too big, and it might go too quickly for comfort. I tell him that there’s nothing to worry about because Dare Devil has been trained as a trotter, so, normally, he doesn’t go very fast. Juan agrees, but he points out that Dare Devil sometimes gets bored with trotting, and then he likes to run, and when he runs, he runs like a berserk rocket. I add that Dare Devil also likes to jump, buck, spin, and roll, but, if Sancho hangs on tightly enough, he should be perfectly safe. Hearing this, Sancho says that, whatever we say, he’s not going to go near the animal.

Juan suggests that, if Sancho were more relaxed, he wouldn’t be so worried, so, to relax him, we break out the Vintage Aultmore, Tullibardine, Bowmore, and Glendronach Special Reserve, and offer toast after toast to the magnificence of horses, then, linking arms and singing ‘The Deil Cam’ Fiddlin’’, ‘Jumping John’ and ‘I Had a Horse’ at the top of our voices, we gallop around in circles, as fast as we possibly can.

Professor Humperdink’s Diary