Tag Archives: holidays

I’m Back

Been a while since I write my own thoughts. I’ve been away for almost four weeks basking in the  sun soaking the atmosphere enjoying the weather admiring the views immersing myself in different culture and generally doing nothing but what I love to do in that moment. I crisscrossed the island on foot, drove around, swam in lagoons and tasted the food. I’ve been in a hospital also. Costed me a fortune but my health insurance will pay me back only  I don’t know when. They say it may take a while since it is a large amount of money but I see it as a savings; money I don’t have in my hand so therefore I can’t spend.

I’m home now with tons of laundry and lots to do in the garden. At least the slugs and snails didn’t devour my entire population of plants like I expected them to do. My chocolate mints died. D. said he upended small bottles of water in the pots but he said it was not enough to lasts for the entire time we were gone but I suspected he had forgotten to do it because I didn’t see any indentation on the soil next to the plants. So, today I drove to the garden center to get new ones but like always I purchased more than I needed. Believe you me I will have second thoughts buying anything for myself but will not hesitate acquiring something for the garden or for the house. I’m crazy that way. It gives me so much joy to shop for both and see them transform a space. The plants which are damaged by late frost are struggling to survive. They are still there but most of them become sort of bonsai, little miniature examples of their former selves. I hope they will totally revive next year. 

I reckon it will take me a week to go back to normal. I will return to writing after everything settled. But first I have to attend two big parties. One is the silver jubilee of a company and another is a retirement event of my father -in-law. The first one calls for a dress code. ‘Future’ is the theme we have to abide. Lots of shining garments dominated by silver and white in casual attire. I don’t know yet if I’m going to attend since parties are not my thing but let’s see when it’s time to go. Maybe I will and then again maybe not.

I wrote this piece without pause and without edit so if you spy some mistakes, look the other way. Till next time and enjoy the warm weather.  

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A Christmas Story

Up and down the streets she ran
With black satin sack in hand.
Filled with sharp knives
She planned to end lives.

From house to house she crept so quietly
Looking almost, no, indeed shadowy.
But she was not alone with her sack
There was something riding on her back.

Green eyes gleamed riding through the night
Glaring around so full of spite.

“Who are you?”
A man’s voice asked
“You don’t know? I am not masked.”

“Get out of here! What do you think you’re doing??”
“Out of here? I think not. You are the one I’ve been pursuing!”
“Pursuing? You’re nuts! Get the fuck outta here!”

“Right now I can feel your fear!”
“Ha! That’s rich. I’m not scared”
“Like I even really cared”
“That’s it, I’m calling the police. They’ll have you pinned.”

The shadowy girl just grinned.
The man went for the phone
In one second he hit the floor with a moan.

Those green eyes glared down
“Ha! What a clown”
What a sweet voice.
The man looked up at those eyes
“Time to say your goodbyes”
With one swift move of a vase that man was gone.

“This isn’t so hard now is it?”
The shadow shook his head
The blood flowed red
“We have a long night ahead.”
He kicked the pieces of vase
“Yes, I know, Sweet face.”

With that the shadows did flee
That man didn’t even get a chance to plea.
Hours passed
This town sure was vast.
They went tapping down the road
Carrying the sharp load.

“Let’s go home now, honey.”
She huffed. 
“Quickly now, before it gets sunny!”
Up the stone pathway she ran
At the door they gave the town a brief scan
“I’m dreaming of a red Christmas.”

She turned the handle of the door
“This time of year is always such a chore!”
He sighed as he hopped from her back
She tossed down her big black sack.

He swept the dirt from his clothes
“The living should thank us”

She brushed her hair
“Those we killed were too much to bear”

She hopped up on the windowsill
“They made me positively ill”

She stared out into space
“And…back to my loving place”
She turned to her evil little doll
He leaned on the wall.

“Wanna open presents now?”
He smiled
“My goodness, child”
He laughed quietly under his breath
“What a quick transition from the subject of death!”

~Disclaimer: Though I found this piece among my old documents I doubt if it is mine. I am not this wicked 😉

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Daily Prompt

Clouds

Last week we were driving from Ciutadella to Cala en Porter  when I saw these formations of clouds. They were so low you can almost touch them. Beautiful they were it was almost unreal I can’t help but taking series of shots, even though it is always a tricky thing taking pictures from a moving vehicle. I managed to capture some decent ones with my mobile phone camera. Here’s a couple of them. Enjoy…

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New Year Thoughts

The new year stands before us, like a chapter in a book, waiting to be written. We can help write that story by setting goals.

I hope that in this year to come, you make mistakes. Because if you are making mistakes, then you are making new things, trying new things, learning, living, pushing yourself, changing yourself, changing your world. You’re doing things you’ve never done before, and more importantly, you’re doing something.

Character is the ability to carry out a good resolution long after the excitement of the moment has passed.

Tomorrow, is the first blank page of a 365 page book. Write a good one.

Cheers to a new year and another chance for us to get it right…

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Quotes: Brainy Quotes

Bah, Humbug!

Okay… Christmas is here again and no matter how I try to be a female version of Ebenezer Scrooge minus the greed I cannot escape certain duties during this holiday season. The dilemmas are always the same each year:

What to wear to those parties?

An outfit for family gatherings must be proper and not overly chic; something a critical mother in law would approve, meaning = don’t upstage her at all cost.

Another one for a corporate lounge dinner with people you don’t know at all and have nothing in common but have to chit-chat nicely in case they are your spouse chiefs or subordinates, wives included. The attire must be formal enough to be classy yet not too constricting for after dinner twirling on the floor with just a hint of simple sexiness as not to look slutty.

And not to forget yuletide season night of fun with friends and whoever they decide to bring along. This time, whatever the choice must be warm enough for after dinner strolling around the city hopping from bar to bar sampling their signature drinks or in case the parking is too full you have to leave your car few kilometres where you have to be. But it has to be punchy too with a lot of schwung for flirty yet classy effect appropriate enough for semi formal dinner and to impress your friends and their escorts. (ha ha)

Oh, the colour! I almost forgot the colour. Red is the obvious and safest choice for my southern colouring that’s why I will not wear crimson this year. Black makes me look washed-out, I will disappear in any shade of tan; white is not festive enough and will appear luminous in any muted lighting. Violet- lavender- mauve and purple remind me of funeral homes, that leaves only yellow which is a big no-no in any circumstances; blue and green which are the traditional hues of Christmas itself will never be on my list no matter what. I don’t want to resemble either a holiday tree or the baubles that goes with it. What a freaking dilemma!

What to serve on Christmas dinner?

As to satisfied the fussiest of eaters among your guests but at the same time not spending the whole evening in the kitchen people would wonder where you disappeared maybe gone to some fancy restaurant for last minute order to replace your over-complicated menu that didn’t work because of your shaky nerves (catering costs a lot of money and frankly I cannot name one among my guests –to- be that deserves such ado and effort since I don’t like them at all the feeling is mutual I suspect good thing that I only see them around this time of the year) I have to come up with an original idea that will not cost trouble but will blow their socks off.

Next is: what gifts to buy?

Especially for the ones who are lucky enough to have everything they can think of. I know it’s the thoughts that counts but you and I know better. I witnessed enough family Christmas gifts drama where both parties ceased to talk to one another long after the jolly holiday is over and years beyond that. Believe me, the theory about its- the -thoughts –that- counts- can only stretch so far.

And of course we cannot forget the hubby darling dear and our once in a blue moon special tête-à-tête; it requires proper attire drinks and delectable(s) as well. And if you are like me who only give certain favors and accommodations  during special occasions… then more careful preparation is required, if you know what I mean.

That nicely summarized my festive dilemmas around this time of the year and like Ebenezer Scrooge I would (if I could) say… “Bah, Humbug!”  Because like him; I do not want to socialize because I never experienced steady growth in a strong family unit and all that jazz, or I could lay the blame on my ex who managed to make every Christmas that we’re together (that’s 20 traumatic years) a living hell.  How’s that for an excuse?

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Where is Christmas?

Where has Christmas gone? It used to be the most celebrated, most popular most observed season of the year but from where I am Christmas is barely there. Except of course in those business establishments where every season is an excuse to capitalize on people’s susceptibility to be seduced for maximum sale.

I cannot speak for other places for obvious reasons but the last time I have spent the holiday season in my birth country, I can tell you it was not how it used to be. What are the reasons why most people these days don’t even bother to put up a Christmas tree? Inflation perhaps? Recession? Don’t have time/interest, empty nest? I don’t know…

Wherever I drive around (except city centers where they are probably forced to do some minimal of decorations) I am confronted with dark streets and dark houses devoid of any festive trimmings. No lighted ornaments, no string of multi-coloured lights around a tree or doorways; not even a simple wreath or statues of Santa. I find it a sad, sad affair.  If we don’t make efforts to separate ordinary days from (supposed to be) the most wonderful, glorious time of the year, how could we know it’s Christmas?

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I Don’t Feel The Spirit Of Christmas Anymore

In three weeks time it will be Christmas again. I don’t know about you but I don’t feel the spirit of holiday season. 

It used to be different when I was young. We had only peanut butter and cheese sandwiches each year for Christmas and New Year but it was there, the true spirit of Christmas. I remember being excited putting on my new dress and going from house to house wishing the occupants Happy Holidays and in return getting few coins or sometimes a meal. 

I came from the land that celebrates the world’s longest Christmas season starting from early September till the end of January. My first Christmas away from home was a revelation. It was shocking to find out that Christmas and New Year here don’t differ from ordinary days. Aside from decorations on store fronts for commercial purposes, there is nothing to signify the most important time of the year. There are no carolers, no front door decorations, no Christmas songs on the radio, no merrymaking. On New Years Eve in my country we make noise both to greet the New Year and in the belief that the din exorcises their surroundings of malevolent spirits. We light firecrackers, or banging on pots and pans and blowing car horns. Here, in that time of the year, the streets are dead.

And when I thought that you cannot reduce nonexistent to nothing, gradually, even those slightest hints of Christmas dissolve into forgotten memories. Those who put up trees and lights don’t do it anymore, what’s the use anyway, it is too much ‘ado about nothing, most people don’t celebrate Christmas anymore. The changes don’t occur primarily here, I noticed that even in my country there are noticeable differences in celebrating the yuletide season. It becomes more commercialized, more hyped but the true spirit is gone. It isn’t the way it used to be.

The familial, traditional, holy, special, cozy, warm, wondrous old feeling of magic, acceptance and togetherness is not there anymore.

I don’t know. Maybe we grow old, money is tight, too little time,  maybe (I’ve read it somewhere) we have to realize that the commercialized version of Christmas is the marketer’s dreams, not ours. Maybe we have to stop trying to live up to that version and don’t fall for thinking we need to buy happiness at Christmas time. Enjoyment does not mean expense. I don’t know. Whatever the reasons, I don’t feel the true spirit of Christmas anymore.

How about you? 

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The Damn Chest

I was in vacation for four months that year. To avoid the usual holiday misery, I decided to rent a place for myself (but I took my mother with me for safety precaution, hers; not mine) and pursued the peace I was desperately longing for; away from everything, but mostly from the people who wanted a piece of me one way or the other.

So, there I was in my two-bedroom, cute, pink bungalow in the middle of a park (which serves as a multi-purpose function hall for private occasions such as weddings, baptismal and such) minding my own business, singing karaoke, roaming around the gorgeous garden, walking along the beach at sundown, chatting with the people who manage the place, life is indeed almost perfect.

At least I thought it was; till one stormy night.

I got it in my head to wade in the water to bring warm clothing, money and food to ‘someone unfortunate’ who was always hanging around the town’s rotunda.

I said to myself: the person will have some difficulty doing the usual routine of begging for the things s/he needs in that kind of weather. I reckoned I have the means and the time to make a difference even for a day so I thought: why not. The gesture seems noble enough but in hindsight, bad idea. The result was: an unpredicted asthma attack!

So, wheezing, coughing, laboured breathing, I tried to find sleep but to no avail. Then, all of a sudden from nowhere, I heard someone whispered: “There is a chest. Go! Look for it! It’s there!” There was no use searching for another person, my mother was sounds asleep and it was 2:00 o’clock in the morning; I was the only one awake for miles. Besides, the voice was clearly in my head. I tried to concentrate and listen to it. (More like ‘feeling’ for it) After few minutes, I woke up my mother.

Armed with a big bolo, I began dismantling a portion of the wooden wall in the upstairs bedroom saying to myself: I can afford the damage. I could if I don’t get too carried away. And so I went on, thinking: if my hunch turned out to be wrong and I was only hallucinating (I had the right to be, I was having high fever) and the chest is not behind this part of the wall, I could end up breaking the whole thing for no reason at all.

After creating a sizable hole, I lit a candle and shone the light in the cavity I found behind the wall. First, I saw nothing. It was too dark to see anything, but I was too stubborn to admit defeat; I cannot be wrong. (not after I wreck the wall of a rental place) when my eyes were finally adjusted to the darkness I saw an outline of  something rectangular; I asked my mother to lights more candles (she by the way was trembling) And there it was, old and grey; the darn chest.

It was difficult to haul the casket out; simply because the hole I created was directly above the stairs. There was simply no place to put my feet on to balance myself and the thing was humongous.

Asthma forgotten, I tried to hold my feet steady on both sides of the baluster and with all my strength, hauled the darn coffer out! (The voice said I will find my picture there and things I needed to further help unfortunate people) I thought: you bet.

Ignoring the rattle of my mother, I opened the chest and what I had found???

Lying inside the chiffonier was a bank book, an insurance policy, an SSS insurance policy complete with all the necessary papers to collect the money. What on earth I’m going to do with all these??? I thought to myself.

There was also a glass box with jewelries (that looks white gold or silver to me) no picture of me but a hand-drawn likeness of eyes, nose and lips! No actual face but the resemblance was striking. I immediately stop digging. (I never reach even half-way into the chest, too creepy even for me) and stared at the damn thing dumbfounded.

The next morning, I went to the owner of the park and told them my story.

They confirmed the name I saw on all the papers. According to them, the person was the original owner of the house. But there was something they could not understand, the place was sold three times over already, and the man whom the crate belonged to had died recently; a week ago to be exact. They said he has one daughter only; a teacher. Whereabouts? Unknown!

I tried to find the daughter or any relatives for that matter. My search turned out fruitless. All the time I was doing this, the house smells like a rotten flesh. I know the smell; I used to be a nurse. But I was the only one who can smell it, strange.

I have questioned myself about the darn trunk: Why on earth he hid the chest from his family? Why he never remove it from where it was when he sold the place? And the million dollar question of course was…why me???

I left the house and the country case still unsolved. The chest… I left it in the care of the people that managing the park. I have no idea what they did with it. I’m not even sure if I want to know.

Sometimes, I wonder… why these things always happening to me???

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Smell You Later

There are lots of smells that immediately transport me back to the past like scent of freshly baked pancakes my mother used to prepare and serve us every day at around three o’clock in the afternoon after we take a nap. No sleep, no pancakes. I remember burying my face in the pillow and rubbing my eyes red so I looked like I slept even though I was out foraging anything I could find or swimming in the sea.

But that is not what this blog is all about. Saturday morning, I will be leaving for a two week holiday somewhere far, where the sun is shining and the sea is blue and the food tasty and the people friendly. I will blog about it later. Here is a little something for the road. I’ll be back soon. For the meantime, keep writing.

The sun is setting,

The shadows are falling

And I must say farewell.

I want to stay and

Spend forever

But…

We were here through happy times and sad

We listened to each other’s problems

Sadness, depression and all that

Shall I cry?

I think better not

It’s only temporary

We will always endure us

In our memory.

And so, as we part

I say, till we meet again…

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A new dawn

Last night…

Last night I was half sitting in bed my head propped up with two large pillows looking out the bay window watching the empty streets devoid of any celebration waiting for the exact hour I could swallow my cherry gumballs (6 hours in between said the doctor as if I don’t know the rules) thinking: here comes another year. Yesterday the neighbour across the street turned off their Christmas lights and took them inside, maybe they cannot wait for the year to end or perhaps they already received their electric bill; I don’t know…

After a time I heard fireworks accompanied by shouting and some other noises I did not care to decipher for my head ached like crazy. It went on for about five minutes. When I thought it was over, suddenly it started all over again. I saw the next door neighbour came out and stood on the middle of the street hands on the hips trying to see where the commotion was coming from and I thought good luck for even from my elevated position, I could hear the noises but I couldn’t  even glimpse one single spark of any fireworks.

I wanted to knock on the window and wave but I saw that he was not in a good mood. I can envision him writing a letter to the mayor’s office first thing in the morning complaining about the incident. He always writes to the mayor everything he’s not happy about concerning our neighbourhood. From inside their house I could hear Ricky the dog barking like his life depends on it and I thought: that’s why; the dog probably woke him up.

Watching him walking to and fro obviously irritated because Ricky’s Cousin Jimmy who lives across the street decided to join in with the howling and I remember thinking to myself: this guy needs to be transported to my country of origin around this time of the year so he can have a proper lesson about how to celebrate New Year in style. But I’m almost sure he will likely to have a heart attack if ever.

If these noises which are not even close to practice when it comes to the real thing bothers him already…

The merry making ceased as suddenly as it started, the street gone ghostly quiet again, the neighbour  stepped inside and locked the door; there goes another year and everything that had happened within its realm, gone, never to be seen again. I don’t know if it was because I was (and still is) sick and my head hurt(s) or I’m becoming a sentimental fool but I found myself crying dry tears…

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Happy New Year!

Here’s to the future we can’t predict,
and here’s to all that we will meet.
I can’t say where I’m going,
but I know it’ll be something great
because it’s the kind future
that holds our dreams.

Here’s to the future that awaits us,
and here’s to the past that will follow us.
I can’t say I won’t make just as many mistakes,
or that I’ll learn from all my old ones,
but I know I’ll be better for it
because eventually I’ll get it.

Here’s to the future that we’ll finally grab,
and here’s to all the hell we got while chasing it.
I can’t say I didn’t break,
but I’m alive and kicking today
because I kept going when I wanted to cry,
’cause hope pulled me forward.

And here’s to those who see a bleak future,
and here’s to those fools who accepted it.
I can’t say anything to reach them,
but I cross my fingers and hope
that they’ll see something worth chasing
because any journey is better with company…  

~ not mine

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