November 19, 2010
Come and visit Verne at the Wausau HQ library lobby. But don't let his Hawaiian shirt fool you. For underneath that hat he's an All-American Pilgrim Pig who can't let go of his island origins. Here's the story.
Around 300 AD Verne set out from points west with the first Polynesian explorers. With skill, luck and pig-navigation they landed safely in Hawai'i. Lacking metal knives (for carving pigs), pottery (in which to boil them) and a written language (for writing cute little stories such as, "The Three Little Makahiki Pigs") Verne was lonely but safe in ancient Hawai'i.
Modern Hawai'i came in 1778 with the unexpected, unwanted arrival of British Captain James Cook. Warfare was forbidden but many new tools arrived with him which ultimately led to the lu'au and endangered porkers such as Verne. He then went underground using a number of disguises such as, "sugar cane stalk", "pineapple clump" and even a little British missionary girl.
Flashing back to North America, Pilgrims seeking religious freedom from England landed the Mayflower at Plymouth Rock in 1620 and began to colonize (now) Massachusetts. For years turkey became the main staple of yearly feasts held with the natives who helped them survive; maize, potatoes and pumpkin pie were common - you never ordered roast suckling pig.
By the 1840's the Hawai'ian kings declared December 31, 1849 as a national day of prayer and thanksgiving, fourteen years before President LIncoln did. When island church services ended, everyone poured down to the beach for a lu'au replete with sumptuous roast suckling pig. It was time for Verne to leave.
Verne caught a cane boat headed for the Americas in search of more traditional Thanksgiving fare such as tofu, corn muffins, corn casserole and Hollandaise sauce. He is now eager to show his pride for this American holiday by sporting a traditional Pilgrim hat which stands for TURKEY ON THE TABLE! He wishes you all a very Happy Thanksgiving.