the house on east 14th street,chapter 4

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burdick
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the house on east 14th street,chapter 4

Post by burdick » Sun Dec 02, 2012 4:21 am

1. Chapter four




Eulalie got home before her mother every day which met that she opened an empty house with a key hidden in a secret place. Her mother (Laurita Casas) was not happy with this but could figure out an alternative, except for Eulalie to stay at school and walk home with her after she finished her work. They tried this for a while, but then when all sorts of problems started to arise, went to this unsatisfactory solution.
When Mom got home, Eulalie went in to the kitchen to talk with her while she made supper.
“I really like the fourth grade, but why don’t we read as many wonderful stories like Treasure Island or fairytales and talking animals anymore? I mean, we don’t read fiction stuff anymore. The stuff about geography is interesting….but why the change?”

“Believe it or not it is part of a change in the California system. They found out that colleges are demanding that students do much better than they have in the past with reading and understanding non-fiction material, so you will be reading and reporting on things in the newspaper and things like that. “Mom replied.
“Let’s see if I remember correctly there are four areas of writing they will focus on: Descriptive writing, Expository nonfiction writing, Narrative writing, and Persuasive writing,. Remember. The school motto on our webpage is ‘O'Melveny Elementary School is committed to educating students and preparing them for real life through rigorous and meaningful teaching and learning.
I think you might like to join the Orchestra this year. I don’t think that it includes a keyboard instrument, so you would have to learn a new instrument if you do. Or ……. Badminton, or Gymnastics are both offered as Extracurricular Activities and would get you out in the air more.”
“Sandra and the other kids are all in orchestra, so I want that, for sure! I hate to retrain my fingers for music, but if I have to, I think it might be fun to play the flute or violin. As to the other stuff, let me find out what Sandra is doing now.”
They were eating desert at the supper table when Papa said:
“The man in charge of the New York office has just announced his retirement and the general manager has asked me to consider the position. If I took it, it would mean a big raise in salary, and a position I think I would do well in. on the negative side, it would mean we would have to move to New York, and I think we are very happy here. Let’s think about it. There is no hurry yet.”
Eulalies’ heart sank. (Oh no! she was really getting to know the kids here. She didn’t want to move, especially to the dark cold east coast!)



>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>





Things happened quickly after Jacobs returned to New York. The gems went through U.S.customs with no problem, and were safely in a bank box. A new account in Aimone s’ name had been opened (waiting his person to open that is) and the money deposited in it. However, It was spring in Turin before Jacobs called and said he would like another meeting.
He came to the apartment alone, and they went to the sun lite room to talk.
“ we come to a time of decision” said Jacobs, “ the history of the diamond called ‘the ’ Florentine , also known as as the Tuscan, the Tuscany Diamond, the Grand Duke of Tuscany, the Austrian Diamond and the Austrian Yellow Diamond.is one of complexity. It was taken from an Indian king and was put in a setting by Lodewyk van Berken for Charles the Bold, Duke of Burgundy. He wore into the in the Battle of Morat on June 22, 1476 where he was killed. The next owner, Bartholomew May, a citizen of Bern, sold it to the Genoese, who sold it in turn to Ludovico Sforza. By way of the Fuggers it came into the Medici treasury at Florence. Pope Julius II is also named as one of its owners. It also is said that Ferdinando I de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany succeeded in buying it from the Castro-Noronha family for 35,000 Portuguese scudi crocati
In its present form it was cut by Pompeo Studentoli, a Venetian working in Florence. The finished gem was delivered on October 10, 1615. When the last of the Medicis died through the marriage of Francis III Stephan of Lorraine to Empress Maria Theresa of Austria and was placed in the Habsburg Crown Jewels in the Hofburg in Vienna. At the time, it was valued at $750,000.
The stone was stolen sometime after 1918 by a person close to the family. It has been suggested t hat the stone was among the Austrian Crown Jewels stolen by Hitler when Germany annexed Austria. Your relative may have been connected in some way with that action. There are reports of it being in south America, and then the United States .
If all (or any part of that) is true, why is it sitting in your bank box? Let me assure you, it IS the Florentine.
All of that is of little importance. I have attempted to find out who the claimants would be if it suddenly appeared. Believe me it would be nightmare. So…as much as I hate to suggest it the best way for it to see the light of day again is recut into smaller stones, the largest being about 80 carats . Would you agree to this course of action?
Aimone sat quietly for some time, and then said:
Yes. How would you do such a thing?”
“It could not be transported by air, or at least I think it would be unwise” replied Jacobs “ I fear it would come to light through the security checks. No, you should carry it to be cut by a man I can trust in Amsterdam, and you should travel by train. You would travel from Turin to Paris nonstop, and after changing trains on to Amsterdam.
When you reach Amsterdam you will go to meet this man”, (he handed Aimone a 3X5 card with the name, address, and telephone number of a person). Pass this card over to him, but you are not to tell him anything until he says these numbers ‘848361” after that you will pass him the stone and leave. When the stone is recut, I will come to Amsterdam and take the larger pieces through customs. At a later date I will return and take the rest of the lot.
You should then leave Amsterdam and fly to New York . Contact me, I have rented an apartment where you will stay …at least until the stones have cleared, which may take some time.
Is this agreeable?”
“yes”
Jacobs stood “this requires great trust on your part, but very little real risk”
Jacobs shook hands and left Aimone a somewhat relived man. Aimone called the train station and booked first class passage to Amsterdam. The train trip took six hours and since most of the journey was during the night, there was little chance to sight -see. He arrived at the gare du nord and was in time to catch the 6:25 train to Amsterdam and while he was on the train called Hientje Baumann( the man he was to meet). Baumann told him where he would meet him and since he would arrive at noon, at a restaurant near the train station.
The exchange of Aimones’ little box went off smoothly, and they enjoyed a pleasant lunch.


>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

It was the week before Easter and Karagoz made one of his infrequent trips to a service at the first Presbyterian Church on west 12th street. He was surprised to see Sun-ja Park in the congregation and sat down beside her. The church had a long history of liberal ideas, and the sermon carried on in that tradition (Harry Emerson Fosdick would have approved). The congregation was a very mixed group from all walks of life. As Karagoz walked back to the apartment with her she explained that about a third of the Korean population is Christian, and of that group one third is Presbyterian. Like Americans, Sun-ja thought, Koreans were really not too interested in religion.
The evening meal was nothing special, but all of them were happy enough for the company, and they knew that Nigar had come to a decision about the house.
“all right , we are not all in agreement with all of this, but here’s what I suggest as the finial plan. The fourth floor apartment has been rented out to a Mr. Aimone Makonnen.. He is elderly and may find the climb up to be a bit of a problem. We want to rent the upper floor as well, which means an even more tiring climb for whoever moves in there. It will take a major reconstruction to address the problems. The fire escape would need to be moved to the front of the house. Construction of a small elevator on the back of the house would require:
1. Replacing the window in the kitchens with a door.
2. building a small passage/nook off the kitchen, to be used as a breakfast nook,and passage to a small elevator. This means we would lose a little garden space.
I am fairly sure that this construction would be approved by the village authorities, but of course, it will have to be submitted. It would be expensive, but would pay for itself through being more rentable for higher rents. we sitting here now would not be subject to that rent increase. Funds are available for this.
All in favor say yea.
(3 yeas)
Any nays?
Silence
We move ahead.”

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>


Aimone felt like a great weight had been lifted from him. It was wonderful to have purchased his ticket to New York, even though he somewhat regretted following an old habit of thrift and purchased coach (cabin?) class tickets. The KLM flight left at 6;50 and would arrive at New York at 1:30PM….which sounded easy but the flight really took 13 hours, making a very long day.
The seating was not comfortable. The airline had pushed the travelers together tightly, much more than he remembered in the old days. The first class seats , on the other hand had even more luxury than before. The distance between the haves and the have-nots was becoming more apparent, and he battled in his heart between the ideal of equality and the
reality of comfort.
Jacobs had arranged for him to rent an apartment in Greenwich Village from a Ms.Nigar Miller, so he planned to take a taxi from JFK to the house and collapse. Jacobs estimated that it would be at least six months until the stones were cut and ready to put on auction. He had done the paper work for Aimone to get a green card so he had plenty of time to wait for the process to work itself though.
He had written Jayden Birru in Addis giving him his new address in New York, and he knew Jayden would be a stable force for his old home.
Arriving at last he stood in long lines at immigration and customs. Everyone would rush to at the head of a line, only to find themselves rushing to get in another line, until at last they all stood together at the baggage claim area where many look alike bags danced by. Then to the taxi stand where a Middle Eastern man drove him with considerable speed and skill to the house on east 14th street. He pushed the button labeled “ Nigar Miller”.
She was a very pretty woman with green eyes.
“ah Mr. Makonnen, I know you must want to rest from your long journey. Please follow me and I will show you your apartment.” She walked up the stairs and opened the door to the fourth floor apartment, and handed him the key. She walked through the apartment which was clean and quite nice. There was food in the cooler and the bed was turned down, the sheets fresh and white.
“today or tomorrow come down to my apartment and we can smooth out the details for the apartment, but now, please make yourself comfortable in your new home. Mr Jacobs has left word that he will be ready to discuss some matters with you when you are ready. The occupants of the house have a tradition of having Sunday supper meal together in my apartment at 7pm. We would be happy for you to join us.
Again, welcome”
Aimone explored the apartment, took a shower, and went downstairs to 14th street. It was a beautiful early spring day and the world seemed to becoming alive. The pigeons busy at work on the sidewalks, picking up things they judged to be eatable, and courting. After a while he returned to the house and met with Ms. Miller who said:
“if you like, miss Park is willing to fix you lunch or dinner for $4 a meal. She would cook this in her kitchen and bring it down to your apartment for you. She would just fix double the amount of what she would fix for herself, but she would be happy to vary the meals for your taste. She is a good cook.”
Aimone replied, “let’s try that a couple of days of that and see how it works out. I am used of a cook preparing my meals thanks , I had better rest now. I will join you for the Sunday supper, “


>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

After supper Eulalie walked over to Sandra s’ house to play. Soon Nyasia ,Kennedi ,and Leticia joined them and the girls started to talk about misdeeds of some of the boys at school. There were periods of scorn, and of giggling that seemed almost out of context, but the group was close knit and had a sort of secret language.
Sandra played the violin in orchestra, and she got her violin out to show them.
“I think it’s real pretty. I love the way the wood is reddish and has these nice patterns in it. It’s very light, and you have to be careful not to hurt it. You hold it like this, and use the bow like this.” (she drew the bow across the strings to make a screechy sound ) “you go up the scale like this” (she carefully put her fingers on the top of the violin, pressed down certain strings, and drew her bow across the strings..then repeated this with different fingering for the scale. The result was an unpleasant series of sour or flat notes in an unpleasant squeaking complaint. )” I have to practice more, of course. What I don’t like is that the strings cut into my fingers.”
(I guess it’s the flute for me, thought Eulalie, I couldn’t stand those bad notes… I wonder if Mom could get them to include a piano in the orchestra, ……….and she said:)
“that’s nice Sandra, it is beautiful. I’ll talk with Mom about it,”
Kennedi tried the violin and made similar sounds on it. Later on Eulalie asked :”does anyone play badminton ? “
Two of the girls did and urged her to join up, which she said she would do (“.maybe”, she thought).


While Eulalie was over at sandras’ house, Laurita, and Emerico Casas sat down in the front room.
“ok, Emerico, I could tell you didn’t want to talk things over with Eulalie around. What’s up? Problems?”
“only good ones, I think” said Emerico.
“They want me to take over the New York office. I can stay here if I wish, but the salary there is almost double what I get here. The manager there has given a year’s notice. They want me to go out to New York for a month (at the company’s expense) and assess the position. I am sure they will be assessing me at the same time, but that’s fine with me.
It could work well for us, even over the increase in salary. We have only 3 more years of mortgage, the house will be paid off, and the market for our house would (I hope) go back up. We could sell here and buy a house there with our money….and have some to put into Eulalies’ education fund. “
“When do they want you to go out there?”, asked Laurita?
“may 1, what do you think?
“go for it” . Laurita smiled and said.
Last edited by burdick on Tue Dec 04, 2012 5:39 am, edited 1 time in total.

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heinzs
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Re: the house on east 14th street,chapter 4

Post by heinzs » Sun Dec 02, 2012 11:35 am

It's like reading the installment novels created during the 19th century... most people don't realize that Charles Dickens wrote his works one chapter at a time for a weekly publication, and was paid by the word...

Keep it up. At some point I'll collate these for you in the "indexed writings" subforum.

Cheers!


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burdick
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Re: the house on east 14th street,chapter 4

Post by burdick » Sun Dec 02, 2012 1:31 pm

at last! a person!
thanks friend henizs. both my son and my grandson, who got me into thiis have pooped out....while i go on and on and on..........
forgive my errors. i will write until i am done and then go back over it.
a lot of fun doing the research and weaving it into my life experience.

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heinzs
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Re: the house on east 14th street,chapter 4

Post by heinzs » Sun Dec 02, 2012 6:42 pm

Hang in there!

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