When Cookies Cured Everything

Santa Clara County, CA  Lockdown Day #40 (Better Known As 40 Days And 40 Nights)

I am really blessed to be locked down and have a precious 6/7 year old neighbor meeting with me, on our balconies, each day.  Especially today when I had had a total meltdown because of an email password issue and had probably yelled some profanities that filtered, quite loudly, through  our shared walls.  Later, he and I meet on our balconies:

Me:  OMG M I’ve had a horrible day today.  (I’m a believer in just putting it out there like it is since he probably knew anyway. So why pretend?)

M:  Horrible?

Me:  Yes.  Really horrible.

M:  Just a minute.  (He leaves and returns with a handful of packaged cookies)  Here, take these.

Me:  (Almost in tears and the innocence of it all) Oh thank you M.  These will really help me feel better.

M:  Yes.

And we parted until tomorrow.  I mean really?  Okay?  Sometimes cookies are just as good as hugs.

Ellespeth

These Days – Flash Fiction

OMG!  The flu attacked us for almost a month 😦  Here I am though…

Time again for Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers.  So grateful to PJ for hosting this weekly challenge  This week’s photo prompt is provided by Goroyboy. Thank you Raymond!

Please follow lil froggy for more stories:)

Here is the photograph and my story:  Another Sissy and Buck thing

These Days

While Buck was recovering from his breakdown, Sissy ran their bookstore alone. People in town still liked the smell of books and enjoyed the adventure of browsing and touching and reading a chapter or two here and there.

The bookstore was right across the street from TJ’s chair caning shop. He sold canaries, too. TJ and Buck had been friends since they were kids.

Next to the caning shop was Charlene’s Ocean View Cafe. There wasn’t an ocean for 400 miles. She just liked the name.

During slow times, Sissy and TJ would walk over to the cafe and Charlene would bring a pot of coffee and a plate of pastries and the three of them would sit and stare out at the street.

And that’s how the days had been for Sissy since Buck went away to get healthy again. It’s amazing how fragile the mind is and how, when it breaks down, it can take so much else down with it. So Sissy didn’t mind slow Saturdays so much these days.

Ellespeth

173 words

The Scent of Lemon – A Journal Entry

Aguateca is a Maya site located in northern Guatemala’s Petexbatun Basin, in the department of Petén. The first settlements at Aguateca date to the Late Preclassic period (300 BC – AD 350).

It’s so dry here this winter.  I’m polishing furniture and wooden masks and bowls and mantles with lemon oil.  Everything smells so fresh and clean.  In the process I’m remembering old friendships…

I pick up a bowl a girlfriend painted for me years ago.  A small wooden bowl.  She painted it a twilight blue and a scene of a lake with egrets and a full moon.  Along the edge she painted the inscription:

The moon and the year travel and pass away
also the day
also the wind.
Also the flesh passes away
to the place of its quietness.

(Maya)

Ellespeth

 

Over A Vanilla Latte – A Flash Piece

Time again for Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers.  So grateful to PJ for hosting this weekly challenge. This week’s photo prompt is provided by artycaptures.wordpress.com. Thank you artycaptures!

Here’s the photograph and my story.  Please follow lil froggy for more stories.

Over A Vanilla Latte – A Flash Piece

Iris approaches Edith at the cafe.   “What are you doing?”

“I’m trying to make a swastika sign,” Edith replies.  She’s making shadow figures on her napkin.

“A what?”

“A swastika sign,”  Edith repeats.

“What in the world?”

“There’s a neo- Nazi group in our city.  I want to know what the sign looks like.  In case, you know, I see someone giving it on the streets.”  Edith takes a sip of  latte.

Iris gives Edith a questioning look.

“It’s not like I’m going to turn them in,”  Edith explains.  “Just never hurts to know who your neighbors are.”

“Come on, Edith.  We don’t have those sorts living here.”

“Well.  I hate to break the news to you,”   Edith holds out the paper and points to the morning’s headlines.”

“NEO- NAZI GROUP  TO RALLY ON TOWN SQUARE”

They drink Vanilla Latte.    Edith reads the article aloud.

Ellespeth

(143 w/c)

A Party Scene – Fiction

Time again for Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers.  So grateful to PJ for hosting this weekly challenge. This week’s photo prompt is provided by TJ Paris. Thank you TJ!

Please follow little froggy for more stories

Here is the photograph and my story.

A Party Scene
“Why are you trying to rescue her?” I asked my best friend. I’m not sure. Maybe I raised my voice a decimal or so but not so much that everyone at the party had to turn and stare at me.

“I’m not trying to rescue her.” Claire put her hand on my shoulder – maybe to calm me or maybe to shut me up.

“I saw him kissing her on our front porch!” I shook off her touch. “I was putting our daughter to bed while my husband was kissing one of our party guests.”

Our eyes met. She knew, of course. Marriages go through phases. One is lucky to escape them.

Ellespeth

(W/C 113)

My Blue Kitchen – Prose & A Short Poem

Ever since May, I am driving my best friend to her breast cancer treatments  Last week, we started the every day radiation – and hopefully last – part of her treatment.

I view life in a different way these days. My friend really needs my care. She needs this time to be all about her and helping her keep going with her treatments and to encourage her. And I intend to stand by and be there for her.  Her life is teaching me so much about my own.  And she says mine is teaching her.

On the other hand Ive been examining my own life. I don’t have children and live far from my family of origin. There has never been anyone in my life who has really needed my care before. Nonetheless, I have taken good care of those, close to me in my life, more – I believe – than was necessary or healthy for anyone. It’s become tiring, actually. And I have decided not to do that any longer.

I don’t know how I will carry out this or exactly what I want to accomplish in order to put myself first. I just know that something will be accomplished. My friend has another month of radiation. That gives me four weeks to feel my way through this. I, along with many others, wasn’t raised to take care of myself. I’ve heard about the concept and embrace it…living it will change my life.

There are such fragile balances to work out in life. I don’t doubt I can work them out, I just hate chaos.

If you’re still here,  here’s a poem I wrote about this:

My Blue Kitchen

We morph into something
someone unknown to us
and no one notices
until we are caught in the kitchen
crying.

Ellespeth

Fossils – Fiction

Time again for Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers.  Thanks to{{ PJ }}for hosting this weekly challenge.  please follow little froggy for more stories.

Here is the photo and my story…what a fantastic photo!

Fossils

Once a week, Polly and I met for lunch at Syd’s Deli & Market. We both loved sardine sandwiches.

We were legal secretaries for opposing  firms. That didn’t matter, though. We’d dated each others’ boyfriends, watched each others’ kids and, eventually, married each others’ husbands. And, when our husbands died, we just kept meeting for lunch once a week, at Syd’s Deli & Market.

That’s why it’s so hard to know where to begin this story. Does one start with the boyfriends or the kids or the divorces and remarriages, or the losses for which there are no words?

Ellespeth

This week’s photo prompt is provided by Louise with The Storyteller’s Abode. Thank you Louise!

At The Cafe Du Monde – Fiction

Time again for Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers.  Thanks to PJ for hosting this weekly challenge.  please follow little froggy for more stories.

Here is the photo and my story…

yinglanAt The Cafe Du Monde

“What?” Harriet asked.

Harriet and Sue had finally found a table at the Cafe Du Monde. They ordered beignets and two coffees.

“I don’t think Blake loves me anymore,” Sue repeated. “He doesn’t seem to pay attention to me.”

“You mean like he did when you first married?” Harriet glanced at Sue.

Something knowing passed between them. Something that remained unspoken.

“No,” Sue said.

She meant yes but she couldn’t say yes because that could be mistakenly interpreted and open her up to possibilities she didn’t, herself, understand just yet.

The waiter brought their order. For a few minutes, they ate in silence. All around them, other diners – some of them noisy – probably tourists, snapped pictures and laughed happily.

“What did you expect?” Harriet asked.

“I don’t know.”

But that wasn’t true. Sue had expectations, she just hadn’t defined them yet.

Ellespeth

thanks to Yinglan for our photo this week