Todd returned shortly with Garry’s meal. “I hope you like chili and fries. That is tonight’s dinner special. There’s also some apple pie for dessert.”
“That sounds great,” said Garry. I’m starving. I must warn you though that the chili gives me lots of gas.”
Todd laughed. ‘Don’t worry we have a window in your room to open if the smell gets really bad.”
Garry was really starting to like this guy.
“I heard that you had a rough time on the Greyhound bus,” said Todd.
“That’s an understatement,” replied Garry. “The bus was infested with reptilian creatures.”
“What do these creatures look like?” asked Todd.
“They all come in different forms. Some have heads like snakes, some look like large lizards and some resemble dinosaurs like T-Rex.”
“That must have been scary, seeing all these weird creatures. Where do these beings come from?” asked Todd.
“I know that they are from some planet outside our galaxy but they won’t tell me the name or location of the planet.”
“You’ve actually spoken to them?” asked Todd.
“Once or twice but they usually don’t like communicating with humans especially those that can see that they are really reptilians.”
‘When did you first hear about these reptilian creatures?”
“I first read about them on the internet. Then I discovered that my parents are both reptilians also.”
“How did you find that out?” asked Todd.
“After a while I would start seeing their reptilian features for brief moments. My senses became more acute to recognizing that my parents were able to move in and out of their reptilian appearance. If a person does not know their true identities they are not likely to ever see their reptilian presentations. Only a select few, like myself, are on to them.”
After about five minutes had passed Todd brought Garry a cup of coffee.
“I hope you like International Delight creamer and Sugar Twin in your coffee,” said Todd handing Garry the cup.
That’s exactly the way I like it,” replied Garry. “I’m hoping this coffee will help clear some of the cobwebs in my head.”
“That haldol is pretty strong stuff. They also gave you lorazepam. I checked your chart.”
“Well, I’ve never been a big fan of meds.”
“I can understand that. The side effects of some of these psychiatric meds can be pretty wicked.”
“The worst is Seroquel. The doctors prescribed that drug for me the last time I was in the hospital and they made me continue taking them at the rehab treatment facility.”
“Which rehab center were you staying at?”
“The House of Hope in Winnipeg.”
“How did you end up there?”
“Well, about a year and a half ago I apparently caused quite a commotion on my parent’s street. I don’t remember much about the incident. They told me that the cops picked me up and took me straight to emergency at the hospital.”
“That must have been scary,” said Todd.
“It was, but it wasn’t the first time that something like that happened to me.”
Just as Garry finished saying this an announcement came over the hospital intercom.
“Todd, Garry’s supper has arrived at the front desk,” said the ward’s receptionist.
“I’ll just get your dinner and I’ll be right back,” said Todd.
At about 7:00 PM Garry Phelge was still feeling the effects of the shot of Haldol that had been administered to him by the psychiatric nurse. He stared at the white ceiling above him and was slowly drifting into a state of partial consciousness. It was not a bad feeling. It felt more like floating on a cloud.
Garry was starting to realize that he was in a psychiatric ward. Garry heard a knock on his door. He managed, with great effort to say, “Come in.”
A rather large man whose arms were covered with tattoos entered Garry’s room. The man looked very tough but he had a gentle manner about him.
“Hi Garry. My name is Todd. I’m a psychiatric nurse here.”
Garry managed to slur out, “Pleased to meet you.”
“I was thinking you must be getting very hungry about now,” said Todd sitting down in a chair by Garry’s bed.
“Come to think of it, I am. I can’t really remember the last time I had anything to eat. I think I had a peanut butter and jam sandwich with me on the bus but I can’t remember if I ate it or not,” said Garry. “Are you the guy who gave me the shot of drugs?”
Todd laughed, “No,
that would have been one of the day shift nurses. They all went home about three hours ago. Believe it or not you’re in luck today. The suppers they serve here are generally not bad, for a hospital I mean. Would you like me to order a supper from the cafeteria for you?”
“ I would appreciate that,” answered Garry. “Any chance that I could get a cup of coffee?” Garry hoped that some caffeine might alleviate his mental sluggishness.
“No problem. I’ll get you a coffee from the staff lounge.”
As Todd left the room to get Garry’s coffee and to phone the kitchen to order a supper Garry felt a shot of optimism travel through his brain. “This nurse is all right,” he thought to himself. “He’s treating me like a human being.”
“As The University of British Columbia will be one of the sponsors of this project I would like to see a great deal of research compiled from an academic perspective,” said Dean Sanderson picking up his cup of coffee.
“This is a given Edward. I will assign research tasks to all of the UBC students involved in this project and perhaps even to Ryan and Monique if they are interested,” said Dr. Lionel Phelge.
“We would love to be part of your research team, Dr. Phelge. Monique and I are willing to do anything to help,” said Ryan.
“Ryan didn’t even bother to ask me but I am in full agreement with him,” said Monique giving Ryan a teasing grin.
“I need to find out who is interested and best suited to each research assignment,” said Lionel. “I am opening the floor to suggestions.”
“I would be interested in keeping a daily log or journal on our project starting with this meeting,” said Jasmine. “I am already recording the minutes for today’s session.”
“That sounds good to me,” said Lionel. “Edward, may I borrow your easel chart to start writing down these individual assignments?”
“Be my guest,” said the Dean.
“I would be interested in searching for and putting together research that has been done so far on Ogopogo.” said Ian. I will need one or more volunteers to help me with this part of the job.”
“I could help you with that,” said Keesha.
“Same here,” said Brendon. “We could start working on the research tomorrow morning.”
“That’s wonderful,” said Dr. Phelge. We now know where to start and we’re ready to get this project moving.”
“I think that this has been a very productive first meeting,” said Dean Sanderson. “Blake could you call me as soon as you know for sure where we stand with your crew?”
“The second that I have everything in place I shall give you a call and we can schedule our next meeting,” answered Blake Riley.
“That’s what I like about you Blake. You are a true man of action,” said Dean Sanderson.
“I never knew there was another way to be,” joked Blake.
Dean Sanderson pulled his chart easel closer to the long conference table. He then passed out yellow legal pads and official UBC pens to everyone.
“It’s time to generate some ideas and then to assign some job duties to this group. Proper organization is going to be critical to the success of this project. I’m not sure where to start but I’ll begin by throwing out some general questions for discussion.”
“Firstly, equipment. What are we going to need?”
“I’ll take care of our equipment needs,” said Blake Riley. “Equipment and supplies for our expedition shouldn’t be a problem.”
“How are you going to access it?” asked Dr. Phelge.
“Daniel Mason, my head of security was a participant in an expedition to find Champ, the Lake Champlain monster, a few years ago. He has recently been in touch with the boat’s captain and is in the process of rounding up the former crew.”
“How do you know that this crew will be willing to go on another monster hunt?” asked Dean Sanderson.
“Because these people live for adventure and the adrenaline rush. Also, I am willing to pay the crew generously for their work and the use of their equipment. Don’t worry. I have enough financial resources to cover the costs of this expedition,” answered Blake.
“That’s a great relief,” said Lionel. “Without the proper equipment and a professional crew we would not be able to search for Ogopogo.”
“And I was concerned that the costs involved for this project could be prohibitive.” Said Dean Sanderson.
“How soon would the crew be available?” asked Kyle.
“I’m giving them one week to let me know if they are in or out. Then I want to have them meet with this group for a planning meeting as soon as possible,” said Blake.
“You certainly don’t let the grass grow under your feet,” observed Dr. Lionel Phelge.
“That’s my philosophy of life,” replied Blake Riley. “I came from an impoverished background but I knew that other people had an abundance of money and personal possessions. There were successful men and women who had their freedom and lived the good life. Despite being brought up in a trailer park I learned that I had one rich and successful uncle. When I was about fifteen years old I decided to give him a phone call. I wanted to find out how he broke out of the poverty mentality while most of his relatives lived below the poverty line. Uncle Jordan and I had a long talk. He told me that the road to success always starts with right thinking. He mailed me two books that he insisted that I would need to read to fully understand what he was talking about.”
“What are the two books?” asked Ryan.
“The two books are both by Napoleon Hill. One is titled, Think and Grow Rich” and the other is The Law of Success in Sixteen Lessons,” Blake answered.
“I’d like to introduce all of you to someone I just met recently,” said Dean Sanderson. “His name is Blake Riley and he feels that he could be a great support to our intended project. Would you be willing to address the rest of the group, Mr. Riley?”
“You guys can just call me Blake. I have been interested in all aspects of cryptozoology. For most of my life I have been especially interested in lake monsters. I don’t mind saying that I’m a wealthy business man who has substantial resources that I’m willing to invest if the planned expedition meets my expectations.”
“What specific outcomes would you expect from our research project?” asked Lionel.
“Firstly we need to capture a live specimen of the creature, “answered Blake.
“ You would want a piece of the creatures flesh to use for a scientific biopsy,” Lionel inquired.
“With all due respect, professor, I would consider our mission to be a failure if that’s the best we could do,” said Blake. ‘My goal is to capture the whole animal.”
“You have lost your mind, Mr. Riley. We aren’t even positive that this creature exists,” said Dean Sanderson.
“Although I firmly believe in the existence of Ogopogo, I feel that it would be a daunting task to capture one alive.”
“I would be happy just to get a close up video of the lake demon,” said Ryan.
“If we could get a tissue sample from the animal we would accomplish what no one yet has managed to do,” added Monique giving her ponytail a good shake.
“If we even got one good sighting just think what a great story we would have for the university’s newspaper,” commented Kyle speaking on behalf of the students.
“I’m hoping that we can put together a great book based on our research and findings during our search for Ogopogo,” said Jasmine.
A meeting was set up for all the parties interested in The Ogopogo Project including Dean Sanderson, Dr. Lionel Phelge, Kyle and the rest of the university students, Ryan and Monique and Blake Riley. On a Friday afternoon they met in the university’s main conference room.
“Thank you all for coming,” said Dean Sanderson who was chairing the meeting. Today’s session will be mainly an exploratory meeting with the purpose of defining what our goals are for this project and how, in a practical way, we might obtain them. I will ask Dr. Phelge to describe how he envisions the project.
“ As some of you already know I have been granted a year’s sabbatical to write a research paper on a topic of my choice related to marine biology. I have long had an interest in cryptozoology and a particular interest in the creature known as Ogopogo. I am hoping to gather some data that has previously never been published that would help determine whether or not this animal actually exists in Lake Okanagan,” said Dr. Phelge.
“There have been many sightings of this creature over many decades and yet no one has been able to come up with any conclusive evidence of the existence of the Ogopogo,” said Dean Sanderson. “Kyle, could you tell this group what the university students’ interest in this project involves?”
“Well, to tell you the truth, sir, our original aim was to come up with a story that would be of great interest for publication in the university’s newspaper. We have noticed that there is a great need for some articles that would be of interest to the student body,” answered Kyle.
“I consider that to be a worthy goal Kyle. I, too, have noticed a lack of interest and readership in UBC’s newspaper. I’m all for anything that’s going to improve the university’s image,” said Dean Sanderson. “And what about our two young people who are on summer vacation? Please tell us how you became interested in this project.”
“My new friend, Monique and I had a recent sighting of Ogopogo. We had just met and were out for a jog when we saw Ogopogo in the lake. Monique was able to take two pictures of the creature with her camera. Unfortunately, the photos were taken from a good distance and would never be considered as positive scientific evidence,” said Ryan.