New Arrivals


* Dinah and Flynn


* New Rabbi

Summary: The Rabbi and his wife come to town

Date: June 16, 1883

New Arrivals

Train Station

Note: There are some Hebrew words in this log. I will put translations in [square brackets] after the words. If a concept is too complex for simple translation to be enlightening, I will put an asterisk (*) by the word, and either a brief explanation or a link to a website that will explain.

Train Station

You are standing in a small train station in Silver Creek, Colorado. There are several benches inside the station, for those waiting on a train. The floor is hard-wood, made from Ponderosa Pine. There is a chandelier hanging from the ceiling, made from gold and crystal. There is a ticket booth, with a cargo station out back.

Players: Flynn Dinah
Exits: [O] East Main St

The man before you is of an average height for the west. Distinct features; greying black hair, green eyes, and a rounded face, mark his as being of black Irish descent. A trace of a Boston accent can be heard when he speaks. His hair shows his age, black streaked with lines of grey. His face has seen time in the sun, his skin tanned with wrinkles around the eyes. He's a little pudgy around the wasit, as if he's slowly transitioning from a life of hard labor to a less streuous profession. He is wearing the uniform of a Colorado and Western Railroad employee. A pair of serviceable black boots, kept shiny. Dark blue cotton pants, belted at the waist, into which a white cotton collared shirt is tucked. Atop this is his blue waistcoat, which shows the chain of a good pocketwatch, and the pin that indicates his position, Stationmaster. Atop his head is a visored cap, with a silver C&WRR badge.

Dinah Maimun's pale olive skin bears a light tan, and her dark brown eyes offer a thoughtful but slightly impersonal gaze beneath the shade of strong, dark brows. Diminutive build notwithstanding, this young woman has an air of quiet, modest confidence. Dinah's smiles are not a wide flashing of teeth, but a very slight tilt of the corners of her lips, perhaps a little extra something in the eyes. She is observant but not overly watchful, and her body language suggests that she is a person who gives to others, and expects in return, a respect that is communicated through personal space, and precludes impromptu personal contact. Though Dinah's English bears the mark of careful education, her accent hints of foreign vowels and too-careful consonants.
Dinah wears a lady's suit appropriate for walking about town, a high-necked white blouse with crisp officer's collar beneath a trim jacket of grey. The skirt has not the fullness required by a hard manual laborer, nor the sleeknees in front and huge bustle in back demanded by the woman of leisure. Topping it all off is a trim scarf of a darker grey, tied in such a way as to conceal all of Dinah's hair. She is, in fact, dressed like a well-off woman from a large city Back East. Here on the frontier she may be a touch overdressed, but she's new. She'll learn.

There is a little smoke in the air from the train that has pulled into town. Wisps of steam wash back down the station platform, as passengers and freight are unloaded from the short consist. Soon, the steam engine will spin up her drivers, and head out to the next town on the line. But, for now, the Station has become the center of activity.
The Stationmaster is overseeing the bustle, making sure cargo is secured in the Freight House, and passengers are asisted on and off of the train. A variety of stuff is moved by these small trains, and the townsfolk have come to collect their goods.

Among a few others entering or leaving town by train are a pair of, shall one say, 'different' people. The man is tall, with curly black hair beneath an odd brimless hat, including a long, thick curl hanging from each sideburn to well below shoulder length. His skin is as dark as a native's, maybe darker, but his features differentiate him from them. The woman's features look more like his, too, marking her as a member of his race despite her fairer skin and the dark red hue of her eyebrows, visible beneath the scarf that protects her hair and throat from the coal dust. Both are dressed modestly but not stylishly in clothing that they probably think looks normal and average, and so it may be, in New York City where they caught that first train. The two speak to one another in some unintelligible language, but when asked if they need a porter's help, the woman answers in almost unaccented English that she would be very grateful. The man already reaches into his pocket for the expected tip.

The Stationmaster, a lanky older man with black hair and a tanned complexion from being out in the sun day in and day out, works his way down the platform, greeting people, reuniting people with their luggage, and directing them to places of interest in the town. People ass through the station on their way to the town, and the awaiting buggies and carts. He sends a pair of farmhands off to the horse-drawn car that will take them to their employer, before walking to the next people in line, who certanly stand out from the crowd.
"Excuse me," says the man. "Have you gotten your luggage? Do you need any assistance?" He speaks, naturally, to the black-haired City Gentleman, as a matter of habit.

Dinah discreetly steps out of the way, smiling but with eyes downcast as the foreign-looking man turns towards the stationmaster. Though people with finer clothing often stand tall and look down, this one does not, instead keeping an attitude of gracious self-negation, in much the manner of a 'kindly old man' in training, which may be fitting, as he does seem about ten or fifteen years senior to his female companion. "Thank you, sir," he says in a quietly resonant baritone, accented but perfectly understandable to most ears. "I believe that we have all of our belongings, oah yes. Will you so kindly tell me if there is livery stable nearby where one might hire a horse and cart?"

Flynn nods, and turns with a gesture to the main street. "While I have not had need of their services, as of yet, there are usually buggies on the other side of the station, ready to take people into town. Additionally, if you are looking for something of a longer term nature, the stables are right down the street, and I am assured that their prices are, in fact, reasonable.
He speaks with his own citified-accent, clearly a Bostonian before following his own journey west. "Refreshments are available at the Saloon, in town, and the Hotel should still have rooms for let."

The two newcomers offer a smile of brief gratitude before consulting one another in their own language, then focus again on Flynn as the porter piles up four trunks on the platform near them. That is to say, the man focuses on Flynn; the woman is apparently appointed guardian of the belongings, and keeps much of her attention there. "We are appreciative of your very thorough information. If you are able to further assist, may we ask if there are any homes that stand empty, that a person might purchase?" This particular pair of city folk apparently are loath to try their hand at building a home for themselves, if it need not be done.

Flynn casts a look around, seeing that most of the work for the train is done. He waves to the Conductor of the train, who comes over. The Stationmaster signs off on some paperwork, and shakes the Conductor's hand. The conductor steps onto one of the passenger cars, and gives a mighty shout of "'ABOOOOOOAAAARD!" The bell of the great steam engine begins to ring, indicating that the train is about to leave.
Flynn looks back at the pair, and shakes his head. "I am afraid not. I just got into town, myself, and I am still renting a room at the Hotel, paid for by my employers."

The man tips his head and mulls it over, one hand thoughtfully stroking his curly beard. "It is very fine, this idea. I thank you deeply and will follow your generous advice. Ishati, shall we make for this hotel?" Meanwhile, the woman has been counting up the boxes and trunks. She consults a list from a hidden pocket in her traveling cloak, nods once, and then sets a coin down on the top of the box rather than handing it directly to the porter. Once spoken to, the woman turns to look up at — with such veiled, yet obvious, warmth in her eyes, this man can only be her husband, older or not — and nods agreement. "Yes, please. And…" Again she speaks in their language, more quietly, and the man asks, "Is there perhaps a river near to this hotel? My bride would like to wash her travel clothes."

Flynn looks oddly at the couple for a moment. "Well, Sir, I use the Hotel's washing service…but, that river you travelled over, when on the train, meanders close to the edge of town. A little muddy at times, but close enough to travel to, safely." It is clear that the man doesn't understand why she'd want to wash clothes in the river, when there are perfectly fine washtubs for sale in the General Store, and a well and cistern available. But working for the Railroad has brought a lot of different people past him, and he knows to keep such thoughts to himself, especially when he's in Uniform.

Dinah and her husband both express gratitude again, verbally and facially. The man heads for the livery stable and the hotel to make arrangements, after a foreign explanation to his wife. By now, almost everyone else has already gone. Some have departed on the train, while others have walked away or been met by family members or hired lifts who take them wherever they mean to go. The foreign woman remains behind with her baggage, however, looking out over what people and buildings are visible from the train platform. Her gaze is alert and interested, despite the tiredness she must feel after many days' travel.

The great steam engine chuffs to life, the large wheels spinning before finding purchase on the rails. With a short double-blast of her whistle, the Engineer opens up the throttle, and Train #447 departs town, slowing gaining speed, before disappearing around a bend.
The Stationmaster checks his pocketwatch, and sees that the train left only a couple of minutes late. He looks at the woman, apparently guarding the chests and luggage, and gives a tight smile, before stepping over to the telegraph office's window, and giving the order to signal the time of departure down the lines.

Dinah's hand quickly flies to her head as the train's engine causes her to gain speed and put off wind, especially as the last of the cars pass. Her head scarf flutters but is not blown off, and soon the hand comes down again to rest atop one of the boxes. Flynn's terse smile finds a match in hers, slightly embarrassed but amused at her own needless worry. Keeping her belongings in sight, she too steps towards the telegraph office, awaiting her turn from several steps away. When her turn comes, she speaks to the telegraph operator, her voice quiet but not shy. "I would like, please, to send a telegraph." In response to the question put to her, she gives the name Ya'akov Maimun, then spells it, gives the address in New York City, and gives her message, frequently pausing to spell words. "Adon [Mister, Lord] Maimun. Have reached Silver Creek safely. Notifying Shushanim [plural of Shushan, husband's family name] next. Will write more when settled. Please continue prayers for…" she pauses, glancing up at the telegraph operator, then resumes delicately, "prayers for family growth. Give highest regards and kiss to mother. Ever your loving daughter, Deena — no, that's D, I, N, A, H," she corrects the spelling.

Flynn tips his hat to the woman, and checks his pocket watch again. Timing, it seems, is everything to a Railroad. He walks down the platform to the freight shed, and hefts a solid-looking leather bag. Carrying it by the very solid and oddly large handle, he attaches it to a wooden stand that sits next to the rails, the circular handle leaning out over the platform.
Satisfied with his work, he goes back to the main station, and uncorks a bottle, drinking heavily from it, and wiping the sweat and grime from his brow with a handkerchief from an inner pocket of his coat.

Dinah oversees another telegram, worded slightly differently, addressed to someone in Denver. When that is finished and the fee paid, she thanks the operator and walks back to the stack of boxes, chests, and trunks. A light sigh escapes her lips, one of satisfaction: she is safe, she has made contact with what many eastern city folk refer to as civilization, and her dark husband, visible now from the platform, walks with an air of success out of the town's hotel and heads for the livery stable. "Baruch Hashem [bless/thank God]," she breathes softly, and though the words may be familiar, the tone surely isn't. It's been heard on so many lips on this platform, uttered by so many tired, happy, lonely, fulfilled, fearful, and hopeful. The meaning can't help but be clear: I made it, I am safe, thank God.

Flynn walks away from the bag stand, hearing the soft wistle of an approaching train, coming in from the South, where the earlier train departed towards. "Ma'am, you'll want to hold onto your hat.", he says in passing. He leans back against the station wall, now in the shade, and takes another swig from the bottle, which appears to hold nothing more than water. A freight handler comes up to the Stationmaster, to inform him that the work is done. With a nod, Flynn dismisses the laborer for the day.

"Thank you," replies Dinah, hand flying back to her headscarf. Sure enough, the incoming train creates an impressive disturbance in the air along with its warning whistle, causing her scarf, dress, and travel cloak to flap like overly excitable flags. When the train has stopped, she remarks, "Goodness! but it does make itself known, doesn't it?" Then the platform again busies itself with folk coming and going for a little longer. By now, the woman's husband is again visible, this time driven by a hefty-looking pair of fellows with a hauling wagon. Apparently he was after a hired wagon rather than a bought wagon, for the nonce. As he spies his wife watching him, he lifts a hand to wave in dignified, yet boyish, triumph: his first business transaction in their new home. Dinah waves back, arm stretched over her head (the arm not holding her scarf, that is).

Flynn smiles at the newcomers settling into town. He quickly gets caught up in the operation of sending this train on it's way, the hustle and bustle of passnegers and freight. This train has an extra car, it seems, labelled "Railway Post Office". Someone inside the car removes what is now obviously a mailbag from the stand, and tosses it into the darkness of the RPO car, and closes the door.

Dinah tips her head as she watches the train partly empty and partly fill again, the mail go out, the train again build steam and resume movement. By the time it has gone, her husband and his two helpers have come to pick up the small boxes and bags from the top of the pile. Ilan's face glows with quiet pleasure as he tells his tiny wife, this time partly in English, about his adventure getting a hotel room and hiring a wagon to take their things there. "… … proprietor said that there is a bath house nearby, or they can bring a tub to the room for a small bakshish [fee, donation, charitable gift]. Then I went to the livery stable, and … … … … already here. No one … … How do you like that?" Apparently the news is all good. Dinah makes an offer to carry the smaller bags, some of which one hopes are hers (one has a painting of a rose on it), but her husband reminds her that she's valuable in watching their things. "Besides, there will be plenty of time for this new life to make your hands rough. Let them stay soft for another day, ahuvati, ken [my love, yes]?"

The train gains speed, and heads off over the rickety-looking trestle that spans the river. It leaves, typically, a cloud of soot that covers pretty much everything, a few cinders setting a small fire on the side of the rails, which is quickly extinguished by a pail of water left around, apparently for just that purpose. The Stationmaster finishes up his chores, once again completing his ritual of checking his pocketwatch, and notifying the telegraph operator to send another message.

Dinah favors her husband with another warm smile at his romantic words, then steps out of the way to let him and his big, burly hirees handle the heavy things. However, once they're out of sight, she turns around and spies the problem with the fire. Though others reach and handle the emergency before she can, apparently this woman is not a bystander, but more of a do-something person; she is already at a run for that side of the platform, and only stops once the bucket of water hits with a hiss of extinguished trouble. Once she sees that, Dinah turns around and walks with prim sedateness right back to where she was, as if she'd never moved from the spot.

Flynn, once the small fire has been put out, resumes his duties. Small fires, while the bane of a railroad, happen on a regular basis. He smiles at the women who got up to help, and nods at her husband. He is glad to see this last passenger finally load up and go, it means that he can take a break, and handle his duties inside. A Railroad runs on paperwork, timetables and switchlists, cargo manifests and accounting books.

Dinah watches the men handle her baggage as if she would have no idea what to do with it herself (and truth to tell, she may have a great idea of what to do with it, but she's tiny and almost certainly not strong enough to lift more than two or three of the smaller ones, anyway). When the last box is carted off by the two beefy fellows, followed by her husband, she turns back to the stationmaster for a little nod of farewell, quite proper, before following them all towards the hired wagon. One more family for the town, one more eastern city family that will probably make a mess of their first year unless they have a steep learning curve almost immediately.


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