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The Latest (Sort of) From the Kangaroo Desk

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Pardon us for being a bit tardy on this, but when you’re on the kangaroo beat here at Carry On you don’t really expect to handle much in the way of news. Sometimes, honestly, we’re caught napping. So you’ll forgive us if the following tidbit is several weeks old.

A few months ago we reported that a number of kangaroos had escaped from an Australian theme park in southern France (yes, that’s correct) and gone romping through the countryside near Carcassonne before they were rounded up and returned to their rightful roost. We’re not sure if that was the beginning of a trend, but several weeks ago another rebel ‘roo, this one named Will, flew the coop from his home in the village of Gente.

By all accounts an otherwise placid, happy-go-lucky marsupial, the escaped hopper caused authorities to form a good Will hunting party. Ten days later the four-foot-tall bounder was at last halted in his oversize tracks in the nearby village of Juillac-le-Coq, where he was immobilized after being shot with a tranquilizer dart gun. His owner, when questioned how the unlikely pet had broken loose, looked bored in the Gallic manner, shrugged his shoulders, tugged his beret at a devil-may-care angle over his ear, and silently lit a cigarette. We’re just kidding. He coughed when he lit his cigarette.

The history of feral French kangaroux is a long one. Well, six years old, at least. In 2003, it was reported in the Sydney Morning Herald—which has a knack for uncovering such things—that a band of macropods was disrupting traffic patterns in the village of Emance, near Rambouillet forest, where the animals were encamped. Follow-up sightings in the neighborhood occur routinely, if not without some sense of disbelief.

In other news of the ‘roos… Well, there isn’t any, actually. But we’ll try to be more vigilant next time some kangaroo caper makes headlines.

Mark Orwoll is the international editor at Travel + Leisure.

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