One of last year’s tulips, but they will return, are already growing.
Today’s orange, outrageously good, known as Tarocco
One of last year’s tulips, but they will return, are already growing.
Today’s orange, outrageously good, known as Tarocco
If you are on a visit to Marrakech in Morrocco then you take photos. We took this one in a night club – she was really dancing in hot magenta
Butterflies also seem to have a preference for something colourful and hot
First of all, yes I am here again. Just ignore me if you have better things to do, but I found if the Daily Prompt can spring over their shadow, then so can I. Who am I to think I am something special, individual etc. etc. In the meanwhile I put myself voluntarily into quarantine and discovered there is something called a Topic Generator and I have discovered my creative uncreative side again. So thank you topic generator and I will be back definitely. It is almost the best thing that has happened since sliced bread (I think that was a prompt once). Anyhow to continue, todays assignment is:
A contagious disease requires you to be put into quarantine for a whole month (don’t worry, you get well by the time you’re free to go!). How would you spend your time in isolation?
There were times as a young mother when I would have welcomed a months quarantine: away from it all, no nappies to change, do homework with the kids, go shopping, cooking ironing and all that stuff that we women thrive on. Now the kids are grown up, finding their own way in life and probably also longing for a month’s quarantine, but that is their problem. I had to deal with it as well.
Anyhow I am now in the golden oldie years, where I do what I want to and not what I have to (with the exception of a daily something or other in the cyber world). There we get to the point. I am restricted to my own four walls due to some sort of mysterious virus infection contracted whilst writing the Daily Prompt. Daily Prompt were suffering for many months and locked themselves in their office in Silicon Valley, straining to press the key that activated the old prompts. They are now cured, but it seems we are infected, so what do we do?
No problem of course. It is the human metabolism that has an illness, our computers are ready to go and we have a complete month to do it all. Making an allowance for time to eat, take your tablets, and measure your blood pressure, the remainder is all yours. After all you can order everything else online. I have my Apple computer, known as Mac and even one of those Windows things, what could be better. In the morning checking through what the others said through the night. It is a well-known fact that whilst we Europeans are sleeping the colonists over the pond are ready to go, and so computer is a 24 hour system. Whilst you are sleeping the others are not and somewhere the others are watching and waiting to jump in, in between.
Throughout my European afternoon I will be writing the new, fresh, original daily prompt of course. After uploading this I will be writing for the topic generator. The Topic Generator is super, it is always there, it never fails, although I must say the combinations of the two words, adjective and noun, can be sometimes quite mysterious, morbid, refreshing, the fulfilment of your blogging dreams, depending on how your illness is developing. I have now spent two weeks with this new way of blogging life and I survived.
In between I did my own thing, accompanied by photos and their inspiration. Of course, with a contagious illness, known as “the dreaded” for want of another expressions, I cannot take my camera into the outer world. In the meanwhile I have discovered that I have almost 1400 MB of photos on my computer and 3 so-called Western Digital hard drives so that will keep me busy in between when I am not writing rubbish.
And as I am not really in quarantine, my fate has been decided by Mr. Swiss. It is not raining, the weather is overcast, but pleasant, and he is ready with the walking shoes and blue jeans. He asked
“what about you” and I said
“Yes, I am ready to go, I just have to upload my new fresh daily prompt”
“I thought you were no longer doing daily prompts.”
“Who said that, they were just not new, but now they have returned.”
“So we are no longer going for walks?”
I did not ask if I could take my computer with me. I will now upload and then I am gone. If the prompt is still breathing and alive tomorrow I will be back.
How are you at receiving criticism? Do you prefer that others treat you with kid gloves, or go for brutal honesty?
Before I start to write my immaculate words of wisdom on this theme I want to say HAPPY BIRTHDAY DAD. Yes my dad is 99 years old today. Born in 1915 when there were no computers, not even television, just something called radio, he grew up in the East End of London. In 1939 his country needed him in the army to fight a war. He was not really asked if he wanted to, but he joined in with all the rest and did his bit. After the war he got married to the lady he met once in on leave, who became my mum. He now lives in London. He can no longer walk so well, but is very well cared for in his own apartment and can still manage to have an argument with me on the telephone, although he does not hear so well. We get on like a house on fire, not always having the same opinion, but that is the spicy part of my dad.
Here we are together on my last visit sometime in March.
And now to the daily prompt, which will be rather short. I generally do not receive criticism as I am so perfect and I am really too old for criticism. If someone wants to criticise me, then it is their problem not mine. There is simply nothing to criticise on me. I do everything correctly. I always say the right thing at the right moment. Now and again I might be misunderstood, but these are really misunderstandings. If someone finds I am not saying what I should or doing what I should, then it is their problem, not mine.
As I said, it very rarely happens and if it does it is not my problem. Of course it might be that one of my felines disagrees with my methods. Yesterday evening after a tiring day at the Angloswiss mansion I was ready for a quiet evening reading a book in my favourite armchair, the one that fits the luxury curves of my streamlined body. Do not disagree, I hate people that disagree with me, do not forget, I am perfect. Anyhow one of my felines had decided to choose my armchair for a long sleep: one of those ten minute lick wash, turn three times in a circle and settle down sleeps with the head resting on the legs in a curved position.
This was my chair, so I spoke in meow to my feline Fluffy. Fluffy ignored me and continued sleeping. Was I to sit on a lesser comfortable chair whilst my place was occupied by one of my four legged meow speaking friends? I picked up Fluffy with care and carried him to another chair, just as comfortable for a feline, but not the chosen chair. Fluffy awoke, made some negative noises and immediately left the second choice chair where I placed him, as if to say “No, not with me. I sleep where I want to sleep.” I took my rightful place in my chair and Fluffy had the expression on his feline face which I could define as “if looks could kill”, but luckily feline have short memories and Fluffy eventually curled up next to Mr. Swiss who was resting his legs which he now had to share with Fluffy.
And now I have to leave you all. I have a telephone call to made to London to wish an elderly gentleman Happy Brithday.
If you had to come up with one question, the answer to which would determine whether or not you could be friends with a person you’ve just met, what would it be? What would the right answer be?
I know the bird on the photo has nothing to do with litmus or questions. He was born in the local supermarket, he asked me to take him home and put him in the garden and since he has been sitting in the garden, so I decided he deserved a photo.
First of all the only knowledge I have of litmus is litmus paper from the dark days of my chemistry lessons in school. Dip the litmus paper in the substance, (animal, vegetable or mineral) and if it turns red it is acidic, if blue it is alkali and what if it does not change in colour? Then you have a problem, because that confuses the litmus and me as well.
Secondly I do not compare people to litmus paper, it is a little more complicated and I definitely do not want to befriend someone I have just met.
“Quite right Mrs. Human” said Tabby my feline. “First of all you have to smell them to see if they have a positive feline karma and examine their intentions in connection with territorial rights. Generally this will be completely negative, and for this reason we intellectual felines do not make friends. We do not need friends. If you really must have a question what about “where’s the tuna?”
“Tabby we are discussing a human question which is not the same thing as a feline question.”
“Mrs. Human, we felines believe that actions speak louder than meows, pounce while the bird is least expecting it.”
Somehow I had the feeling that my tabby cat did not exactly grasp the true meaning behind this wise inquiring question, but to be quite honest neither do I.
Do you sometimes have those strange telephone calls from someone you do not know. It often happens to all of us. It might be a wrong number; they might want to sell you something. Generally you hang up and perhaps offer a feeble “no interest” comment. Sometimes my “no interest” comments can be more than feeble, quite strong and even insulting.
I remember particularly a gentleman that was constantly calling on my mobile. I noticed the number he was ringing from was foreign. I checked it and found it to be Nigeria. As I do not know anyone in Nigeria I decided to ignore the call. However, he was persistant so one day I took fate by its hands and answered.
Just white noise and no answer. I put the phone down, as I cannot speak white noise.
He rang again.
There was a voice on the line.
“Hello can you hear me, I am Ubanga, Ubanga (or something like that).”
“I don’t know you.”
“I know, but I want to be your friend”
At last someone wants to be my friend. That does not happen very often, especially a gentleman from Nigeria.
He continued: “What’s your name, where do you live?”
Was this acid or alkali? I decided it was one of those in between and I also decided I did not want to be his friend, imagining a surprise visit from Mr. Ubanga Ubanga with his ten brothers, mother and father, and a few Nigerian uncles and aunts. Not that I have anything against Nigeria, I have never been there. My answer “I do not want to be your friend” and I hung up the telephone. Since I have not been bothered by this Nigerian gentleman
In this connection I would say there is no question, no right answer, although I just met a new neighbour this week and said “Hello” without a question mark. I do not have the custom to ask people questions when I meet them for the first time. If they answer with “Hello” that is OK, we are both civil and friendly, what more could you possible need?
Oh dear, this is one of those daily prompts where I do not really know where I am going.
You’re about to enter a room full of strangers, where you will have exactly four minutes to tell a story that would convey who you really are. What’s your story?
“That was a refreshing golden oldie midday sleep, now I am awake and ready to go, but what is that noise, seems to be coming from the living room.”
“Hello Mrs. Angloswiss.”
“Hello Wordy, what are you doing here?. I don’t remember inviting you for a chocolate cake today. You look quite smart in your new t-shirt with the words “WordPress” in golden letters on that black background.”
“Yes, that is the special t-shirt when we have a task.”
“And what is the task today, I was just going to see what the daily prompt is and begin to write. Time is important on these prompts.”
“Exactly Mrs. Angloswiss. Today you have just four minutes to tell all these people who you really are.”
“What people Wordy. Just a minute who are these guys (and dolls?) in my living room. What do you think you are doing sir? Leave my whisky supply alone, that is reserved for guests.”
“Hey Ma’am I am your guest and so are the others.”
“Wordy, explanation please.”
“Mrs. Angloswiss put me down, you are stretching the neck of my nice new t-shirt and I cannot breathe when you are squeezing my neck. You now have the opportunity to tell all these nice strangers in your living room who you really are, but you only have four minutes.”
“And Wordy, you have just one minute to clear these people out of my place. I don’t do personal explanations, unless ….. Is anyone here from the Pulitzer prize people, just raise your hand. No-one, and the Nobel prize people? Wordy if you drag people into my private apartment, then make it worth my while.”
“Stop knocking that little guy around, he is only doing his job.”
“Who are you?”
“I was invited by that Wordy guy. He said there might be something in it for me.”
“I don’t think so.”
“Have you got a life insurance? Our company can fix you up with one, a great deal. Just sign on the line and everything is covered if you have an accident, commit suicide, or get kidnapped.There is even a special agreement with the undertaker included; a solid oak coffin.”
“Don’t shout Mrs. Anglosiwiss, he told me he would love to hear all about you.”
“I am sure he would. What do you think you are doing. Wordy who is that guy. He is standing next to me with a measureing tape”
“Hello Mrs. Angloswiss. I am your local undertaker and work in partnership with Mr. Insurance Man. You would be just the right length for our special economy size coffin, silk red padded lining included. And if you prefer cremation, we have solid gold urns that would fit nicely on your sideboard.”
“Mrs. Angloswiss, stop pushing that guy out of the door, he is only doing his job.”
“Where did you find these freaks Wordy? Is there anyone here that is normal and will listen to what I have to say. You in the white coat holding your hand up. You will listen to me?”
“No problem, it is my job.”
“Tell me all about it.”
“I work up on the hill in the local institution. We would have a special padded room for you, food and lodging and medical attention. I would see to all your needs. Dr. Jules Frankenstein at your service. We might even let you out at the week-end with supervision. Does you health insurance cover psychiatric care?
“Go, now. If anyone wants to know who I really am, here is my criminal record.”
“But Mrs. Angloswiss, it is an empty page.”
“Wordy, I will begin to fill up the page with a few murders if you do not throw these strangers out of my place and your name will be on the top of the list. Any other details can be found on my WordPress Blog, Facebook page and Google+. I do not need a Daily Prompt filling my place up with drinking strangers, especially not Wordy strangers.”
The room emptied within 4 minutes and another blog is born. Wordy was last seen being pursued by an insurance salesman, psychiatrist and undertaker as he left my place.
Changing colors, dropping temperatures, pumpkin spice lattes: do these mainstays of Fall fill your heart with warmth — or with dread?
“No, no, no. Slugs you are ruining my poetic description of Autumn when the leaves turn from green to gold, tinged with red, blowing in the wind to make a carpet of colour on the ground. Now I have a mouldy apple with three fat slimy slugs slithering over the skin and absorbing the remains of the apple.”
“Stay cool Mrs. Human, we slugs have to eat to survive.”
“But not in my garden on my apples.”
“Would you eat an apple that has fallen from the tree. I don’t think so, humans are fussy. Our little brothers, the worms, have already done the preliminary boring of the apple and now we are eating the remainders. This is the real spirit of Autumn Mrs. Human. My brothers/sisters and I are celebrating our Autumn festival. We have been forced to feed on leaves throughout summer and not all leaves are to our taste. Mrs. Human you even killed some of the slug family by dissolving their bodies with salt. Would you like to dissolve?”
“Of course not, but I do not thrive on my plants with their beautiful flowers. You completely devoured my gallardia, there were only a few stalks left.”
“We don’t like stalks Mrs. Human. They are dry and brittle, no juice or soft parts: Nothing better than a nice thick juicy leaf, especially if it is slug friendly. We like parsley most of all and hostas, that is a feast for us. Now autumn has arrived, the leafy season has gone and we are celebrating our Autumn festival aren’t we boys/girls. It is apple harvest time, when the apples are tired from hanging on the trees and bounce to the ground where we are waiting.”
“This is all very well, but we humans also eat apples and even make pies and tarts with them. I did not plant my apple tree for a slug Autumn festival.”
“Oh, come on Mrs. Human, you don’t eat the apples that fall from the tree. They might have a brown soft spot on their skin. Yummy that is our favourite part. We can really squeeze into the apple and savour every part of its flesh. Isn’t it so boys/girls?”
“Yes boss of course. Autumn is the time of year that we all look forward to – munch, munch.”
“So do not gobble the food, eat with dignity, we are slugs and not humans.”
“Excuse me, what was that last remark?”
“Mrs. Human have you ever watched a human eating an apple. He kills it, hatches away with the things called teeth and murders it by biting large lumps out of its flesh.”
“So you want to tell me that slugs don’t have teeth.”
“Of course we have teeth, 14,000 of them in all, but they are fine and dainty. We do not chop our food, we absorb it. So enough talk, I have an apple to deal with. There are four of our kind waiting to take over when we are finished.”
“You are not going to eat the complete apple?”
“We share our food Mrs. Human: besides there is another apple just around the corner that left the tree, so I think I will slime my way over to that apple. Did you plant any strawberries this year Mrs. Human? We slugs love strawberries. They are so nice and juicy.”
“No I did not plant strawberries. I decided to stop planting strawberries as the last time the slugs ate them all.”
“Oh, I see. Never mind apples are OK. What are you doing with all those apples you are collecting in that basket Mrs. Human?”
“They are for human consumption, not for slugs. Don’t worry, I will leave the bruised apples for you.”
“Thankyou Mrs. Human, you are so kind. Did you hear fellow slugs. The remaining apples are for us. ”
And I left the Autumn in my garden, accompanied by the munching sounds of millions of slug teeth as they devoured the apples that no-one really wants. They seem to be the garbage people of my garden.
“And Mrs. Human, see you again next year some time in spring. We will be keeping our feelers crossed for a nice wet Spring. Don’t forget to plant the parsley and look after the hostas.”
You have to love them I suppose, I hope we have a nice dry warm Spring and I will not plant parsley. I will buy it at the supermarket.
“I would have written a shorter letter, but I did not have the time.” — Blaise Pascal
Where do you fall on the brevity/verbosity spectrum?
Butterflies have a brief life. They spend months developing in their caterpillar form. One day they awake as a fully-fledged small tortoiseshell butterfly with enough time to manufacture a few eggs and that’s that. Something like our prompts perhaps. We only have a day to construct our meaningful words, but the length of the days dwindles when the daily prompt does not appear at the usual time. I think I will have to make a telephone call.
No-one is picking up. The phone is ringing and ringing. Is no-one at home?
“Wordy WordPress guy talking, can I help you?”
“Hello Wordy, Angloswiss here. At last you have answered the phone. I was worried that something had happened.”
“I was having a sleep Mrs. Angloswiss. It is my day off today and so I was making the most of it. Do you have a problem with the brevity/verbosity spectrum?”
“Oh come on Wordy, of course I have a problem with the brevity/verbosity spectrum. I always have enough to say, but have problems with keeping it short and sweet. At least today this problem has disappeared.”
“That’s great Mrs Angloswiss. I am always glad to be of help.”
“No Wordy, you don’t get it. I have no problem today because I have no Daily Prompt. Your stand-in, the person that is supposed to be doing your work on your day off, has forgotten to pull the switch and I am locked out, together with about 100 other daily prompt colleagues. We are blocked, forced to sit at the computer and watch a blank screen. Wordy, pull yourself together, take off your WordPress pyjama and put on the t-shirt. Move and go to headquarters.”
“But it is my day off Mrs. Angloswiss. If I do that I will be breaking union rules and my boss will not be pleased. There might even be a strike.”
“Wordy this is an emergency. How can I apply brevity to my verbosity when I don’t even have a spectrum?”
“Mrs. Angloswiss you seem to have a problem. I will do my best. Oh no!”
“What’s wrong Wordy?”
“I was hurrying to get dressed and cleaning my teeth and now I have toothpaste stains on my nice new clean freshly ironed t-shirt. That will give minus points at headquarters.”
“Wordy, if you do not do the necessary with the daily prompt it will give more than minus points at my place. There will be no freshly baked chocolate cake waiting for you, just bread and water.”
“I am on my way Mrs. Angloswiss, just have to comb my hair.”
“You have hair? Don’t bother Wordy, you always wear a WordPress baseball cap in any case. I have never seen your hair.”
“Of course I have hair, but at WordPress they told me to do the uniform cut – Bruce Willis style. This saves time and I can have a shave as well.”
“Wordy I give you five minutes to arrive shaved or not shaved. Three day beards are quite sexy. Ask the nice Mr. Hubermann to beam you up to headquarters. It is now 4 p.m. Swiss time. This is an emergency.”
He hung up and is probably on his way. In the meanwhile my brevity/verbosity spectrum has been forced to wait, and what is it all about anyway? I don’t do refurbs on my blogs, or rewrites and shortening them does not come into the question. It is not my style. I prefer to go round three or four corners before I actually say what I want to say.
Wait a minute Blaise Pascal lived from 1623-1662 and was a mathematician. Did he ever write a blog?
It seems that our team of daily prompt workers have been partying again or have their annual excursion. Up to now there is no daily prompt.
Of course I have given them a push on the forum site. Here is the link for those that might be interested.
How would you get along with your sibling(s), parent(s), or any other person you’ve known for a long time — if you only met them for the first time today?
I could tell you all about Uncle Nick. Now if you met him for the first time, you would probably run and hide. He did have the habit of flying around on full moon nights wearing a long black cloak and sharpening his teeth on a file. The teeth were very pointed and I am sure he could have bitten through a tree trunk if necessary. However, he only used them for jugular veins on the necks of various animals or people and they often made blood stains on his white shirt. Not that it bothered him, he just continued as usual. I suppose it is as they say, you can pick your friends, but not your family.
He would work at the local blood bank on the night shift. He slept most of the day, although when the days got shorter in Winter he had a twilight hour job helping the local undertaker. Getting along with Uncle Nick was an overstatement. He was a quiet person, did not mix very much and liked to keep himself to himself. His wife Aunty Dementia was a wonderful person. I remember she always took her broomstick with her when she went shopping. She had a thing for cleanliness. She said it was quicker than the bus or train. Both Uncle Nick and Aunty Dementia are no longer with us in body, but they left their cat, Boris in my care. He loves to go for a walk in the evening and I often accompany him on an excursion to the nearby cemetery. It is almost as if he senses where the remains of Nick and Dementia lay. Unfortunately some nights the grave is empty as they seem to have a wandering spirit.
If you ever meet Boris I would not advise to pat him on the head or stroke his long black fur. He is very sensitive to human touch and it might be that he turns his head and sinks his fangs teeth into your hand. If he draws blood do not worry He has a long sharp tongue and will gladly lick it up for you. Yes that was an unforgettable family.
“Get down Boris and stop annoying that rat in the corner. Ah, you are hungry. Here is a nice bloody steak. Boris do not just bite meat and swallow it, chew it first of all. It will be much easier to digest. Ah, that is not necessary, is slides down nicely in lumps.”
I cannot remember the first time I met that happy family, they were always there and never really left us.
Of course, there was cousin Smokey. He was the son of Nick and Dementia. I think Nick was disappointed in him as he did not seem to live up to the family tradition. He worked for the local fire brigade. He loved things that went up in smoke and if there was no fire he always seemed to find something to burn. He hated school, but he was a lucky cousin. The school burnt down and he had only been there a few weeks. Of course he was under suspicion because someone saw him with a magnifying glass holding it in the sun’s rays over the wooden school door. When questioned he said he was practicing spontaneous combustion for his chemistry lesson at school so no further investigations were carried out.
Smokey had a brother. He had a nickname and was known as “The Strangler”. We do not talk about him. He managed to escape from prison and was last heard of somewhere in Eastern Europe. He seemed to be the black sheep of the family.
So, that will do. Speaking about family members or friends that I have known for a long time is a personal thing and I am sure they would not like to know that I am giving their private details all over Internet. Nick’s family are an exception. They did not really have any friends and most of their relations disowned them. “Boris, down boy, I have a nice piece of liver for you for lunch, but avoid making blood stains on your fur, it does not make a good impression.
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