Commented index
Danish Publications 6856
D 6856/1 Go Slowly, Sands of Time show I.N.D.U.C.K.S. entry
CBL V/1/364 · C: 1968-??-?? · P: 1987-04 · 14 p.
Script/idea only
Donald Duck; Huey, Dewey, and Louie; Scrooge McDuck
Uncle Scrooge gets to worrying about what will become of his binful of money when he passes on. He considers the horrible prospects of leaving his fortune to Donald, who would have no better sense than to spend it. The government of Duckburg would do likewise. This vast pile of money is too precoious to be used for common purposes like buying bread and baubles. Scrooge winces as he imagines even one of the much-fondled coins being clanked into a cold cash register ba a greedy-handed merchant. This money pile is a collection. It must be preserved as such, and only while Uncle Scrooge is alive and tending it with loving care will it be preserved. The only solution Uncle Scrooge can see is that he must somehow extend his life onward and onward. He must live a long time. How? Is there some rejuvenator in the worlds of food or air or chemistry that can keep his battery recharging? Somehow he learns about the Vale of Khunza in the Himalayas where people live to great ages. He locks his money bin securely and, taking Donald and Huey and Dewey and Louie with him, goes to the valley of Khunza. He has aged ten years from the rigors of the journey by the time they arrive, but he sees such remarkable specimens of human longevity living and working in the valley that his hopes rise mightily. In the valley the principal diet is dried apircots. There is almost no fuel, so everybody is cold all of the time. The kids surmise this constant refrgeration is one of the preservatives of the populace. The people are no help in pinning down the principal element of rejuvenation. Each hoary ancient has his own idea of what thing or habit has added the extra years to his life. Uncle Scrooge tries out all of the theories. He eats apricots until his skin turns apricot color. He gets so cold he should turn blue, but because of the apricot hue his skin becomes a ghastly green. He drinks tea the Khunza way - so strong it paralyzes his eyelids - open. He eats rice ... steamed, raw, unhulled and unripe ... but, although the oldsters who touted him onto each of these »secret formulas« are whole and hearty, and enjoying whatever rigorous occupation each follows, Uncle Scrooge can't seem to assimilate the beneficent essences. He only grows older and more rickety rapidly. He thinks he is close to success when an aged beekeeper tells him about the magic of eating honey. Uncle Scrooge gulps whole hives of the stuff. He does lose his wrinkles, but the kids point out that it's only because his skin is stretched so tight. He tries the theory that bee stings may carry the essence of ever-elasticity. Draped with sacking, with only a small target of his fanny exposed, he backs into a bee swarm. He gains no elasticity, but the heat from his fanny warms the kids' hands for hours like a radiant stove. His bones are aching with age and his hands quaver with palsy as Donald helps him totter to the temple where he is going to interview the oldest ancient of them all, the temple treasurer. Meanwhile, the kids do some interviews themselves. They ask the ancient who eats unhulled rice what he does for amusement. The old guy is insulted. He has never played. He likes to work so much he wants to do it all of the time. He tries to tell the kids what a joy it is to herd yaks on windy cliffs at 60 below, but the kids are off to the next interview. The ancient hag who sips super-strong tea weaves rugs. It is such a joy to weave rugs that she resents any time out for sleep. The kids return to Uncle Scrooge. No use asking him what he has done for amusement all of his life. They already know. But the business of longevity has gotten them curious. »How old are you, Uncle Scrooge?« they ask him on the way up the temple steps. Uncle Scrooge can't remember. He has always been too busy to bother with such record-keeping. »You made your first fortune selling surplus cannons from the Boer War, didn't you?« they ask. »Bah!« says Scrooge, »I was rich before then! I found diamonds with Rhodes in the Transvaal! I was a 'Bonanza King' on the Comstock Lode! I took millions out of the Klondike!« »Say no more,« the kids say. »By our figures, you're already as old as these Khunza fossils!« »That's of no importance,« bellows Scrooge. »It's how old I want to become! Now help me to meet the temple treasurer who must know the way I can stretch the clock!« The meeting is short and to the point. The treasurer is a spry old codger who says simply, »The secret of long life is to be happy with your work. I enjoy counting money! I just love the feel of money and to burrow around in money!« He pours a bucketful of coins over his head. »And I think there's something in the metal that rejuvenates me anew every day!« The ducks rush to the side of Uncle Scrooge who has fallen to the floor wailing and sobbing as though broken-hearted. The reason for his unhappiness? He has just added up all the money he's spent to come over here to learn the formula for extending life when he'd had the magic substance in his possession all along. Three cubic acres of it, in fact.
Plot outline only by Barks; the story was extended to a comic at Gutenberghus (script: Tom Anderson, artist: Vicar). See also USHLT 1/1.
The theme is probably from an article in National Geographic magazine of October 1953 which had already inspired Barks for US 6/2.
First publication worldwide in Danish Anders And & Co. 18/84 under the code D6856; title: »Vejen til evig ungdom«. First U.S. publication in April 1987 in US 216 (translated by Geoffrey Blum).
The summary is an unabridged reproduction of Barks' outline. Rhodes is not mentioned in Geoffrey Blum's translation of the comic version, instead these names appear: Andrew Carnegie, Fezora, Mir of Khunza, Moola Khan, Nadir Shah, Suni Begum.
CBL: plot outline only.

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