Companion piece to "Double"
I took a job as ambassador to a planet very similar to mine; as part of it, I'd teach the natives about my own planet's history and culture. One of the unusual things about this is that I get to be a giant even without growing one bit. That's because everyone on the planet is half my size, at the most.
The planet is called Earth.
My name is Doryan Oto, and I'm 12 feet tall and weigh just over 2,000 pounds. That of course is normal for people from my home world of Varditor but apparently on Earth it makes me the largest human ever. When I first heard that the Earthlings got to be no bigger than waist high to me I thought, OK, so they're only as big as 3 or 4 year olds back home. But when I got here to Earth, the size difference really threw me. These poor little guys are even shorter and scrawnier than I thought. And since their world is scaled to their size, guess who not only sticks out like a sore thumb, but has a tough time dealing with everyday life?
That would be me. I was placed with an Earth family to host me, but I could tell right off things would not be easy. I tried to get into their house but could barely squeeze through the door, and their ceilings are only 7 or 8 feet tall so I had to pretty much sit or lie down--and hope to heck my "big" body wouldn't break anything.
Of course I hear one of these puny people is back on Varditor, as the Earth ambassador--guy named Rob Dorr. It must be tough for him being the size of a Varditorian 3 year old. Then again, he and I would have many things in common. Neither of us, for example, would be able to drive a car on our guest planet. He'd be far too miniscule, even with special pedals and a raised seat. I, of course, am far too huge. In fact I've had to ride around in the back of open- air pickup trucks, and even then it's tough because 2,000 pounds of my weight puts a strain on the truck.
When I walk around, I found everyone is anywhere from waist high to knee high. My host has a son who's only 4 feet tall, which I guess is normal for a 9 year old here but he'd be smaller than a baby back on my world. And when people here walk or run, they seem to take awhile longer to get places, as they have tiny little legs and lil' baby feet.
It takes a lot of their food to feed me, while they seem to get by on a scant bit of grub. And I'm way too big to use their toilet or bath facilities. Sometimes I jump in a river with some soap if I need to bathe. As for sleeping, they have a covered area in their backyard for me (a tarp up high, in case it rains) and they put some mattresses together but they still seem too small for me.
My host is named George York and he has a wife named Lydia, a 9 year old son named Timothy, and a 7 year old daughter named Amy. They do OK here on this planet of dwarfs but I could just imagine what it would be like if they were on Varditor. Poor George would be afraid of getting beaten up by a 5 year old. He only weighs one tenth of what I do--a mere 200 pounds. (Of course I'm using Earth measures here; I've gotten used to their language, units of measure, and so on.)
They're a lot weaker than I am, of course. I have to be careful when I "shake their hands" (an Earth custom of greeting). Saw some of Earthlings next door moving into their house and it took more than one of them to move a sofa or refrigerator but I was a gentleman and grabbed the sofa and easily carried it from the moving van to the house.
Just now I went with the Yorks to a supermarket and walked around as they shopped (the ceilings there were at least high enough to accomodate me). The local residents had heard about their "giant visitor" and they either gawked or seemed quite afraid of me. I was careful of course; if I stumbled I could have fallen onto one or more of them and maybe killed them-- again, the biggest of them is waist high or maybe belly-button high to me, and many of the kids were only knee high or just a bit taller. So wee and weak.
The Yorks have a balcony on the second floor of their house and I can easily just stand outside on the ground and see them eye-to-eye up there.
One of their neighbors has an in-ground pool and they let me swim in it; it's a fairly big pool in Earth size, though it felt more like a bathtub to me, or maybe slightly bigger than that. The "deep end" was only 8 feet. I mostly just sat in it and cooled off, taking up much of the space in the pool.
Recently I was on TV there, and the interviewer loved to compare his feet and hands against mine.
It's all so bizarre seeing their tiny cars and houses. A world of people who would be dwarfed by my 4 year old nephew.
As I said, I've been teaching as a part of this cultural exchange. Went into a college, barely squeezing into the door, walking hunched over down the hallway, and then again barely squeezing into the classroom door. I then sat down cross-legged on the floor and told the 5 and 6 foot tall students about my world.
It does seem like a nice place though eventually I'll get back to my own world, where I won't have to keep looking down, and my back won't ache from always walking stooped-down through hallways!