Coming halfway across the world was the easy part, Lisa thought, slapping a mosquito the size of a hummingbird away from her sunburned ear. Changing planes from jumbo jets, to small commercial liners, to finally an old bucket of bolts which looked as though it had long been the possession of some forgotten cargo cult, in search of.....what? A footnote in a diary, scribbled in haste after perhaps one too many late night toasts with the local brew? A rumor, passed perhaps by a Spanish explorer to further glorify his conquest of a distant island for King and country?
Somehow, the enticement of finding the legendary treasure had been more appealing while sitting in the cool confines of modern air conditioning. Last night, gliding through moonlit waters over the bones of the PT 109, it had still beckoned her on. Standing at the bow of the silent craft, with the distant lilting insect music mingling with snap of the wind in the sail, the sea's rhythmic crash against the sparkling shore, there had seemed nothing more logical than finally proving or disproving one of the greatest speculations of the avicultural world.
Today, the tropical sun beating down upon their heads, far from books, computers or flush toilets, Lisa wondered ruefully what she had let her friend talk her into this time.
Dale R. Thompson, famous aviculturist and world explorer, claimed he had actually seen a Cheese Tree growing in the tropics on one of his many explorations. Dale’s dancing brown eyes would get big as saucers when he described his journey, and his surprise at seeing a mammoth tree unlike anything he ever gazed upon before, standing in the middle of the Indonesian forest. His tall, thin frame fairly vibrated with intense excitement as he described the colour, contour and height of the massive one of a kind giant he discovered quite by accident.
Years had passed since the hours of enthusiastic discussions delivered by Dale into the wee hours of the morning, yet Susie had never forgotten their magic. When an unexpected windfall came her way, she managed to talk her best bud and fellow aviculturist/botanist Lisa into the biggest treasure hunt of their lives. While often openly skeptical of some of Susie’s more outlandish schemes, she secretly relished the opportunity for adventure and derring-do.
"How much farther do you think it is?" asked Susie in a stage whisper. Long tendrils of blond hair escaped from where it was artfully pinned on top of her head and curled to frame her heart shaped face. Her tee shirt and shorts clung to a figure much more likely to be found gracing an adventure game heroine than a noted aviculturist. A large green parrot sat on one shoulder, eye cocked toward the dog eared notebook her companion hastily scribbled in.
"According to these notes of Dale's, we should be pretty close," her friend said, without looking up. Her caramel-streaked dark hair also escaped its confines, but plastered itself to her neck and cheeks. Her bosom was not so ample, but certainly heaving, the motion confining itself to a central point. After a moment, a little red parrot head periscoped up from her cleavage, looked around, and retracted.