Thanks to Bikurgurl for hosting 100 Word Wednesdays.
Sweet dark chocolate slides across my tongue, the richness of chocolate icing soft and creamy; the moist cake, competing for flavour with the icing. It’s sweetness allows one to eat it slowly. Too much cake at once would ruin the experience and leave me with an upset stomach. But each bite savoured with pleasure and a bit of vanilla ice cream, ensures my scrumptious chocolate cake is a heavenly experience.
Across the table you wink, you knew it was my favourite cake and you ordered it for me. Our eyes hold as you eat your own cake and I absorb every ounce of chocolate flavour in mine; eating cake becomes seduction.
“Fragrance is a powerful thing. It can bring you back to your favorite meal your mother used to make, to your first kiss, to any number of events in your life. Free write for 10 minutes and see where your nose leads you, if your words need some encouragement, walk outside, down the street, through a mall, through a forest until your nose reminds you and the words begin to flow.”
Scent of cinnamon, apple pie freshly made, divine,
Easter ham glazed with pineapple rings, smoked, homemade.
Perogies, bacon, onion, soft satingdivine.
Walking outside after it rains, pine scent invades,
Deep breath, acrid wonderful smell naturedivine.
Puppies and kitties, newborn babes, a scent persudes,
Love, care for, feed and adore, keep safe those divine.
Incense in churches, candles burning, chants disuade,
Wine strong, broken bread, prayers with coffee wake the divine.
“A Ghazal is a poem that is made up like an odd numbered chain of couplets, where each couplet is an independent poem. It should be natural to put a comma at the end of the first line. The Ghazal has a refrain of one to three words that repeat, and an inline rhyme that preceedes the refrain. Lines 1 and 2, then every second line, has this refrain and inline rhyme, and the last couplet should refer to the authors pen-name… The rhyming scheme is AA bA cA dA eA etc.”
“Madam, you and your children need to come with me,” a police officer stated. He was from the police nationale.
Mom gazed up at him and asked: “Why, what have we done? We’ve only been sightseeing here on vacation. We have our passports and travel Visas.”
“If you come with me, right now, this will be much easier,” the officer said. I shivered at his cold impersonal accented tone.
My Mom attempted to speak but the officer squeezed her arm tightly and picking her up, deposited her in the back if his police car.
My sisters and I peered up at the officer scared spitless. “We didn’t do anything,” I said. “I’m twelve and my two sisters are ten-years old twins. We aren’t bad kids.”
The officer nodded at me. I could hear my Mom crying and banging her hands against the window in the police car. My sisters Paige and Monique were crying silently.
“What’s your name Cher?” The officer asked me. His French accent was thick when he spoke English.
“I’m Brianne, what did my Mom do?” The officer didn’t say anything, but he nodded to one of his fellow officers.
“We need to talk to your Mom about some things for a while. This is officer Carson, he’s going to take you back to your hotel. You girls can watch movies and swim in the pool. Don’t leave and always ask Carson when you want to do something. He’ll take you for repas du soir later on,” the officer said. He smiled at me and I could tell his smile was forced.
“But our Mom . . .” Paige and Monique whined. It was no use. Officer Carson herded us into his vehicle and drove us back to the hotel we were staying with our Mom.
We played in the pool, pretending we enjoyed it. We watched three movies on pay-per-view and then some cartoons on TV. We played on our Mom’s tablet, emailing our Uncle Reese and asking what we should do. The message always came back to Mom’s email, saying the email address was wrong, but we knew better.
At 4:00 pm Officer Carson came back from the gift shop with chips, popcorn, pop, and chocolate bars. Paige and Monique were happy to eat what they could; mom didn’t let us have much junk food, even on vacation. I had a square of delicious Belgian chocolate and almost threw-up.
Later around 8:00 pm, Carson told us to put on nice clothes for dinner. We dined at a trendy restaurant and the food was magnifique. By this time the smell of the delicious food in the restaurant and my hunger had surpassed the twisted and nauseous feeling in my stomach.
“My Mom, what if she can’t afford all this?” I asked Carson referring to all we’d done so far. Our family had scrounged and saved to travel to a few countries in Europe this year. Mom thought it was vital for us to have the experience traveling to see history, and other cultures.
Officer Carson appeared thoughtful. “It’s okay Brianne. Ne tu inquites pas. We’ll take care of things until your Mom returns. I nodded. I didn’t know what else to say.
That night we went to bed sleeping fitfully. The next morning Carson awoke us and told us we would be sightseeing today. He told us about various places we could visit and let us choose a couple of them to see. We went to the Louvre and the Eiffel Tower. We didn’t have to wait in line at all; we immediately were able to see what we wanted first.
The four of us continued site seeing for the next week, never seeing our Mom. We always went out to dinner at a different restaurant each night to dine. Carson enjoyed eating well.
One day, Carson even took us to H&M and some clothing stores for girls our age and let us each have one-hundred-and-fifty Euros to shop. We didn’t question Carson on this, even though it was a lot of money to us. We decided to spend eighty Euros and save the rest of the money for emergency.
Caron seemed to know, “Vous etes des files intelligences pour economiser de l’argent. Bon les files.” He smiled at us, a rare occurence. We understood a bit of French from school and found ourselves picking it more with Carson. He brought us back to the hotel to spend the rest of the day watching movies and swimming.
Three-weeks later our Mom returned. We cried when we saw her. I thought I’d never see her again and I gathered Paige and Monique thought the same.
Mom appeared awful, unkept, and waif thin. She immediately went to bed, waking up in the middle of the night to shower. A wardrobe of various designer clothes and shoes was later delivered to her that week and Carson handed her a cheque for a large amount of money. My Mom’s eyes nearly popped out of her head.
“For all your troubles Madam,” Carson told her and disappeared; we never saw him again.
After Mom recovered for a couple of weeks, she decided we should continue to travel. A Doctor which had come to see her every two-days declared her fit and well.
“Now that we have the money, we can travel throughout Europe and see many countries, not only three,” Mom told us. She smiled almost like her old-self and arranged for us to go everywhere we wanted and stay in nice hotels.
Later I thought back to this and realized Mom was running from the demons chasing her inside, from her nightmares, and her flashbacks.
On a beach in Grenada, Spain, Mom finally said: “Girls I suppose it’s time we go home, you’ve missed a month of school already.”
We didn’t want to leave. We were worried about or Mom. She hadn’t been the same person since the police first took her away.
I’d given her space and only asked once or twice what happened to her. She ignored me. She wouldn’t talk to Paige or Monique either.
” I can’t tell you. That’s why we’ve so much money now Brianne,” she finally said to me.
Years later, I’m thirty-six and visiting my Mom. She is paging through a scrapbook of our European vacation.
“You never said,” I began,”You never told me or anyone what happened to you in France. I know the memories give you nightmares still. What did the French police do to you Mom?”
To my surprise she answered me. “Your Dad, you never knew him. I divorced him when you were only three-years-old and the twins one-years-old. He was a bad person, involved in things even in Europe which were awful and illegal.” A tear slipped out my Mom’s eye.
“When we came through France, they thought I was there to see your Dad. They promised they wouldn’t hurt my daughters but treat them well, if I told them everything I knew about your Dad. I told them I hadn’t seen him in almost ten-years that he was a terrible low-life, wanted across the North America.”
“They wanted more. The police thought I had to be in contact with him. They were sure I was here to see him. For a week they tortured me, wouldn’t let me sleep, and other worse things. Eventually, they believed me and promised to let me go if I helped catch your Dad and draw him out from hiding so they could arrest him. Their plan worked, your Dad’s locked up forever,” my Mom said.
“Mom, how could you not say anything all these years? How did you manage to travel around Europe after being . . .”
She cut me off. “Money Brianne. Millions and millions in US funds. Enough to send my three daughters to the best universities and give you everything I couldn’t before. Enough money to wipe out the misery of thattime in my life.”
“Did it work? I asked my Mom.
She sighed tears forming, “It’s money Brianne. It makes things better and hides the truth. But in the end, the truth of what I went through is always there behind my eyes when I close them. I’m thankful Carson took care of you Brianne and Paige and Monique. He treated you well as the police promised he would. Above all, I was grateful and am grateful for that.”
Mom closed her eyes and the tears continued to streak down her cheeks.
1. Wow, you’ve brought scrumptious, mouth watering, sinfully fattening, cupcakes to work, however; there’s a problem or three with the cupcakes you’ve bought to share; first of all, the cupcakes are small, if you’re going to allow us all to indulge in a cupcake, at least make the cupcake full size, not mini; cupcake are not a delicious treat most of us have often so please, don’t leave us wanting more ( a second cupcake) when you’ve only brought enough for one each.
2. The second issue I have is, your cupcakes aren’t chocolate; a most grevious error on your part, I don’t know who decides to bring cupcakes to work and doesn’t buy chocolate ones; chocolate is beloved by the majority of people and vanilla is boring (even if it vanilla does smell delightful), vanilla isn’t chocolate, it can’t compare; you’ve unknowingly offended at least all the females in our work area by bringing cupcakes which aren’t chocolate; in fact, I’d say my day is ruined, having seen the cupcakes and realized, they weren’t chocolate or even chocolate iced.
3. My third issue has to do with the icing on the cupcakes; I understand, you’re not the baker and you don’t ice the cupcakes yourself, but the icing is the best part of the cupcake; a slightly stale cupcake can get away with being stale, if the icing is to die for; vanilla icing could be satisfying but again, chocolate would have clearly, been the wiser icing choice; as well as choosing cupcakes which were “fully” iced; the baker’s icing style has much to be desired because the baker did not ice to the end of the cupcake, to the cupcake paper edge; icing is the most imperative aspect of a superb cupcake, perhaps, in the future, when you visit this cupcake bakery again, you will choose cupcakes with more icing; while the icing was delicious, there was far to little of it.
I’m no cupcake expert, but I know what I like when I taste it.
1. I buy flowers for the women in my life (flowers they would like) such as my Mom, friend, or Godmother every now and then so they feel appreciated and because some of them don’t receive flowers from their husbands often.
2. I buy sweet treats for some of people in my life such as my brothers, Dad, Mom, and friends. Favourites are Gluten Free Macaroon cookies from Cookies by George or Gluten Free cupcakes of any flavour for my Dad. Everyone else enjoys Purdy’s Mint Melties, Hedge Hogs, Sweet Georgia Browns, Plane Milk Chocolate, or Coconut Cream Chocolate bars. Cupcakes, mainly chocolate ones work too.
3. I send notes in the mail to my Grandmas who I can’t see as often as I wish. I wrote my Grandma Reeder a poem and mailed it to her and I try to remember my Grandmas on their Birthday’s and at Christmas time, with a card and a treat when we visit.
4. I spoil my bestfriends with birthday presents such as giftcards to stores they would enjoy, makeup they would like, or a mixture of items that are about their tastes. I try to visit my friends as best as I can but it’s always nice to be remembered on your birthday. Wine works great, a nice redwine does the trick!
5. I bake treats sometimes like chocolate fudge brownies, rhubarb cake, chocolate turtle squares, chocolate chip cookies, and apple sauce branmuffins for my family to enjoy.
6. I do extra cleaning at home or I try to remember to do a job the way my parents like the job to be done.
7. Once in a while, I take a family member, friend, or favourite date out for dinner and pay for it, whatever they like to eat including drinks and dessert. I trust these people so I know they won’t go overboard.
8. I talk with friends family often and I listen well and let them say whatever they need to say. If they’re looking for input, I give thoughtful input. I’m also complimentary when I talk to people, trying to find good and nice aspects about them. It’s much easier to getalong with people when they don’t see you as a threat or competition. This being said, I’m honest if they truly want my opinion or they are hurtful to me; I’m no doormat.
9. I pray for everyone I can remember at night. Everyone needs prayer and I don’t always remember those I need to remember, but I attempt to get everyone in my prayer. I pray for those people who make my life miserable too because at times the best way to deal with them is to pray for them.
10. I share my faith in Christ and God in my writing, and I try to show my faith in my actions and voice. By no means am I perfect, and I miss many chances to witness but I try and the HolySpirit guides me. If you have something that is utterly lifechanging and giveshope you want to share it.
1. Well into my twenties, I would celebrate the end of the week, stress from work, and or school, by going out and drinking and dancing; especially, after midterms or finals. These days, I feel a two-day hangover is not worth it. When I was younger it only took a morning to bounce back, but two or three glasses of wine with the ladies is divine, with the occasional night out to dance.
2. I will get dessert when I go out for supper. Something that is chocolate cake with Carmel sauce and ice cream if the dessert menu is sufficient. I usually never order dessert otherwise.
3. I go out and do something with a friend(s) whether that be dancing, supper, drinks, movies, coffee, yoga, brunch, or walking. It’s fantastic to be with your favourite people and share your good news in a greatconversation.
4. I shop or plan to shop for a new outfit or cute shoes if I’m able.
5. If I’m only giving myself a smallreward, I will go buy myself a package of Three Lindt chocolate balls or an ice cream sandwich. I suppose I’m too motivated by food.
6. I go on vacation, celebrating each year and all it’s trials and good times too. Doesn’t have to be anywhere big, only a week in a fresh city with new things to do and see.
Nina sat beside John as representatives from both Habitat for Humanity and the Children’s Reading program from Mergers, both gave speeches thanking the company and it’s CEO’s (Jasper, John, and Jordan) for holding this fundraiser. The crowd was assured the money raised by the Silent Auction and ticket sales, would be put to good use.
Dessert was a lavish affair. Tables were set up with tartes, cakes, pies, squares, cookies, and fruit. Many of the cakes and squares were chocolate. Nina looked from the Chocolate Ganache Cupcakes to the German Chocolate Cake. She wasn’t sure which dessert should join the fruit on her plate. She asked John’s opinion.
John patted her back and said to her: ” You have as much dessert as you like. Splurge and have both desserts if you want. Tonight doesn’t count.” Nina looked at John dubiously and shook her head.
“You’re not good for my waistline John.” He patted her tummy fondly in response.
“Okay, tonight and only tonight — I am going to have a Chocolate Ganache Cupcake and German Chocolate Cake. I wish the pieces were smaller.” Nina muttered and filled her plate. John filled his plate with a few desserts and they went back to their table.
While John was in a discussion with a Board Member about one of the well known authors Mergers worked with, Nina devoured her fruit and both chocolate desserts. She felt full afterwards. Then Nina felt guilty because Rianne was at the Medicenter having her broken arm x-rayed, while Nina could eat all the chocolate she dreamed of. At least Rianne was with Jasper.
Nina wondered if anything permanent would happen with Jasper and Rianne. Rianne found few men who could appreciate her drive to have her company someday. Jasper also had two little boys. Rianne had never wanted kids. She had grown up an only child and didn’t mind being alone. Nina had seen pictures of Jasper’s sons though and they were adorable.
Nina blinked and looked up to see John staring at her. “You ate all the chocolate?” John said. “I didn’t even get one bite.”
“You had your own,” Nina told John. “My relationship with chocolate is separate from you and I.”
John smiled,”I’ll try to remember that,” he said and wiped a bit of chocolate off her cheek then he grimaced. “Nina” he said quietly, “you’ve got some chocolate icing on your dress.” Nina frowned as John pointed to the icing on the middle of her chest.
“Damn, it’s a new dress too. I better go to the washroom and see if I can clean some of the chocolate out and make it less noticeable.”
John grinned widely.” It makes me notice a very noticeable place. I don’t mind having my eyes drawn there.” Nina looked at him aghast.
“It looks horrible! I hope it comes out.”
” You are beautiful Nina. Despite everything I’ve told you and that has happened, you’re here with me tonight. You even got my brother Jasper interested in a woman again. Rianne’s a first since his wife died. You’re amazing.”
Nina smiled and catching John’s hand before she left, went to remove the chocolate stain off her dress. She was falling for John hard and fast. It was no wonder so many women had slept with him if this is how he treated them when they were together. But maybe, Nina was special to John and he was her John, just as he had called her his Nina.
Dubiously, Nina looked at her dress. Maybe a bit of soap and water would help her. She would try a wet wipe first.
In the Lady’s washroom were charming details of eighteenth-century decor. Nina headed for the twenty-first century sinks and ran straight into a young woman with funky jade coloured glasses’ frames.
The young woman was taller than Nina but had the same white blond hair. The young woman’s hair was wavy. Big jewel green eyes stared back at Nina from a pretty face. The young woman cleared her throat and waited for Nina to move out of her way. Nina looked at the young woman again. She couldn’t recall if she’d seen her before but she seemed a bit familiar. The young woman had money it was clear. She was dressed in a silky blue-green ombré dress which swept the floor. Definitely a couture piece.
“I’m so sorry.” Nina said moving out the woman’s way, “I got chocolate on my dress and I’m trying to get it off before anyone else notices the big stain on my chest.”
The woman smiled. Her voice was youthful and melodic. “Oh it’s no problem, hon. I’ve had my share of beauty mishaps too. Try not to make the stain any bigger or it will really show up. Such a shame your dress looks fab on you. I hope it doesn’t stain for good, you’ll have to dry clean it tomorrow.”
Nina removed a wet wipe from her purse and began to work the chocolate stain from her hot pink dress. “Yeah, I will have to dry clean it for sure. This icing must have been loaded with cocoa it’s not coming out well. Oh, and thanks for the compliment I love your dress, especially the ombré.”
The woman smiled girlishly.” Everyone says I look good in this colour. Malcolm my boyfriend says I look hot and sophisticated.”
“You can’t be more then twenty-five. I should think.” Nina said making the woman laugh.
“I’m twenty-three-years old, although people often think I’m older. I must look wise. Would you like me to help you get that stain out?”
Nina who was bent over the sink smiled. “That would be awesome. Nothing I do seems to work.” The young woman rubbed at the stain and murmured something under her breath. Nina looked down and the chocolate stain was gone.”How did you do that?”
The woman smiled. “It’s my secret. My Grandmother taught me how to battle laundry stains. Let’s say with a little magic anything can be done.”
Nina thought what the young woman said was terribly funny considering John’s situation. She was half ready to get the woman to use her magic to reverse John’s curse.
Nina and the woman left the washroom together. Nina put a hand out when the young woman started to walk away, “Do I know you from somewhere? Do you work for a company that deals with Wilus Accounting or are you in Marketing? Maybe you know the guy I’m seeing, John Eric. He’s a CEO of Mergers.” The young woman’s face went pale.
New Years like Christmas, maybe gone sooner then you think. After nursing hangovers from late nights, booze, or both, the future will become clear on January 2, 2016.
We will all arise from our holiday slumber and the chocolate binging — eating the whole box; the wine and egg nog guzzling (not at the same time); the superfluous shopping; the endless company; the traditions that we practice once a year; the singing of carols and playing of Christmas music; the dressing up in party wear; playing with our new pieces of technology like they won’t be replaced by a newer version soon; and we will pack away Christmas and New Years celebrations for another year.
The Christmas tree will have no ornaments and be put away until next November; the spice and pine candles and trinkets will go away in a box; special dishes and table clothes will go into storage; and the wreaths on our doors won’t welcome anyone anymore. The house will seem bare inside and outside you’ll probably take down your Christmad lights — or turn them off at least. What could be so good about the empty feeling in the house when reality sets in. What’s so important about a New Year anyway?
I’ll tell you, it’s a chance for change, a new beginning. I’m not going to tell you to make a New Year’s resolution you can’t possibly keep. I have read that the reason people fail so much at their resolutions is due to their high standards. People aren’t setting achievable goals or do not realize that making changes takes time. It is best to break your goals down into little steps. These steps will make your goal more reachable. Keep the end goal in mind, but focus on the little steps along the way. That’s only if your heart is set on a resolution. But something is more important then your resolutions.
I think we all have to stop thinking that when we achieve some lofty goal (say lose 10 lbs) our life will change drastically. We will have all dreams come true! No, reality check. Life is here right now, there is no later without the now. I know it’s yogi talk but I think it is good advice to know: stay present and in the moment through each event of life. People will not remember you for what you said but for what you did. Be present in the lives of your children, your partner, your family, your closest friends and even your suspicious cat or crazy dog. Perhaps, if we are present we will choose where it is wiser to spend are time and with who.
Perhaps, we will stop wasting time and thinking, ‘Should I?’ And instead go, do it! Go travel, buy that expensive pair of shoes; pay off your debts; choose to not work on Sunday’s; find God in a Church; meet new people; take a course; write until your fingers hurt; publish that book; create your own job; have another kid; retire early. Live life boldly, with zest. You only live once and then we go “into the night.”
And don’t be frustrated when the things in life you want don’t come your way right away. Life takes work, everything takes work and time. You want to stick to your small goals, then be present as you make those milestones; even if you are only going out and walking around the block twice for exercise at lunch. Even if you are trying painting for the first time, pick up a brush. Book those flights to Amsterdam.
So, do I have any resolutions of my own I do? They are small goals. To only eat when I’m hungry and never until I am full. To do 10 minutes of Cardio on the bike or elliptical every week day. And to choose to do things with people rather then buy stuff. To be present.
Inspiration For Your Thoughts:
1. Forever is composed of nows. – Emily Dickinson
2.The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience. – Eleanor Roosvelt
3. Let everything happen to you,
Beauty and terror.
Just keep going,
No feeling is final.
– Rainer Maira Rilke
4. You must live in the present, launch yourself on every wave, find your eternity in each moment. Fools stand on their island of opportunities and look toward another land. There is no other land; there is no other life but this.
– Henry David Thoreau
5. Happiness, not in another place but this place…not for another hour, but this hour. – Walt Whitman
6. If there’s one thing I learned, it’s that nobody is here forever. You have to live for the moment, each and every day . . . the here, the now. – Simone Elkeles