The Jungle of Wild Robots
They call it the Jungle of Wild Robots because that’s where all the robots that run away during the Big Escapade went to hide. It’s been over a century and not only hasn’t the number of robots reduced, their numbers are actually growing. That’s what drove me to the Jungle. I had to understand how it was possible that such primitive robots could adapt and thrive by themselves.
I ventured into the jungle and hiked the mountain at its heart. I suspected most robots hid there. At first I only found broken pieces of machinery, but soon after I started running into the wild robots. I came across a group of little Climbers, delivery robots used over a hundred years ago. I crossed paths with a herd of Walkers, with legs thick as tree trunks, used for transporting heavy cargo. I also saw swarms of drones and a three legged robot I couldn’t identify.
On my second week as I approached the summit I found a cave that wasn’t in any of my maps. This cave had been carved out on the side the mountain. As I got closer I could hear a humming sound. I took one step forward into its entrance and a small caterpillar robot emerged from inside, zooming pass between my legs.
“I knew this day would come,” a deep voice said from within the guts of the mountain. I stood frozen by fear. “You’ve already come this far,” the voice continued. “Come on in and I’ll show you what you are looking for.”
I know what you are thinking. So what was inside the cave? I don’t know. I’m sorry to disappoint you. My theory had always been that a group of renegades was behind the robot’s upkeep and construction. But whatever was behind the voice I heard, whatever it was, it wasn’t human. I turned around and run away. I didn’t look back once until I was well out of the Jungle one week later.
To this day I still hear the voice. I hear it every night. It calls me from deep within the cave across the Jungle. And it lures me with the answers that I seek. Every night I face the calling. And every night it gets harder and harder to resist it.
August 24, 2017