"choo!choo!choo!" went the train as we rounded another bend, me in my coat and top hat hanging as far over the side as one hand can handle. It had been a long ride thus far, and thus far wasn't nearly the end -- not of the excitement or the adventures! I was still so full of anticipation for what other incredible things we were planning to discover (as far as discoveries can be planned) -- my servant and right hand man, Jigibarr, was there next to me, all contemplating with his dark and wide eyes the vistas spreading out before us. How vividly I remember those eyes, so full of esoteric truth learnt on a first hand basis, so full of his ancestors' collective exotic wisdom! It seemed so strange to have such a deep and profound man catering to me -- I should have been his servant -- and yet, in many ways, I was. Me, Jay Branson, waited on by the Master Yogi Jigibarr himself! What a fluke! But I tell you, if it were not for him and him alone, so many puzzles and dangers that confronted us would have remained unsurmouted -- and so many subtleties of and nuances of the landscape, its mysteries, and its peoples, would have blown right passed my grasp without me even being aware of them! Boy oh Boy, that Jigibarr -- what a hoot!

So there I was, hanging over the rail with one hand keeping down my hat and the other keeping up my body suspended over the deep and sunless crevice below when suddenly whipped this butterfly-like insect four feet in diameter out of nowhere to land smack across my face -- and I mean across!! Our velocity was something like twenty knots because we were riding in a solar sun shoot and -- splat! -- there's a gargantuan butterfly twitching its incoherent remains all across my surprised and quite literally shocked gourd. I freaked out, to put it properly, and lost my grip and began falling at the old thirty-two-thirty-two down into the jowls of that sunless and depthless abyss of a geographical asscrack.

There I was, all hoot'n and holler'n, being dragged tooth and nail directly towards the center of our fair earth until some inconsequential and solid mass interrupts my no-detours trip -- all wailing my throat chords and flailing my coat tails and falling down, down, down.

Now, you know I'm an honest guy, I mean, I don't try to hide nothing; whether it'll save face or not, I tell it only one way -- and that's called "how it is." So I was falling -- but, from what I recall, I can't quite definitely say I was scared -- I mean, my body was -- heck, it could do nothing but spill every ounce of its warm liquids into the air as if it thought any landing pad was better than none -- but my mind, my soul, man -- was it scared? I really don't think so -- and you can argue any which way you would, but for me, I really do think I had some certainty -- and that certainty, my dearest audience, materialized in the form of Sir Yogi Master Jigibarr Supreme, my faithful servant and the teacher of my spiritual path.

There I was, going down with no distractions to derail me, and of a sudden I look through the misty haze of my scattered discharges, and this guy, this Jigibarr is all placid and levitating like and he just grabs me by my nooker and flings me right back on up onto that curving train right up there doing its propulsing locomotion silliness. Thump! Ugg! By I'm saved!!

Well, after a moment or so, I de-prostrated myself from the deck of that nifty and speeding solar sun shooter and I thought "Now, where'd that wack Jigi get himself now?" and just when I was about to look over the railing, half expecting, I admit, to see one of those little dusty poofs! you see in the cartoons -- all like poof! and all tiny and stuff -- but no, not that damn fine Jigibarr -- no sir! Plop! went he right on the deck beside me.

"You kick, man!" I shouted, "You're super-fine!" And I was about to do this victory dance I learned one night from the forest pigmies a few weeks before hand -- but before I could raise a foot, good old Jigibarr grabs my chin and takes a sanitary napkin to it!

"Those bugs are known to cause rashes, Master Branson," he says, by way of explanation, and I'm like

"Jigibarr, do you forget anything?!?"

He shrugged, as he is wont to do, and I got him to do the dance with me for a couple of exalted minutes.

Craziness I say!





Jay Branson lives!

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