Author’s note: A more cynical take on the prompt words for my second contribution for the Wordle this week… 😉
Overwhelmed by a world teeming with pretense, I am challenged to keep up with so many ‘individuals’. In this dearth of light, I take the easiest possible route to jump ship. Ambivalence is my drug, and I take it in bulk. Shock; horror.
As I trudge the well-worn route, there is a dearth of light as we briefly pass under the bulk of a huge granite boulder. It has been a challenging hike so far; the constant incline gradually wearing me down.
I focus on regulating my breathing and carefully place my feet on the footholds of the individual rocks. With a shock, I realise we have reached the summit.
I jump up onto the 360o viewing platform and let the stress melt away. There is no noise except for the eerie sound of the wind sliding between granite and trees, and the occasional raven cawing. I close my eyes and breathe. My senses are teeming with the bracing mountain air and smell of the bush. I love it up here. I’m on ‘top of the world’.
As the vast expanse of the Australian Alps stretch out before me, I realise I cannot keep up the pretense with my husband anymore. I turn to him; smile and say, “It is entirely possible, that bushwalking has become my drug too.”
Author’s note: The Horn, at Mount Buffalo, has sweeping 360 degree views of the Australian Alps and plateaus. It is an exhilarating sensation to swivel and view the magnificent Mount Buffalo National Park spread out before you.
Prompt: Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie, Sunday Writing Prompt, #224 – Name That Tune
Task: YES – these are real.group.band.names. REAL.Anyhow, there are 10 selections. Pick a few, one or two – and create something, anything, maybe 3? Let yourself just have a ball with these. Create whatever – short story, flash fiction, poem. Just play.
As I walk my two pooches, I pop in some earbuds and switch on my iPod hoping for something motivating. It randomly selects ‘Foo Fighters’ – excellent choice! I listen to the gravelly voice of Dave Grohl and find it ironic, as I bend down to pick up the steaming heap, that he can be a Foo Fighter, while I am being a Poo Fighter.
There once was a castle in the middle of a field. It loved being the centre of attention. The grass bowed to it in the breeze, and travellers were drawn to it, like a beacon. For many years it was so.
But slowly, a town began to spring up around the castle and the field disappeared. At first, the castle was glad for the company, but in time, the town became a city and the castle was swallowed up by the busy-ness around it. Sometimes, it would still catch a glimpse of travellers’ eyes, but now they hurried past in their vehicles. The castle felt sad that in the midst of such hustle, it could feel so lonely.
Author’s note: Sometimes my writing is based on my real life experiences. This is one of those stories and is an actual account of a costume I was responsible for, whilst working at an exclusive all girls college a few years ago.
Oh, how I wish it were fiction…
The girls usually looked like seraphic supplicants, in their polished shoes, ecru stockings, petticoats and navy blue tunics. My job on the dramatic arts team, was to source a neutral, yet eye-catching costume for the production. I didn’t want to squander the funds, and bent over backwards to find a freely-licenced image and reasonably priced t-shirt manufacturer.
As I unpacked the boxes, I realised with alarm, the disastrous outcome of my work.
(However it did tickle the amusement of at least one stranger in the crowd, as 150 female students took their final bow, I could hear his guffaws from backstage…)
* supplicant (noun) – A supplicant is a person who prays to God or respectfully asks an important person to help them or to give them something that they want very much.
^ seraphic (adjective) – characteristic of or resembling a seraph or seraphim|seraphim:an angelic being, regarded in traditional Christian angelology as belonging to the highest order of the ninefold celestial hierarchy, associated with light, ardor, and purity.
^^ ecru (adjective) – the light beige color of unbleached linen
Prompt: Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie, Wordle #173;
and also Sammi Cox, A Month Of Mini Writing Challenges, Day 25
Task: Write a story in 75 words or less about an encounter with a stranger.
It was a rainy day and my sisters and I had decided to go on an expedition to explore Hilo, HI. We saw a sign declaring ‘Rainbow Falls’ and discovered this beautiful oasis; cascading and emerging out of the rainforest. Unfortunately though, no sunshine equals no rainbows. Maybe next time.
It’s the morning after my brother’s wedding and we are feeling a little…seedy, at best. After a wholesome recovery breakfast of bacon and eggs, my husband and I meander down the Main Street of Belgrave, a tiny outer suburb of Melbourne, in the Dandenong Ranges. I notice a shop I haven’t see before: Belgrave Emporium.
“Let’s go in!” I plead with my husband.
As it turns out, Belgrave Emporium is a exciting retail space in the heart of the little village. As we wander and browse, I am struck by the eclectic mix of wares on sale.
I mention to my husband that it seems as though this is not just one store, but many stores. And it turns out I’m right.
Belgrave Emporium indeed, houses seventy hand picked boutique stalls, ranging from vintage clothing, handmade accessories by local jewellers, artisan home wares, quirky art and prints, and much more.
We ended up spending an hour (and a fortune in the store), and with so much to look at, our hangover woes were soon forgotten. I highly recommend a stop in if you’re ever in the area!
Prompt: Sammi Cox, A Month Of Mini Writing Challenges, Day 19
Task: You’re on your way to work and a new, strange-looking shop has opened over night. You are drawn to it and go in but what – or who – is inside? Tell us in less than 100 words.
My husband does not like doing the shopping with me.
It’s not that he doesn’t appreciate my company or the help. It’s the fact that when I go with him, our shop is typically $50 more than usual.
This is because I am a sucker. I’m one of those people who sees ‘half price‘ or ‘two for the price of one‘ and am instantly reeled in. Hypnotised by the promise of something special that will save me money!
Nevermind, that I don’t particularly have a use for a double ended head torch (let alone two!); or that it will take us a year to get through the 18 rolls of paper towel for $8. I just see stuff and have to have it.
My husband suggests writing a shopping list, which is what we did today.
It didn’t help. Sometimes, you just have to put it down to an irritating quirk; a trial of being married to someone like me…
The sand squishes beneath my toes. I feel the warmth of each grain. I inhale deeply and, simultaneously both smell and taste the salty air. I stretch my arms above my head and listen to the small waves lap against the shoreline.
I open my eyes; sigh at the recreated memory, and get back to work.
Half spluttering, half laughing, I emerged from under the wave. It had been a big one! I turned to see my husband successfully catching it all the way to shore. I gave him a thumbs up and looked for the next set, swelling further out to sea.
It was a magical day for boogie boarding. The sun was warm, but not too hot. The water was clear cerulean blue. And most importantly, the tide was full on high. I spied a beauty rolling in and positioned my body ready. Kick, kick. Legs pumping and then elation, as I felt the lift of my board taking hold.
They’d been warned the house was in a flood zone when they’d purchased the property. The couple weren’t bothered though – the house was on stilts that kept it at least 10 metres off the ground.
They peered out the windows, hearts sinking as the water level continued to rise. The Beareau of Meterology predicted this would be the worst flood in 100 years. The couple had taken precautions – sealing the windows and doors with waterproof tape. But they knew that it wouldn’t be a matter of a few leaks; more likely engulfment of the entire home.
The flood’s peak was still six hours away. The husband and wife deliberated what to do. Evacuation was no longer an option, as the emergency services had told them yesterday.
“I’ve got the dinghy, maybe we can get out with that?” the man said.
She didn’t need to be asked twice. “I’ll pack a bag with some of our valuables.”
They launched the dinghy out the front door. Counting their blessings, the couple paddled for safety.
As they neared the banks they could feel the waves of a large marine vehicle coming up swiftly behind them. To their surprise, they were overtaken by their now floating house…
I entered the toilet cubicle and cringed. Someone had left behind brown offerings of what appeared to be a chilli or bean lunch. Holding my breath I reached for the flush, but to my horror, the water and contents began to rise. Oh no! I thought, praying for it to stop. Thankfully it ceased filling and I decided to use another toilet. I opened the door and apologetically said to the person waiting, “It wasn’t me!”
It was bad enough these cyclists hogged the road, riding two, three or even four abreast! Sylvie thought, fuming. Now they’re hogging our car spaces too!
She looked at the eight bicycles taking up two and a half perfectly useable spots; one of which should have been hers! Sylvie glanced through the window of Deja Brew and saw them – muscular thighs clad in Lycra, sporting an array of fluorescent jerseys up top, laughing and sipping on their lattes.
Smiling, she executed her revenge, and began affixing the signs to their bikes: