Dear Ted and Jody:
Your CARE package arrived. Thank you for the used stamps. As you know I love them and appreciate your saving them for me.
It was one hell of a struggle this morning between the stay in bed side of me and the get your ass up and out to see if there is a photo opportunity at dawn/sunrise side of me. The latter won.
As I said yesterday today I am attaching traditional images from our short visit to Seaside, Oregon. The first shot is at Astoria. A blue and white ship at anchor. This is actually a composite of several photographs. The second is also at Astoria. It is an abandoned fish processing shed. It is also a composite of several shots. Next is an untrimmedd panorama looking south from the main tourist traps street in Seaside. Then we have sunset both looking at it and its reflection in hotel/restaurant windows. Finally, a group of people around a fire initiating a girl into the mysteries of roasting marshmallows.
Warmest regards, Ed
031 Small Problems
Fiction in 1232 Words by T. Edward Westen, 2017
“That wasn’t a particularly good demonstration of the flight capabilities of our vehicles,” said a chagrined Stephen.
“I imagine many of your early wind lab tests must have had some issues as well, ” said Special Agent Fleishman. “But, seeing your design of the vehicle does raise the question in my mind of how will your space workers return to the surface? Especially since they will not have wings to slow their descent.”
“The wings would burn up in reentry in any event,” replied Deborah. “Our space workers will mine a chunk of the asteroid, use screws built into the front of the vehicle to secure it as a heat shield. Then once the vehicle is at a safe altitude several parachutes will deploy. However, that is only until we finish constructing the space elevator. ”
“Wherever did you get the idea for a space elevator?” Asked Special Agent Fleishman.
“One of our students studying in your universe specialized in reading science fiction. A space elevator is well known in that genre.”
[Flashback to the 2nd Decade in the 20th Century in Tucson] Antonio Persico, a tall, dark haired and vain you man stood in front of a mirror adjusting his tie. He watched the half naked woman on the bed. That she looked bored and not at all interested in him distressed him. “You need to dress better,” he said. He pulled his wallet out of his inside suit coat pocket opened it and withdrew all the bills in it and threw them toward the bed. “Get a skirt and blouse, a dress for God’s sake Norma Rae instead of those dammed men’s work jeans.” He turned and looked at her, shook his head and slammed the door as he stormed out of the room.
Norms Rae stood, retrieved her shirt and jeans from the floor where he had thrown them an hour before. She noticed two buttons were missing from her shirt. She got done on the floor half looking, half feeling in the carpet. She ran her fingers under the bed and felt something. She leaned down further and saw it was a suit case. ‘Wonder what he keeps in here?’ she asked herself. She pulled the suitcase out and found it to be a bit heavy. She lifted it on the bed and sprung the caches. When she lifted the lid she made a sharp intake of breath and said, “Oh my. There must be thousands of dollars here.” She knew Antonio was not coming back for hours so she got back down on the floor and spend 20 more minutes finding her buttons and picking up the money Antonio had thrown at her. It took her another five minutes to sew the buttons back on, get dressed and put the money Antonio had thrown on the floor in her jeans pocket. She went to the closet and picked out another outfit, folded it and tucked it under her arm. She then picked up the suit case and left the room.
‘I had better look I am supposed to be carrying this suit case,’ she thought on the short walk to the train station. She purchased a ticket to Seattle WA as it was the first train scheduled to leave. She only had a 30-minute wait. She boarded in Tucson and got off in Denver. From Denver, she caught an east bound train and disembarked in Lincoln Nebraska. In Lincoln, she caught a ride on a mail coach going back west. She finally stopped traveling in Rawlings Wyoming. Only when she was in her hotel did she open the suitcase a second time and count the money-$95,386. When she tallied up the amount for the second time she began to laugh. ‘This will piss Antonio off royally,’ she thought. “Serves the bastard right,” she said out loud.
[July 20, 1926, Ladoga, WY] Mrs. Calkins put her headset on, plugged it into the circuit to the Sheriff’s department and waited for an answer. After a second or two, “Deputy Fields, this is Aida Calkins over at the telephone switch board. I need the Sheriff to make a stop over here.” She listened to Deputy Fields for a few seconds and then said, “No, it is not an emergency. It is something that he needs to see and deal with; but, it will keep. It has so far. I think this will give him a clue as to why Norma Rae was murdered.” She listened again for a second and then said, “Yes the morning is fine. Thank you, Deputy.” She hung up and thought ‘Judging from the layer of dust on it, it has kept for a decade or more.’
[July 21, 1926, Ladoga, WY]
Mrs. Calkins answered the door at 7:00 A.M. “Good Morning Sheriff.”
“Good Morning Mrs. Calkins,” replied the Sheriff. “Deputy Fields left me a note to stop by and see something that you told him might shed some light on why Norma Rae was murdered.”
“It’s up stairs where I found it,” said Mrs, Calkins. “Right this way.” She led him up the stairs. “I have been cataloging Norma Rae’s belongings and packing them away with lists both on the outside and inside of the boxes. Yesterday evening I found a suitcase under her bed. I pulled it out, but you will see. I closed it and put it back it where it was, under the bed.” They had reached Norma Rae’s room. Mrs. Calkins bent over and pulled the suitcase from under the bed and then stepped aside.
Sheriff Gilberson bent over and opened the suit case, abruptly stood up and exclaimed, “I’ll be a son of a bitch.” Then he quickly put his hand over his mouth and said, “I do ask your forgiveness, for my language, Mrs. Calkins, I am so embarrassed by my behavior I . . . “
But Mrs, Calkins put her hand on his arm and interrupted him, “Sheriff those were close to the word I uttered when I opened it. All is forgiven. Think no more about it”
The Sheriff sputtered a bit, “I, I think, I think there is, I mean I may have been right in the rumor I got the paper to print about her estate after all. Who knew? How much is there?”
“I’ll count it if you want,” replied Mrs. Calkins. “As I said, I left it as I found it.”
“You used to work in a bank?” asked Sheriff Gilbertson.
Mrs. Calkins nodded.
“Then it would be a favor to me if you counted it,” said the Sheriff. The Sheriff closed the suitcase and carried it down to the kitchen. He set it on the table and Mrs. Calkins got a pad of paper and a pencil and set about counting. When she was finished she handed the Sheriff the pad with a number circled at the bottom, ‘$92,105.’
“I was off by only about $8,000,” said the Sheriff. “Now I know something will crawl out of the sewer.” The Sheriff handed Mrs, Calkins a luggage identification card that had been attached to the handle from the Santa Fe Rail Road in the name of “Norma Rae Persico.”
Mrs. Calkins said, “Well, I’ll be God damned. It is a small world indeed. One of her relatives is trying to kill me too.”