dunedin caught unprepared (the visitor part 5)

i've only endured a small portion of my cousin larry's unannounced 2 week visit, and already i'm nearly at my limit...

not only has larry been he's usual JERK! self and almost gotten me kicked out of my home and all of new zealand, but he's managed to turn the tables on me everytime i try to push him on why he is here in the first place!

as if that weren't enough now larry has insisted that we check out town.

even without larry i never wandered around dunedin. the reason being why i moved here. they don't have any dinosaurs down here on the south island of new zealand, and as of such the locals just aren't ready for a dinosaur walking down the street. that's tiny small than a human me i'm talking about! i've gotten plenty of uncomfortable and scared looks from dunedinites.

i just couldn't imagine what the reaction to larry was going to be!?!

never the less larry was insistent. as we left the botanic garden larry got impatient with my inability to keep up with him... which is yet another example of what a JERK! he can be. i barely clear larry's ankle (on a t-rex the ankle is way higher up. looks like a reverse knee) so him expecting me to keep running along side him was just not going to happen.

larry made a most unexpected offer though. i thought he was just going to ignore my problem, and expect me to keep up. instead he stopped and offered for me to hop up on his back... had my waking him up so early in the morning caused a personality change?

with me up on his shoulder larry set off towards downtown dunedin. being a full grown t-rex larry had to walk on the road rather than the sidewalk, making us all the more conspicuous.

well if the people of dunedin hadn't seen a tyrannosaur before than it's safe to say after today many of them have. the reactions varied between dumbfound shock, wonderment, or the most common panic, freight, and a LOT of screaming!

back in drumheller people were a lot more used to having dinosaurs around town, but then again that's what drum was famous for. you'd still have tourists through town that would react to us, but it wasn't every single person on the street... unlike here.

the worst part of this field trip with larry was intersections. if the people of dunedin didn't know anything about t-rexs, than larry didn't know anything about the rules of the road. the traffic problems he'd cause just by walking through red lights or onto the wrong side of the road were scary!

i let out a scream as we walked onto george street, the major thoroughfare of dunedin, as 4 lanes of oncoming traffic barely screech to a halt. oh man that was close. despite what movies show even a full grown t-rex could get seriously hurt or even killed by a full on collision with a car (granted the car would probably take it worse!).

"you disapprove of something cousin," larry noted moments after my scream, breaking the total silence of the walk.

"it's just," i hesitate. i don't want to make larry mad. falling off his back would probably cause me some major hurt, and that's only if he than didn't follow up after i was off his back. "why are we ignoring traffic?"

larry holds back an angry growl. i know cause it still vibrates in his chest which i'm sitting above. "is it cause they drive on the wrong side of the road?" i throw in hoping it will mitigate my previous question.

"why does it bother you cousin?" larry asks with a hint of disapproval.

"i don't like getting run over," i reply with only half the truth. of course i don't like getting run over, but i also don't like being a blatant problem to humans. we dinosaurs aren't rulers of the earth anymore, and we have to try and fit in.

"ah if that is all you are worried about then..." larry acknowledges. suddenly he lunges forward nearly jarring me off his back. digging my talons into his thick hide i barely maintain my grip.

i realize that larry is in a full on tyrannosaur charge... right for an oncoming car!

"wait larry! don't," i start pleading, but i am cut off...

a loud crunch of metal and glass echoes down the street as larry skilfully applied his colossal 6 tons of weight onto the hapless vehicle. crushing it promptly.

i feel my heart skip several beats as the cars horn begins going off broken by the impact... what has larry done!?!

i begin to despair. larry has by the second day of his visit completely destroyed my life...

then i see the most relieving thing ever! the driver of the car crawls out of the wreckage of her car, and manages to peel herself off the pavement and just starts running and screaming away from the scene.

"how'd you like that?" larry boasts as we resume walking. my head is still numb from the last minute.

"i learnt that trick while filming jurassic park the lost world ." larry goes on, totally undaunted by the fact he nearly killed an innocent woman, and no doubt has gotten us into tons of trouble. "so long as i can see the car coming i'm not worried about it. you just have to press down on the front part of the car, and not only do you stop it, but the shocks and wheels absorb the worst part of the momentum. so long as their going under 50 km an hour at least."

"do you have an idea how many laws you just broke?" i ask disgusted in total shock, oblivious to how this comment might effect larry's temperament.

"laws don't apply to us," larry smugly replies. "they were made for humans, and only effect humans."

his dismissal of the situation fills me with rage. which if you're a tyrannosaur is quite potent rage. i start to growl...

larry doesn't react typically. normally my growl would be a trigger for a fight (we t-rexs can be very aggressive and competitive towards one another. thus it is interwoven throughout our language tyrannosaurese). larry just starts laughing.

"that is more like it my cousin," larry says cheerfully, the first time he has been nice to me that i can remember. "now you're sounding like a true tyrannosaur. i was beginning to worry that being raised by that soft human had dulled your instincts."

"you could have hurt someone!" i snarl.

"but i didn't," larry turns his head round for the first time since i've been on his back. "you must stop putting the mammals before your own kind, cousin. it is a very concerning attitude that you have developed."

my growling increases. it is the tyrannosaur version of a death threat.

larry lets out a very loud roar for silence in the tone of a pack leader. in human terms if a t-rex pack were like a family than larry acted like dad telling the kids to listen up...

"who cares what i have done, traumador!" he asserts, addressing me by name as his eyes focus on me. "the mammals surely don't. they haven't ever bothered to include us in their society. certainly not their laws!"

"there is not a single law that refers to or applies to dinosaurian behaviour or conduct. only our bones. all they care about is our dead," larry venomously goes on. "had i killed that female there is nothing they could do to me, and the reason. they don't see it fit enough to even acknowledge my existence. anything i do to them is their own fault."

though what he says still enrages me i can't argue with him... larry is right. no where on earth has laws about to us few surviving and living dinosaurs. only fossils, and than it's only who can dig them up and put them in a collection...

"i understand your anger cousin," larry tries to calm the situation. "but save your emotion for the mammals. it is they who have trampled over your dreams and aspirations. not us."

who is this us larry is talking about?

i stew on the events of today's walk as we start walking past the iconic sites of downtown dunedin. among larry's favourites is the octagon cathedral.

"i have been wanting to do a remake of the valley of gwangi," larry muses. "this would make a perfect setting for the end fire."

typical egotistical larry i think. only he would think of casting himself as one of the most iconic dinosaurs in movie history... being mr. jurassic park, and the darling of the BBC dinosaur series isn't enough for larry. now he has to be the ONLY dinosaur in pop culture!?! i hope they remake gwangi and cast ANOTHER allosaur to play the lead role!

"you haven't said a word since you woke me up this morning cousin," larry finally notices. "come speak to me. i have travelled a long way to see you."

"about what?" i grumpily reply. "are you going to try and kill someone else if i do?"

"you are upset about the mammals," larry thinks out loud. he stops walking. "very well cousin. for the rest of my trip i shall try not to directly harm any of them since it uncomforts you so much."

wait what just happened? why the sudden turn around on his stance towards humans? a second ago he told me i was an idiot for feeling that way. now he's going out of his way to accommodate me... what gives???

"alright," i agree wanting that to stick. "what are we going to talk about though?"

i think with my tiny brain. then it hits me! valley of gwangi... movies... dinosaur movies!

i've been writing reviews of dinosaur movies lately, and here i am sitting on the back of some of the most influential dinosaur movies of all time (and trying get himself into more JERK!)...

the info could get for future reviews right now...

"what about some of your movies?" i prompt.

unsurprisingly larry is more than happy to talk about himself, and his fame and fortune. i'll get you that info in some nice new reviews. namely peter jackson's king kong and all the BBC dinosaur series (which craig just got me for my birthday!)

after an hour of this civil conversation, the day's previous drama came loudly back to our attention. police cars cut us off at the top of london street. now lucky for us in new zealand cops don't carry guns cause i'm pretty sure they would have opened fire instantly if they did.

instead over a loudphone "freeze! put your... uh... teeth and claws where we can see them!"

i started to panic. which caused me to chirp in tyrannosaurese a bad habit from my growing up among humans (i didn't need to watch my verbal or body language around them... unlike when i'm around other tyrannosaurs).

"don't act like a hatchling cousin!" larry snarled in disgust. the cops got antsy due to larry's speaking in tyrannosaurese (which is very frightening for people at the best of times). "remember what i said earlier. they have no grounds to bother us. tell them." larry referred to my being able to speak english.

"uh excuse me," i called down.

there was much surprise and astonishment within the police ranks. "you talk?!?" called back one of the officers.

"what are you charging us with?" i pretended to demand. this wasn't going to work i thought.

i was met with silence for several moments. "uh nothing," was the reply i got.

"good. now then tell them we'll be on our way," larry smugly instructs me.

"than you're going to have to let us go," i relay. i worry that they'll contact the department of conservation and find some reason to arrest me.

they seem at a lose to this turn of events. an angry boss looking police officer grabs the loud speaker "oh don't you things think you're clever? acting like a bunch of movie monsters, and than talk your way out of trouble. at least on the TV they can't talk."

he was right. more to the point i was letting larry drag me down into being a sterotypical tyrannosaur just like him...

where was the justice for that lady whose car we crushed, and tried to kill? was this how i was going to define my new life in dunedin by wrecking havoc, and getting away with it because i'm not part of the mainstream...

"it was an accident," i call back. i feel larry shift underneath me "we're sorry, and we're going to pay for a new car."

"what?!?" larry and the police officer ask in unison.

"you just told me how rich you are from jurassic park 3," i address larry. "and you just promised not to harm anymore humans on your trip. well guess what she's still harmed. so you pay for a new car or i'm not talking to you ever again!"

"my cousin here will write you a check for that lady," i call down to the police. "and you have my word that neither him nor i will cause this kind of damage again!"

i'm not sure who was more mad at me the police or larry.

fortunately larry gave them the money, and they reluctantly left. we started on our way back to the gardens.

the walk back was even quieter than our way into town at first. than larry spoke up.

"i'm impressed," larry said. "i never would have expect you of all dinosaurs to challenge me like that. you just made me pay $20,000 without so much as asking my permission."

he was right i did! wow come to think of it that was stupid! larry could easily have swallowed me in 10 seconds, and yet i'd put him on the spot without thinking... man that was dumb!

"to think that lillian said you had no spine at all," larry added knowing full well it would get to me. when had he talked to lillian, the girl of my dreams?

"you're going to have to tell me about your trip to drumheller," i demand of larry.

" you are right cousin. i do," larry agrees. dodging the question as he has been the whole trip though... "for now though let me tell you some more about my movies. as i recall we were interrupted in the middle of prehistoric park..."

he's going to run out of time to tell me sooner or later. what was he doing in at my old home the tyrrell? he hates drumheller and the museum... i also need to find out how larry knew i was in new zealand at all?

even more funny... as we got back to the garden and larry wrapped up his auditory autobiography he'd told me about all sorts of future projects, but made NO mention of this upcoming peter jackson movie of his...

to be continued...

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