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Wednesday November 8th 2017Tim Candler9

 

     Carmelites have never been much on that sort of evangelism that goes round knocking on doors handing out pamphlets, but at the same time there's always a branding issue, you can't just wake up one day have a vision and call yourself a Carmelite or even a Barefoot Carmelite. Just doesn't work that way, never has. And soon enough news reached Carmelite Headquarters in far away Rome that there could be some kind of heretical activity that was using the good name and reputation of the Carmelite order without permission. And indeed in the wider perspective the Church of Rome had had a certain sensitivity around Carmelites ever since the Heretic Martin Luther had briefly found sanctuary amongst German Carmelites. Nor had this suspect reputation been in anyway ameliorated by Saint Teresa who had created a bit of a schism in the Carmelite order when she and John of the Cross went all mendicant and discalced on what had been an otherwise fairly relaxing life choice in the painful path to a comfortable retirement in the afterlife. It's also the case that your N scale enthusiast, like a good majority of N scale enthusiasts are devotees of the relativist calling and grains of salt should be liberally sprinkled on our interpretations. However, one thing you can put in the bank is the fact that soon after the first Steam Engine pulled a single passenger carriage to a gliding stop at Saint Barbara's Halt there was an umbrage in Carmelite Headquarters that resulted in a genuine, highly qualified, boy Carmelite of excellent reputation being sent to Saint Barbara. His name was Brother Ryan, he had the outfit and everything, and he was accompanied by a couple of youthful novitiates, Paul and Davis, to help with stuff like luggage.

 

Past

     Bronwyn the Seamstress had received several cease and desist letters via Georges Papadopoulos of the Pony Express, but she along with her sisters couldn't yet read, so the whole thing was rather sinister and Papadopoulos wasn't much help because apparently according to his terms of employment he wasn't permitted to read other people's letters or make any kind of comment about them. "Thou art a sweet boy Poppy," Bronwyn still had her Omani accent. "Canst thou place an origin upon the source of these missives?" Georges, who was a stickler, agreed there was nothing in his rule book forbidding that sort of thing and not only did he read the return address out loud he knew where Rome was and he did go on a bit in an incomprehensible way about boot heels and Elba, none of which made any sense to Bronwyn. Nor was Bronwyn the sort of Carmelite who just gave up, left things to the gods. She'd heard that Saeed's former translator, the Dutchman, had found work with the railway line as a ticket collector, and she guessed that the Dutchman would be able to help resolve at least some of the confusion. The Dutchman was struggling with his new job. In those days timetables were a little random, there weren't that many trains, and people travelling on trains that did stop at Saint Barbara's Halt so the engineer might refresh the boilers never even got out of the carriages to stretch their legs, so what with one thing and another The Dutchman became very excited as he read the letter from Rome to Bronwyn the Seamstress' Sisterhood of Barefoot Carmelites. "What does this mean, Honorable One?" Bronwyn offered. "It means," the Dutchman beamed, "I'll soon be collecting my very first ticket!" 

 

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