Barnington Withersom always followed the rules. Never would he take an unearned advantage. He was fair, honest to a fault. Hardly any would ever know his qualities. Barington worked a 46 acre spread just south of the Rockies. Nice enough but what can you farm in the desert? Barington knew and so did the specialists who came to work every summer. Barington let them be and collected the rent. The Withersoms owned the land since, well, since a long ago ancestor Kari-Strauss Withersomful hijacked a slave ship and ran it aground somewhere on the Texas coast. His origins are rather sketchy some say he was a prisoner from Portugal, convicted by the inquisition, after a couple of years of torture he wouldn’t confess and wouldn’t die, they sent him to Africa to work as a slave. He quietly escaped and found the double mast ship in harbor, loaded and waiting to set sail. Kari-Strauss Withersomful stowed away, once the ship was under way he overcame the guards in the hold and released the slaves. Within minutes he and the “passengers” had secured the ship without firing a shot or killing one person. The captain and officers became guests in the hold. They continued toward the west. No one wanted to go back. Life was hard and, if your neighbor was going to sell you into slavery or something like that, it might be time to leave. On with the story. Kari-Strauss along with the ship and crew struggled across the Atlantic. Finally reaching the islands, they knew better than to dock. They continued west around Florida and across the gulf. Every so often they’d make land and a few men would leave, sometimes others would join them. At one point, while in the middle of the gulf, they set out the captain and crew in the life boats. The tales of their exploits are legendary, they’ll have to wait for another day. They reached shore finally and assuming it was Mexico scuttled the ship in a deep cay. Over a hundred men swam to shore. Some walked away in groups, others alone. Kari-Strauss went alone. He walked and he didn’t stop until he was in what is now northern New Mexico, within site of the Rockies.
Far enough, absolutely nobody around, I mean nobody. He built a rock house, this ended up being the southernmost boundary of his property. He found a river about 10 miles north and after about two years moved his home to the river. Kari-Strauss did not see another soul for five years. He loved being alone though he may have gone a little loopy. The year is 1634. Kari-Strauss met his first original occupants of the land. They were impressed. They had not seen someone with fair skin before and thought it a bad omen. They didn’t care if he stayed but decided it would be better to keep their distance while keeping an eye on him. The men stayed a week and left. Still somewhat impressed. Who could live out here? After a couple of years the men returned with women and children. They stayed for an extra month and, when they left, one of the women stayed.
Another story has Kari-Strauss as a extremely rich and very eccentric resident of Hau-chen city somewhere in central China. He built a small fleet of ships to sail east. He had a vision of wide open sea leading to a beautiful shoreline. Kari had a mission, he knew there was more in the ocean and did not want to travel west to the barbarians. We’ll get into that later. Back to Barington.
Barington was very happy when the paleontologists arrived. They paid well to dig in the northeastern sector of his property. Turns out the property had the largest collection of tyrannosaurus bones in the western hemisphere. Barington found himself contemplating what the world must have looked like when those hugh beasts roamed. These insanely large reptiles lived for millions of years. He ran through the familiar thoughts again; How did they live? Did they develop cross species communication? How could a catastrophic event kill them all and not allow a recovery? Did they stay together as families or tribes? Herds? Barington loved this land. It was paid for and he sent half the rent payment to a local shelter, some 300 miles away.
Barington would have liked to have more friends but his manner of speaking drove people nuts. He talked with an unbelievably loud, scratchy voice. HOW YA DOIN? Is about all they could stand.