When You Get a Chance…

The blogosphere has been a gift, an inspiration, a learning experience, an on-going teacher, a place to create, to vent, to share… but you all know this because most of you are bloggers.  I have mentioned how much I appreciate the folks I’ve gotten to know, even doing a sort of Advent Calendar to show my appreciation for some… may have to do another this year, to be determined.

I have become good friends with a few bloggers that has brought us to the Skype stage (or rather, Messenger), allowing us to exchange face to face.  Did so, just this morning, in fact!

I have been so very lucky to meet two bloggers in person. One is from Montreal, right next door to speak, who also happens to be a friend of a friend, proving the world is a puny place.  And one who has become more than a cherished friend with whom I can share anything and everything, as he knows he can with me, our trust and respect for each other is that great.

And just this last Tuesday, I met a third.  Sawsan, who blogs at Last Tambourine, is a wonderful woman that I first “met” through David Kanigan’s fabulous, inspiring, thought-provoking blog, Live and Learn. Sawsan often comments with “return” pieces of poetry or prose to David’s original post and the exchanges between her and David, are wonderful and inspiring, and often humorous and even snarky.  Actually, David’s peeps love to interact with each other on his posts and he has created quite the family.

The world truly is puny as a few months ago, Sawsan and I found out – too late – we were at the same hospital at the same time on different floors visiting our loved ones. What? Damnation…  From that moment on, our exchanges went from solely on David’s blog, to emails and texting.

Again, Sawsan had to come to town (three towns over from mine) to stay with her parents to help out following her mother’s surgery, and this time there was no way in hell we were going to miss meeting each other.  Friday fell through so we had Tuesday and Wednesday left as potentials.  David kept texting us, teasing us that we were not gonna manage to get together… The thing is, when you are in town only now and again, you have family obligations that cannot be avoided.  However, we were able to prove David wrong when she was able to escape the parents and we met for coffee that turned into dinner. We had to send him selfies to prove it 😉

She has a lilting voice with the loveliest accent of her place of birth (Palestine) and a beautiful, sweet smile.  We hugged hello and talked non-stop until it was time to leave. Our senses of humour were in synch and we felt like old friends from the first minute.

When we start this blogging business, we never think things could or would go further than the post page.  Yes, there are those we find ourselves bantering with, some, by sharing our stories, we come to care for. We send each other encouragement, love, friendship, kudos, and we don’t expect things will go to the next level. We might joke and say, next time you are in Chicago, New York, Boulder, etc (coz, right, like I go to any of these places on a whim), don’t forget to look me up!

So when you get a chance…

… you take it!

 

 

 

 

Chopped! – Friday Fictioneers

Good Wednesday morn, my peeps!  Rochelle has given us a most interesting picture to use today. It is thanks to Ronda Del Boccio that I found myself immediately sent in the direction I went. Sometimes we just have to let it go, eh? To play along, just click on the frog below and you’ll be taking to the squares where you can add your own story to the mix.  G’head, you know you wanna….

      G’head, Try me!

Chopped

“What the hell, Mom?”

“What?” Mom’s voice was muffled as her head was deep into the refrigerator.

“What are you doing?”

“Looking for one more ingredient.”

“For what?”

“I am challenging you to create a dish with the black olives and the peach jelly and something else.”

“You have got to be kidding me.”

“You’ve seen the show. Made your snarky comments. Time to put your money where your mouth is.”

“Who’s gonna judge?”

“Jeff. He’s in town.”

“How about some beef? And we can use the pantry, right?”

“There’s the spirit!”

“Prepare to be chopped, Lady!”

“I think not.”

 

 

 

 

Walktober – St. Helen’s Island and Marie-Victorin Park

It’s October and that means it is time for Robin’s Walktober!  I had plans. Big plans. Was gonna go to St. Helen’s Island on one day (okay, that part I did, but not as much as I wanted to) and the next day was going to go to Mount Royal in Montreal (which didn’t happen because I was just too damn lazy to get up and out of the house early enough). So instead of crossing the bridge and half the island of Montreal to get to Mount Royal, Zeke and I just went to the next town over as there is a lovely area by the St. Lawrence River in the town of Longueuil, called Marie-Victorin Park, we enjoy walking along.

Actually, I am totally going to cheat here. Yep. Imma combine THREE walks, adding in Parc de la Frayère in Boucherville because I got some amazing shots that I want to share with you. And this walk did take place in October.  I do hope you don’t mind…

On October 5th, Zeke and I went to the Parc de la Frayère (which means spawning ground park) for a sunset walk. For once the stars were aligned, or rather, the sky was clear and I was able to take advantage of the golden hour followed by the sunset.

Yesss! We parked, went right to see if maybe, just maybe the heron was hanging about and he was. I did catch a little black duck but that photo is a tad dark as well.  So we turned around towards the little bridge when I spotted the moon between the trees

A half-pie slice of moon.  Crossing the bridge, we made our way towards the water’s edge and were rewarded by a woods tinged with gold.

Even Zeke took on a golden hue

The sun then put on a spectacular show and it was difficult to NOT inundate you with a bazillion pics…

Satisfied, Zeke and I climbed back into the car but I glimpsed a little marina on my return and had to stop. (Sorry, Zeke, you stay in the car for a minute or so…)

I couldn’t make up my mind on which one to share, so you get two.

October 8 was a Tuesday and the first of my two days off that week.  Into the car we went and off to St. Helen’s Island between the south shore and Montreal. There are so many things to see but we stayed within one little section.  It was a glorious day with the bluest of skies and brightest of colours all around.

Up the steps for a nice view.  I took this angle of the Tour de Lévis (built in the 1930’s, usually we have access to the steps inside bringing us to the top where we can have a spectacular view of Montreal and surroundings) but now gated shut for repairs

We walked along the lovely leaf-strewn trails (seriously? a construction cone? are there no construction-free zones in all of the province?) and then down a hill past this huge boulder. I loved how the moss draped over it.

We walked some more and whoa! I have been on this island countless times and have never ended up here. And if I did and don’t remember it then I must have been otherwise preoccupied. A little oasis in the middle of seemingly nowhere.

 

I let a friend know I was in his neighbourhood so we ended up going to his backyard to have a beer before heading home. The view from the communal backyard is lovely.

As mentioned at the start of this walk post, Wednesday was supposed to be a totally different walk but I hemmed and hawed and took my time – so much so that the idea of driving into Montreal no longer appealed to me. Plus the sky was not quite as blue so, I decided to go to another lovely park in the city of Longueuil. This is also along the St. Lawrence River so we had a chance of seeing geese, ducks or simply lovely trees.

The entrance of the park has this… thing. There are no signs and I have no clue what it is.

As I walked towards the official path, my eyes were drawn to this bright red…

And then the entrance to the park

There were a couple of ducks but the light was shite and they were far and I took ’em anyway. Thank goodness for PicMonkey to play with settings.

We walked along and I was struck the by colours… yellows, reds, sticking up out of nowhere.

We kept on walking and arrived at this easily walked into water… which Zeke, as per, did not hesitate to enter. Which is fine because I had arrived at a busy section with some sort of seagull (I think) and a heron.  While Zeke played in the water, he didn’t disturb the birds or me!

The seagull was busy fishing and every time he’d dive down to pick at a fish he’d caught, his wings would flap. I took so many photos but will not bore you with more than two 😉

And then Bob (for you, Mr. Paxson) was standing there waiting for me.  I took pictures as I got closer and closer with the intent – I know, I am mean – of hoping he would fly away and I could attempt to capture him in flight…. I got my desire.

I was pretty pleased with myself even though I felt a tad guilty.

There is a wonderful new overpass that has been rebuilt after an unfortunate accident – a dump truck with its dumper raised hit it and it smashed it.  My sons and I were on our way to the movies and never made it because we were stuck in the traffic it caused. I wrote about it here.

It is quite spectacular at night and I have promised myself to go there and cross it.  But till then, here is the view during the day.  It was built specifically for bicycles and pedestrians.  Zeke and I planned on going to  the top to see the view. Unfortunately, once we got to the second floor, the stairs were metal teeth-like things and poor Zeke tried the first four. I couldn’t let him go up so I told him to stay on the landing whilst I went up. I don’t usually get the willies but you can see through the stairs and my stomach did flip-flops. Since when am I such a wuss?

It was time to go home and the golden hour was arriving. Walking back I noticed there were crabapples and had I a sac, I would have filled it. (Thief that I am.)

I hope you enjoyed my walk and didn’t find it too long! I apologize. I got somewhat carried away.  Should you want to join in, the link is above on Robin’s name.

 

Thoughts Become Things – Friday Fictioneers

I had a great idea for a story. Well, I had the beginnings of a great idea for a story.  Then I didn’t. But I did. But the words and my fingers had a fight. Irreconscilable differences, I’m afraid. So I fiddled and futzed and said fuggedaboutit.  And then pressed publish.

If your muse works like it should, then by all means, please click the frog below and add your story.  Rochelle, our lovely leader, is always thrilled when new peeps join in on the fun.

Clique Ze Frogue

Thoughts Become Things

Like speech bubbles, thoughts floated up, decorating the sky in glowing blue circles.

Those walking the street were oblivious to the goings-on above their heads, preoccupied with their own musings:  to-do lists, dreams and random thoughts.

Sharon sat in the doorway of her kiosk, looking, to anyone who bothered to even glance at her, like a simple kitschshop owner.  She could see their thoughts, and orchestrate them at will.  She swirled them around, bumped them together, made them trade places. She loved watching the bemusement cross their faces as aleatory thoughts popped suddenly into their head seemingly out of nowhere.

Weekend Writing Prompt #127 – What the Fork is This?

A word prompt to get your creativity flowing this weekend.  How you use the prompt is up to you.  Write a piece of flash fiction, a poem, a chapter for your novel…anything you like.  Or take the challenge below – there are no prizes – it’s not a competition but rather a fun writing exercise.  If you want to share what you come up with, please leave a link to it in the comments.

Word Prompt

Replace

Challenge

I’ve been doing these challenges for a good while (Thanks, Sammi, for creating and maintaining it) and never, ever put a title on my whatevs. I thought the total word count had to include the title but, after noting quite a few who do, including our facilitator, I decided, well, hell… let’s do it!

What the Fork is This?

I walk around my home and notice there are missing pieces everywhere. Incomplete sets: cutlery, dishes, glassware. Some breakage happens over time; it’s to be expected.

Yet, somehow cutlery that doesn’t belong here is lying in my drawer. Of course no child of mine left any of my good forks at work and took another in its stead. No, I don’t know what I am talking about. What’s the big deal? The big deal is, the cheap shit you brought back does not replace the good stuff I own.

Do You Speak Newfinese?

This week Pegman takes us to the Newfoundland and Labrador province of Canada. Your mission is to write up to 150 words inspired by the location. Feel free to use the photo supplied with the prompt, or roam anywhere within the province for your own view.

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

How could I resist the one province I have yet to visit? I was gonna go the Gander 9/11 route but changed my mind, though it is a worthy story to share.  Instead I went light.  Have you ever heard two Newfies speaking to each other? I think it’s as bad as two Scots! Indeciferable….

Do you Speak Newfinese?

We love to tease our Newfies – there is no shortage of jokes on attacking their supposed stupidity and enjoyment of beer (what’s wrong with that?). Not fair, really. No more fair than dumb blonde or Polish jokes, come to think of it.

Yeah, they can be really hard to understand. Their dialect is particular to their corner of Canada. A mix of Irish, French, English all turned into super-fast gibberish for most of us. Problem to them is we don’t listen fast enough!

“Stay where you’re at ’til I comes where you’re to.”

“Whadda ya at, b’y?”

“This is it.”

“Ow’s she cutting?”

“Oh, y’know, like a knife.”

“B’y y’don no nobody who don want nudding don, d’ya?”

“Sorry. Wait a fair wind.”

“Me nerves is rubbed right raw.”

“‘Ang on to yer draws. It’ll come.”

“What odds?”

“Do you want some takin up?”

“Not hungry. How ’bout a beer?”

 

Can’t have a Newfie post without Great Big Sea – one of many fabulous musical bands hailing from The Rock.

Here’s a link to Newfinese should you need a little aid 😉

 

 

Writing and Music Are But Two

“It’s interesting how we can connect so deeply with friends so different from ourselves. In fact, perhaps it’s these differences ultimately bonding us the most. The opportunity to expand our horizons.”
Brownell Landrum

When one is curious, doors open to worlds that would have remained unknown. This is not a bad thing for those who are content in their own little rented space and have no desire to expand their horizons. I am not one such person. As a matter of fact, I am far removed from that type of person. As a matter of more fact, I am easily bored by those contented persons. I know, this is not a nice thing to say. I choose to surround myself, either physically or virtually, with people who have something to teach me – even if they have no clue that they do.

I never considered myself a writer.  Sure, I kept a diary on and off over the years. Then a diary became a journal, also kept on and off (I can’t tell you how many “theme journals” are lined up with but a few pages scribbled upon).  Still, I would never have used that term until quite recently.  After certain new writer friends told me to stop.  I’m not fighing it any more. I am a writer.

Like my diary/journal days, I started and stopped a few times. I’ve used Blogger, https://dalesdelectables.blogspot.com/ and Tumblr (discovering to my shock as I searched for my account that I had not one but two different blogs here!) https://dalesstuff.tumblr.com/ and https://dalesdelectables.tumblr.com/.

How I ended up in the blogosphere is beyond me. I cannot say how I discovered Blogger, Tumblr or even WordPress. Yet here I am.  I think I truly became a blogger/writer here at WP on August 12, 2013, when I wrote my first post.  Preparing for this post, I got lost in the dark hole that is the internet only this time it was my own stuff!

“The good writers touch life often. The mediocre ones run a quick hand over her. The bad ones rape her and leave her for the flies.”
Ray Bradbury, Fahrenheit 451

My curiosity with writing led me to “meet” unbelievable numbers of talented writers of all genres. Writers who don’t realise how much they challenge me to do better, to try new things. Things like different styles of poetry: haiku, double etheree, cleave, etc. Heck, I didn’t know there WERE styles of poetry beyond the twelve-syllable rhyming doohickies (OK, I jest, I know this one is an Alexandrine).  Trying to find my voice in short stories, keeping my personality involved. How cool is it that in these new writer friends, I have been asked to beta read their works?

“A good writer possesses not only his own spirit but also the spirit of his friends.”
Friedrich Nietzsche

I landed on my post I’m Inspired which truly sums up what makes me tick.  I am a Life Enthusiast who is always on the quest to move forward and learn.

“One ought, every day at least, to hear a little song, read a good poem, see a fine picture, and, if it were possible, to speak a few reasonable words.”
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Speaking of song, I am no musician but I love music.  My curiosity has led me to go see bands I’ve never heard of in all sorts of genres. I won’t lie – there is stuff I really can’t get into like Hardcore Punk or Black Metal. I just sit there in a daze wondering when my hell will end. But that’s me. If you love it, then by all means, ignore me!  Thanks to friends, I have discovered wonderful music like Manu Katché or the band we saw last Friday called Snarky Puppy. To think when my friend Dany suggested it, I thought it was something like black metal – well, wouldn’t you with a name like that?  How wrong I was. A funky, jazzy, world music, rock mélange of music that I would have missed out on, had I been the sort to not want to go outside of her box.

“Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot remain silent”
Victor hugo

 

I have promised myself to go to an opera. At least once in my life. I know I am being influenced by the movies but if Ronny can bring Loretta to the Metropolitain Opera House (Moonstruck) Edward can bring Vivian to the San Francisco Opera House (Pretty Woman) and both those women  be moved to tears, maybe I can, too!