Sheriff Porter 63
I wasn’t surprised that several things happened over the next few days. None of them were especially exciting or loathsome. They were really just interesting.
The weekend passed with nothing much happening, except I got to ride my trike and wear my bikini. I did not wear the bikini while riding the trike though. Drivers got distracted enough by me on the trike. I surely didn’t need them running over me while gawking at my skinny ass.
On Monday morning before Wilson got his sorry ass out of bed, a package came Fed-Ex I have never heard of the Savoy restaurant in Martinsville VA. So I had no idea why they would be sending me a package. It was heavy for it’s size, and it rattled so it didn’t seem like a bomb. Nonetheless I planned to use great care in opening it. Whenever Wilson got a new toy, he showed it to me with great enthusiasm. Such was the case with the video camera on the end of a wire which we acquired a few weeks previously.
It would be a chance for him to use it on the box, so I woke him. He came to life reasonably quickly. He was in just a white tee shirt and shorts, when he came to sit on the deck, which ran around the top of the barge houseboat.
“Take a look, do you think it is worth using your video camera on a string?” I asked.
“Most likely not, but you have to use them, if you buy them. I’ll take it to the office,” he said.
“No you won’t. You will get me the camera and explain how to use it, then you will go to breakfast till I am finished with it,” I demanded.
“You have no patience Sylvia, but as you wish,” I followed him to the office where he laid out all the crap I would need. He also told me where I should enter the box just in case it was a bomb of some kind. “You want to cut a hole with this box opener about the size of a dime. Then you carefully insert the camera. If there is anything in there you don’t recognize or a it’s a bunch of wires, we call the cops,” Wilson said.
“If it goes bang, you call my friends first, then the cops. You also do whatever they tell you to do,” I informed him. Then I motioned for him to leave. I gave him time to get to one of the containers on the Barge, then I cut the hole. I couldn’t manipulate the contents of the box but I got a good look. The box was filled with money. At least what I could see of it. The Miami man had sent cash and why wouldn’t he. All his money needed cleaning and he knew I understood it. I packed the little camera back up and cut the tape on the box.
Once I walked out the door carrying the box with the top open Wilson came out to meet me. “What was it?” he asked.
I didn’t answer till I got close. “Cash,” I said quietly. I know you are probably still in cop mode, so you don’t have to take any,” I said.
“How much is there?” Wilson asked.
“It looks like about ten grand,” I said. “Which would make your cut about three thousand, after expenses. I would have to get the bookkeeper’s notes but I will gladly advance you three grand right now,” I said.
“Gee I haven’t been paid in over a week, and that was only thirty odd k. How will I ever live on that till we can do a full accounting?” he asked. “I have such a large nut to crack these days.
“Well this is a little different. It is dirty cash, so would you take four and I’ll run the expenses against the next job. And be careful how you spend it,” I warned him.
After the money arrived, I decided it was time for a vacation of sorts. First thing I did was talk to Wilson. “Wilson I’m going to go on vacation,” I said.
“Where you going?” he asked.
“I think I have decided to fly airplanes. I’m going to find a flight school. I’m sure I can get into one with no flying experience. Well I have flown commercial as a passenger a few times,” I said. Best I can figure, if I go to the school all day everyday it will take me about two weeks to get a license for a small plane. I am going to call a guy I know who does fly just to see if I can get the name of a good flight school. One that will give me a crash course.” I saw his curious look so I added, “I have been thinking about this for a while.”
“Are you sure about this? Flying around in a small plane can be dangerous,” Wilson informed me.
“Sitting around on the deck out there can be dangerous. When you number come up, and the man call it out, it ain’t gonna be for a whopper and fries,” I explained.
“I have no fucking idea what that means, but I could use the two weeks off,” he said.
“I can walk away from the school half finished and come back to finish it later I’m sure. If anything interesting comes up, you have my cell number,” I informed him. He just nodded so I called the Swamp.
“Hey this is Sylvia. I need to talk to your pilot,” I said.
“Sylvia honey I’m going to have to give you his number. He doesn’t work for us, he is a contractor,” the receptionist said.
I made two more calls before I got him. “Damn Issac, you are hard as hell to find,” I said.
“I am unless you want to hire a pilot, then I’m easy, if the price is right,” he said with a laugh.
“Well Issac, I just need advice, today,” I said.
“Oh Miss PI, what is it you want to know?” he asked.
“So you heard,” I said.
“I flew you to Washington remember?” He said.
“I can’t remember saying I was a PI,” I replied.
“Okay, maybe I heard it around the Swamp,” Issac suggested. “Anyway what can I do for you?”
“I want to get a private pilot’s license. I don’t want to fly anything bigger than a small plane,” I said.
“Hell the kind of money I hear you got, you could buy a new Lear Jet,” he replied.
“I don’t want a Lear Jet. So where does a girl go to get the required course to get a private pilot license?” I asked.
“You still down east?” he asked.
“Yeah, but I can go live in a motel. One is as good as another,” I suggested.
“Oh hell you can do that anywhere. Your best bet is Hanford Air Service. They got a qualified FAA program there. They can give you the book learning on an interactive computer program. Hell you can buy the written course and take it before you show up for the practical part. That is gonna take you about two weeks. Then you take the certification test flight with an FAA dude and you get your ticket.”
“Sounds good, can I say you recommended me?” I asked.
“It won’t help. It might even hurt you,” he said and laughed.
“Well thanks anyway,” I said.
Hanford Air Services had a space in the Hanford airport about two hundred miles north and one hundred miles inland. I called them and spoke to their Chief Flight Instructor Madison Bronson.
“You any kin to Charles Bronson?” I asked.
“Probably my dad says we are all related, if you go far enough back. So what can I do for you Ms. Porter?” she asked.
“Frankly, like most of your students, I want to learn to fly and get a private pilots license. I don’t want to fly anything bigger than a stretch limousine,” I explained.
“Well there are two really easy plans. One is you buy the interactive course from us on a DVD. When you get through with it, you should be ready to pass the written text then you attend flight school for two weeks all day or part time. The course requires forty hours behind the wheel so to speak. That part runs about a hundred and fifty bucks an hour. If you take our instructional DVD before you get here, you can go right into the ground school. You can fly four hours a day, for ten straight days but most people need a break,” Madison said.
“I run a business and now is our slow time, but I can’t promise I won’t have to start and stop some. Is that going to be a problem?” I asked. “I hope it won’t happen, but sometimes it’s with no notice at all.”
“Well you pay for the hours you use, and we will schedule it however it happens to work out for you,” Bronson promised.
“How long will the computer study course last?” I asked.
“It’s work at your own speed but the fastest, I have seen it done was one week. It goes from there to never completed,” Madison said.
“Okay send me one. Can I download it?” I asked.
“Sure just give me your credit card info,” Madison said.
“I never asked what the cost of the home study course was,” I said.
“Seven hundred bucks and when you finish it, you come here and take the test. When you pass it, we can schedule your flight hours,” Bronson suggested.
“Fair enough, here is my numbers,” I said delivering the bank draw account debit card number. I downloaded the interactive course and began working it right away. It was Monday at 3 PM when it had downloaded to a burner laptop. I wasn’t sure why I chose to do it on the laptop from the cargo auction, but I had it there on two of the flash drives also from the auction. The course wasn’t as easy as I expected. My memory wasn’t as good as it had been in high school.
But five days later I was ready to schedule the test at Hanford Airport’s hanger which was owned by the Flying Service.
“Well damn that was fast Sylvia,” Madison stated. I’m impressed. By the way I did a background check on you. Had to make sure you weren’t a known terrorist or anything. I have to tell you I was very impressed with you.”
“Bronson right now I admire you. So when can I take the test and get started?” I asked.
“We can test you Monday morning and start your flight training in the afternoon. Assuming you get past the written test,” she said.
“I’ll spend the weekend reviewing,” I said. Nothing happened over the weekend so I had plenty of time. Well that isn’t exactly true. I didn’t have any business obligation pop up, but I did have the young woman, who operated the piano bar call Saturday afternoon.
“Silvia this is Chrissy from the piano bar,” she said. “Do you remember me.”
“Yes I remember you. So what do you have on your mind?” I asked.
“I have you on my mind,” she informed me with a girlish giggle.
“And exactly what do you have in mind for me,” I asked being a little bit coy.
“I was hoping you might be free tonight. If you are, you could come meet Brian, one of the boys I know from my high school days. Don’t worry he is over 18. We both graduated last year. He is a really sweet boy and he is well endowed,” she said.
What do you call well endowed?” I asked.
“I would call nine inches and as big around as small coke bottle, pretty well hung,” she said.
“If I like him then what?” I asked.
“If you like him we rent a room, but not from mom. We have a place we go when we want to get away from the B&B. It’s over in the Watch Tower area,” she said.
Edited by Walt