Friday, January 28, 2011

I prefer the other kind of blizzard

This week's Red Writing Hood prompt is: You are trapped (alone or with others) in a single location during the fury and/or aftermath of a blizzard of historic proportions. Keep the post under 1,000 words.

Lucas was a worrier my nature, and I knew he was scared. He kept his eyes on the white line, never blinking I'm sure.

When the south bound interstate traffic came to a 2 lane stand still, I realized I had made a mistake.

We shouldn't have tried to make it home. We were in the middle of nowhere. 10 miles away from the nearest exit in either direction.

Google image

I called Alex to let him know we were stopped. While I was on the phone I heard the sound of sirens, but Lucas & I couldn't see the source of the sound through the blizzard.

The ambulance finally passed us, but it quickly went out of sight again. I could only see as far as the SUV in front of us.

As time passed, Lucas really had to go. Bad. But we had nothing for him to go in. So as he opened the door of the truck, I reminded him to put his back to the fierce wind.

He slipped. But somehow didn't fall.

It was simply too cold and too difficult to 'go' and he got back in the truck.

Poor kid.

A few minutes later, a police officer came around to all the vehicles & told us to turn around because the interstate was closed in our direction.

I immediately called home & told Alex to get on-line to find some hotels in the nearest town. As I drove back in the direction I just came from, I couldn't see 5 feet in front of me.

Lucas was absolutely quite. He was staring at the fog line again, making sure I didn't go into the ditch.

We finally made it to the exit. Along with the 200+ other people from I-57.

Alex called & said the 3 hotels in the small town were all booked.


The only option was to get a room in the next town which was 13 miles north. So Alex booked a room for us while Lucas & I finally got something to eat (and go pee).

Ever so slowly, we followed a caravan of vehicles and actually made it to the hotel. Enter choir of angels singing!

We enjoyed the comfort of a warm comfortable room, relieved to be safe.

The next day, we traversed the still icy & snow blown interstate and made it home at last.

The whole reason for our travel (an amazing 4th grade basketball tournament) was completely overshadowed by the blizzard.

* So my "single location" was a truck. Is that cheating?

** This is actually a true story. Except it was Alex with Lucas instead of me. It's an experience I hope we don't have to repeat. Ever.

*** Word count = 491. Really? That's it? Hm.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Pass the what?

"You heard me. Pass the fruit pectin," the old man said to the teenage boy on the public bus.

The boy looked around, making sure the old man was talking to him. But instead of seeing people riding the bus, he saw giant strawberries sitting in the seats which didn't seem strange to him.

When the boy looked back, the old man was gone. The bus hadn't made any stops. He had just disappeared.

The next thing the teenager knew, he was singing Pour Some Sugar On Me - a song that was popular before he was even born - while cooking. He was adding citric acid to corn syrup in his grandmother's house. But not her current house. The house she lived in when he was a toddler.

As he did this, his 3rd grade teacher walked through the kitchen and said, "Oh sweeite. Be careful, you know how bad that high fructose corn syrup is for you, right?"

All of this seemed completely natural to him.

Until he woke up.

What's in your pantry? For this week's prompt, grab something out of your pantry and write a short piece - using all the words in the ingredients. It can be fiction or non-fiction, poetry or prose. My item was Smucker's Strawberry Jam.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Cuz it sounded like fun

When I read this prompt, I knew it would be fun!

Here it is...

"Your assignment is to write a short piece - fiction, non-fiction, poetry, whatevs - in which each sentence starts with a the next letter of the alphabet. Starting with "A." So, yes, your finished product will consist of 26 sentences."

Another day started out with big grey clouds & strong, steady snow. "Blah!" thought Erin. "Can we just have 1 day without snow?"

Don't get her started about the weather. Ever since she moved to Chicago she's had a hard time adjusting to it. For as long as she can remember she has hated the cold. Go figure she'd end up in a city with brutal winters.

How did a country girl from Texas end up in Chicago? It had to be fate, because she always thought she'd live where it was warm.

Jake had proposed a year ago, and the wedding was only a few weeks away. Keeping up with everything had become stressful for Erin. Leaving her family & friends to move to Chicago was hard. Making the long trip back to Texas for the wedding was what kept her focussed. Nobody ever doubted that the wedding would take place in her hometown.

On her way to work, Erin couldn't help but be distracted with her thoughts of the wedding. Particularly thinking about the reception. Quaint wasn't her style. Rowdy, fun, & lots of dancing was what she wanted.

Soon her last day of work was over, and she & Jake made their way to Texas. This day seemed so far away last year! Upon landing, Erin was greeted my her sister, mother, and father.

Various groups of friends showed up for the big event. When it was time for the dance, everyone knew it would be a great time. Xerox copies of pictures would be made for sure! YouTube videos from the wedding will probably be seen around the world! Zimbabwe too!

Whew! I did it! It got kind of tricky there at the end, but I think it worked. I can't wait to read everyone else's post.