Chapter 61: Not Telling You (Part One)
Although the scenery along the way didn’t change much, Fang Jie felt like he sensed something different after leaving River-East Circuit and entering Capital Region Circuit. The Capital was the heart of Great Sui, so Capital Region Circuit was the rib cage that protected the heart.
Great Sui had 24 circuits. Except for Capital Region Circuit, all the governors-general of other circuits were rank 2 officials, but the governor-general of Capital Region Circuit was a rank 1 official.
To ordinary people, rank 1 officials were powerful. After all, such figures were greatly trusted by the Emperor. Since the establishment of Great Sui, the governors-general of Capital Region Circuit were always the most trusted people of the emperors.
How could the emperors let those who they didn’t trust to protect the Capital? Just like how could soldiers leave their backs open to their enemies.
Capital Region Circuit was small among all 24 circuits, but it was still bigger than the territory of Eastern Chu.
When Fang Jie and others entered Capital Region Circuit, the weather was already warm. Whenever they traveled by a village and saw the seniors sitting down and chatting with each other peacefully in the sun, Fang Jie would become reminiscent and feel envious toward his previous life.
On Earth, the seniors would enjoy sitting in the sun much more than young people.
When seniors chatted, they might not discuss important national issues and would focus more on their memories of their youthful years.
Fang Jie looked at those seniors and thought, “Among these old villagers, perhaps some of them are veteran soldiers who had been through many battles, and perhaps some of them had been wealthy. Although they aren’t rich at this age, their lives are peaceful.”
After more than 100 years of social improvements, there were policies that assisted the seniors. For example, seniors who were more than 50 years old could each get ten cash coins per month from their village heads, seniors who were more than 60 years old could each get 15 cash coins per month and also receive jackets and blankets in the winter. Those who were more than 70 years old were assisted in more areas, and even county magistrates would need to move out of the way when seeing them on the streets.
When the Emperor came into power, he paid even more attention to seniors. Therefore, Heaven-Bless Emperor Yang Yi was said to have the most respect for seniors.
There was a story that was well-spread in Great Sui. When the Emperor was still the Fourth Prince, he once inspected the southern region as an imperial commissioner. When the group got to a stone bridge, a senior who used a walking cane got tired and rested in the middle of the bridge. Perhaps the sunlight in the afternoon was too warm, this senior fell asleep.
Fourth Prince Yang Yi stopped his subordinates from waking up this senior, and he walked over and draped his jacket over this senior as a blanket, afraid that the senior might catch a cold. Then, he ordered people to grab the cotton cushion in his horse-drawn carriage, slowly placed the cushion under this senior, and waved a palm fan to get rid of the mosquitos. Everyone watching was stunned.
The senior woke up after close to an hour. Fourth Prince Yang Yi asked this senior how old he was, and the senior said that he was 72. Yang Yi instantly grabbed a red envelope with money inside and handed it to this senior, saying that it was the filial respect that the central government had toward people who were more than 70 years old.[Support the real translators and read on Noodletown Translations for free.]
He said that it was filial respect instead of a gift.
Then, Yang Yi helped the senior to get over the bridge.
Just as everyone thought that this incident was over, Yang Yi did something that others respected him for. He ordered people to investigate where that senior’s home was before going there, gathering the senior’s children and grandchildren, and reprimanding them in the village.