I had met Juan, a fellow rat, on an exploration around the Canary Island shipyard. I had plenty of time to explore the area while the Pinta was in dry dock, getting a new rudder installed. Juan was a good tour guide and introduced me to the delicacies of the island. On one of our excursions, he introduced me to his young and beautiful sister, Juanita. It was love at first sight. From then on I spent every day with my new friends. I invited them to join me on the Santa Maria, which was bound to sail westward to the Indies. I told them of my meeting with Sing Lee, a wise older Chinese rat, who had set out to travel the world a few years ago, by sailing. I was convinced that I wanted to see the world also and was determined to board the next ship sailing to India.
I had boarded the Santa Maria, whose captain was Christopher Columbus. The ship seemed to have enough food and water on board to supply the crew and me for more than a whole year. There was a scrumptious array of food and drink. The Santa Maria did not have a mess hall or quarters for the crew, except for the captain and the pilot. The rough seas and the sloppy behavior of the crew guaranteed plenty of food, including live chickens and pigs, and drink for a large group of rats, but to my surprise my friends and I were the only members of my kind on board. I suppose my friendship with Juan and my proposed engagement to his sister had persuaded these friends... [continues]
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