“In the middle of a difficulty, lies opportunity…” Albert Einstein
Personal friends and those who know me from LinkedIn have expressed kind concern over whether or not the “government shutdown” will effect my employment and the roof over my head. That job is my only source of income. So far it has not impacted my livelihood.
I count myself fortunate that regardless of how it impacts my job, I will not have to go to my workplace and do my job without being paid. That has happened to many, including groups who put their very lives on the line, like the Capitol Police.
I promise you that if the shutdown does affect me, I will do everything I possibly can to find opportunity in my situation.
Now to the point… episode 20 of the serial. Our little 1920’s story is set in Florida. Today’s things come from another peninsula state — Michigan. You can do catch-up reading where the entire story lives at The Three Things Serial page.
20. Medical Bill, Confirmation, Military
The man had an authoritative manner and was dressed in very expensive looking clothes. He had what they called presence. The white-haired woman murmured something that was lost in a sob. “Don’t worry about that either,” the man told her in a kind voice. “Besides, there won’t be any medical bill. There’s more than one doctor here today.”
A teenager with an alarmed expression on his face came running toward them. Clearly he’d heard all the ruckus. At first I thought he wore a military uniform, but then I realized he was some kind of servant, dressed in livery.
In a calm voice the man instructed, “Go fetch a doctor.”
“Yes, Mr. Ringling,” the young man said, and ran away.
Frankie and I exchanged astonished looks. Even though we had just seen a picture of this very yacht moored at the Ca’d’Zan mansion, I was amazed to think I was standing a few feet away from a celebrity like John Ringling!
The white-haired woman lifted her head and stood a little straighter. I could see her profile. The first thing I noticed was a bit of blood and a bruise at her temple. I was sure that bump to the head didn’t come by accident. Then my eyes just about popped out of my head. Her profile — it was the spitting image of Boris!
No wonder the “ballerina” had acted so funny back at the Nickelodeon Theatre, when he saw this woman and the group of Russian dignitaries. Even then I wondered if Boris was connected to that group, though he refused to discuss it. Right then and there I was sure I had confirmation. The white-haired woman had to be a relative; probably a close one. I wondered if she might be his grandmother.
However, this old woman looked like she was well off. Boris wouldn’t be living in the building with the rest of us if he was from money. The building owner had a soft spot for people trying to better themselves. Even though the building was supposed to be for office space, he let us live there if we at least went through the motions of having our own businesses. It wasn’t the nicest place to live, but he let us rent the suites for a song.
Despite her wealthy appearance, the woman appeared to have said something to indicate she didn’t have the money to pay a doctor. Maybe, I speculated, she had been wealthy but had fallen on hard times. There was plenty of that going around with the land bust. Or maybe Boris had a falling out with his family and they’d cut him off.
My speculation was cut short when the yacht’s owner, John Ringling, turned and looked at Frankie and me questioningly.