By Queen Kong
Staff Island Writer
If you’ve spent a decent amount of time on Monster Island, you’ve surely come to notice that the misfits here were banished for good reason. The whole idea to escape the troubles and idiots of your world was to go to a place where there are no troubles and idiots at all.
Not to worry. If you can shake the animatronic hippos, banshees, bloodthirsty mermaids, centaurs, cyclopses, dinosaurs, dragons, dwarves, elves, ghosts, golems, gorgons, griffins, giant gorillas, hydras, imps, minotaurs, mothmen, ogres, pirates, sirens, skeletons . . . (This place isn’t called Monster Island for nothing!) . . . two-headed tigers, warlocks, wizards and the will-o’-the-wisps, then try to locate the Beach of Never-Ending Solitude.
At last, you’ll be able to enjoy what you came to the island for -- peace, quiet, seclusion and only a few sea monsters, hobgoblins, orcs, giant vultures, giant crabs, giant centipedes, giant scorpions, monster bees, selenites, harpies, the occasional serpent woman and the Kraken, which is a sea creature so it’s somewhat redundant to bring him up. Other than a few pests, you should find yourself all alone.
But you may discover that there’s really nothing to do on the Beach of Never-Ending Solitude when it comes down to it. All of that solitude starts to make you feel like you’re the trouble and the idiot you’ve been trying to escape all along, in which case, get off the Beach of Never-Ending Solitude.
Around the northern peninsula and back into what’s called Bug Bay, you’ll come across the Worm Holes. These holes, dug up by monster worms, are great places to climb into as a means to unlock your inner peace. Go on -- get in. They’re actually quite relaxing.
Once inside one of these cocoon-like encasements, you’ll be able to shut out everything. Shut out those thoughts that bring you down with your so-called “logic” and “rational reasoning.” These are the thoughts that make you say things like, “My life is so unfair,” “I have no friends” and “I’m so good-looking,” and with that you’re forced into coming up with lame rationalizations as to why you’re worse off than everyone and everything else.
And just as you shut all that out, a giant worm from inside your wormhole will inevitably attack you. Get out of there quick.
That’s when you’ll be confronted by the hordes and swarms and packs of bugs -- ants, aphids, bed bugs, bees, beetles, cockroaches, dragonflies, earwigs, fleas, flies, grasshoppers, leeches, mantises, mites, moths, mosquitos . . . (This place isn’t called Bug Bay for nothing!) . . . sandflies, spiders, termites and the occasional cloud of wasps.
Take cover in the nearby Troll Caves. If you make it there before your demise, you’ll forget all about your personal anxieties, so there’s no sense in finishing my previous explanation of how to shut out the thoughts that bring you down.
The trolls will first try to attack you. After they have their fun, they’ll want you out of their home, so they’ll take you to a boat headed back to the mainland.
They’ll most likely drag you to Viking Village, where you can catch a Viking boat over to a small floating landmass connection off Monster Island called Voodoo Island. Not to worry -- your layover will be brief (only a week or four). Use that time to get to know Tiki Town and Captain Cook’s Tiki Cove.
Although, if you’re a skeleton, avoid Captain Cook’s. The fact that they started serving skeletons last year doesn’t mean a thing. The Captain and company still hate skeletons because they can’t hold their liquor. According to one of the tiki gods that serves there, the drinks literally go right through skeletons and all over the floor, and the staff is tired of mopping up after them.
But do check out Tiki Town for the best in all your tiki needs, including voodoo dolls and pins, cursed wooden tikis, stone heads that put spells on you while you sleep and other cool stuff like that.
For entertainment, check out the death chant ceremonies you can join, exotic music performances that hypnotize you and the Polynesian Midnight Burlesque Show that pays homage to the early dooms of the island.
At last, a shrunken head dealer or some other kind of tradesman will come and get you. No, your boat for the mainland is still not ready, but all those monsters from Monster Island are after you.
Hope you can swim. All you have to do is get past the breaking waves and over to the other side of that invisible force field that keeps monsters trapped on Monster Island. Because the field is invisible, I can’t tell you where it is, so just keep swimming.
See your pursuers crashing into something there? That’s the field. You made it. And after a few days of swimming, you’ll be home again, back to everyday life (or afterlife) and all the stressful difficulties you thought you escaped.
But I promise, it won’t be long before you find yourself back on Monster Island in search of a place to help you forget all the troubles and idiots of your everyday world. And you can bet that all us misfit monsters will be here to welcome you with open arms . . . and claws and curses and fangs.
This is one in a series of TRAVEL STORIES from the 13 districts of Transyl-vein-ia. These stories run weekdays between August and September. Jack-o’-Lantern Press’s regular news and entertainment coverage will continue in October.