Ready for another trivia quiz and jumble puzzle? You'll find them in this newsletter along with the first chapter of my new release Murder Is Handy.
Murder Is Handy is the second in my boarding Kennel series. If you would like to read Old Shadows, New Murder, #1 in the series, here are the links:
Barnes and Noble:
Since this series is placed in small town Manitoba, today's puzzles are all about Manitoba.
1. What well-known children's book character has his roots in the capital of Manitoba?
a) Paddington Bear
b) Winnie the Pooh
c) Dora the Explorer
2. What Manitoba town is known as the Polar Bear capital of the world?
d) Leaf Rapids
3. What Winnipeg man is one of television's longest reigning game show hosts?
a) Alex Trebek
b) Pat Sajek
c) Bob Barker
d) Monty Hall
4. What is the nickname given to the statue on top of Manitoba's Legislative building in Winnipeg?
a) Silver Streak
b) Golden Boy
c) Copper Beacon
d) Bronze Buffalo
5. Arborg, Manitoba lays claim to which notable fact?
a) World's first indoor skating rink
b) World's largest ice hotel
c) World's largest curling rock
d) World's biggest corn maze
6. William Stephenson a Winnipeg soldier in World War II is considered the basis for which fictional character.
a) James Bond
b) Sherlock Holmes
c) Perry Mason
d) Hannibal Lechter
7. Winnipeg, capital of Manitoba, is historically noted for which of the following.
a) First North American city to initiate 911 for emergencies
b) First North American city to use Daylight Saving Time
c) First North American city to use yellow fire trucks
d) First North American city to establish bicycle lanes
8. Which Manitoba town is named after a fictional character?
d) Flin Flon
9. The town of Boissevain, Manitoba is known for what annual event?
a) Pet parade
b) Turtle races
c) Cow milking contest
d) Goat and sheep rodeo
10. What title has Manitoba now held for 16 straight years
a) World's coldest temperature on January 1st.
b) World's biggest snowbank
c) World champions drinkers of the most Slurpees per year
d)World's biggest coffee drinkers
And now for the Jumble: Can you unscramble these Manitoba towns and cities?
1. A P I N U D H
2. B I N T E S H C A
3. D I N O S M A E N
4. V I S I N O B E S A
5. I N P I W E G N
6. R A N K Y L E L I
7. L I C R U C L H H
8. P A W N E E A
9. N I B L O R
10. K L I K S E R
Here to whet your appetite for the Boarding Kennel cozies is the first chapter of new release Murder Is Handy:
Jonah Whitcomb whistled through his teeth as he bumped the blue pickup along the byways of the nuisance grounds. He wasn't whistling a recognizable tune, just expressing his pleasure at the way the day had gone. There were others, he knew, that wouldn't look at things in the same way.
The garbage dump, known to residents as the "nuisance grounds," occupied what used to be a gravel pit. It had expanded and slid like a glacier over the years. As well as the depository for the garbage from the town trash collectors, there were areas for old building supplies, and a shed for electronics as well as bins for recycling.
The black and white dog beside Jonah appeared to be smiling too. He struggled to keep his balance on the truck seat beside his owner, but his joy at the happiness of his master was obvious. It was late afternoon and no one was on the grounds except for Jonah and his companion. The man paid by the town to supervise the garbage would be gone home for his supper. A gate stood across the main entrance, but Jonah slid it open and then closed behind him. He didn't need help. He was a regular and knew where to go.
Jonah pulled to a halt at the north end of the grounds and backed his truck against an incline. This was the area used to dump old building materials and occupied the furthest reaches of the dump. Beyond laid a stand of trees, and past that, the town cemetery.
He made short work of empting the truck box of the old planks, two-by-fours and other debris from the project he had completed. He smacked his hands against his jeans to dislodge bits of sawdust that had clung to his clothes and spoke to his travelling companion through the truck window. "Good job today, old fellow." The dog responded with a thwack of his tail against the back of the seat. His panting tongue disappeared for a moment in a gulp, then reappeared, hanging at the side of his mouth.
Jonah walked around the front of the truck to the driver's side and stood with his right foot on the running board, his back to the trees. Pulling a pack of cigarettes from his jacket pocket, he tapped the box and pulled one out, placing it between his lips. He cupped his hands, struck a match, and held it to the cigarette.
He smoked in silence for a bit, chuckling softly once in a while at the day's events. He flicked the cigarette stub to the ground and was grinding it into the dirt when he felt an unexplainable uneasiness. He started to jerk his head around at the sudden warning bark from the dog in the truck, but it was too late. A hard blow to the head felled him and another two followed. After that, Jonah felt nothing. The figure that had wielded the blow disappeared as fast as it had come.
The dog barked, clawing at the window to escape, but there was no give to it and he couldn't expand the mere inch or two it was open. Bouncing back and forth from one side of the truck to the other, his howls began to mingle with the barks. He lunged at the driver's door, then crouched in the seat, scratching at the door. Finally, one of his paws hit the handle with enough force and in the right direction to swing the door open.
He leaned over Jonah, pawing at his shoulder as though to wake him, whimpering as he nuzzled his face, frightened by the lack of response and by the blood oozing from his head. He dropped into a crouch, stretching his body alongside Jonah's and became still.
Then, as though coming to a decision, he rose and began to lope off to the entrance of the grounds. He followed the winding road to the edge of town. He turned into a street and came to a stop in front of the first building on the corner. He trotted up to the door and sat on the ground, raising his head to begin a keening howl.
And now for the answers:
1. The correct answer is Winnie the Pooh. Lt. Harry Colebourn had bought a black bear cub from a hunter and managed to sneak him overseas when he set off to England to fight in WWI. He named the bear Winnie after his hometown, Winnipeg, and donated him to the London Zoo when he went to fight in France. It was the zoo where A. A. Milne regularly took his son Christopher who fell in love with the bear. The rest, as they say, is history.
2. The correct answer is Churchill. Thousands of tourists visit Churchill each October and November to see the bears in the wild as they relocate to their winter grounds. Tundra vehicles with guides are an ideal way to see the bears while remaining safe. Churchill has a Polar Bear Prison for those bears cheeky enough to wander into town. People are asked not to lock their car doors so as to provide a safe haven for someone trying to escape the attention of a bear. And parents are requested not to allow their children to wear polar bear costumes on Halloween, to avoid mistaken identity.
3. If you guessed Alex Trebek, close but no cigar. Alex is a Canadian but he's from Sudbury, Ontario. The correct answer is Monty Hall, long running host of Let's Make a Deal.
4. The correct answer is The Golden Boy. There is a great deal of speculation surrounding the design and construction of the Manitoba Legislative Building, fostered by author/architect Frank Albo. He studied Freemasonic and Hermetic symbolism in the construction, noting Egyptian sphynxes on the roof, numerological codes, hidden hieroglyphic inscriptions, and the architect's (a Freemason) following of Solomon's Temple in the planning. You can now take Hermetic Code tours through the building. The Golden Boy himself is modelled after Mercury, the messenger.
5. The correct answer is c), the world's largest curling rock. It weighs a whopping 1.5 tonnes and is 4.2 m across and 2.1 meters tall. It is made of steel, foam and fibreglass.
6. The answer is James Bond. Sir William Stephenson, a Winnipeg native, was a master spy for Britain during the war and was the subject of the book, A Man Called Intrepid. Intrepid was his code name. It is commonly believed that Ian Fleming used him as the basis for his character James Bond.
7. The answer is a). Winnipeg was the first city in North America to set up the system for the emergency number. Britain had already initiated it across the pond. In the UK it is 999, while here in North America, it is of course, 911.
8. The answer is Flin Flon. It was named by Jim Creighton, founder of the town, after a science fiction hero, Flintabaty Flonaton.
9. The answer is turtle races. Every year turtles go speeding down the racetracks (well, maybe speeding is a bit of an exaggeration) of Boissevain. On the outskirts is a statue of a giant turtle to mark the town's claim to fame. Of course if you visit Boissevain, you also might want to check out their famous murals.
10. For sixteen years now, Winnipeg residents have consumed more 7/11 Slurpees than any other place in the world. I wonder if it's to beat those January heat waves?
And the answers to the jumbled towns:
Thanks for joining me. I hope you enjoyed the puzzles and the first chapter. Murder is Handy is scheduled for release Friday May 17th.
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