Consumed – Friday Fictioneers

Good Wednesday morning, my readers. I hope your weather has cooled a bit as ours has. (Those who have been cooking these past weeks, that is) Rochelle is busy sunning herself on the beaches of South Carolina and has rerun this picture by Randy Mazie from December 2013. It’s before my time so is new to me!  Thank you, Rochelle, for hosting even when you are out gallivanting!

Click on the blue frog below if you wanna add your own 100-word story.  G’head, don’t be shy!

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Consumed

He would have to use a surreptitious, if not furtive, approach to getting close to her as her barriers were firmly in place. He wondered briefly why this was so then dismissed it as unimportant. He was not attracted to easy.

Bit by bit, moment by moment, day by day, he made progress, searching for and finding her every vulnerability, fulfilling her every desire. Her barricades crumbled as he charmed and wove his way in.

When she was finally completely consumed by him, he strangled the life out of her. He got what he wanted and was no longer attracted.

****

For you those of you who’ve passed by a tad later, you are lucky, well, I like to think so, anyway, in that I have written the follow up of this here tale. To read it, just click here.

Fête Nationale au Québec

Today is June 24. For many, this simply is another day in the first days of official summer (northern hemisphere) month of June. In Quebec, it is something else entirely. It is supposedly celebrated by French Canadians across Canada and the few stragglers in the States as well – I have no proof of such celebrations so shall take Wikipedia’s word for it.

It is the feast day of St John the Baptist, a Jewish preacher who baptized Jesus in the River Jordan. So how the hell did he become the Patron Saint of Quebec?  And when did the patriotic and political tone for French Quebecers start? And why in the name of all that is holy did I choose to work in a place that is not only open, but is celebrating the anniversary of their opening business?

For many Quebec Anglos, it is simply a statutory holiday. I am one of the lucky ones who has both French and English, well, actually it is Scottish, blood flowing in my veins.  I don’t do that whole “barricade yourself in your house until it passes” thing. Actually, until I worked in a certain company, I had never heard of such a thing. Whatevs, I digress. I party like a Pea Soup on this day – coz I am.

So, because inquiring minds (me) want to know, I went a-digging to get the facts and figures and share with you, my readers, the whole story behind the Fête Nationale du Québec.

The Feast of Saint John the Baptist, or Midsummer, was a happening thing in the Ancien Régime (middle ages) of France. Stands to reason when the first French colonists came over to what became Acadia, they needed a reason to keep the party going. Let’s face it, life was not an easy thing over here in the wilds of Canada. Just think, the first recording of celebrations happened on the shores of Newfoundland in 1606 and then things got ever so more wild on June 23rd, 1636, on the banks of the St. Lawrence River when a bonfire was created and five cannon shots were fired.

In 1834, Ludger Duvernay, a journalist of influence for the newspaper La Minerve, and other patriotes, attended at St. Paddy’s Day parade in Montreal and said hey, if the Irish can have a day, why can’t the French Canadiens also?  And so, the charitable Association Saint-Jean Baptiste was formed and that following June 24th, there was held a grand banquet with 60 francophones and anglophones of Montreal where was sung the song Ô Canada! Mon pays, mes amours (Oh Canada, My country, my loves) – not to be confused with today’s national anthem “Oh, Canada”. The Canada in this song refers to Lower Canada, i.e. today’s southern Quebec. They repeated the celebrations in ’35, ’36 and ’37.

Of course, the English-French thing has been going on forever and a day here in Quebec and way back in those years, there was the Lower Canada Rebellion between les Patriotes québécois and the British so no celebrations happened again until 1843, when the official Saint Jean Baptiste Society, backed by the Catholic Church was formed and officially charted by 1849. Bonfires became a tradition and the first parades started happening.

Ah yes, the Patron Saint part… That happened in 1908.  This helped to re-enforce the connection between Saint Jean Baptiste Day and French-Canadian patriotism. By 1925, this day was declared a provincial holiday in Quebec and during the turbulent political 1960’s, this holiday became very political and by 1977 the holiday became known as La Fête Nationale du Québec, and was completely separated from the church.

Bonfires have been replaced by fireworks and the parades still take place (though, I for one, am not really a parade-goer so I refrain).  Last night from the windows of golf club (around 10 pm), I could see the fireworks happening. Could have been from my town of Boucherville, or the town of Ste-Julie or, nah… I don’t think we would have seen the ones from Montreal!

There were definitely fireworks happening in my home town and off a Facebook Page, I got the following beautiful shot

©Alain Lemay

Guess I’ll be participating in the celebrations vicariously through others once again this year.

Bonne Ste-Jean mes amis!

Till then, I leave you with one of my (many) favourite québécois chanteurs, one that brings me right back to my last year of high school, Paul Piché

Childhood – Friday Fictioneers

It’s Wednesday, so I’m Friday Fictioneering!  Yessiree.  This photo by J. Hardy Carroll, chosen by our facilitator by excellence, Rochelle, brought me immediately to childhood.  One like I had.  When times were simpler and freer.

Care to join the party?  Click on the blue frog below to add your 100-word story.  G’head, it’s fun!

Click mo to join in!

Childhood

“Go outside and play. Be home for supper.” Mom dismissed us to go do what children do.

We went to the park. We played games we invented. We hung upside down on the monkey bars. We played hide-and-seek. We disputed. We negotiated. We settled.

Always too soon, Daddy whistled for us to get home for supper.

We jumped on our bikes, disbanding with promises to be back at the park tomorrow.

Nowadays? Kids aren’t allowed out of sight of their parents’ watchful eyes. Everything is scheduled. They’ve no freedom to figure out how to settle the score on their own.

 

Stories My Father Told Me – Friday Fictioneers

Good Wednesday morning my readers!  You know what day it is? Yep… hump day AND Friday Fictioneers day!  Today’s photo of a synagogue reminded me of my dad and his many stories of growing up in Montreal.  Thank you, Rochelle, for keeping this challenge interesting week after week.  And thank you Roger Bultot for allowing us to use your photo.

To join in the fun, click the blue frog below.  Not sure how?  Click on Rochelle’s name for the rules and regs.  Fun and teaches you to use your words sparingly!

©Roger Bultot

Click me!

 

Stories My Father Told Me

Dad always said he was a “goyim mit a Yiddishe kopf” (sic).¹  Grew up in the same ‘hood as Mordecai Richler, and considered himself a real Duddy Kravitz.  Loved to talk about “Shtunks”² — real name, Stringer — owners of the general store that he and his buddies used to torment in their youth. He sure respected the tattoo on their arms, though.  Was so pleased to introduce me to Mrs. Stringer before she passed.  “Such a bad boy was your father!” she scolded and laughed.  We finished our tour with a Wilensky Special.

Why did I not write these stories down?

___________

¹Men with a Jewish head (goy would be singular 😉 )

²Stinkers

Cheers

Korikancha – What Pegman Saw

Don’t think I’ve ever participated in a Pegman so late but there you go.  In my efforts to help this challenge stay alive, late is good, right?

Thanks to Josh and Karen for trying to keep this great challenge alive.

Today Pegman treks down to the Andes for a stroll through Cusco in central Peru. Once the capital of the Inca Empire, Cusco is now known for its archaeological remains and Spanish colonial architecture. Remember to breathe… the elevation is 11,000 feet.

Stroll around until you find a picture that grabs you and write 150 words. When you’re done, click on the froggy below to link your story and comment on others.

click me!

Korikancha

Pachacuti looked on from the beyond in disgust.  It is the end of us.  The great and powerful Inca are no more.  Those savage Spanish heathens – they dare call themselves conquistadors – have destroyed all that we are, that we built.  That I built.  My empire.

He watched as Atahualpa, the last Sapa Inca, was murdered despite the ransom agreed upon.  The fool!  80,000 men at his disposal and yet he was ambushed by one man, Hernando Pizzaro.

My beautiful Temple of the Sun, built with the finest ashlar masonry.  I wanted it to be more, so I had the sides plated with 700 sheets of gold for each of the gods: Inti (Sun), Killa (Moon), Chaska (Stars) and Illapa (Thunder/Lightning/Rainbow); the garden, adorned with silver and gold life-sized statues.

For what? To take all the treasures, destroy it and build an ugly church to pray to their supposed better god.

Some Dare, Some Dare Not – Friday Fictioneers

Good Wednesday morning, my peeps!  Yessiree, today’s hump day is brought to you by Friday Fictioneers!  I know, I know, the name stuck despite many of us writing on Wednesdays.  Think The Piano Guys – there is no mention of the cellist, who, in my opinion, is the bigger piece of the group.  Anyway, I digress!  This week, Rochelle chose this most interesting picture by our Sandra Crook, she, whose stories are always top shelf. If you feel inclined to play along, just click on the blue frog below and add your 100-word story.  Not sure how it works?  Click on Rochelle’s name for the how-to’s!

  Click me!

Some Dare, Some Dare Not

“Why do you like to walk on that beam, Tina? It’s slimy and gross.”

“It’s not that slimy, Josie. Plus when you go all the way to the end, you feel like you’re at the edge of the world, wild and free.”

“But it’s not safe, Tina.  It scares me to watch you go way out there.”

“Don’t worry so much.  You should try it.”

“God, no…”

Fifteen years later, Josie sat on that very beam, remembering, missing their childhood, missing her sister, gone to the edge of the world on adventures while she had remained home, safe and secure.

A Better Plan – Crimson’s Creative Challenge #23

Thought I was gonna forgo Crispina’s weekly challenge.  My head was too stuffed up to think up something half-assed decent.  Feelling better and since Zeke is too tired to go for a walk with me as he already went a-running, I figured I’d let him rest whilst I cooked up something for Crispina’s wonderful cabin photo.  Now I don’t usually do sequels, but I couldn’t resist. To find out the rules and regs (I mean, there are still two days before her next one, so… yanno, if’n ya want to) click here.

A Better Plan

Do think I’m going to trust you after that last crazy stunt you pulled trying to add spice?  Talk about overkill.”

Bill had the grace to look contrite.  “Not one of my finer moments, admittedly.  But Harry’s plan backfired, too, remember?  Helen had the crap scared out of her but it all worked out in the end.  Now they’re both spies!”

“For the love of…. that was a movie, you fool!  Plus Harry really was a spy so he was better equipped.”

” Yeah. Anyway.  Trust me.  Let me blindfold you.”

“No!”

“Gin, I promise.  This one you will love.  Turn around.”

“You better not—”

“Shhhh.  Now, sit quietly while I drive, please?”

Seething yet curious, Gin sat back, arms crossed, lips a thin line.

Bill stopped the car, opened the door for her, helped her out and free’d her eyes.

“Ta-dah!  Our weekend getaway.  Just you and me.”

“Oh, Bill!”

****

150 words