Walking along the beach one day, I came across a glass bottle with a piece of parchment inside. I quickly opened the bottle and unfurled the scroll. On it the riddle below was written.

i sail eastwards, sleep i concede
riches i could earn, musings of nights spent oblivious of need

I smiled, put the scroll back in the bottle, and wished the writer safe travel.

Do you know where the writer was going?


It is the name of a real place that is both specific and general at the same time.


The answer and question title have a Euterpean connection.


Already quite nearby, hitching a ride on a boat with a girl, a chicken, and a demigod could take you there.


Half of it lies within the courtyards of the Taj Mahal and the Forbidden Palace.


Kim's daughter probably would not have liked this part of the world.

Hints 2 & 3, as well as the title, have been solved by @Luke

Only half of the acrostic has been solved by @oleslaw
Only HINT 3 has been solved by @Luke

  • $\begingroup$ Could u pls let us know the correct answer? $\endgroup$
    – S M
    Commented Sep 16, 2019 at 7:21
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Maybe after two weeks from posting? Not sure what the convention is for answering your own questions. I'll try to add another hint within the week. $\endgroup$
    – greysaff
    Commented Sep 17, 2019 at 10:31
  • $\begingroup$ No need to give it away if you don't want to! Is hint 2 a reference to rot13: gur frn (frr gur yvar jurer gur fxl zrrgf gur frn). Guvf vf nyfb trareny naq fcrpvsvp ng gur fnzr gvzr. $\endgroup$
    – Dr Xorile
    Commented Sep 19, 2019 at 16:34
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @DrXorile That is correct! rot13(Vg'f n yvar va n fbat va gur zbivr ersreerq gb ol uvag 3. Uvag 1 pbhyq nyfb nccyl urer va n jnl.) $\endgroup$
    – greysaff
    Commented Sep 20, 2019 at 1:28

3 Answers 3


[Attempt #2]

Some parts of this may be a bit stretched, but hopefully it's close enough to the solution.

Step 1

Euterpe (Hint 2) is a goddess of music.
The title's full sentence is "See the line where the sky meets the sea", a line of a song in Moana (Hint 3). Credit to @Dr Xorile.

"line where sky meets the sea" could refer to a river that runs from the highest mountain (sky) to the sea. The highest mountain is Mt. Everest, in the Himalayas.

Step 2

Half the acrostic solved by @oleslaw referring to India
Hint 4 gives a place between Taj Mahal (India) and Forbidden Palace (China)

Step 3

Half the acrostic's mystery may have relation to Buddha / Buddhism

i sail eastwards

Probably referring to Buddhist monks sailing eastwards to promote their teaching

sleep i concede

refer to The Sleeping Buddha

riches i could earn

Gautama was born a royalty

musings of nights spent oblivious of need

Buddhist lifestyle of meditation and detachment from material needs


One place that links all the clues is

Tibet, the center of Buddhist monastery

[Attempt #1]

I have 2 possible answers. But let me try this one first.

The writer's going to


The writer here is

The ship Euterpe (now called Star of India)

As pointed by @oleslaw,

the acrostic 'Rice Monsoon' may refer to Euterpe's frequent journey to India

The texts 'i sail eastwards' and 'musings of nights spent oblivious of need' possibly refers to:

the "twenty-five years of carrying passengers and freight in the New Zealand emigrant trade, each voyage going eastward" - Wikipedia

The answer corresponds with Hint 3:

A girl, a chicken, and a demigod is a reference to the film Moana, which takes place in the Polynesia, a region which New Zealand is a part of

  • $\begingroup$ Very creative but not the the intended answer. You got hints 2 and 3 but the acrostic clue is still only half solved. Getting it should point you to the right direction. $\endgroup$
    – greysaff
    Commented Sep 17, 2019 at 10:28
  • $\begingroup$ @greysaff I've made an update $\endgroup$
    – Luke
    Commented Sep 20, 2019 at 14:49
  • $\begingroup$ The 2nd attempt is also wonderful but alas still incorrect. For the acrostic clue rot13(Rnpu bs gur evqqyr'f gjb yvarf sbyybj qvssrerag ehyrf gb fbyir gurz.) You are also geographically closer to the answer than your previous attempt. $\endgroup$
    – greysaff
    Commented Sep 23, 2019 at 5:53
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I've awarded the soon expiring bounty to this answer since it got the most hints and closest to the intended answer. I will post the solution when the question has turned one month old. $\endgroup$
    – greysaff
    Commented Sep 27, 2019 at 4:57
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ @greysaff thank you! I'll surely wait for the answer since there's been 'musings of nights spent' trying to solve it :p $\endgroup$
    – Luke
    Commented Sep 27, 2019 at 5:13

It is observed that

First letters of each word spell "ise,sic rice, monsoon"

Which may be interpreted as

"Eyes seek rice monsoon" or "I seek rice monsoon"

The phrase

Rice Monsoon

usually refers to

monsoon that enables rice growth in India

so I think that the writer is heading to


  • $\begingroup$ Close but not the intended answer. You got some of the clues right... I'll add a hint soon. Give it another shot by then :) $\endgroup$
    – greysaff
    Commented Sep 12, 2019 at 7:04
  • $\begingroup$ @greysaff Yeah, that sounded too simple ;) I was almost sure I missed some hints. $\endgroup$
    – oleslaw
    Commented Sep 12, 2019 at 7:16

As promised to Luke, here's the answer to the puzzle.

The acrostic clue for the two lines follow different rules

First and last letters of each word:
i sail eastwards, sleep i concede

First letter of each word:
riches i could earn, musings of nights spent oblivious of need

which gives the following clue words

isles, spice, rice, monsoon

The first two are a pair referring to the Spice Islands or the Moluccas archipelago of Indonesia. The fourth clue word, monsoon, while typically associated with India also heavily affects its neighboring region to the east. This seasonal rainy season particularly influences the planting and harvest of rice, the crop shared by inhabitants of this area.

In fact, one might say that in this region of diverse ethnicities, religions, and languages, only this staple is shared by the community. This reflects in the use of rice stalks on their regional flag.

enter image description here

Going back to the puzzle's title, completing those lyrics will lead us to the answer.

See the line where the sky meets...

the SEA, a common (if not local) abbreviation for Southeast Asia

Now for the hints

1. Being a collection of countries in Asia, it is both specific and general at the same time.
2. Euterpe, the Muse of music, sings a musical connection between the title and answer (correctly guessed by Luke)
3. This describes the movie Moana, where the title was taken from (guessed by Dr Xorile in the comments)
4. "The courtyards of the Taj Mahal and the Forbidden Palace" is an allusion to being in the periphery of India and China. In fact, the mainland part of Southeast Asia used to be called Indochina. The other half is maritime SEA or the Malay archipelago.
5. The Kim referred to here is Kim Kardashian, who together with Kanye West ostentatiously named their daughter North West (the opposite of South East).


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