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Author's Chapter Notes:

I'm really sorry about taking so long to post the next chapter. I had a lot of things going on in my life and couldn't get this done. Anyway, if you haven't lost interest in the story yet, I'd really appreciate if you could comment, as usual. Thanks again for reading and hopefully you'll have fun!

Three Stories


Thesis Project, Chapter 4: Size and Tourism

Each one of us, at least once in our lives, has thought about travelling. Meeting new places, new people, new cultures, and even new weathers; all of those awaken our adventure spirit. So what do we do? We look for places that look interesting, fun, and in general worth the trip. Most of us don’t have the time and money to afford to travel a lot, so we have to be very picky.

This is where the first problem appears. One of the most common methods that we use when we pick our destination is seeing pictures of the places. “This one looks very pretty”, “Wow, look at that palace!”, or “What a cute town” are just a few common expressions that we might use while checking the photographs of the cities we intend to visit.

And that’s OK. It’s important to at least see a few images of the place before actually going there. However, as we see the pictures, we might forget that, depending on our scale compared to the destination city, we could find ourselves in a landscape completely different from what we expected.

And don’t get me wrong, I know that people aren’t stupid. They’d obviously try to estimate the size difference before travelling, knowing very well that scale might play a big role in their trip. But some might not consider that landmarks and other touristic places might not have quite the same impact as they seemed to do in the pictures, especially since some of them rely on their size to overwhelm the tourists.

For example, the Tokyo Tower is an awe inspiring sight, but an Icelandic tourist might not be too impressed by a shoulder-height, feeble looking tower, even if she can perceive most of its details. The Great Wall of China, as long as it is, would probably not seem so majestic to an Australian tourist, considering that the wall with be about as tall as her ankle. And how about the statue of Christ the Redeemer? It’s one of the most important landmarks in Latin America, and the Brazilians are very proud of it. That said, to a British tourist, it’d look like a normal guy standing on a pedestal. Not to mention an Austrian tourist; to her, it’d look like a 2 year old child standing on a chair, trying in vain to reach his mother’s height.

I assure you, I’m not trying to disrespect or denigrate any landmark in the world. I’m just saying that those which rely on size to “wow” onlookers might lose a little punch when the tourists surpass certain scale. But they’d be just as beautiful and mesmerizing as they were before. That doesn’t change a bit.

Another example: the Taj Mahal. It’s one of the most admired and visited landmarks in India and in the world, and even a Czech tourist should be fascinated by its splendid construction and perfect proportions, even if she’s big enough to hold the whole construction (not counting the base holding the minarets) on the palm of her hand, as if it were one of those tiny souvenirs that smaller people can buy at the landmark’s site.

On the other hand, smaller tourists would probably be overwhelmed by the colossal proportions of landmarks, so it’d most likely just enhance their visit. That’s why I’m mainly focusing on bigger tourists in these paragraphs, because they’re more likely to underestimate landmarks, just because of their size compared to them. So I’m inviting every person who visits a smaller city to be a little more open minded and to lay aside the size differences. That way, they’ll be able to appreciate much more the treasures that human culture around the world can offer.



“Svetlana!”, I shouted, already annoyed. “Hurry up, or you’re gonna be late!”


As I promised, I was helping Svetlana get a job, but she was taking forever to get ready to go. I was sitting on the couch in the living room, waiting for my Russian roomie to walk out of my bedroom. After a few minutes, I heard steps coming from the hall. Standing up, I noticed it wasn’t Svetlana, but Sarah.


“Hi there, Lenny”, she said.

“Hi, Sarah. Where are you going?”, I asked, knowing that she didn’t work on Fridays.

“Oh, I’m babysitting”

“Really? You? How come?”

“Well, it seems like an easy way to get some extra cash. Watch TV while some kid sleeps.”

“Hehe, if you say so.”

“Yeah. I’m spending the weekend there, though. Just so you know.”

“Really? Will you even fit in the house? I mean, this is Mexico, after all.”

“Hope so!”, she said, giggling. “It’s some kind of summer house in the outskirts of the city, so…they obviously have money. I guess the place should be big enough to accommodate me.”

“Well, good luck, then!”, I said, waving at her as she opened the front door.

“Oh, hey! Look who’s here!”, she said, looking down. “She’s on the couch, tiger.”


I looked at the front door, noticing my tiny boyfriend walking in, just as Sarah left. He walked towards me, smiling as I waited, sitting on the couch.


“Hi, honey!”, he said, standing by my feet.

“Hi there. What are you doing here?”, I asked confused. “Not that I’m not happy to see you.”

“Well, I have a big surprise for you!”

“Oh! What is it?”, I asked, excited.

“It’s better if I show it to you. Come on, let’s go.”

“Actually…I kind of have to do something first”

“You do? What is it?”

“Well, I promised my new roomie to help her get a job, so…”

“New roomie?”, he asked. “What new roomie?”

“Oh, right, sorry, I forgot to tell you. Her name is…”


The sound of footsteps interrupted me, and Daniel and I both looked at the hall. To my dismay, Svetlana was walking towards us…completely naked! Her body looked wet, as if she had just finished showering. As a reflex, I stamped my foot right in front of Daniel, blocking his view.


“Svetlana!”, I said, blushing. “What are you doing here, and naked?!”

“Well, I wasn’t sure what to wear to the job interview, so I came to ask you before getting dressed.”

“You could at least have put on some underwear.”

“I know, but it’s fine. I mean, we’re just girls in the house, anyway.”

“No, we’re not! My boyfriend is here!”


As if on cue, Daniel walked around my foot, staring up at Svetlana. Both of them looked at each other, mouth open. With a swift movement, I snatched him from the floor, trapping his tiny body inside my hand. Only his kicking legs stuck out from my closed fist. Svetlana’s eyes were fixed on my hand.


“Awww…is that your boyfriend?”, she asked, stating the obvious.

“Yeah, he is. Now go get dressed!”

“Right, right, sorry”, she said, turning around and leaving. “Oh! So, what do I wear?”

“Whatever you want is fine!”, I said, already a little annoyed.

“OK, sure.”, she said, and walked into my bedroom.


As soon as I was sure that Svetlana was gone, I opened my hand again, holding him on the palm of my hand.


“Hey! What was that about?”, he asked, crossing his arms.

“You know what! She was naked!”

“Yeah, but that doesn’t mean you had to do that! It’s not like I was staring.”

“Yeah, right, you weren’t staring…”, I said, sighing.

“So, where is she from? She’s huge!”

“She’s Russian, and I know how big she is.”

“Awww…are you…jealous?”

“Jealous? No, no! Of course not!”, I said, blushing even more.

“Awww…that’s so cute”, he said, hugging my thumb. “Well, you really shouldn’t. You’re so much prettier than her.”

“Pfff! Yeah, right.”

“I mean it. But, anyway, can I come along, then?”

“Sure, why not? It won’t take long, and then you can show me the surprise.”

“Very well, let’s go.”

“As soon as Miss Slowmo decides to get ready, that is.”




After what seemed like an eternity, we finally reached the Colombian Café where Paula worked. Before we walked in, however, I carefully placed Daniel inside my pants pocket.


“Hey, what are you doing, Lena?”, he asked me.

“I just rather keep you out of her sight while we’re here…”

“But Lena…”


Before he could keep talking, I slipped my right hand inside my pocket, not only muffling his voice, but also keeping him inside, without hopes of escaping. I could feel him squirming, struggling against my hand, but I easily held him in place. When I was sure that he wasn’t getting out, Svetlana and I walked into the café.

I thought it was going to be a little hard to spot a tiny girl like her in a place so large, but as soon as we were inside, we could hear a tiny, squeaky voice, calling my name from the floor. Looking down, we saw a tiny girl, hands cupped around her mouth, staring up.


“Lena?”, she asked, obviously surprised. “What are you doing here?”

“Hi there.”, I said, crouching at her. When I noticed she was just holding an empty tray, I gently picked her up with my free hand.

“Whoa! Hey! I’m working!”, she said, almost dropping the tray.

“Sorry, sorry, this will only take a second.”

“OK, OK, fine.”, she said, staring up at Svetlana. “Who’s your friend?”

“Well, that’s what I wanted to talk to you about.”, I said. “She’s Svetlana. She comes from Russia, and we were wondering if…”


Before I could finish my sentence, Svetlana had already snatched Paula from my hand, rubbing her tiny body against her cheek.


“Awwww! Look at her!”, she said, happily. “She’s so cute!”

“Hehehe…thanks, I guess.”, Paula said, unable to fight back.

“Ummm…yeah…anyway”, I proceeded. “We just wanted to know if you could help her find a job as a waitress here.”

“Oh, well, sure, I guess. But that’s not up to me.”, she said.

“Then who?”, asked Svetlana.

“See that door over there?”, Paula said, pointing at the end of a hall. “That’s the office of the guy in charge of hiring.”

“Oh, great, then I’ll go talk to him.”, Svetlana said, walking straight towards the door.

“Wow…that girl is really straightforward, huh?”, asked Paula, chuckling.

“You have no idea.”, I answered. “But you’ll find out once she’s hired.”

“Is that so? How are you so sure she’ll get the job?”

“Well, it’s like that song from Sonata Arctica. A Job as a waitress she sure was to find, beautiful face, mind of a child.”, I said, giggling.

“Hehehe, good point”, said Paula. “Anyway, how are things with your little boyfriend?”

“Actually, we were just about to go somewhere where he says he’ll show me a surprise.”

“No kidding! Well, then, don’t linger here anymore. Just go. And of course, you’ll let me know what it is later, right?”

“Of course, silly”, I said, placing her back down on the floor.

“Thanks. And don’t worry about your friend. I’ll take care of her.”

“Good to know. She’s probably gonna need it.”


And with that, I walked out of the café, taking Daniel out of my pocket.


“That was uncalled for”, he said, upset.

“Sorry…I won’t do that again. Promise.”

“OK, OK, fine.”, he said, obviously faking a sigh.

“So…where’s my surprise! I want to see it now!”

“Calm down. We’ll get there. Just follow this street. I’ll let you know where to turn.”


And so I did. With my little boyfriend on the palm of my hand, I followed the path he pointed, more and more excited to see what he had in store for me.

Chapter End Notes:

I know this chapter seemed rather strange, but it's actually the beginning of 3 simultaneous stories coming right after this. This is some sort of introduction to them. Don't worry, I won't take nearly as long as I did with this one. I hope you like it, and thanks again for reading!

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