René von Tiger – Consulting Detective
Day 4 – The solution
For three days I had been mucking through London, and finally, when I looked down from the giant Ferris wheel, the London Eye, I discovered a very hot trace: Something was going on at Trafalgar Square! Something Chinese! Of course I went right there to watch the spectacle up close. On the way, I put myself into a more fitting outfit, with which I was able to mix very subtly among the crowd.
Crowds of people cavorted in the entire square. Even the streets around the square were closed and crowded. And then I saw something that made me doubt my watchful tiger’s eyes: under the sound of cymbals, drums and bells, a colorful dragon danced through the people! Holy stripes! And not just one! He was followed by various other dragons, lions, and many other strange shapes. Only a dog was unfortunately not there.
I grabbed a tiger’s heart and stalked one of the dragons, who had taken a short break in dancing. My plan to move easily through the crowds with my inconspicuous outfit, came together. This allowed me to contact the Chinese mythical creature quickly and easily. After some distracting small talk about the weather, I casually cheered the question on the Chinese Dog to the witness whom I interrogated. I don’t know whether I mispronounced some of the syllables of Mandarin, which I do not practice very often, or whether he just did not want to help me out of sheer lasciviousness. In any case, his answer consisted only of a hoarse coughing and hissing, with a few small puffs of smoke billowing from his nostrils. When I transfer my knowledge of the social behavior of European dragons to the conduct of this Chinese one, I conclude that he laughed at me. Impudence, monstrous!
I realized that I needed other witnesses who could answer my questions more competently. So I made my way from Trafalgar Square almost to Piccadilly Circus. This neighborhood is also known as China Town, with many people of Chinese descent and one Chinese restaurant next to the other. I interviewed more dragons, two panda bears, a lion – ok, you should never expect any reasonable answer from a lion anyway – a real Chinese and even Master Yoda. Nothing! Everyone just looked at me in astonishment and laughed at me.
Finally, with the help of my fluffy-striped Tigercharmes, I managed to reassure myself of the help of a very friendly witness. The competent young lady told me that this was the biggest celebration of Chinese New Year outside of Asia. Incidentally, this is celebrated every year on a different day. For the traditional Chinese calendar is a lunar calender, which does not correspond to the solar calendar used by us in Europe.
Now every year in Chinese astrology is assigned to one of twelve zodiac signs. There is the pig, the rat, the buffalo, the hare, the snake, the horse, the sheep, the monkey, the rooster and of course the dragon. What I am particularly pleased of: Even a tiger is there. And then I didn’t trust my ears when I heared that there is also a dog! And today, in 2018, the Chinese year of the dog starts with this huge party between Trafalgar Square and Piccadilly Circus! Aye! By the way, the next year of the tiger starts on the 1st of February 2022.
Finally there it was, the Chinese Dog. Holmes had completely tricked my. There was no sinister conspiracy to uncover, and no criminal genius to be hunted down. Holy stripes!!! There was just a big New Year celebration for the year of the dog.
So I put aside the case that had never actually existed, mingled with the people for a while and celebrated with them. Later in the evening, I reviewed my experiences all around the secret of the Chinese Dog with a delicious Chinese meal. I had to laugh at myself for being tricked by my colleague Holmes. And I chuckled softly as I considered how I would pay him back that evil prank.