Illustration: Maya E Shakur for FREDERICK & SOPHIE

Location: The Mysterious Lost Jungle

We must grab our binoculars and wear our explorer best because we’re going to visit the mysterious lost jungle! Wally comes too because he loves papaya-coconut porridge, and there are a lot of trees in the mysterious lost jungle that grow big bowls of papaya-coconut porridge! First, we must read the map. 


The map points us east, west, north, and south, across the mountains, and through the ocean. When we reach a cave with a wooden door, we must knock five-and-a-half times and say the password, which is ‘the Siberian tiger smells like chicken.’  That’s when the door opens, and we fall down, down, down, all the way to the center of the Earth. We land with both feet on the ground right next to a colossal coconut. Most things are colossal in the mysterious lost jungle. 


We walk past the giant mushrooms and through the dinosaur valley. When a monkey jumps out of a purple flower and yells, “Spaghetti-Bolognese-a-Boo!” you must ask him to turn to open the rock in front of you. The mysterious lost jungle uses only one type of keys, you see: monKEYS!


We build a car from broccoli trunks and follow the signs that say, “That Way.” Our compass points us left and right, and we tumble down the hills. It’s rather bumpy. 


That’s when we see crocodile Croc and flamingo Odile. They are best friends like us. Sometimes they dance a pas de deux. It’s terribly unusual. But most things are in the mysterious lost jungle. 


Here’s what there’s absolutely none of in the mysterious lost jungle: privacy. Eyes are always peeking through the trees. It can be a cockatoo who eats French cuisine or a mammoth eating borscht. We say, “Bonjour,” and wave “Dasvidanya.”


We must visit Otto the mudskipper. Otto is very wise. He can swim underwater and breathe air on land. He speaks 200 languages, and he likes to read lots of books. 


Otto’s favorite book is The Jungle Book. He says it’s because it tells you all about having a brave heart and a courteous tongue. Our tongues are pink. Here’s what we think. Someone should write a book about Otto. 


To get back home, we must find the mysterious stones and put them back into the right places. The stones are shaped like animals. If you get it wrong, you’re stuck in the jungle forever. If you get it right, the most terriblest storm comes up and swoops you straight up, up, up through the ocean floor, across the mountains, south, north, west, and east, all the way back home. 


Oh, isn’t the mysterious lost jungle, the most marvellous place?


Frederick & Sophie


Top Illustration: Maya E Shakur for FREDERICK & SOPHIE / Illustration Styling: Priscilla Obermeier