By Muriel Bristol (Transcriber) | September 4, 2018
Caroline Calderbank, young daughter of mathematicians Ingrid Daubechies and Rob Calderbank, posed this problem.
Jan and Maria have fallen in love (via the internet) and Jan wishes to mail her a ring. Unfortunately, they live in the country of Kleptopia where anything sent through the mail will be stolen unless it is enclosed in a padlocked box. Jan and Maria each have plenty of padlocks, but none to which the other has a key. How can Jan get the ring safely into Maria’s hands?
[Answer to Puzzle #2 to follow in the next Puzzle]
Answer to Puzzle #1: Going to St. Ives
The traditional answer to Puzzle #1 is 1. Only the narrator is explicitly said to have been going to St. Ives.
All of the others, all 2,801 of them, are assumed traditionally to have been going the other way or standing along the way. (If one subtracts out the sacks, the living beings total 2,752).
Were they all headed to St. Ives, that would make 2,802 going there (including the narrator). (If you discount the sacks, the living beings total 2,753).