The House Hunt

92191E54-4EAE-4690-BCF5-918D8E4B5517“This house is in a shambles,” Sandra said. “I’m ready to march outta here right now. I just don’t see how we can take this on.”

“But wait, honey” Josh said, “Didn’t you see that beautiful waterfall and how the water cascades down and flows under the bridge?” It’s a real treasure.”

“Yes, I admit that the property’s setting is idyllic,” Sandra said, “but the house itself, no way. I just don’t want to go through the grind of major another renovation project.”

“Fine,” Josh said. He whipped out his iPhone and started looking at other listings in the area on Realtor.com.

“Put that away,” Sandra said. “I want us to go through a human real estate agent. Clearly finding suitable properties on the internet just isn’t working out.”


Written for these one-word prompts: Word of the Day Challenge (shambles), Scott’s Daily Prompt (march), Your Daily Word Promot (cascade), Ragtag Daily Prompt (bridge), Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (treasure), HW Daily Word Prompt (grind), and Nova’s Daily Random Word (Internet).

Photo Challenge — Life Imitates Art

DFE95346-FB4C-46E3-929C-0F289608AC19I had dozed for a few minutes, the rhythm of the swaying bus getting the best of my tired eyes. An abrupt stop, followed by a blaring horn, woke me up. When I opened my eyes and looked across the aisle, I saw a vision, a living Mona Lisa.

I blinked and rubbed my eyes, but she was still there, staring at me with her Mona Lisa smile, her right hand resting on her left, just like the pose in the da Vinci portrait.

I realized that I couldn’t not say something to this personification of one of the world’s greatest work of art. “Excuse me,” I said. “Are you an model?” I asked.

“No,” she said, maintaining her slight smile. “I’m a nurse.”

“Did anyone ever tell you that you look just like the woman in the da Vinci masterpiece,” I said.

“Yes, I get that a lot,” she admitted.

“Do you intentionally dress that way, wear your hair that way, sit that way, and smile that way,” I asked.

“No, of course not,” she said. “This is just who I am, how I dress, how I sit, and how I look.”

The guy in the seat next to her got off the bus at the next stop and I moved over and sat next to her. “My name is Leo,” I said.

“Hi Leo, I’m Mona,” she said, holding out her right hand for me to shake.

“Mona?” I said. “Seriously, your name is Mona? What’s next? Are you going to tell me you’re last name is Lisa?”

“Oh no,” she said. “My last name is Schaefer. Lisa is my middle name.”

“Get out,” I said. “Your name is Mona Lisa Schaefer?”

“Yes,” she said. “And you are?”

“I told you, my name is Leo.”

“Leo who?” she asked.

“Leo Vincenti”

“And what do you do, Leo Vincenti?”

“I’m a painter.”

“As in houses?”

“No, as in portraits,” I answered. “In fact, I’d like to paint your portrait, Mona. You have a classic, timeless look.” I pulled out my sketch pad and a piece of charcoal and quickly sketched her. When I was done, I held it up to showed it to her.

“Oh, this is my stop,” she said, and hurriedly got off the bus.E0FB8DF3-1F77-45B4-ACE8-2EDEC74A7B3F.jpeg


Written for this week’s Photo Challenge from Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie. Photo credit: Reddit.com. Drawing credit: Pinterest

The Wrong Solution for the Wrong Problem

75F050AF-1AAF-4D3A-9907-9228BEC6B74DThe following is taken word-for-word from a blurb I saw in today’s morning newspaper.

The Trump administration is planning to roll back Obama-era policies aimed at ensuring that minority children are not unfairly disciplined, arguing that the efforts have eased up on punishment and contributed to rising violence in the nation’s schools.

The decision culminates a nearly year-long effort begun by the Trump administration after the massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. The deaths of 17 students and staff members last February prompted lawmakers in both parties to demand tougher gun laws.

But President Trump abandoned that focus and instead empowered a school safety commission, led by Education Secretary Betsy DeVos. Almost immediately, the commission turned away from guns, and instead scrutinized the Obama administration’s school discipline policies, though none of the most high-profile school shootings were perpetrated by black students.

Talk about implementing the wrong solution for the wrong problem. This article is just another example of the racist nature of the entire Trump administration. In my humble opinion, of course.

Further proof that we have the wrong president. A very, very wrong president.

Finish The Story — The Chapel, Part Last

41504FCB-7911-4C5A-A5AA-D77E6C909541Teresa, the Haunted Wordsmith, has this habit of starting a story and then pawning it off on another blogger to write the next part of the story. The “rules” are simple.

  • Copy the story as it appears when you receive it (and the rules please)
  • Add to the story in whichever style and length you choose
  • Be sure to pingback or comment on the original post please.
  • Please use the tag THWFTS
  • Tag only 1 person to continue the story

Teresa tagged Michael (Morpethroad), who tagged Crispina (Crimson Prose). Then Sadje (Keep it Alive) ran with it before tagging me.

So here’s what we have so far.

Teresa wrote:

Far beyond the city, in the middle of nowhere, sat a tiny chapel. No one knew who built it, why it was in the middle of nowhere, or why any traveler in need would always find the light on – but I know these things. I am alive because of Father Chris and the little chapel in the middle of nowhere.

I just turned eighteen and was so sure of myself. I knew everything I ever needed to know – at least I thought I did. I was an adult and didn’t need anyone’s permission to leave. So I did. I left home the morning of my birthday with a few clothes and what little money I had stuffed in a backpack. Mom and Dad weren’t up yet, which made it a little easier not having to listen to Dad ask why or listen to my Mom cry and ask me to stay. No, it was better the way I did it. At least it seemed that way at the time.

I boarded the Number 3 bus heading out of Jasper and …


And here’s what Michael wrote:

… noticed the light on in the chapel. I was curious as it was a shade of green I had not seen before. In the vestibule was Father Chris. He was a tall man, taller when he stood up, and he was standing there looking at me as I passed.

I watched, as around him, the green light seemed to throb as if suspecting I was flying the coop of my hometown. He was dressed in his customary black, but his clerical collar radiated a blinding white light. I looked away with a sense of betrayal and guilt.

I looked back through the window of the bus and found myself just passing the chapel, green light and Father Chris. This disturbed me, as the bus appeared to be travelling at a rate of knots by now having cleared the town limits.

Three times this happened, and I started to feel stuck in some sort of ground hog day. I then pulled the stop cord above me and alighted.

As the bus moved away I saw across the road the chapel, now dark, lights gone and Father Chris standing in the doorway in his radiant collar.

I found myself crossing the road and coming up to Father Chris who….


Here’s Crispina’s Addition:

… opened his arms as if he’d embrace me, his face collapsing into a picture of welcome relief.

“What is it?” I asked, for surely something had happened to cause him distress. But more than that, I wanted to know what that green light I had seen.

“Oh, my lad, my lad,” he said. “I’m so glad you have come. I’m to have a visitation.”

“A …? What, as in Jesus? Or a saint? Or …” I slapped my hand over my mouth “… no, you don’t mean the devil? Is that what the green light?”

He flicked his fingers into my face. “Silly boy! That ‘green light,’ as you called it, is just off Old Bess. But Old Bess is the problem.”

(I’d best explain. Old Bess was Father Chris’s exceedingly antiquated computer—steam-powered I shouldn’t wonder, it’s so old).

“So what’s up with her?” I asked.

“I think she’s not well. She refuses to access my records. And I have the bishop due any moment to inspect them. I don’t suppose …?”

The way he looked at me … what could I do but check out the ancient machine.

The fool of a Father Chris. He’d crammed a communion wafer into the thin slot of the floppy drive. I pulled it out and held it out accusingly. He colored up.

“But, my boy, my boy, I am so grateful. And just in time, for, Hark! That’ll be the bishop now.”

And true enough, a vehicle of sorts was drawing up outside the chapel. But when I looked out of the door …


Here’s what Sadje added:

… it didn’t look like a sort of transport the bishop would use. It was strangely shaped carriage, drawn by some creatures, which weren’t anything I had seen in my life. They had the body of a horse but very large wings attached to it. In fact the carriage came flying through the air on these “flying horses” and landed near us.

The person driving or flying the carriage stepped out and opened the door for the person inside to alight from it. The person who came out of the carriage could be a bishop, I suppose but from some other world. The whole of his body was emitting a strange white light. Father Chris welcomed him with utmost joviality and warmth. He was not deterred by the strange aura surrounding the bishop. In fact he acted as if it was nothing out of ordinary.

“Your Excellency, how kind of you to visit us in our humble abode,” gushed father Chris. “Please come inside, it’s too cold to stand out and chat.” He then instructed the coachman to take his flying horses to the side where a large barn stood. The bishop and father went inside and I followed them. I was wondering who this mysterious bishop was. Was he from some magical place or was I too tired and was imagining things?

When I entered the chapel behind them, the sight which met my eyes was so unusual that …


And finally, my very addition to the very long story:

… I let ought an audible gasp.

“Hey buddy, are you okay?” I heard a voice say.

“Father Chris?” I asked, “Is that you?”

“No, I’m not your father, kid,” the voice said.

I opened my eyes and looked around. I was still sitting on the Number 3 bus and the driver was talking to me. “What’s going on?” I asked him.

“You we’re having some sort of nightmare and you started screaming,” he said. “Listen kid, we’ve reached the end of the line. I’m heading back to the terminal on Main Street in Jasper. Do you want me to drop you off on my way back into town?”

“Yeah,” I said. “Can you drop me at Center Street?” As the bus headed back into Jasper, I saw the small chapel again. But there was no green light shining from within. Just the yellow glow of a standard light fixture. That’s when I realized that the whole thing — Father Chris, the green glow from the old computer, the flying carriage with the flying horses, and the strange bishop — was all just a dream. And now I was headed back home to be with my father and my mother for the holidays.

Even though it was not real, it was my dream encounter with Father Chris that made me see that I didn’t know everything and that what I really needed was be home with my family.


I’m not tagging anyone else. At almost 1,300 words, I think this story has gone on long enough.

So back to you, Teresa.

30-Day Song Challenge — Golden Oldies

Today we are asked for “a song from the year we were born.” Now we are talking about some serious ancient history here. I was born about nine months after World War II ended. I was literally one of the first of the Baby Boomers. I Googled the Billboard top 100 songs of 1946 and this is the song that was sitting at the number one position: