The Joy of Cake.

Esther Chilton Challenge – Cake

After the event, she concluded that there is something which definitely assists in getting to know someone when meeting them for the very first time.

Cake.

Yes you see, if you give them a choice you will find out whether or not they are comfortable or uncomfortable. If they are easy going or uptight, watching their weight or happy in themselves.

Turn up with Cake. Who can resist? Especially if it’s Organic, Dairy Free, Gluten Free. Then there is no reason not to partake of cake. Unless you are diabetic or really don’t like the flavour of course!

So there it was. A very pleasant first meeting, where we arrived with cake and one of us would not take No for an answer since it would be strange for two out of three of us to be eating and the other not. So out of politeness, the other one joined in and we found that we all liked the cake after all. It’s such an ice breaker too isn’t it. To be blessed with colour, texture and flavour which should there have been any break in the conversation, or awkward silences or questions (which thankfully there were not) then a mouthful of cake will always give you a moment of thinking space.

So we all sat around the table, talked endlessly about all kinds of things, our own history, travel, families, work, recipes and making cake and got to know each other better. I know, three ladies enjoying lunchtime at a cafe is not unusual in itself, but a rare thing for at least two of us and one of us was on the other side of the world. Taking the presented opportunity, we indulged ourselves chatted over coffee, hot chocolate and a rather nice Dandelion Latte and this rather lovely cake in a place called Kunara at Forest Glen, Buderim in Queensland. An organic marketplace with lots to see and a lovely café within the garden centre. We stayed for a few hours and figured that it is well worth a visit if you are ever around there and if you are up to walking it off afterwards,  (the cake that is) then it is a lovely area surrounded in nature.

Advertisements

The Storm – A short story

via Daily Prompt: RadiantIMG_8699

The weather reported that the cyclone was passing over right where they were. It could have hit at any time. They had been expecting it for days, battening down the hatches and protecting the house and garden hoping that the damage it might cause if any would be minimal.

So far they had been safe. But now at that moment on this day, louder than ever the sea was calling them, they went to answer the call.

Travelling to the beach, there was no sign of bad weather.  The sky was bright and clear, a real blue sky for miles with no grey of rain. They parked and bought refreshments at the nearby café. As they stumbled across the sand, past the lake and up the dunes to the top, they paused as they were met with an almost empty beach, no crazy surfers hitting the waves for once heeding the warnings of danger.

The occasional local wandering along, with dogs, racing through the sand and water, charging around barking excitedly. Or others with some companions walking and taking in the spectacle of it all.  Lifeguards on patrol retrieving rubbish from the beach, no one out at sea for miles around.  She stopped for a moment, looking out with her friend at the softest sand and crystal blue sea gazing in wonder at the sight before them.  A wall of waves and foam, about 40 feet in height, the sand being swept up crashing upon the shoreline and their faces.

Suddenly there they were, like little storm hunters barefoot and racing towards it, they ran into the water. Embracing the storm for a moment the wind lashing at their faces and sand biting their skin, cleansed by the elements.

They had gone expecting to find great treasures washed upon the shore, a storm can bring such wonderful things to the beachcomber. Alas, no sooner had the large waves brought in an abundance of things, which they scurried to collect, then another would arrive to sweep the beach clear once again. The beautiful shells and things being replaced by fragments, shattered in the process.  But they did not cause sadness, they held a beauty all of their own. For the storm granted them freedom. Yes, freedom to run to jump, to think and to breathe.

They stood, transfixed as the waves grew and broke before them, such power which no one could harness. Nature at its finest and there she walked along, arms outstretched, welcoming it all with a radiant smile. Suddenly with all the previous stresses of her mind now gone, washed away by the storm carefree she walked along with her friend, both of them in silence at the wonder of it all.

Returning in the direction of the car, greeted by wet dogs and smiling people along the way, she thought quietly of her loved ones at home and the moment they had missed. This glorious beach which would be the perfect place to walk, hand in hand with her lover and their beloved dog racing towards the surf. Wind in his fur, tail held high in excitement, hardly anyone around. Miles and miles of pure white sand, not littered by rubbish, but freshly groomed by nature for their pleasure. Her friend in tune with her suddenly voicing the same thoughts agreed, they should be here to enjoy this too it would be the perfect beach for them.

IMG_8711

A Shooting Star?

As she lay down to sleep, her eyes closing from tiredness.

She asked for her angels to protect her and her loved ones. To keep evil away so that they might be safe and happy and they gain rest and recovery from ailments and worries.

She can see flowers, as though someone has scattered them above her, burgundy and white but she is not sure what they are.

Once again the buzzing of the nerves through her body, like a telephone ringing in her leg. Starting at the toes and radiating up the leg. The wake up call as it were. Does she have a direct line to them she wondered. Do they answer my call in this way?

She was shaken just once but as though two hands rest on her shoulders, were vying for her attention.

Just as she wanted to sleep. Ah insomnia my old friend, so you are back again she thought.

So she waited, willing for sleep to arrive and as she did so it began. The swirling lights on the inside of her eyelids and all around her as she breathed slowly and rhythmically and tried to relax. I think she knew what to expect. This time green mixed with blue, white and gold. Like her very own Aurora Borealis happening right there above her head, a long awaited dream coming true.

Opening her eyes she was not surprised that as before she was wide awake again. Suddenly no longer tired, the body momentarily invigorated by the experience. It happens again and she can still see the lights above her. Reassurance that I did not dream it.

The dog awakes from the other room, not excited by this spectacle, he does not run to look. She does not even know if he sees it or senses it. He takes a leisurely drink and comes to settle at her side just as the light show ends. But she cannot sleep and neither can he, he returns to the darkness of the next room huffing gently that his own sleep was disturbed again but not really knowing why. He will be back when it has settled down. As her body cries out for he sleep and let it wash over her, like the waves of tiredness, rest assured he will be there a furry assistant watching her back. As she drifts off and she looks up the reassuring image before her, that of two hearts in the doorway, beating and pulsating where once was darkness stood.

Some time passes and some sleep is gained before swallowing hard as the noise of piano keys crashing is in her ears. This sudden noise a rude awakening as she is awake once more but comforted by the breathing of the hound who has returned to the side of the bed she realises the message is loud and clear, that love is strong and all that matters.

And after staggered sleep she wakes to the blessing of being able to welcome another day, the sun rising on the new horizon colourful and bright and offering her new hope. Thanking them for the comfort they bring her on the darkest night. The gratitude that she holds for these special moments, the thoughts that she has been part of something special. A shooting star perhaps, flying through the cosmos on its way to somewhere new. A new galaxy to explore, reborn with new light to shine.

Daily Prompts Horizon

Release.

Suddenly awake again without warning. The thud of a heartbeat filled her ears just like the bass sound of music in a passing car. Thud thud thud thud. Her heart suddenly racing and she wondered why.

Looking up as her eyes grew accustomed to the surroundings she noticed the thin figure in the darkness leaning against the doorframe. As it often did but this time just standing there considering it’s next move.

As the dark figure loomed in the doorway, its shape changing with every breath she lay there wide eyed. As it began to head towards her she sent it away. Those all too familiar words, Be gone. You do not belong here. Just get out.

She wished that it would leave her alone. It was never a happy feeling, she didn’t trust it for she had felt its cold grip on many occasions as it grabbed at her, always waking her from her slumber. But she did not allow it to strike fear in her any more, it did not have that power, as time went on she was gaining strength again. It was just an annoyance that disturbed her.

So was it a dream? An annoying recurring dream, that changed and mutated along with the dark character, shifting its shape as she questioned her thoughts.

She waited…. the darkness left and with it, came a warm feeling from her feet through her legs like she had felt previously. Again it moved through her and as it reached her head it pounded. Lightheaded as though to be let out as the light danced around the room above her. Little flickers of blue and white, it was usually blue and white but occasionally red and green and yellow too.

The lights although barely visible swirled above her and danced around her, she wondered what they were. A trick of light perhaps her conscious mind thought, or had they some deeper meaning? Whatever their purpose she gained comfort from them whenever they were there. A warmth spread around her like a blanket of reassurance and she felt totally safe. Somehow empowering her along the way and equipping her for some unknown battle. Suddenly she let out her breath and as she did so a sound not dissimilar to a popping bulb and then she saw it, clearly above her in big white letters RELEASE

She took another deep breath and let it out the warmth spreading through her body once again a calm feeling took over as though a storm had passed her by. Some kind of lucky escape.

As she lay there willing her breathing to return to normal she thought about what had happened and wondered as to why. What was its message or purpose?

She grabbed her phone, looked at the clock 3.33am again what did it all mean?

Daily Prompt -Surreal

All that I am.

And as I drew the picture in my head as I have so many times before.

The image began to take form.

I saw before Me a large egg shape intricately decorated. Standing strident behind it a small blonde woman. An unlikely looking warrior with a look of determination upon her face as she swung the hammer high, bringing it down heavy upon the egg, into which were engraved the words, Hate. Fear. Loathing. Anger. Sickness. Poverty. So that they were gone, shattered fragments of a past, no place for them and as she stood there a smile spreading across her face.

Ready to rise from the things that bound her up to that point. A past which no longer served her.

There she stood reborn. Unknowing as to what would happen next. Her new beginnings ready to grow from the remains of an eggshell.

And finally these words sprang forth from the debris.

Fearless. Kind. Unafraid. Beautiful. Strong. Loved. Relentless. Healthy.

Prosperous.

All that I am and much more.

Daily Prompt Finally

Artists Unknown.

Before the Storm

As she sat in the corner of the sofa, feet tucked in, cup of coffee in hand and the blue of the sky enveloping her mood, she contemplated what was to come. The inevitable storm that would follow on this wintry day, where the air was cold and she would fight to keep warm in it all.

She knew it was coming, but she could not foresee what it would bring, just knowing that there would be trouble.

The only way was to wrap herself up protected from the elements and hunker down until it would pass, after all there was nothing she could do to change it.

It made her feel so helpless. Powerless as the weather and emotions exploded around her bringing about a change in the way that she would view things. The world she had known and loved now immeasurably different than before. Would she still find comfort in those little things. Pleasures in the simplicity of the life she had known back then.

Would she still be at one with nature and the beauty of the things that surround her. Could she still love in the same way.

The clock ticked and as the time went by she thought about all that had happened. How the years had gone and how it made her feel. The hurt and the resentment which could have swallowed her whole if she had allowed it to. But the old familiar hidden strength saved her from herself then just as it would again. Resilience was a family trait, she would not be beaten and before she knew it the storm had passed. On its way to somewhere and someone new.

Is it The End?

I’ve decided I will be writing a few short stories into the blog occasionally, just now and then. This one was borne out of one of the daily prompts.

via Daily Prompt: Final

She could not explain why it felt so final.

As she prepared to go on her journey, the moment that she booked the ticket, what he had said, he talked of if she didn’t come back to them.  Is that what he thought? Surely not.  Where on earth would she go, she did not wish to be anywhere else.  She did not even wish to go back in the first place.  To leave them at all.  What a funny thing to say, she thought to herself as she booked the ticket.  So off he went shopping alone, gathering foodstuffs for a single man.  There would be no meals cooked whilst she was gone, would he survive on sandwiches and pies, chocolate and biscuits. No chance of a staple diet, she worried about him.

They would be alright, he promised not to do anything silly in her absence, nothing that would cause him damage, he would rest, he said.  A friend was taking her to the station, they would not be there to bid her farewell, the kisses and hugs would have to be had before the short journey to the train.

It was only going to be a few days. So why was he speaking as though she would not be back? She did not understand, but hoped that the paranoia would not overtake sensible thought even for a moment.

But it sounded so final.

As she left for the return journey the conversation of the night before with someone else played on her mind. The words still rang in her head. “You must get there and not come back!” It seemed as though she belonged in neither place at the time. But she knew that she was right. This was no longer right for her. So much had changed in such a short time. Almost as though it was like she blinked and missed it, some altered state making her unaware of the when and how.