Cheese and Crackers – Friday Fictioneers

Good Wednesday, my peeps! It is Friday Fictioneers time and this week we have a sorta special. Rochelle and I decided to link our stories, just for fun. So…if you haven’t already, you really should read hers first 😉 then mine… Our lovable clown, Russell, is the “hero” of our stories so… Russell, just know, we absolutely adore you!

If you want the rules and regs, well, you’ve already seen them on Rochelle’s blog, right? If you want to simply link your story, please click on the blue frog…

Get the code for yours

©The ever smiling, ever sweet, Connie Gayer

Cheese and Crackers

Shelley and Dale were hot and sweaty from their hike. Shelley said it would be nice to cool off in Gayer’s pond but worried, saying he was mean as they come.

“Looks harmless to me. Offer him a drawing.”

Shelly would have none of that as she felt he had no clue about art.

“Hey! Draw him with that clown nose he likes so much. Oh, and put that bloody invisible box he goes on and on about. Hey Farmer Gayer! How ’bout Shelley draw a picture of you in exchange for a swim?”

“Lemme guess, I’ll be all purple?”

Flee – What Pegman Saw

This week Pegman takes us to Armenia. You are welcome to use the photo provided in the prompt, or chose from among many photo spheres from across the country.

Will you dig into Armenia’s rich history? Delve into its present? Imagine its future? Or will you conjure your own alternate reality? The only rule is to keep your story, poem, or essay under 150 words.

Once  your piece is polished, share it with others using the Linkup below. Reading and commenting on others work is part of the fun!

Thank you to Karen and Josh for hosting this weekly party.

Having Armenian friends, I allowed myself to use a mix-up of their names for authenticity as well as using part of their history to create mine.  Though born in Lebanon, they will always say they are Armenians, then Lebanese… and finally Canadian!

Click on the blue frog to add your link and join in the fun!

Early April, 1915, Kevork and Siran gathered their children.

“Sebouh, Houri, we must leave as soon as it is dark.  It is no longer safe here.”

“But why, Baba?  What have we done?”

“Nothing, my sweet.  War has come to our land and the Ottoman Empire has chosen to destroy us.”

“We’re lucky that it has not reached us here, yet,” Mama added.  “We have a chance to escape this massacre.”

“I still don’t understand why,” Sebouh cried.

“Son, there are no explanations to justify destroying a people.  Men become crazed with power, believing their religion is the only one and others should not exist.  Dominance becomes their religion.

Houri frowned, “I don’t think I’ll ever understand this.”

They packed what they could carry and left, eventually making it to Lebanon to start anew.

Two generations later, civil war erupted and the Arakelian family found itself once more fleeing for safety.

Honouring Dad – Friday Fictioneers

I was going to wait until tomorrow to write my Friday Fictioneers so that I could dedicate a post to my father, gone five years ago today.  I was all gung-ho to scan some great photos of my dad that I have in an envelope.  Somewhere.  As my house is up for sale, the exact box I know those pics are in is…. I can’t find it.  Had it.  Got stacked.  Sigh.  As luck will have it, that particular box will pop up out of nowhere tomorrow, when I no longer need it!  I refuse to fret about it and Rochelle was kind enough to supply a picture that worked for me to mix a tribute to my dad and FF.  Thanks, my friend!  The dialogue below would be between my sisters, Lisa, Tracy and me.

Honouring Dad

We need a centrepiece.

How’s this?

Perfect, he’d like that.

Don’t forget to put ketchup in little bowls. Heaven forbid we leave the bottle on the table!

Got it.  Got some pickles?  Put them in a bowl, too.  Can’t have people’s fingers going in there.

OK… Got the kids’ table set up?  Make it just as nice, eh?

What are we missing?

Got the capers, onions and cream cheese for the salmon?

Yep.  We’re good. All that’s missing is Dad’s bloody bird.

Dad, you’ve been gone five years. What we wouldn’t give to hear you talk about your damn bird.

************

To participate, please click on Rochelle‘s name for the rules and regs and to add your link!  I’m still having trouble with my inLinkz login so can’t add a blue frog of my own…

Me and Dad… Celebrating his birthday, Sept. 11, 2012

One year after Dad passed away, I wrote this

The Watchmen – What Pegman Saw

This week Pegman takes us to San Ignacio de Velasco, Bolivia.  Karen chose a great photo but I went snooping and chose this one.  As a result, the text that introduces this week’s Pegman makes no sense so I’m not sharing it here!

I’m having trouble with my inLinkz account so, please click on Pegman above to have access to the blue frog and to add your story or read other wonderful takes on this week’s prompt.

Thank you to Karen and Josh for hosting this fun weekly prompt.

The Watchmen

They stood there, tall, stoic, unmoving, watching.  Most simply drove by, unimpressed, ignoring and dismissing them as nothing.  The curiosity of some encouraged them to slow down in wonder, questioning their existence but not enough to stop so they shrugged and drove off.  A few actually parked their cars and walked right up to them, trying to determine their use or purpose.  Taking pictures for their scrapbooks they promised themselves they would Google what they were so they could share with their friends and families.

The locals.  They knew.  They understood.  They placed their offerings in cages so that the Watchmen would continue to protect them from all those passersby.  From the truly curious who would never be able to find the answers to their questions as well as those who didn’t bother stopping.  For this they were grateful.  They could continue living as they were meant to, without fear.

 

Just Like Dad – Friday Fictioneers

Good Thursday, my Peeps!  I am a tad later than usual as my computer decided that life was not worth living and died in my arms.  Not one to grieve too long, and knowing that my brother-in-law will do his best to retrieve what he can out of the damn thing, I put my man-child to work to find me the best deal I could get immediately.  Am now typing from my brand-spanking-new laptop.  Oh the joys of setting up all your “stuff”!

Enough about that.  Thank you, always, to Rochelle for keeping us in line.  And this week, thank you to Courtney Wright for the use of her wonderful picture this week.

Sorry… can’t log it to include the frog this week… so, go to Rochelle’s blog and click on hers!

Just like Dad

He was so excited.  He got the job working in the shop around the corner from home.

“You need construction boots with a steel cap, don’t you?” Mom asked.

“Yeah,” Son answered

“Here, try your dad’s.  I bet you they fit.”

He put them on and it was like they were made for him.

“Cool!”

Off he went for his very first full-time job.

In the early afternoon, Mom received the text:  “I must have inherited Dad’s genes.  I’m a natural.”

Tears in her eyes, she replied:  “I’m not surprised.  He would have been so proud of you, you know.”

 

What’s In a Name? – What Pegman Saw

This week Pegman takes us to Gwynedd, Wales. This week’s location was suggested by regular Pegman storyteller Alicia Jamtaas. Be sure to visit her site and enjoy her flash fiction and poetry over at https://lishwriter.wordpress.com/   Thanks for the great suggestion, Lish!

Your mission is to visit the region via Google Maps, and write (up to) 150 words inspired by the prompt. You can use the photo above, or browse around for your own view anywhere in Gwynedd. There are plenty of photo spheres around Caernarfon Castle, and both street view and photo spheres all over Gwynedd.

Once your piece is polished, you can share it with others using the linkup below. Reading and commenting on others’ work is part of the fun!

I, on the other hand, totally did NOT go to Gwynedd… Because Karen and Josh are not mean and allow us to stray… And because once an idea planted… I could not unplant it.  I am submitting this quickly before work so will be reading the other participants’ versions later this evening.  Hope you enjoy my silly attempt!

What’s in a Name?

Honestly, I know nothing about Wales.  Well, wait a minute, I do know Richard Burton, Tom Jones and Catherine Zeta-Jones come from there.

You DO know that it is part of the United Kingdom, right?

WEll duh!  I know that much.  That, and they have that ridiculously long town name.  What up with that?

You mean:  Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch (llan-vire-pooll-guin-gill-go-ger-u-queern-drob-ooll-llandus-ilio-gogo-goch)?

Are you kidding me?  You can actually pronouce it?  Why, oh why would they do such a thing? And what the hell does it mean?

It roughly translates to:  “St Mary’s Church in the Hollow of the White Hazel near a Rapid Whirlpool and the Church of St. Tysilio near the Red Cave”.  And it was a publicity stunt in the 1860’s

Kinda silly if you ask me.

Don’t worry, though, it goes by the name Llanfairpwllgwyngyll.

Like that’s any easier to pronounce.  You know this, how?

I Saw it on PBS!

Magnolia Overture

Karen and Marc are at it again.  They have these little chat sessions and next thing you know… it’s prompt time!  I could definitely NOT refuse this one.  Somehow Magnolia became the object of their desire to write.  OK, OK… when you read Karen’s beautiful post, you’ll understand.  Just so happens, that when it comes to flowering trees?  My ultimate favourite.  Marc’s wonderful story is here.  I honest-to-goodness don’t know how they do it.  But they do it so bloody well.  Instead of telling myself I just can’t play with the big girls and boys, I shall simply strive to do my best.  Now I am quite late to the party but there was no “write-by-date” so…

Magnolia Overture

She loved to walk.  She had her favourite destinations and usually decided on the spur of the moment which one she’d take.  Turn right? Turn left?  Go straight?  Either one would end up bringing her joy.  On this day, she chose right.  Once past the residential houses, she ended up in the first park.  In winter, a hockey rink would have a few people passing a hockey puck, or, depending on the time of day, a solo skater, practicing his shots. In summer this would be full of kids splashing in the water games.  But today it was spring.  The air was warm but now and again a breeze came by, teasing with a hint of cool – just to let her know that it was not yet summer.

She walked across the first park, through a walkway, across a street, through another walkway and bingo!  There it was.  A  huge magnolia tree planted in the middle of a field.  How did that happen?  No way the city would plant such a tree in a park.  It must have been some good Samaritan or lover of spring blooms to have donated such a gift for all peeps to enjoy.

It was an older tree with a good-sized grouping of trunks, the flowers starting just high enough for her to sit beneath.  She had brought a blanket and her book but instead of reading, leaned back and let her memories loose.

They met just as the first magnolia flowers appeared.  Each on a two-week solo vacation, no plans, free to do as they please.  Both expected to spend that time reflecting, visiting, ambling.  One particularly warm day, she was sitting at a table on a terrace, sipping a cool drink watching the passersby.  He arrived and chose a table next to hers and ordered himself a beer.  They smiled at each other and continued their individual reveries.

“This is going to sound ridiculously corny, but, have you been here before?” he queried, smiling.

She laughed in return, “No, actually, I’m on vacation.  You?”

“Same.  Where are you from, if I may ask?”

“Canada.”

“Canada is pretty big.  Care to specify by province, at least?”

“Well now, I am impressed.  Most Yanks don’t even know we have provinces,” she grinned.  “Just teasing.  I’m from British Columbia, more specifically from Victoria.  How about you?”

“The United States of America,” he smirked.  She raised an eyebrow.  “My turn to tease — I’m from Seattle, Washington.”

“Jeez.  We live so close to each other yet meet here, so far from home.  Are you travelling alone?”

“Yep.  I always dreamed of coming to New Orleans, to be here in the spring before it gets hot and disgusting.”

“Nice.  I have never been here in the summer but I have heard it is brutal.  I’m also on my own.  We were supposed to be four girlfriends à la Sex and the City, New Orleans-style but they all flushed me last minute.  I decided that I still wanted to come here.”

He dragged his chair closer to hers.  “You mind?”

“No, not at all.  Why don’t you just join me officially?”  She held out her hand, “My name’s Charlotte.  Most of my friends call me Charlie”

His warm hand clasped hers, “Pleased to meet you, Charlotte.  Such a beautiful name.  I’m Dante.”

“As in inferno?” she could not help but ask, tongue firmly in cheek.

“For you to find out!” he laughed, eyebrows wiggling up and down.

She smiled, ever more curious about this handsome stranger.

Afternoon turned to twilight, turned to evening.  Soft jazz played in the background.  Their conversation never waned, food was ordered, eaten, neither remembering what they ate.  They left the restaurant and walked the streets of New Orleans, hand in hand, their conversation ebbing and flowing as if they’d known each other forever.

They spent their two-week vacation wrapped in each other.  Loving, talking, sharing, eating, laughing.  One room got cancelled and their solo vacations became a couple one.  They visited whatever took their fancy and come evening, visited each other.  Listening, touching, tasting, feeling, whispering.  Every day, as they left to explore, they marvelled at the magnolia tree planted right outside her Air BnB.  The blooms so much larger than either had ever seen in their hometowns.  “So beautiful,” one or the other would comment. and off they’d go.  Museums, Bourbon Street, French Quarter, City Park, Garden District, they played it by ear, deciding as they went along.

On their last day together, a sudden wind swept through, blowing most of the blooms off “their” magnolia tree and sending them in all directions, save the ones that swirled around them, encouraging them, embracing them as they held each other close, loathe to separate.  They swore they would return.  While neither of them was married they laughed and said it could be like Alan Alda and Ellen Burstyn in Same Time, Next Year.  Both film buffs, they needed no explanation.

However, that also implied they would only see each other once per year…