Tuesday, August 19, 2008
March 2, 1932
Read a disturbing article in the morning paper about Colonel Lindbergh, the world famous aviator, of Hopewell, New Jersey, who found his child missing last night with a ransom note. How frightening! I think this Depression is making people commit desperate crimes for money.
It has been over a week since I've received an assignment from Loockersmans, so I have taken the time to do some investigating of my own. Of course with Mid-term examinations coming, this is the worst time for that sort of thing, but I can't help myself.
I returned to St. John the Divine and met up with that strange little man, Irving Lincoln. He apologized for being so terse last month and told me that he understands my frustration. He took me down to his little office which was down a set of spiral stairs behind the choir of the cathedral. His office is stacked with old books and maps from what looks like various centuries past. There was one lone roll-top desk stuffed with papers at which he sat. It looked like it was custom made for his height. He explained to me that he is the archivist at St. John the Divine and has been for a countless number of years. His charge is to catalogue and organize the cathedral's vast number of books and documents.
I asked him why he thought the Lightkeepers were making a fuss over me. He explain that I have an unusual sense of perception, which will only grow stronger as I grow older and it will come in handy with the work they need to accomplish. I'm still not sure how I am any different from anyone else. He said that my knowledge and ability to master and understand languages is really my greatest asset to them. Jack also said the same thing. Why they have me as a messenger is still a mystery to me. I'm not observing anything or speaking any other language other than English.
I of course went on to ask him who the Lightkeepers were as an organization. He said that their story was long and involved but basically they were a group of Dutch settlers who banded together to keep the interest of the city and its residents as a priority. There are always seven seven members at one given time, he was very quick to point out that he was not one. Every member is in some way related to an original founding family of New Amsterdam. I explained to him that Dr. Loockersmans is directly from Utrecht and not from New York. He said that my thinking on the matter was narrow. Of course families came and went back from the Netherlands. The whole thing sounded like one of those old boy's club to me. He laughed and said it was in a way.
Many times he stopped to offer me a pipe. I continually turned him down telling him I didn't smoke. He said it was a shame. He said smoking a good pipe cleared the mind. Mr. Lincoln said I was to return to him twice a month (on the first and third Wednesday) with a notebook in hand. He was going to begin divulging useful information about my post. Before I left, he asked me how my Dutch was coming along. I said fine, I was practically able to understand most of the language conversationally. And could read most anything put in front of me. He laughed and said I would need that soon.
Robert and I are going out again for the third time tomorrow. He is taking me to the cinema to see 20,000 Years in Sing Sing with Spencer Tracy and Bette Davis. He told me that he enjoys my company more than anyone elses. I said I did his. I really cannot stop thinking about him. I'm not sure these thoughts couldn't have come at a worse time.