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17.07.2019 Feature Article

The Underground Man - Part 30

The Underground Man - Part 30

“And that is exactly what I did. I opened classes, started my training to become a Minister in the Anglican Church… .”

“A Jew a Minister!”
“Exactly…a long way…a bumpy ride”, laughed Fred like a child with sharp blue eyes. His round face was marked with sprinkles all over; it gave him an extraordinary composition of children´s innocence and matured mind of a great thinker; simple and at the same time most attractive. “I had made my mind up never to give up.”

“So, please share with me…empty handed and all of a sudden the owner of this place”, did Lord Astor ask while touching the front wall of the little Cottage facing The Abbey assigned to be Fred`s private residence once renovation had been completed.

“One of the people in my classes was a woman with a very, very big heart. She had been married to an Estate Developer. The man had passed on and left her a fortune behind. The lady was a humble person…very simple character…and ready to give me the needed funds to buy this place here.”

“Your inner magnet attracted you to her”, praised Lord David Astor while standing before the grave of Eric Arthur Blair he once had helped to find his final resting place on the church yard at The Green. He loved to do his business by walking around. It helped him to think better. “George Orwell would have never had any peaceful moment if he would have been buried at a popular spot instead of our small Parish garden. He was a phantastic author and great personality; I happened to be a friend to.”

Lord Astor touched the stone seeing the green color on it had increased since last year. The author of Animal Farm and 1984 had wanted a place out of sight of his flowers and Lord David Astor had convinced the local Vicar to make it happen.

“So…the lesson to learn is…if you really want something, have patience to wait and work hard on it…anything is possible!” said Fred with confidence while seeing his guest off.

Anna bumped into Fred as he entered the courtyard underneath the one room apartment rented out to an Italian couple, she finishing her thesis on Leibnitz, he working for JET in Culham.

She pushed her bike and said: “Sorry…luckily missed you!”

Both enjoyed each other´s company, she because of his enormous wisdom, and he liked to use her to practice his rusty German. Anna mentioned to him, she would be going over to Braziers Park near Wallingford, not far from the singer George Michael´s house, to meet up with Glen and Margarete faithful. Fred laughed very relaxed asking her to give both his best greetings.

Before letting her ride off he mentioned: “Tomorrow we must organize the Camp for The Gandhi Foundation.”

Anna waved good-bye and off she went. It was only a short ride of half an hour to reach the impressive estate with vast land. The place once was the home of young Ian Fleming before he became the famous James Bond author. Glen had bought the house for his own foundation be the father of singer Marianne Faithful once close girl-friend of Mick Jagger. Behind the estate laid the King Williams Pub, an old pub in service to the local community for hundreds of years. Black thick old beans stretching all across the pub which cozy center was the old fire place still in use when the cold wind would blow through the paper thin windows.

“So, Fred is doing fine?” asked Glen Faithful while Anna looked at the ceiling of the library to spot the marks where Ian Flemming swing would have been fixed. In full swing little Ian would throw his much hated porridge over the book selves very much to his own delight and relief.

“Oh yes, Fred is fine…very busy as usual!” answered Anna laughing. It was a friendly place to visit occasionally, a place to have peace from all voices in her head. Walking down the stairs she came across a photo of the White Horse Valley near the area, took a few seconds to look at it before answering Glen´s question: “most certainly…I would very much love a good cup of tea…and few scones…if you do not mind.”

Glen Faithful turned around knowing she was always good for an English treat: “Most certainly…my little Princess.” The old man with white hair, long thin fingers and cancer growing in his lounges served her tea with milk personally after Margarete had placed the silver tray on the piano of the music room, the first room to the left after entering the house. “Whether we in England leave Europe or not to will capsize us all on our island…our snobbishness will not change anything. Whether in Europe countries open or close borders does not matter, the problem is coming and will not be solved in that manner anyway”, lectured Glen while Margarete offered him home made strawberry biscuits glazed with thick layer of dark chocolate, a truly crunchy experience. “In Africa they make babies after babies no matter what we say or believe. Africa´s overpopulation will eventually lead us to the fact again, the Black Man will dominate the world and the White Man, as it has been in our beginning as Homo Sapiens, will be dominated by the Black Man..and no AID or donor funding will change that but is opium for the African leaders to mess their countries up very well.”

“You really want to say“, needed Anna clarification, “ Africa, our world´s trouble maker number one with corruption, mismanagement and poverty praised with ignorance, can ever take over?”

“Most certainly”, was Glen Faithful very clear in his mind, walked over to the big window pointing to the main gate, “as the sheer size of the numbers of future Africans will all crash our white societies against the wall. It is only a matter of time that the power circle will close again with the Blacks…no doubt in my mind about that. Therefore it does not mater too much what we do here, as long as over there in Africa the management of countries is totally in wrong hands.”

“You mean….Colonialism…again?”

Glen Faithful turned to Anna taking his seat again. “Neo-Colonialism and all these stupid ideas will never happen…forget about people that say so. Such people have no knowledge, no sense for history at all!” claimed Glen to know the future. “History seems to be complex on the outside…but when you see down to its core from an eagle eye perspective over thousands of years, than it becomes obvious that the world is all about the balance in circles of Black and White!”

Anna remembered the conversation she had with Joe back in Hamburg. Therefore it was not the first time to be confronted with this issue. She needed to know more and asked: “What is the solution then?”

Glen took another cup of tea and biscuits. He looked over his left shoulder pout of the window and rested his eyes on the narrowly constructed water play that needed serious attention. Dried flowers around made it look more appalling than the fact, no water was running anymore down the three cascades, an attraction the time it was build. Behind the great chestnut tree two green houses were standing their glasses long time gone. The little cottage nearby had been renovated years ago to accommodate paying guests helping to run the place financially.

Glen turned back to Anna and mentioned: “Our world is in a long transition period…very long indeed. We live from problem to problem, see so many parties and organizations for what not to like mushrooms creeping up from anywhere. We tend to live anyhow just in order to complete our lives from cradle to grave, everyone in his own very small corner. The big values once keeping us all on board and fight for a big future, all that has gone. Today everyone lives as it pleases him. William Shakespeare once wrote a play to this effect.”

Anna was confused and needed clarification once more: „Is this the answer?”

“What we need is a new way of life, a complete overhaul of our attitude how to life and find answers to address the new power shift we tend to ignore…but ostrich mentality to never the right answer.”

It was late afternoon, the right time for Anna to ride home. In Wallingford she wanted to rush into Lamp Arcade for the latest arrival of English Antiques, her favorite furniture’s. Chesterfield sofas and chairs were what she wanted the most to study in all its shapes and sizes to get them one day, one day. She studied them carefully the same way she studied Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud II to call her own over time eventually. She was prepared to wait for possibly decades before her dream would come true. She wanted to be prepared for the day to come when the unexpected knowing on her door would be in her ears to know how to handle the blessings in her life.

While Anna was resting in her room digesting the well cooked meal from Lucille Champagne, her phone rang. Monika Willers told her about her relationship with Walter, how much he was drinking but stayed peaceful. His own children were not able to make him stop taking to too much alcohol. All her joy was Puschel, a small grey cat with great love for her but nasty to any other person. The small garden behind her ground floor apartment was coming on well, lots of roses would progress well.

“Your sister Irena”, informed Monika Willers, “has now decided to study.”

Anna was astonished. She did not understand her mother well and asked: “But…but Irena has only a bad low school education and no A-level certificate.”

“That is true”, responded Monika Willers.

“How on earth is it possible that without such a qualification like mine these days someone can attend University?”

“Yes, it is true. But I do not know much about it. Times changes! All I know is she told me personally that definitely she wants to study now!”

Anna was hearing a great relief through the telephone that finally she would see that her oldest daughter had come to her senses, better later than never, to match their both siblings. There were clear hope in her words.

Anna commented: “In that case I wish her all the best and hope she will get along with her Professors well.”

For years the two sisters had not communicated with each other. What they knew about each other was only by her mother´s stories. Anna had no intention to change her attitude towards Irena seeing any contact as a waste of time.

Fred reminded The Abbey members of the discussion later the day in the Great Hall about financial inequality and the need to increase taxes for the rich. Before attending Anna needed to pick some herbs and spices from the Pharmacy Garden. A man opened the small wooden door leading to the Provision Shop of the village, an old institution handed down from generation to generation. The beams of the facade were painted in black, the windows in red making the simple shop look most elegant. The man entered the property assuming not to be seen. Once discovered by Anna kneeling over the herbs, he turned around and left in a haste.

….to be continued

Karl-Heinz Heerde
Karl-Heinz Heerde, © 2019

This author has authored 323 publications on Modern Ghana. Author column: KarlHeinzHeerde

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