Tortoise and Hare Issue no. 63 Fall 1975 He started out at a nice easy 120 strides per minute, his heart rapidly increasing its beat to accommodate the extra strain on his body, his pulse more or less normal, and his breathing deep, rhythmic, and unlabored. On his right was the canal, on his left the river, and everywhere else trees. Or at least it appeared that way. In reality, the trees were only on his left, between the path and the river.