Across the Andes by Frog

Iquique, Jan. 19
Expedition delayed by three days after the frog was squashed when I sat on it. We wait around in the sultry heat of this coastal town whilst another frog is found.
Iquique, Jan. 21
A perfect day to set off. The sunshine was bright, but a strongest north-easterly wind kept us cool. The baggage porters had at last settled their differences over pay, and the forecast was good. However, as soon as I mounted the frog, I squashed it again. Oh, the frustrations! We must reach the Andean foothills by mid-February, or the vicious South American winter will set in.
Iquique, Jan. 26
I have tried mounting frogs without a saddle and even tried with my haversack, but they always squash as soon as I sit down on them. Have decided to try a different approach. I will walk and the frog can carry the baggage. It will be hard work, especially in the mountains, but I would rather suffer some discomfort than give up now.
Iquique, Jan. 27
The frog has proved incapable of carrying even the lightest hold-all. Seven or eight were squashed in succession last night while we were trying to load up.
Iquique, Jan. 28
Today, at last, we set out from the main square here in Iquique, on the 500-mile journey to Santa Cruz in Bolivia. The frog, unladen by any baggage, set a furious pace, and we lost it through a hole in the wall not ten yards from where we started.
Iquique, Feb. 6
The days pass by in a long frustrating week, whilst we design a special frog harness. The Andean winter gets closer as every day goes by. Conditions in the mountains could be hell.
Iquique, Feb. 7
The frogs are so slippery that any harness is almost impossible to fit. They are sending to Belgium for a specialist.
Iquique, March 30
At last, the Belgian specialist has arrived. He says that frogs are totally unsuitable for this type of journey. The man is a complete fraud. We refuse to pay his return fare.
Iquique, March 31
Wake up with a huge Malaysian Leper Frog at my throat. The Belgian specialist eventually calls it off, after we promise to pay his fare back.
Iquique, March 32
Decide to set off with frog in a box. The weather holds out, and we make good progress. We reach the outskirts of Pozo almonte before I discover someone has let the frog out of the box.
Pozo Almonte, March 33
I am beginning to have suspicions about my Chilean calendar.
Pozo Almonte, March 34
Success. I discover a frog in my lunch, so I put him in the box and set out again.
Iquique, March 35
I misread the map. Simple mistake. Bump into the Belgian specialist in the street. He hits me with a South American Singing Toad, which he was taking to the vet. I report him to the RSPCA.
Iquique, March 35
RSPCA man arrives from London. He says he has called about a matter of sixteen frogs squashed while under my care.
Iquique, March 37
How the frogs have let me down, making a mockery of the oft-repeated maxim: "a man's best friend is his frog". Decide to take up a new challenge with a more reliable creature. Decide to attempt the first crossing of the Skaggerak by maggot.
London, March 43
So my Chilean calendar was right. It really is March 43rd.

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