Sunday Photo Fiction – ‘One for the road’

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         The journey was tedious. Six long hours on an endless motorway and Reg refused to stop. Not even for the toilet! He’d just done a course on mindfulness and stubbornly believed that the only way to commit to an activity was to focus on it completely without straying for a moment, even for something as essential as a loo break.

But then he saw the writing. It was hard not to really. ‘The Pies’ was bold and brazen and scrawled on the bridge overhead. Reg speeded up slightly when we went underneath and his face changed.

‘What time is it?’ he said.

‘1.30.’ I didn’t need to look at my watch.

‘Hmm,’ he replied and kept on driving, but when he saw the next ‘Services’ sign, he indicated left.

‘I thought we were’t taking a break,’ I said.

‘Just a short one.’ His face was deadpan. ‘I’m rather peckish, aren’t you?’

I nodded, quietly delighted.

I picked up a sandwich in Costa, then watched in amazement as Reg strode over to a pasty shop where he stuffed a steak and kidney pie into his mouth.

‘I’d forgotten how much I loved them,’ he said between mouthfuls. Then he ordered another.

‘One for the road,’ he said.

This post was written for Sunday Photo Fiction

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Sunday Photo Fiction – ‘Colour Therapy’

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‘Don’t think,’ said Ella. ‘Just choose. Follow your instincts.’

It was difficult. I’d always been a glass half full type of person yet the glasses which were half full contained liquids with colours that repelled me: a washed out, insipid sort of yellow; the kind of yellow your undies might turn should an errant grey sock creep into the load; a deep burgundy that smacked of cheap 70s suits and a washed out pink; the colour of flighty candy floss.

My favourite colour was cobalt blue and yet the glass with that shade of liquid was virtually empty. It’s such a shame I thought. That glass should be full.

‘You’re taking too long,’ said Ella. ‘I can see your mind working. Use your heart instead.’
I couldn’t decide so I closed my eyes, reached forward and grabbed the nearest glass to me.

‘Give it to me, dear.’ Ella’s voice was so kind and encouraging that I tentatively passed it over to her and opened my eyes. The glass I’d selected contained the yellow liquid.

‘Oh,’ I said, really disappointed.

‘It’s the sun glass,’ she said. ‘Good choice.’

And as soon as she said ‘sun,’ I saw something different in the yellow. I no longer saw washed out underwear but positivity, optimism and a glorious future, and when Ella started the reading, I knew that things were about to change for me.

This post was written for Sunday Photo Fiction

‘The things that daddies do’ – FLASH FICTION FOR THE PURPOSEFUL PRACTITIONER: WEEK #21 – 2016

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The opening sentence for the May 19th Flash Fiction for the Purposeful Practitioner: “This can’t be that hard.” Please use this sentence (or this thought) somewhere in your flash.

The Things that Daddies do

This can’t be that hard. Daddy plays the piano every morning and he says it’s easy. He zips his fingers along the keys creating the most beautiful songs and music, and people clap and sing along and tell him how wonderful he is and what a talent he has. He tells me that I must take after him as my fingers are as thin and lean as his, and that that’s a sure sign that I have the gift.

I started lessons last week. With an old lady called Mrs Bradford, who says ‘good, dear,’ ‘more slowly, dear,’ and stuff like that. She gave me a piece of chocolate cake afterwards and said I’d done well.

I want Daddy to teach me, but he says he can’t as he’s my dad and dads don’t do things like that. Dads do things like take their boys fishing and climbing. Only he doesn’t do those things either. I’m hoping that if I practise and get as good as he is, then he’ll do those things that he says that daddies do.

Written for Flash Fiction for the Purposeful Practitioner: Week #21– 2016

‘Moving mural’ – FFfAW (65th challenge)

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This week’s photo prompt is provided by S. Writings.

The festival tickets were 200 each. Car rental 300.                                                   ‘Only 100 each if we split it,’ said Anna.
‘I agree,’ said Jane. ‘Imagine how cool we’ll look, driving there in that!’
The car she had her eye on was a moving mural, covered with bright images of bridges, houses and exquisite birds, and two against one, I had to agree.
On the day of the festival, we donned trilbies, sunnies and maxi dresses and headed off, basking in the admiring comments that accompanied us there.
‘Funky car.’ ‘Cool motor.’ ‘Love your style!’
‘See, told you!’ said Jane. ‘It was well worth the money.’
We parked up and took out the tent, but two hours later when the sun had set and the bands were playing, we were still putting up the tent, while our previous admirers ambled past sniggering.
‘Not so cool now, are we?’ I said.

This post was written for Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers

Sunday Photo Fiction -‘The Town in the Wood’

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‘There used to be a town there, you know.’ Jim waggled his walking stick vaguely to the left, but didn’t stop.
‘You mean to say people actually lived there?’ It was hard to believe as the place was a mass of gorse, brambles and bushes, the only sound the plaintive call of a distant cuckoo.
‘Yep, that’s right. Take a look if you don’t believe me.’
‘When you say ‘town,’ what exactly do you mean?’ I had visions of a thriving little place with pizza restaurants and department stores, squirrelled away from civilisation in the middle of this wood.
‘I don’t know exactly but if you look hard enough you’ll find something. Not much left though.’
‘Do you mind?’
‘Sure, go ahead.’
So I ploughed my way through the entangled bracken, forging a path with my walking stick, and after a few minutes I reached a clearing, with nothing apart from a large box and an unhinged door. I poked around a bit and a black cat sprang out. It hissed at me and vanished, its tail swishing as it went.
‘Anything to see?’ shouted Jim.
‘Not much,’ I replied and began to retrace my steps, wondering how an entire community could have disappeared overnight like that.

This post was written for Sunday Photo Fiction

SoCS – ‘Children’

Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is: “apparent/a parent.” Use either one or both. You choose. Enjoy!

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My niece, Imogen and me

I’m not a parent and although I could say that on the whole my life has turned out pretty well and I’ve reached a stage where I can look back and feel happy about what I’ve achieved and the life choices I’ve made, one regret I can admit to is not having had children.I’ve always had maternal instincts. When I was younger I figured that having children would be something that would naturally happen when I got older, but when I had a real chance to settle down with someone wonderful that I loved (way back at the tender age of 22), I simply wasn’t ready. I was still restless and felt I had a whole life to live till I was.

When I reached 30 I went travelling for a year in Australia and the other day I found an old diary with a list of my future children’s names scrawled in red pen at the back that I’d compiled while sunbathing on a catamaran in the Whitsunday islands. At that time I still believed I’d have children, and in the years that followed, I dated (a lot), partly because I was panicking that I was running out of time. But I realise looking back, that I wasn’t terribly happy. I was dating compulsively and for the wrong reasons, and it was only once I reached 40 that I started to relax a little. I had nieces and nephews by then & I was tutoring children so that in part went some way to relieving my maternal instinct. I now have a cat and that helps further!

I will always want children but I think it’s just one of those things that I have to learn to live with. I manage to deal with it by focusing on other things that are important to me such as writing and friendships. I suppose I could have settled down with several different people in the past but it simply didn’t feel right at that time and that feeling of ‘rightness’ is what has always guided me in life and will continue to do so.

This was my post for SoCS

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