Weekend Writing Prompt #96 – Seashore

I promise ya’all, when I have a new house bought and signed for, I shall let go of this obsession… Or will go on and on about my new digs.  So, maybe I cannot make any promises, after all!  Thank you, Sammi, for giving me reasons to work a little harder!

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

Seashore

Challenge

Trying not to feel woe is me

Mother, sisters, their families

On a cruise, taking in the sun

While I’m at home, not having much fun

I may feel a little bit sore

Not playing with them by the seashore

But! I might have missed the sale of my house

Now that would be something about which to grouse

Cook in Tuscany – La Chiusa, A Surprise, Innocenti and Farewell

*** EIGHT – yes, EIGHT!!  months have gone by since I returned from Tuscany.  I had so many issues with my computer that I had put this aside to finish later and later never seemed to come.  I am now, if you don’t mind, ready to finish the telling of this fabulous life-changing (for me) trip! ***

♣♣♣TWO YEARS – yes, officially TWO YEARS have, as of today, gone by since I started my Cook in Tuscany Trip.  I am not counting my day in Zug because that would have made yesterday the official two-year mark.  Though I am not pro-resoution, I have promised myself to finish every project I have started and that includes this one.♣♣♣

Now where was I….

Sigh, the last full day in Montefollonico, at La Costa with this fabulous group that made the start of my trip so wonderful. The next morning most would be hopping the van to Chiusi-Chianciano Station to continue their adventures elsewhere or return home.  But till then, we had a full day of wonderful stuff!

As per usual, we had our breakfast in the closed-in veranda before making our way to our last cooking class.  It is kinda funny that we had the van, considering how close we were!  We could easily have walked there and back but hey, why not?  And it’s not like any of us knew where we were going anyway.

This time we made our way to the restaurant La Chiusa, run by Michelin-star chef Dania, a woman who is somewhere in her 70’s but does not dress “accordingly” (whatever that is supposed to be)!  She is one sexy lady!  Though divorced, her husband still works with her.  How very European, eh?

Dania is very artistic and she showed us how to decorate plates with zucchini and beet purées.  We made stuffed zucchini flowers, pesto risotto, chicken stew, caramel nests, fig and caramel ice cream.  The colour of the egg yolks… I have no words.  And this standard for them!

Once most of the mains were started, Dania brought us through to her gardens, which were still amazing in September.  Huge kale, leeks, rows and rows of rosemary, basil, eggplants, peppers, fig trees, zucchini with their blossoms – it was amazing to walk through, while Dania chattered away, occasionally translated by the lovely Geraldine – same who had translated on truffle-hunting day.  I think I would spend hours on this bench, dreaming of what to pick next…

Group photo!

We then went into the “pasta” kitchen where Antonietta had us making ravioli stuffed with ricotta and lovely gnocchi.

All that hard work meant we got to eat al fresco on the terrace.

To return “home”, we decided to walk this time.  It was just up a hill, less than a kilometre and let’s face it, walking was not a bad idea.  As we entered the gates of Montefollonico, we were chattering and laughing when I heard “Dale?”.

What the… I spun around and there was Pierre.  One of Mick’s close friends and former clients.  Oh. Em. Gee.  You cannot make this stuff up!  I mean, come ON!  This is not THE rocking place of Tuscany.  This tiny village is tucked away in the middle of nowhere!  I can still hear Donna saying:  “You turned French Canadian in front of my eyes!”  Speaking of eyes, the whole gang got all misty-eyed at seeing us hug.  Pierre looked at me, then up at the sky and let out a “Mick, tabarnac!”  He said he was a little bit of a believer but now was full-fledged.  I had no idea he and his wife, Geneviève, were there on vacation.  And it was his in-laws who wanted to go visit there.  What were the chances?

Pierre and Me

We exchanged emails and made arrangements to hook up in two days.  So. Very. Cool.

We had a few hours to kill before our next adventure and Sandy wanted to deliver an apron to Dania in thanks.  So I joined Donna and her for a walk back to La Chiusa and Dania.

Our last excursion was down the street from LaCosta to Innocenti Wines.

We were greeted by Vino, Vittorio Innocenti’s sweet dog.  We entered and a few feet in, found ourselves in a fairly dark and musty wine cellar with the big casks.  Vittorio and Laura (Geraldine’s mum) were waiting for us to give us a tour.  Not a very big one!  The place is quite small and feels very intimate.

It was our last night together! How quickly it passed.  How much fun we had.  The memories created will remain forever, of that I am certain.  Friendships created and with the magic of Facebook, maintained.

Our last supper was at La Costa in the closed veranda as the evening was quite cool.  We had a lovely feast of pork chops and the lemon roasted potatoes and balsamic roasted cipollini, three types of crostini (mushroom, roasted tomato and olive), salad and a birthday cake for Cindi and Alison!  A perfect ending to a perfect week in perfect company.  Linda and George gave us each a lovely ceramic plate as a memento.  We would save our good-byes for the morrow.

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

Part 5

Part 6

Part 7

 

 

Vacation in Roswell, New Mexico – Friday Fictioneers

Good Wednesday-Friday, my peeps!  You know it, it’s Friday Fictioneers time!  This week I’m doing something new.  Frank over at A Frank Angle, wanted to play indirectly by suggesting a collaboration of sorts with me.  I send him this week’s photo prompt, he then gives me the title or idea.  So voilà!  This here is the result 😉  I really did try to stay away from dialogue.  Couldn’t do it for this one. Hope y’all don’t mind!

Thank you always to Rochelle for keeping us in line – or doing her best to 😉 .  This week, she chose this photo from Ted Strutz.  Thank you, Ted, for allowing us to use and abuse it for this challenge!

Should this picture jump up at you and makes you think of something to say, then please, by all means, join our merry band of misfits and share it with us!  Click on Rochelle’s name for the rules and regs or click on the blue frog below to read more interpretations…

Add the frog to your blog by clicking here

Vacation in Roswell, New Mexico

“You have GOT to be kidding me.”  Shanna watched Charlie set up his camera and tripod in the middle of the field, using the car lights to see.

“What?  So far, we have done all the stuff you wanted to do:  Farmer and Artisan’s Market, Peco Flavors Winery, and we toured the International Air Center – ok, that was for me.  Still, can’t I just do this?

Shanna sighed.  “Yes, of course.  But c’mon, you know it was proven that it wasn’t a UFO that landed way back in ’47.”

“So they say, Shanna, so they say. Can’t hurt to look, right?”

 

Colour Me Green – What Pegman Saw

Why am I writing at 3:00 a.m.?  Because my boy has some friends over, and though I went to bed hours ago, they are still going strong.  Somehow sleep eludes me.  Weird, eh?

So, I checked my email and what do I see there?  What Pegman Saw!  Might as well be one of the early-birds!  Thank you to Karen and Josh for hosting this great writing challenge.

This week Pegman takes us to Abaco, Bahamas. You won’t find much in the way of streetview out in this neck of the Bahamas. Mainly because you won’t find much in the way of streets. You can use the photo provided, or dangle Pegman over the map to find your own slice of paradise.

Your mission is to write 150 words inspired by what you find. Will you treat us to comedy? Tragedy? Sci Fi Slipstream Historical Fiction? Your only limit is your imagination. And of course the previously mentioned 150 words. Once you’ve polished your story-poem-essay, share it with other Pegman contributors using the link up below.

Colour Me Green

So, you go away for two weeks every year?

Yeah.  It’s like a timeshare.  I’m never sure where I’m going until a month or so before I leave.

So, you’ve known since we’re together that you’re going, though.

Well yeah.  Like I said, I go every year.  Found out it was the Bahamas a little over a month ago.

I see.  And, you couldn’t tell me when things got serious between us that you would be going on vacation.   You chose to tell me two weeks before you leave.

I’m telling you now.  What’s the big deal?

Maybe I would have liked to have known about it.  To go with you.

You can’t. You’re not on my invitee list.  I’m going to ask them if I can add you for next time. Why you are so upset?

Maybe it’s just envy.  Surely can’t be any other reason to be upset.

 

Back Then – What Pegman Saw

Good Saturday, my peeps!  I have been reading Rochelle‘s Pegman stories for a while now, wondering if I should play or not.  Today I decided to play!  Of course, when I told Karen I was considering it, she encouraged me to do so.  So I did. 😉 

***

This week Pegman takes us to Haiti’s neighbor, the Dominican Republic, in the central Caribbean. Feel free to use the crazy capture Karen posted, or find your own photo sphere anywhere within the country’s borders.

Your assignment is to produce 150 words (or less) inspired by this week’s location. Will it be fiction? Essay? Poetry? The only limit is your imagination. After you’ve polished your piece, you can share it with other participants at the link up:

Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic

Word count:  150

Back Then

“Holy moly this place has changed!  Do you remember what it looked like back in 1985?  I can’t believe it was 32 years ago.  Doesn’t age us at all, does it?” she laughed.

“Yeah, it’s crazy.  Back then there were wide open spaces and what, three hotels and one under construction?”

“Something like that.  Let’s see, ours, the Dorado Naco; Villas Dorado; Jack Tar.  Holiday Inn?  Was that one there?  And I think it was the Eurotel that was under construction.”

“Oooh… so a big five on this long stretch.”

“Now look.  It’s wall-to-wall hotels and everyone is packed like sardines on the beach.  I can’t even find a lounge chair or parasol or even a spot to lie my towel down!  This blows.  Why do things have to change so much?”

“I feel your pain, Dee.  I miss the peaceful wide-open spaces.”

“And I miss my bikini-body from back then, Dan!”

A Disney Birthday – Friday Fictioneers

Good Hump Day, my fabulous readers…. or to us in this wacky group, Happy Friday Fictioneer Day!  Our wonderful Rochelle keeps on keepin’ us on and we’re all the more grateful for it. This week, she chose J. Hardy Carroll‘s picture.  Love the vintage feel of it.  If you want to add your 100-word story, please do so, by clicking on the blue frog and adding your link.  It is a lot of fun, a great exercise in cutting out the unnecessary and teaches you how to get to the point!

A  Disney Birthday

“Disney!  Woo hoo!  We are going to Disney!  For my birthday!  This is gonna be the BEST one ever!”

His excitement could not be contained.

“Did you know they give you six fast passes for the best rides for any time you want to use them?”

He was positively fit to be tied.

“And then you get special name tags and you get a free picture and I wonder if they even feed the birthday boy?”

She could not help but smile at his enthusiasm.

“Yes, Dear.  You told me, many times.  You don’t turn 46 every year now, do you?”

***

Yes, the biggest kid was the most enthusiastic!

Ask For Directions – Friday Fictioneers

I am very happy to say I am typing this from a real computer, not an iPad, at my desk, surrounded by boxes and boxes and boxes… Seriously.  How many books and bobbles do I have, already?

Instead of “doing the right thing” and emptying said boxes and placing the books I shall be keeping into the bookshelves, I find myself much happier writing my little memoir and sharing it with you, lovely readers.  A huge thank you to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for hosting this party, coming up with fabulous stories herself (sometimes two!) each and every week.  As well, we cannot do a photo prompt without a photo, so, shout out to Kent Bonham for this week’s pic.

To participate, just click on the blue frog and you will be brought to the lineup of a bunch of fabulous writers, each one give us a different story.  Try it, you’ll like it!

©Ken Bonham

Genre:  Humourous Memoir

Word count:  Toujours 100

Ask For Directions

 

“The stupid signs for the 417 have disappeared!  Now, where do we go?”

“Hang on, lemme see…”

“Dammit!  I’m stopping to ask for directions again.”

“We have stopped three times already.  I cannot believe we get lost every single time we drive through Ottawa!  This is ridiculous!”

 

I watched Mick wipe his brow with the back of his hand.  It was minus 37ºC, the car window was open and he was sweating like a horse.

 

“You are ridiculous, you know that?  We could never participate in Amazing Race!  Every time we’d get lost, you’d freak out!”

“I know, Rog, I know.

***

Mick could not stand being lost.  I teased him mercilessly about it.  Once, I went on a “by-myself-weekend”.  When I came back, I told him:  “Know what I did while I was out in the Townships?  I took a road that I had no clue where I would end up!”   Needless to say, he responded with a “hardy-har-har…”