On receiving a map

As is our custom, the map was put on public display. No doubt you heard the cheers when it was noticed that some small incursion into the Black Hole had been revealed. The tribe spontaneously broke out the prairie weed and picked the juiciest deciduous leaves for our tribal brew – somebody said we really ought to learn how to make mead, and I was later petitioned by a delegation that had the plans drawn up for how to do this. It is now on our agenda for the coming 3-year cycle after the Great Migration South.

In a well-received speech I made to the clan about mapping, I reported that between us and our other great friends we had uncovered 125 new hexes of terrain this last month. Cue more cheering, this time with foot stomping and twirling (the shaking of hands above the head – a tradition of ours to show happiness). I reported the Southern River as being 800 miles long, but we had finally found a ford; and Lake Surprise had again provided more surprises and it is now theorised that it is indeed two lakes.

We debated long and hard about how to respond to the lovely map. A bleary-eyed inactive suggested that an appropriate reciprocal map would be that area where our brave and intrepid western element has spent so much effort in getting out of mountains. A herder with a long memory (probably a result of looking after elephants for so long) said he hoped that it might lead to a larger map of the area to the north, after all, ‘hadn’t these guys said they were well to the NW of Elfo Vale many months back?’

‘Patience,’ I said to the many nods of remembrance. ‘Patience. These matters take time. Tribes have different ways of doing things and no matter how frustrating we might find them, we need to be aware that many are not as spiritually advanced as we are. Be thankful for what we have and praise the Tachyons for their communication. We have learnt much about the nature of the world from such communication and wish to learn even more.’

The grumbles turned quickly to foot stomping and twirling.

The map I send in return is of what we call the Mantis Head Cluster – so called because at one time some young lass experiencing a moment of shamanism said that the mountains looked like a large praying mantis. The map fragment incorporates Elfo Vale.