What’s in the Suitcase?

The Challenge:  Write a story about the suitcase sitting on the train tracks in exactly 99 words!

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“What’s in the suitcase, Ralph?”

“Well now, ain’t that the million dollar question?”  Ralph smirked.

Dopey was jumping up and down, anxious to find out.  “Uh…what’s in the suitcase, Ralph?”  

Ralph succinctly cut his eyes to Dopey.  Dopey noticed and hushed.

Ralph looked at the suitcase, thought of the deadline, “What the hell’s taking so long!?”

As if in answer, the train’s whistle blew. 

The suitcase was railroaded, it toppled in the air, and fell open beside the tracks. 

Access

Ralph, Chihuahua-In-Chief, looked inside. 

Dopey, Big-dog-sidekick, bounced up and down behind him…

“Uh…what’s in the suitcase, Ralph?”   (99 Words)

Photo from https://miragerry.livejournal.com/160945.html

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July 26 Flash Fiction Challenge

Word of the Day:  Succinct 

Daily AdditionWord of the Day:  Access

Fandango’s One Word Challenge:  Deadline

 

 

 

 

 

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Siren’s Song…A Haiku

Indigo amiss

Chasm to fathoms below

Sea’s eternal bliss.

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Siren’s Song by Lisa Hardy
Heeding Haiku With Chèvrefeuille Challenge:  Cooling Down
Word of the Day:  Lullaby
Daily Addiction:  Infinite
FOWC with Fandango:  Unknown
RDP:  Whisper

Reflections at International Harbor

Today’s Photography is inspired by RDP – Reflection

About a year ago, Corinne and I had the privilege of spending a couple days at National Harbor, which is located South of Washington DC along the Potomac River.

As a physician, she had a medical conference to attend, and as the wife of a physician, I was lucky enough to be able to tag along.  There was no indecision on my part!

I knew much of my time would be spent alone, and whereas some may find it pointless, I found I loved the long days alone, especially my quiet time at sunset.  I guess that’s one of the perks of being an introvert.

While walking along the shores of the Potomac River I was able to capture the views below.

I hope you enjoy them as much as I did.

Reflection 1
View of the Capitol Wheel from the marina at International Harbor

 

Reflection 2
Sunset view along the Potomac River at International Harbor

 

Reflection 3
Sunset by the pier at International Harbor

 

Reflection 4
Reflection of the Capitol Wheel as seen from the walking trail that hugs the Potomac River.

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Share Your World Challenge

The Share Your World Challenge (SYW) hosted by Cee Neuner, gives writers a place to congregate and “shoot the breeze.”  Each week, on Monday, Cee proposes four questions and welcomes us into her cyber living room to discuss and share our unique answers.  I would like to give a “heads up” or an “alert,” if you will, to all my fellow writers…come on in and let’s chew the fat for a while!

So, here we go!

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This week’s four questions are:  

  1. Since we are approaching the hottest part of our summer in the northern hemisphere, what’s your favorite ice-cream, frozen yogurt or sorbet flavor?  As a child growing up in rural North Carolina, the summers were long and days were hot.  Most of the time my hair was in pigtails like Pippie-Long-Stockings, and my feet were bare from sun-up to bedtime.  My days were care-free, romping around the neighborhood with my numerous “Heinz 57” hounds, or playing “Hide-and-Go-Seek” and “Cowboy’s and Indians” with my cousins who lived on the same dirt road.  Every now and then my mom would interrupt my play with a surprise visit to our local Tastee-Freeze.  I would always get a cone of soft serve vanilla ice cream.  Usually, we would sit outside at one of the scattered picnic tables to enjoy this rare treat.  The coldness of the ice cream was so refreshing, making the hot days just a bit cooler.  So to answer the question, I would have to say my favorite frozen treat is still a big cone of soft serve vanilla ice cream.  Now, you may think soft serve vanilla ice cream to be boring, but I beg to differ, for every time I pause to enjoy its soft sweetness I’m transported back into the world of hide-and-seek, cap-guns, and bow and arrows.
  2. How often do you people watch?  Do you remember the old television show, Bewitched?  Elizabeth Montgomery played the lovable neighborhood witch who could twitch her nose to make things appear, disappear, or to even clean a nasty house. (Damn!  Sure wish I could do that!)   Growing up I always had a major crush on this pretty lady.  (Kind of still do)  This loveable witch and her handsome husband, Darren, lived beside a nosy busybody who hid behind her curtains to spy at them with binoculars nestled to her nose.   This year for Christmas, Corinne, my wife, thoughtfully gave her bird-watching wife (me) a wonderful set of binoculars.  Now, you may think you know where this is going…but, I’m nothing like the busybody in Bewitched.  I never hide behind the curtains to spy at my neighbors.  No way!  Instead, I sit on the front porch, behind of the cover of our overgrown hedges to watch the goldfinches eating at the feeder beneath the maple tree in our yard.  The thing with goldfinches, though…they flitter and fly away to visit someone else’s birdfeeder.  In their absence, I tend to get a little bored and find my binoculars swaying to the left or swaying to the right.  It’s not my fault if the neighbors just happen to be in my field of vision.  Just saying…download
  3.  If you had a choice which would be your preference saltwater beaches, freshwater lakes, ocean cruise, hot tub, ski resort or desert?  Oh wow, this is an easy one.  Saltwater beaches all the way!  Growing up poor my mom didn’t have the money to take us kids on vacations to the beach, however, we had family living in the Appalachian Mountains of North Carolina.  Since we could stay at our beloved Aunt Bessie’s house we were able to get away and visit family while at the same time relaxing in the serenity of the mountains.  I loved it and part of my heart will always walk those hills.  I was much older when I first saw the ocean in all her glory.  I remember feeling fear, reverence, and love…all three mingled together and my sight fell helpless into the wild torrents rolling water.  I was smitten, and I remain smitten some 40 years later.
  4.  What did you appreciate or what made you smile this past week?  The smile and kiss from an old woman was the best thing that happened to me this week.  Her teeth were stained and worn, and she reminded me of the old Eskimo women I’ve seen in photos and television.  I’m not sure of her ethnicity but I could sense she knew little English.  Maybe she was a refugee or an immigrant…it’s possible.  I was volunteering at the food bank, busy greeting and helping those needing food.  I always try to smile and ask them how their day is going, and most smile back and say “fine” or “good” and continue their shopping.  I was in the process of doing this when I noticed an old lady slowly pushing her cart my way.  She paused by the rice, reached for a bag and put it in her cart, then she walked a few more steps, paused and slowly reached for a bag of oatmeal and put it into her cart.  Finally, she reached me and I smiled and said hello.  She smiled creating a multitude of lines that seemed to frame her face within a set of parentheses.  I looked at her smile and at that moment I became an esthete, a person who notices amazing beauty.  Her smile was the most beautiful smile I’ve ever seen.   She walked with somewhat of a limp, closing the distance between us.  Then she took me into her arms and kissed me on the neck…she was short and couldn’t reach my cheek.  I didn’t know whether to smile or cry…so, I did both.

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A Love Note to my Readers:  I don’t say it often enough but I’ve fallen in love with each and every one of you.  Thank you from the bottom of my heart for taking the time to read my ramblings.  You are a blessing to me.

    

 

 

Gasp! Jesus Agrees with Buddha…?

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Daily Proverb:

“If you roll a boulder down on others, it will roll back and crush you.”

Y’all, this sounds like God’s way of saying, “Karma’s a bitch!”

Could it be that Buddha and Jesus agree?  Gasp!

Damn straight!

Why should this simple thought bother us?

I’m convinced that most of the world’s religions are in some ways more similar than we believe.  Most, at its core, seeks peace with their God and peace with their fellow man.

If this is the case, why is religion used more as a weapon than the intended conduit to peace?

 My answer:  Pride.  Humans in their narcissistic, selfish pride have convoluted the simple message of most religions.  Of Christianity, Paul writes, “…I fear that somehow you will be led away from your pure and simple devotion to Christ…just as Eve was deceived by the serpent.” 

It’s sad to say, but religion in the hands of man has done far more harm than good.  I understand the case my Atheist friends bring to the table, and as a Christian, this hurts my soul.

Christianity, in a nutshell, is meant to be “pure and simple devotion to Christ.”

It was never meant to be complicated.  It was never about a list of do’s and don’ts.  Many who still use the list as a whipping stick have forgotten that Christ took care of the do’s and don’ts on His cross.

Jesus stressed time and time again to “…love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.  This the first and greatest commandment.  A second is equally important:  Love your neighbor as yourself.  ALL the other commandments and ALL the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments.”  

If we would but follow Jesus’s commands there would be no need for a list of do’s and don’ts!  Why, because our motives would be pure.  There would be no wars, and peace would reign.

Simple…and yet profound.  Such is life.

Friends, don’t listen to those who spout condemnation, those who seek to heap coals of guilt upon your head, and who try to put you once again under the bondage of “do’s and don’ts.”

Those who condemn and judge others would do well to heed the warning from Jesus:

 “…whatever measure you use in judging others it will be used to measure how you are judged.”

So, when it comes to judging others…tread lightly, my friends, because Karma’s a bitch!

Jesus and Buddha agree!

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Personal Proverb:

One is happy when one believes their Christian life, and relationship to Christ is nobody’s damn business!  LH

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Word Of The Day Challenge:  Gasp