Have you guys ever heard of the Mandela effect? It’s where a large group of people with no connections or ties to one another remember a specific event or item a different way than what it actually is. For instance, I distinctly remember there being a hyphen between Kit Kat when I was younger. I even remember “Kit-Kat” on the actual chocolate, and I’m not the only one. Theories state this is due to parallel universes, apparently I lived in a universe that had Kit Kat’s with the hyphen, but somewhere between the early 90’s & now that universe collided into the one I am in currently.
I’m here to tell you that parallel universes do exist, and you know how I know? Because I was there when the sombrero wearing penguin walked into a bar and asked for a gin and tonic!
It all started last year when I went on Vacation to visit my friend Christen in Arizona. It was the second week in May, and I decided to fly out to see her for her birthday. Both of us were stressed to the max and felt burnt out from our jobs. Both of us had our passports from an out of country trip. She went to Italy for pleasure, I went to Canada for business to help set up a non-profit. Anyway, we decided that we needed some sand, sun, and salt water, so we crossed the border to Mexico.
It was perfect and just what we needed, we spent our days on the beach, and our evenings checking out local bars, restaurants, and being typical tourists.
Around the third day there we decided to venture out to some of the shops and grab lunch at the inlet which was filled with food trucks, they served the best tamales. Did you know penguins like tamales? Neither did I, until one approached me and handed me 5 pesos, and asked if I could get him a couple since his flippers were too short to reach. I had to do a double take, but lo and behold, there he was, one of the penguins from Mary Poppins, and in a sombrero, nonetheless! I turned to Christen to make sure I wasn’t going completely insane, but when I turned and saw her slack jawed, I knew she was seeing him too.
No one else acted any differently, as if they were used to seeing an animated penguin walking around and talking among them. When I looked back down at him he said “What? You’ve never seen a talking penguin before?”
“Well, no, I haven’t.” I replied.
“Tourists,” he sighed, “So will you get me my tamales?”
I handed him his tamales and watched him waddle away.
Christen, still slack jawed turned to me and said “Do you think maybe the heat is causing us to hallucinate, do we have heat exhaustion?”
“I don’t know, but I could sure go for a Margarita right about now!”
We walked to the closest bar and sat down with our frozen Margaritas, lightly salted, and an order of chips and queso. We were desperately trying to make sense of it all when in walked, you guessed it… the sombrero wearing penguin! He walked up to the bar, the barkeep came around, put him on a stool and asked, “Que Tendras?”
“Gin tonic.” The penguin replied.
Christen and I sat there with baffled looks on our faces, the penguin turned and spotted us.
“Can’t a penguin get some respect?” He asked.
“We’re sorry,” Christen replied, “It’s just, where we’re from talking penguins don’t exist, let alone famous ones that were once on Mary Poppins, shouldn’t you be old and gray by now?”
The penguin hopped down from the bar stool, grabbed his tonic and waddled over to us. “Don’t you know that animated penguins don’t age?” he paused to take a sip of his drink. “What do you mean I was in Mary Poppins?” She’s real, so is Bert, but please don’t tell them I drink, Mary will have my flippers!” He tipped his sombrero, bid us good day and we watched him waddle away for the second time that day.
Christen and I didn’t say anything, we just sat there stuffing our faces full of queso, freaked out, we decided to head back to Arizona.
So the next time you question your sanity, you very well just may be in a parallel universe.
Prompt: 739 words
Please, don’t just like the story, please score on a scale of 1 to 10 how creative you think this tall tale is.
Thank you so much!
Love & life lessons,