Saturday, July 10th, 1869

Dear Diary,

Despite recent events involving a certain odious tiger, I passed yesterday in a mood of tolerable tranquility. My dear friend Captain Wytchwood has found some work in the new commonwealth of Austral. His company, the East Zindra Trade Corporation, is licensed by the Governor General not only for trade, but also for services of a more martial bent. In the wild colony, it would seem that the captain and his cohorts are the next best thing to the law.

Fortunately, this untamed country lies directly to the south of Caledon. The trip to my friend’s new offices was not far. He and I enjoyed a ride upon our respective horses, during which I observed a number of charming scenes. Austral is, for instance, still rather overrun with wildlife, and so kangaroos and other foreign beasts scurried away from us as we made our way over the sun baked soil. One wonders how the climate can remain so dry an dusty, as inlets and small ponds abound; the captain and I were constantly riding over rustic bridges. At one point, a lonely and weathered home stands untended upon an island. That particular setting so captured my interest that, were I not a landowner myself, I might have considered purchase. Truly, Austral is a beautiful country.

Later, I had the pleasure of traveling once more to the nation of Steeltopia, where my friends from Steelhead were hosting a charity auction upon a marvelous airship. I found myself quite outbid on nearly every sale, but good company rendered the evening enjoyable despite that misfortune. And, as Captain Sir Ambrose Huddleston put it, it is difficult to be disappointed when one knows that the money is going to so worthy a cause. So that I may do my part, I have contacted Mr. Ortega and offered myself as a charity date. Perhaps someone will donate some little sum in order to obtain the privilege of a few hours of my company.

Perhaps I might take someone shopping! Captain Wytchwood recently asked me to do so for a lady friend of his from the company. He also recommended his cousin to me for advice regarding fashion. It seems that everywhere I go, people compliment my attire. Just last night, both Captain Sir Ambrose Huddleston and Mr. Crieghton seemed quite taken with my ensemble. Of course, I think the captain may merely have been being polite. Whilst we danced, I asked after the designer of his most elaborate and impressive attire, and he confided that it had been custom made by a tailor who was, as it happens, inspired by the captain’s own drawings. He promised to send me the name of his tailor, for which I am very grateful. I never set out to become a fashion plate, but I do love haberdashery and lace!

The captain is new to these parts and also has a fondness for horseback riding. When I shared my story of the morning’s expedition in Austral, he expressed that fondness and informed me that his own horse has just been shipped from England. Naturally, I then invited him for a riding tour of Caledon. We have not yet decided which parts to see, but I look forward to the adventure.

Speaking of adventures, Mr. MacBeth and I are slated to tour Caledon in his shiny new Steamcar. I very much look forward to riding in this remarkable contraption! I shall have to let you know how that adventure unfolds!


–Miss Palabra Puddlegum–

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