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Facts about Umbagollah.

Dear B,
Yes, I have reached Gum Gooloo Gum Jublet, and yes, they do sell toothbrushes here, so you can stop worrying about my teeth. It's not the teeth though, is it? You're trying to track me down again. Well, go ahead and try. Umbagollah is a big place. To show you just how big it is, I'm going to send you a map.

= The city of Ex.

= The city of
Gum Gooloo Gum Jublet.

= The town of Cumber Poidy.

= The town of Jail.
We have two different seas, did you know that? At the top of the country there's the Sea of Hum, and at the bottom you've got the Bathwater Ocean. Those mountains at the bottom left are the Two Show Ranges, and the river that I travelled along to get here - the Fly River - runs from the Fly Ravine in the south-west to the Bay of Ex in the north. The pair of rivers on the eastern border are called the North Thrip and the South Thrip, and those offshooty bits of river in the middle of the country are West Drosophila and East Drosophila.
Water all over the place. The forest around Ex is so dense that you can stand in some parts of it in the middle of the day and not be able to see the sun. The trees in the Forest are grey. It's really weird, apparently. The north is generally weird. Even the government up there is strange.

The guy I bought the map from was really friendly, but then everybody in Gum Gooloo is friendly. He told me a lot of interesting things. Apparently the North-west part of the country is completely flat. I don't know if I've ever seen absolutely flat land before. The rest of the country is hilly. The Isle of Yunck is bare rock and it's pitted because the sea smashes into it, and because the wind keeps blowing the earth away. Anyway, I've got to go now.
Take care.

Calendar, History, Festivals, Music and Making Paper.
Dear B,
I was walking along a laneway yesterday - this dirty little place with people passed out along the walls, talking to their knees or taking a piss or whatever - when I walked across something hard and cold. It was a plaque that said, "Caleb Sighwater, Exian Ambassador stayed in this house. - Year of Bigger Crowding" Caleb Sighwater! I didn't even know he'd been to Jail. "This thing must be hundreds of years old," I thought and this big gush of history went right through me. I looked around at the drunks with all this love and hey I wanted to burst into song right there on the street. Oh yeah, that's right. I'm interested in music again

I'm in Jail. That's Jail the town, not jail the prison. I can safely tell you that because I'm leaving tomorrow. They want to hold some kind of festival event where a woman does something with a fish - it sounds pretty dodgy. I can't even tell you what day it is. I don't think there's a single calendar in the whole town. They don't use a lot of paper here, even though Furl (that's the village where they make paper: I went through it on the way here) is only a short way away.
Catch me if you can!

Trade, Climate, Language and Illnesses.
For the love of Pete, did you actually pay that man to walk through the streets of Ex shouting, "A letter for Hatstand, Mariel Hatstand?" until he found me? I hate to think what price you paid for that. The uneven rate of trade and exchange between Ex and home has been giving me nightmares. Look, get a grip on yourself mate, I am not coming back. As for your question about the weather, the answer is No. It is not lovely. The southern part of Umbagollah is temperate, the central part is temperate to hot (gorgeous!), but the area around Ex gets some really weird weather. I've found a book about it which I'm going to quote: "Violent seabourne windstorms occasionally batter the costline, while the lakes and rivers which flow through the foothills of the Two Shows Ranges are subjected to almost annual floods when the snow melts at the end of winter. Bushfires in the Forests of Ex are not unknown. The forests are also prone to Silence Storms, pockets of noiselessness which drift invisibly through the thin, heavy tree trunks and astonish anyone they come across. No-one is quite sure about Silence Storms. They may be weather conditions, or they could be a strange type of animal." Basically nobody knows what they are. We don't have the language to describe them properly yet.

P.S. For the hundredth time, my teeth are fine. No, I don't have any illnesses, no, I don't need any medicines or doctors. And no, you raving mystic, I do not want a hug.

Bathing, Farting, and the Fauna and Flora.
B, Just lyin' here in a bath in a forest clearing, staring at the night sky, trying to name the stars. The trees have turned into silhouettes. There's no-one else in here with me, but I'm trying not to fart anyway. It's a peaceful night in the forest of Ex. I haven't been this surrounded with plants since I was in Gum Gooloo. I can hear little animals skittering around behind me. They sound happy. I don't know what they are, but I'm not afraid of them at all. Right now, even thinking of you doesn't bother me. I reckon you're not going to be happy about that.

Inhabited Areas, Food, Sports, Beliefs and Books.
Here! Here's a letter! Now you've got what you want, you can get off my arse!
There's nothing I want to say to you so I'm going to quote again. This comes from "The Great Big Book of Umbagollah," by Daens Resought, HG, Sc.Ast, professor of geography at the University of Ex. I met him on the street the other day and he asked me over to his house. He introduced me to some Exian food. A nice old guy. He says he got his good manners from playing some kind of sport in the Falling Hills when he was young. The sport was called fair ... fair-something. I can't remember what. The quote in the last letter came from his book as well. "The population of Umbagollah is quite small, and almost half of it lives in one of the two major cities. Ex is substantially more crowded than Gum Gooloo Gum Jublet, with the seaside port of Jail third and the underground town of Cumber Poidy running a distant fourth. Jail is Cumber Poidy's main point of contact with the mainland. An uncounted number of ferrypeople live on the River Fly. Most other Umbagollians live as farmers around Gum Gooloo or in the North-west Flatlands. Some make their homes in the forest, in the mountains or in the Falling Hills; many of these are mystics, hermits and outcasts."

Daens says that some of the mystics are very interesting people, when you can get them to talk to you. He spent hours telling me all about all the things we believe in. Spends a lot of his time down in Gum Gooloo, doing research in the Cultural and Natural History Museum. He said I should go there. I didn't say anything. Don't want him to know that I'm not really interested in old stories or books. The man can cook too - he's got this really bizarre garlic presser.
Eat crap and die,

Communications and travel.
Don't threaten me you son of a bitch. Yes, I do know how much it costs to send messages from town to town ( it wouldn't have been so expensive if you'd sent them by boat down the Fly instead of hiring a messenger to gallop his beastie across the entire country ) but that doesn't mean that I have to be grateful for them. What's with, "You're in trouble when I find you, Mariel" and "I can tell you're flirting with this Daens character" and "I'm going to make you sorry you were ever born" ? You make me laugh mate, you really do. Stop embarrassing yourself.
Learn more about Communications and travel

(the letters end here. Mariel Hatstand was reported missing by her mother one month after the last letter was written. She has not been seen since, and we do not know who B. is. Anyone with information should contact their local authorities.)

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