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Monday, October 7, 2013

Three Months with Charlie Chan Chapter 6

The Girls Settled Down once we arrived in China
courtesy google search

After three weeks at sea I was ready to get on dry land.

Once we arrived in China the girls straightened up and assumed the role of a proper Chinese young woman.  After walking a narrow line with them it was a relief for me.  

I scared them once during the trip by acting as if I was going to take advantage of them.  They all had come to my cabin and I locked the door.  

Then I started to make advances and pulling at their clothes saying I can’t stand it and must have them all.  They started jumping all around the room.  One of them managed to get the key and they ran out of my room.  

I thought that would stop their teasing but that afternoon they came beck and said, that was the most fun we have had; let’s do it again.

When Charlie found about it he couldn’t stop laughing and said he had to explain to the parents that it was all in fun.  I thought, “Yeah, it was almost too much fun there for a while.”

Once ashore we immediately boarded a train and headed for our destination. We were on the old and uncomfortable train for two days.

We then arrived at the family ancestral home which was nice except for the bath.  It was one large bath where everyone bathes at the same time.

The weather was chilly and they only heated the water in it once a day.  That was when I really felt accepted by the family as we all stripped down and got into the pool together.  There were several of people who lived there and they joined in the bathing pool with us.

I was a little surprised that even Charlie was a little shy, even more than me. While the older women were a bit of a turn off, several girls had gained my attention.

I was afraid I might be thrown out of the bathe for staring.  We visited for a few days and doing the Bathe thing was my favorite thing even with the older women laughing at me.  It was like they could read my mind.

Then after visiting for a reasonable time the men left to do the business we came for.

We arrived at a place where antiquities were sold.  Charlie read the sign above the door and the name was something Chan.  Charlie couldn’t make out what the first word was.  He said you better wait inside but the rest of us will be taken into a private room for our discussions.

Charlie later related to me what had transpired in the room and as best as I can remember it went something like this.  At first there was a arguing about linage and after some disagreement it was agreed that Charlie was entitled to any and all artifacts that belonged to the Chan family line and they should be turned over to him for the future maintenance of them.

Charlie said the only things his father wanted was the vases and the remainder of the artifacts should remain where they were.  The owner of the artifacts store left and returned a few minutes later with two vases and gave them to Charlie.  He said take these with you as symbols of the real ones.

Charlie asked, “What was this all about?”  The man responded by saying the real vases didn’t exist any longer.  They had kept the truth quiet for they could sell the forgeries for a large amount of money as long as they thought the real one still existed.

Should the news that the real ones were destroyed then no big money collector would pay a big price for the forgeries.  They could show them off and impress people by saying these vases go back over two thousand years.

Charlie said, “I heard what happened to the first vase, but what happened to the second?”  

He was told it was during the Japanese occupation.  Some soldiers came into the shop and searched for gold and jewelry.  Finding no gold they discovered the vase and they smashed it and then stomped it into fine pieces and now neither exist.  

These replicas are all we have.  I have a back room full of them.   

To be Continued

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