Good Afternoon Ted and Jody:
There is no other way to say it; but, the weather is late today. It was supposed to warm up overnight and start to rain. We were supposed to be icebound this morning. None of that happened, yet. Indeed, it remained below freezing all night and no rain until very late this morning. Now, mind, that doesn’t mean it won’t happen. It just means the weather is late.
However, in anticipation of bad weather for photographs, I stopped on the way home from lunch yesterday and took a few “last shots” before the weather denied me the pleasure. While I did not expect the first panorama to be quite as “sunsetish” as it turned out, it fooled me. It was a much brighter day than the image captured. However, I let it slide and did not mess with it other than cropping it to size. Then I noticed a Great Blue Heron fishing. Well, he was sitting there trying to stay warm and look like he was fishing. I know this is a he as a she would have gone home finding ice surrounding her favorite fishing hole. However, we males like to fish and it is a test our manhood that we can take the cold and inclement sunshine while fishing. So, he stuck it out. You will notice in his “portrait” that there was much more direct sunlight than the earlier panorama showed—strange, Mother Nature is messing with me (or a cloud moved from in front of the sun. Either way, Mother Nature is messing with me).
I went back at sunset to see if I could get some color. I watched either an otter or a beaver bring in her young. (an enlargement only pixelates) I suspect a den under the bank in the vicinity of where she was. I tried to get a recognizable shot of her and her and her young one, but the above is the best I could do. Hardly recognizable as either a beaver or otter. I rather suspect the latter given the possibility of a den and the local area is not full of downed timber that occurs when you throw a beaver into an environment. I need a really big lens to capture her image. I also managed to get a late afternoon shot pointing my camera to the south.
Since the weather was late, I made my Tuesday morning trip into Longview to talk to my talk person. On the way in, there were “interesting” clouds over Silver Lake, so I shot them. So much for last night being my “last shots” before the rain. The weather man was trying to say this weather system is a “pineapple express” bringing tropical moisture into the area. I would say he needs to think in terms of a “pineapple local.” It must have make a lot of stops to take so much longer to get there than the schedule mandated.
Warmest regards, Ed
PS: None of the photos today are enhanced. AND, here is the next episode in the Amanda Saga.
040 Mrs. White’s Life Story Part 2 of 2
Fiction in 1244 words by T. Edward Westen, 2017
Detective Batan’s jacket pocket was making a chirping noise. He reached in and pulled out his cellphone. Looking at the screen he said, “I have to take this.” Although he stepped into the adjacent dining room, he still could be heard in the kitchen “Yes, . . ., Tell me the address and I’ll meet you there. . . . 14557 Higgins. . . I’ll be there fairly quickly, it is only a few blocks from where I am.” He stepped back into the room.
Special Agent Fleishman said, “We could hear. Let me walk you out.” He turned to Mrs. Hastings “I’ll just be a moment conferring with Detective Batan before he leaves. I’ll be right back. Keep the coffee warm.”
As soon as the two men left the room Mrs. Hastings went to the bathroom to make sure Mrs. White was alright. She knocked on the door “Are you decent?”
“Right, come on it. I can’t find my mascara.” Said Mrs. White as Mrs. Hastings entered. “Recalling David’s death really messed up my eyes.”
“Third drawer down on the left, dear.” Said Mrs. Hasting pointing.
“Right. I’m afraid it was so vivid when I told the Special Agent, that I forgot the here and now.” Said Mrs. White as she finished cleaning off the mess her tears had made and began applying fresh mascara. “I don’t know who invented this stuff, but it really should be water proof, or at least not break down and run just because of a few tears. For heaven’s sake tears are a woman’s first line of defense.”
Mrs. Hayes chuckled, “More like a woman’s first response to a baker’s dozen of situations I can imagine.
“I think I’m OK now.” Said Mrs. White. “how do I look?”
Mrs. Hastings looked Mrs. White over from head to toe. “Lovely, dear, as always you look lovely.”
When the two women entered the kitchen, Special Agent Fleishman was thumbing through the file that Detective Batan had been carrying when they arrived. Mrs. White looked around with a questioning expression on her face.
“OH, I forgot to mention, Detective Batan was called away on police business.” Said Mrs. Hasting.
Mrs. White nodded her head and turned to Special Agent Fleishman. “I do feel a bit embarrassed by my little display of emotion.”
“No more than I for putting you through that. I think he rest of my enquiries will be much less emotionally charged.” Replied Special Agent Fleishman.
“OK; what else you need to know? Asked Mrs. White.
Special Agent Fleishman pulled a photograph out of the folder and asked “Do you remember this girl from high school?”
Mrs. White took the photograph from Special Agent Fleishman and held it turning it just a bit. “She seems familiar. Is this someone I went to school with?
Special Agent Fleishman nodded. “Detective Batan’s notes say she was homecoming queen when you were a freshman.”
“Well, then I would have seen her around but we were not in any classes together. I can’t recall meeting or talking with her. In those days freshmen and seniors did not socialize. It was worse for the boys, they were made to wear beanies and genuflect to guys wearing yellow corduroy pants.” Said Mrs. White.
“Genuflect? What is that? Asked Special Agent Fleishman.
“You know when a woman curtsies to a member of royalty.” Replied Mrs., White. “They were demeaning the Freshmen boys. I don’t know why the Seniors insisted on doing that sort of thing; but, they all did. Us girls just had to stay away from the Seniors’ Lunch Room.”
“Oh, I get it, a rite of passage.” Said Special Agent Fleishman.
Handing the photo back, Mrs. White asked “Who is she, anyway?”
“Beverly Houston. She was Judge Belemany’s adopted daughter, Beverly Belemany back then.” Replied Special Agent Fleishman. “Does the name Beverly Houston ring any bells.”
“No, I didn’t know her then and haven’t run into her since.” Replied Mrs. White.
“Well, it was a possible angle for why the late Judge would have unfairly incarcerated you if there had been some beef with his adopted daughter.” Said Special Agent Fleishman. “Let’s move on. Did you have any children?”
Mrs. White shook her head and said “No, David and I were going to start a family after we both got jobs after graduate school. . . .”
Mrs. Hasting quickly added, “And they both knew that Mandy would arrive when she was 24. That was the pattern. We all knew that from puberty.”
Special Agent Fleishman nodded to confirm he heard Mrs. Hastings. “What kind of work do you do?”
Mrs. White gave a snort, and said, “After prison I learned that a record makes one close to unemployable. So, I took some courses in repair and maintenance of audiology equipment and computer repair. I free-lance with audiologists. I can keep their electronic equipment and soundproof booths in better working condition than the manufacturers’ reps can. I have an incentive to fix things. The manufacturers’ reps have more of an incentive to sell new equipment than to fix old equipment.”
“I see,” said Special Agent Fleishman. “I suppose your undergraduate and graduate work prepared you for working in a technical field.”
“It is surprising that one both remembers a lot and one forgets a lot. Use it or lose it is not far off base. But, I got back enough to make the electronics and computer training fairly smooth sailing.” Said Mrs. White.
“I would like you to look at these and tell me what you can about them. Said Special Agent Fleishman handing her scanned copies of the Amanda White Patent from Judge Belemany’s files.
Mrs. White’s face lit up with a smile and pride. “Yes, this is the patent that my friend Amanda White, the unmarried one of us, got for finishing our work.” She went through the pages and stopped on a complex chemical formula. “This” she said as she pointed to a specific part of the formula, “is what made the use of the metal possible in reducing the heat and increasing speed. I had a hunch it was in one of the salts and there it is.”
Special Agent Fleishman nodded and said, “You must be proud of the role you played. But, turn to the first page.”
As Mrs. White flipped the pages back and laid the patent on the table with the first page showing, Special Agent Fleishman pointed to the name of the applicants. “notice this is in the names of Amanda White and Amanda White.”
Mrs. White looked confused. “But Amanda showed me the original and it only had her name on it. How is it possible that this one has both our names?”
Special Agent Fleishman handed her another copy of the patent. This one bore only one Amanda White on the applicants’ names. “This is a copy of the patent from the Patent Office.” He pointed to the one Mrs. White had first examined. “That came from the late Judges papers. Do you have any clues as to why he would have a copy of this patent with both of your names on it as applicants?” He paused, then added, “they both have the same date and same number from the Patent Office.”
Mrs. White did not pause. “What is more puzzling to me is why he would have this patent in any event, one or two Amanda White names on it.