Pollyanna, the Yeti Sketch and the Media Circus

While trekking in Bhutan Pollyanna visited a very remote Buddhist monastery, where she got in to conversation with the sole caretaker monk, who took her into a part of the temple which was hardly ever shown to either foreign or Bhutanese visitors.

There she was shown an object mounted on a pole, which through her interpreter she was told was a yeti scalp which had been in the temple for many generations, and was regarded as a holy relic.
No photography is allowed in the interior of any Buddhist temple in Bhutan, but Pollyanna was able to sketch an outline of the scalp in her expedition journal.

Later she also completed a ‘photo fit’ sketch of a yeti, working from descriptions given to her by the local villagers, who regularly report sightings of and encounters with yetis in the Himalayan mountains.

Left: Pollyanna with the 'photofit' Yeti sketch

Following a brief mention of the yeti sketch in an interview with a local paper, Pollyanna suddenly found herself in the centre of a media circus, with the story being featured in almost every national paper from the Daily Telegraph and the Express through to the Sun, the Mirror, the Metro, and the Scotsman, and on countless web sites. Many of these reports were highly exaggerated, claiming she has found ‘flesh and bone’ of a yeti – but they went on to spark a round of radio interviews, with Pollyanna speaking on BBC Radio Sheffield, BBC Radio Derby, Peak FM, Ram FM, and National radio Five Live over the course of three days.

The story was discussed on the Pick of the papers on Sarah Kennedy’s morning show on BBC Radio Two, and made the news reports on several other radio stations. Pollyanna will be featured in the next issue of the Fortean Times magazine, (which deals with the ‘unexplained’) – and has even been invited to guest at the next National conference organised by the Centre for Fortean Cryptozoology!

Meanwhile the story has since gone international, appearing in among others the New Zealand Herald, the Bahrain Tribune and the Washington Post,as well as papers in Russia (where is was helpfully illustrated with a photo of a yeti scalp ... not supplied by Pollyanna!), Poland, Spain, France and Ireland, and being mentioned on NBC news in America. Appropraiately enough the story even found its way in t the Bhutan Times and the Himalayan Post.

The original Yeti sketch was displayed to the public for the first time at Pollyanna's gallery, for the duration of the Land of the Thunder Dragon exhibition in June 2008.