Friday, September 13, 2013

John Henry - Part One

John Henry

Part One

            I traveled to Albany, New York this week.  On business.
            I scheduled two days; over and back, ‘on business’.
            I took five days total... ‘on business’.
            My business
            With the other business ‘scheduled’ within the ‘took five days’.
            A nice trip.  Left Maine traveling Route 25 to Route 4 to Hanover, NH, for lunch.  Then Woodstock, Vermont southward and wandering until day’s end near Manchester, Vermont.  The next morning a wandering into New York State via Arlington-Cambridge-Greenwich.  Then down to Albany.
            For lunch BEFORE the appointment ‘scheduled’ ‘on business’.
            I ate a roast beef club sandwich...with fries... at the Gateway Diner.  It was good mood food to buttress me for the ‘appointment scheduled on business’.
            What is my ‘appointment scheduled on business’?
            Please understand that I do not do appraisals; appraise antiques.  I do not do that.  For anyone.  I do have, by personal development, a supple variation of that industry that in traditional business ecosystems would make me called a ‘consultant’... I suppose.  It is that... in the end... to the end user... I suppose... but... it isn’t actually what I do; what I am paid to do.
            What that is; what I actually do a little known... old and narrow... alley in ‘antiques’ land... that I do not encounter others traveling in or... even knowing one may travel there... and get paid to do ‘that’.
            Refusal to ‘do appraisals’ created a frustrated contact group... primarily law firms with specialization in estate services... that “NEED” “SOMEONE” “who knows” that they “can depend on” “TO TELL THEM” “WHAT” an ‘in there’ ‘that’s good’.  So I created a way for them to hire me where I didn’t have to do appraisals and they received the precious cargo of information they ‘can depend on’.  I am their bird dog... flushing birds?
            I scamper to the estate of their direction... at THEIR (the law firm’s) direction.  I scamper through the estate at their direction.  I scamper back to their roost at their direction and ...speak concisely at their direction... to summarize ‘what I saw’... for them.  Usually a woman writes down a lot of what I say.  Then I am done and leave.  And send a bill.  Traveling through four states to scamper the to, through and back is unusual but not a ‘hasn’t happened’.  That ‘big trip’ prerogative is fabricated by the estate setting having multiple properties ‘with antiques’ that the law firm involved with the estate “find it cheaper to send YOU there and back than it would be to find and hire someone to do the same” “over there”.  I saved the receipt for my club sandwich
            “My, my.” arrival at ...two minutes before one... 1:00 PM being the appointed time of the my appointment... AT the ...Albany estate property... comes, in this case, AFTER I had already been to two other estate properties ‘in Maine’ ‘at THEIR direction’ (the ‘a law firm’).  The first property was the “Maine Home”; the ‘a mansion’ ‘on the coast’.  The second property was the “CAMP”... upon a well understood to be splendid interior Maine lake.  The camp was twice the size of my home... and “has been robbed twice”.  This ‘Albany House’...was the original family estate that was still the ‘main’ (as opposed to ‘Maine’) house of the estate... in the eyes of the heirs... although for the past forty years “our parents lived in Maine” “mostly”.  “Other members of the family lived (live?) at the Albany house”.

            My scamper to and through the Maine coastal mansion started my eye roaming.  I returned the law firm’s roost and reported that “there are a lot of antiques but no biggies”.  ‘Biggies’ are stand alone major value fine arts or decorative arts.  Or rare book collection.  Or all three. “BUT”:  “There is a lot there that WILL ADD UP for the estate is large and ...full (‘imbedded generational layers’)... with, principally, 'descended in' fine arts, decorative arts and... almost no printed matter at all except that relating to a.... very well to do WASP family who pushed all of the that family through all the right schools and ...kept every college course book read, college essay written, and... etc, forever, for everyone, in the family, forever ‘too’... with a few ‘Christmas gift’ books for (aging) Dad... on top of the table.  The library of the home, I could summarize, was solid between the words ‘Hebron’ (academy) and ‘Harvard College’, et al and of ‘no money’ value “from what I can see”.
            I am very adept at the ‘what I can see’.  And fast.  And do not miss much.  Especially this last because at the slightest signal of there being a ‘something’... I slow way down.  In this case... the skimpy and well dusted book... case... in the stuffy with door closed “library’ ...needed only my spine ends quick scan... before I left their ‘our library’.  That did include the perpetual nuisance of having ONE of the ‘people who were there’... upon observing my observing their ‘library’ book’s... spine ends ...announce to the room that they “DO HAVE” a “HEMINGWAY FIRST EDITION” I “NEED TO LOOK AT”.  I said, as I left the library room to ‘on to’ the NEXT room, that I “only need to look over the estate books for the law firm”.  This misty verbalization on my part of ‘what I am doing’ caused no response from anyone and ...I never heard about or saw the ‘Hemingway first’.

            Shortly, I was back outside driving away with my “bailed right in there mostly 20th Century rich people stuff with tig and tag 19th century ‘stuff’ ‘descended in’ (as opposed to ‘inherited’) the family and house WITH a few ‘paid a lot’ 20th century furnishing and decorative arts NEATLY arranged and dusted clean, clean, clean in lived in settings AND a few ‘by chance’ fine art things with a few oil paintings that are NOT WORTH sweating but again it is BAILED RIGHT IN THERE enough for a ‘three day on site auction’ that, again, WILL ADD UP”.
            A woman at the roost wrote all that down.
            I was told about the Albany property then.
            I went home and waited.
            I went to the “CAMP” ‘next’.

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