I’ve been away too long, lost among overgrown untravelled paths this last while with no fiction in my mind nor fingertips. But I’ve found my way back to this favourite spot – Friday Fictioneers. It’s where storytellers gather to tell their tales of 100 words or so according to a photo prompt. We are hosted by our gracious host, Rochelle Wisoff-Fields of Addicted to Purple. Here is my tale of 99 words.
The glare of headlights nearly blinded her. She clung onto the steering wheel with all her might, willing the car to stay the course. Horns honked and blared. She willed herself not to scream. Everything was coming at her every which way. What kind of nightmare was she in? Was she sleeping or awake?
She remembers going down this road so many times. Oh, how she wishes she could forget. Memory lane is not what it is cracked up to be. Where’s the champagne and balloons? Where’s the laughter? Where’s John Travalta singing Staying Alive? Where’s……Oh my God, Nooo!
After the party is over, after all the drinks are gone, after all the speeches have been spoken, after everyone has gone home… We can relax and let our smiles fall. We can take our shoes off and drop our clothes on the floor. We can sigh, breathe and let our shoulders drop. We can wash the weariness off our faces, smile again, remembering the moments, faces, toasts and stories, feeling grateful that we have friends and family to invite and share.
After the party is over, after we can take no more, after we have come home, we can let our faces fall. We undress, hang up our clothes and stumble to the bathroom. Under the warm shower, we breathe and sigh with relief and contentment. We smile at the memories, stories and happy faces, feeling grateful to be invited.
After the journey is over and the dog collected, after the bags are unloaded, after a cup of tea and a glass of wine, after a meal cooked and ate, after a good night’s sleep…..After the bags are unpacked, the clothes laundered and hung, I am able to sit here, feet up, tap, tapping on the keyboard, feeling grateful for the journey, the hills and valleys, the laughter, the tears and the people who travelled with me.
It’s another day. I still have a million and one things to do. For now, let me rest in this space if I can, but difficult neighbours seem to be my cross to bear – especially the obsessive compulsive type. Right now I can hear the constant whine of her leaf blower. It’s like hearing fingernails scratching on a blackboard over and over. I don’t mean to be unkind but I wish she would disappear. It’s my evil twin speaking.
It stops and starts again, this never ending stream of irritation. I will breathe and sip my cuppa and tap away on my keyboard. There! It has stopped. Praise the Lord! I close my eyes, unfurl my eyebrows and let my shoulders drop. I am tired but it is a good day. The car is back from the shop with a set of brand new Michlin tires. Have tread, will travel far. No worries. I am ready, set and can almost go. It feels heady not to procrastinate.
Now if I can get to my tomatoes. There’s no end to them. Seems like I pick bushels of tomatoes and sunberries every day. I’m complaining a little now. Come winter I will be happy to have tomatoes for soups and spaghetti sauce. And those little berries will be delicious in muffins. Suffer now. Enjoy later. Oh, that whine has started again. It’s like being at the dentist’s.
The dishes are done and laundry hung. The Roomba is operating on its own in the living room. There’s still a million things to be done but isn’t there always? The tomatoes can wait. A few more hours on the vine will sweeten them more. That goes for the grapes also. Everything can wait.
It’s time for me to put up my feet and have my tea. What is it with us girls? We just can’t do without our cuppa. Life is so much better and easier with this pause in the day. I like to sit here in my favourite spot and savour the experience. Thoughts, pictures and words parade through my mind.
It is September, end of summer and the beginning of another season, school and work for some. For us it is a return to the city from the lake. Endings, beginnings and changes are ever with us. But for all that, the more things change, the more they remain the same.
It is easy to slip back into the same old ruts. The grooves are deep and the mud is sticky. It is only with grit and determination that I don’t fall over the slippery slopes again. Past experiences are painful but I do learn from them.
My ugly sister, my evil twin showed herself again, whispering her thoughts and feelings. I believed her at first but then I had to ask. Is that true? She was silent. I forgave her lies and loved her anyways. I loved her that was part of me.
We are stronger knowing we are part of each other. Even though with all the things that remain the same, we do not have to be the same. We can do different.