Currently, I am working on some character sketches for Episode 2 and beyond. Soon I will have an outline for Episode 2, followed by the Episode which you will be able to read here. I have been gathering ideas and here is a partial outline.
While on sabbatical from his job at Southern New Hampshire College, Glynn Barrett, the Dean of Academic Administration travels to England. On New Year’s. Eve 1971 he finds a quaint little pub in Bockhampton Dorset, the home of Thomas Hardy, his favorite author. While enjoying a pint of bitters, he strikes up a conversation with a rather odd fellow named Ivan Trickler. Ivan loves Americans and he asks Glynn about himself, what he does, and America. After about three large bitters, Trickler and Glynn are both becoming quite loose. Trickler sells Glynn on the possibility of the college branching out and offering studies abroad. He knows the perfect place in Littlefleet West Sussex and he can help him. Glynn begins to warm to the idea. They agree to talk further. The pub becomes quite boisterous and Glynn is thrust into the frivolity of the locals and joins a conga line. He then calls Blake Livingston from the bar completely inebriated. He wants Blake to come over because he has a great teaching opportunity for him. Sensing he’s quite drunk, Blake explains he can’t come to England, he has too many obligations in Holden at the College. Somehow Glynn manages to talk Blake into coming to England and to meet him at Heathrow Airport on Friday.
Glynn introduces Blake to a dilapidated girls school. Blake has no idea why Glynn brought him to England, but soon it becomes clear that Glynn has secured funds to buy the building and start an English campus for Southern New Hampshire College. Or has he. Ivan Trickler isn’t anywhere to be found and he promised to help Glynn get those funds. Blake’s first question is about studies abroad is why? Glynn sells him Blake, a vision of a quality education abroad that would broaden the horizons of the American student with a curriculum that fit what was relevant to England. Glynn’s enthusiasm for this project is so overwhelming that Blake sees his vision and buys into the idea.
Blake returns back to England and tells his family they are moving to England. Darcy, Blake’s older daughter takes it the worst and refuses to go. Ned, his son isn’t so sure what to think and Eileen has questions.
Glynn calls his wife and tells her to pack her things, she’s coming to England with the kids and they are going to spend his entire sabbatical preparing a new endeavor. When Elizabeth hears about the campus, she thinks Glynn’s lost his mind, but when she arrives and sees how much work he has put into it, she’s on board.
Glynn returns to the states and calls for a meeting of the Board of trustees. He asks Blake to join him and help sell the vision. Most of the board think the idea is too far fetched. The first question is where will the money possibly come from to start this project. Glynn doesn’t have the answer because Ivan Trickler hasn’t secured the money yet. He promises them in a month’s time, he will have the funds secured. In the meantime, he reminds them that the College is hemorrhaging money and enrollment is falling off drastically. When the project is a success, they will all see the benefits that he is promising them. President Danley finally speaks after Glynn finishes the pitch. He likes Glynn and the idea seems sound to him. He tells Glynn to go forward and get the campus ready in England.
For the Livingston’s the Summer of 1971 was a Summer of uncertainty. While Blake and Eileen act in the complete 8 play season, Darcy spends her summer working at a dog Kennel up the road. She is so angry about this move and she doesn’t wish to deal with her parents. She refuses to see any of the Dudley theatre productions. While mucking out stalls at her friend Eliza Cousins’s house, she formulates a plan where she would spend the winter in the Sahale Valley and live with Eliza and her family. Eileen is not having any of it and they get into a huge fight.
Glynn returns to England with big worries about the funding. He calls, Ivan Trickler who promised big cash for the project, but no response for a week or two, then out of the blue Trickler shows up with a check. Glynn sets about and multitasks. He hires a small crew of construction workers to tear parts of the building down and manages to hire a faculty. He hires a classical Pianist to teach music. An archeologist who has dug all over England and the Middle East. His job is to give students the opportunity of going on digs in the local area to discover the history of West Sussex. He also hires a published writer and poet to teach poetry and English literature and a ballet critic to teach dance.
While Darcy stews about her predicament, Ned tries not to think about moving away from all his friends. Instead, he plays Baseball with his two good friends Chuck Chaplain and Marty Campbell. It’s their first year playing Babe Ruth Baseball. Ned manages to make the team as a pitcher and right fielder, Chuck fills in at second base and Marty makes the team as a Catcher, but a few ballplayers on the team are happy with Logan Brent’s decision to put her on the team. about having a girl on the team. Marlon Grooper, is the one who gives Marty the hardest time, until she proves her worth by getting into a fracus with him at home plate.
That’s all I got so far. When I have the episode done I will post a link here.