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|The Dead Sea, a tourist - my book - and a whole other story!|
It's Flashback Friday and this time we're staying on the prairies but it's going to be an adventure all the same. Flashback two years and we're heading for a hotel close to home but with an interesting event going... Feeding Furbabes.
The title of the event intrigued me as I fed my last dog an all home-made diet. And, I still have my dog food cookbook on the back burner of things I mean to do. Except that wasn't what had my interest, it was the demo of Goat Yoga. Who could dodge an invite like that? Apparently a few people I discover after sending out some texts. No one but me seemed interested in checking this event out.
So, who cares about the naysayers, there are eleven strangers who were on the same wavelength - goats rock.
This is a pet event so you can bring your pet! Great. I don't have a pet right now but I love animals so I was looking forward to some pet interaction. When the first one I see is a crazy happy puppy jumping up as far as his leash lets him, I reach down to pet him at which point he decided to wrestle my hand with his needle sharp puppy teeth. One bleeding thumb wrapped in a tissue- later, I'm signing in.
"I'm sorry there are no goats today."
Now that news just bites - harder than the puppy. And, as if anticipating this, there is a trio lined up to deliver the news. One of the goats is sick and from what I understand it is only precautionary, nothing life threatening. So, that's a relief. And the yoga is going on as planned...
But no goats. I mean, goat yoga isn't exactly anything but yoga without a goat. Not exactly true.
"It's still on but now it's puppy yoga," says the tall man at the end with a hopeful tone as if puppies fix everything.
Puppy yoga, hmmm.
"We can refund your money."
Nope. I'm in.
So puppy yoga it is. And with eight adorable puppies, a group of puppy wranglers and twelve yoga participants, it was an interesting event. Try to do downward dog with a real dog licking your toes. So after an hour of puppy cuddles and kisses, and some attempts at yoga - puppy yoga ends. Apparently animals in yoga is a bit of a thing. The instructor has a studio where she has cat yoga.
It's been fun and entertaining and I actually got some exercise. Plus, I reconnected with someone who I'd gone to obedience training with my puppy ages ago and yet it seems like yesterday. Now both dogs are gone. Time moves on and sometimes we say goodbye what seems like too many times. But now isn't time for sad thoughts. Instead we laugh at the memories of those puppies of long ago, as a real-time puppy has crashed in my lap.
So, yes - no goats but puppy yoga was a hit.
Goat yoga - when life gets back to normal I sure hope this event comes back to town. If it does - count me in! And I might be hoping that it again morphs to puppy yoga. Either way, it should be fun.
It's that time of the week - Flashback Friday. And today - well today, we're going on a virtual trip to that place where most trips begin - the airport. Flashback a few years ago to the bowels of a prairie winter - possibly the coldest day of the year when I saw my sister-in-law off on a trip and, did a whole lot of people watching in the process.
"Eat My Exhaust", great title and one not to be taken too literally. It's the weather who "Eat My Exhaust" is targeting. Why? It's ridiculously freezing cold today. Not scary cold, not quite but bordering on that. Now for all of you from cold climes you know what I mean. There's the point where you can see the cold in the air and it's awful uncomfortable to be outside for too long. And we all know it can get worse. Worse - that's where it steps into the land of scary cold. Kind of like strong wind - hurricane.
The day began at -30 celsius that's -22 for all you farenheit lovers. Either way it feels like -43 c or so the weather channel assures me. I'm taking their word for it and the furthest I'm venturing is the visitor side of the departure lounge in the airport. I'd pay money to be on the other side of that line - the one where I was actually going somewhere. Wait, that's right! Eureka all I need to do is fork out some money get a ticket and head out. Instead I'll be heading home to put on extra layers. But in the meantime I'm having a virtual trip.
It all started, pre-airport run, with an urgent discussion about a backpack that wouldn't close. Ah, the horrors of travel, you want to take it all but soon discover that lugging all that stuff through airports, hotels and transport of all sorts; well, it's just not practical. So with scaled down luggage we headed with said traveler to the airport.
Did I mention that I love the airport? The hustle and bustle - the mystery of trips about to begin and the exhausted yet completed feel of trips that have just ended.
Then, of course, there's the security line and while it's annoying, sometimes I actually like it. Why? Well, there's stories hanging out there. Yes, even amidst the frustrated and disgruntled passengers that have maybe been in line too long and on one flight too many. There's characters too - I mean really, is that shifty looking man clutching his carry on a little too tightly because he's clutching the evidence of the money he's stolen from the small firm he worked for or, because he has an even darker intent? And if the latter is the case, will security screens catch him or - is he smarter than that? And in process right now - how far will security go as they strip one more article off that sullen looking teenager? And what do they suspect?
Ah - yes, I hear it, the rattling of another story as my outrageous imagination defies logic and trips on ahead of itself. That's what I love about airports. There are stories everywhere. In fact, I'm thinking one day I'll just pack a lunch and hang out for the day. Okay - or not. But it wasn't a horrible thought. Slightly eccentric I admit but I'm betting not boring, not for one minute.
Meantime it's bon voyage to someone who'll be setting foot in Cairo as a new day dawns over here.
And me - well tomorrow I heard the sun will be shining in a brilliant blue sky and the temperature? I'll get back to you come spring.
Any trips in your future - or would you like to pack a lunch and join me at the airport?
It's Flashback Friday and I'm feeling optimistic. I feel like soon it will be time to blow the dust off my passport and head for places clear of snow and ice, places where things aren't familiar and where I will be a foreigner. Yes, I'm dreaming about being a tourist.
I know, I can't go - not yet. But I can dream. And who knows, maybe a trip is just around the corner or nearer the end of the year or at least close enough that I can begin thinking about it. So, thinking along that tract, there's no harm in looking back at old blog posts, past trips. And, as I did, I was reminded of one of the things I dislike about travel. Sure, there's a few things - long waits in airports, cramped airline seating but that's all ho hum standard. What is there at every stop, every custom's office and seems to be laughing at me like it was some cosmic joke is...
There really should be a drum roll inserted here...
Okay, here goes...
the passport picture.
Do any of them turn out good?
Did you ever have a passport picture that you wanted to show to anyone?
Not me. My thoughts are that if you've never been in trouble with the law and haven't had the opportunity to get a "mugshot", the next best thing is the passport photo.
|The Dead Sea, a tourist and a whole other story!|
Stark white - glow in the dark. Isn't that one of the tricks of Halloween - white sheets glowing in the darkness, ghosts reaching quivering hands to frighten little kids. I know, you're not all into Halloween but it's my thing. And yes, sheets well positioned may be rough forms of scary fun but they can be effective.
|Footprints in the snow|
White sheets - brings me to the topic of this post. Yes, in a round about fashion. I'm talking about paper not snow, like the only picture I had, but kind of comparable. Blank paper without even a footprint, a smudge - nothing. Now I've never been scared of a blank page - in fact they're one of my favourite things. At least so I thought until this morning. I discovered something then - blank pages are great if you're just free-form writing. They're really crappy if you just want to get a start on a novel and not choke on the third page, mid paragraph because you have no idea where to go next. A blank page can throw a long shadow.
Where was this story going and how many ideas could I incorporate into one story before it became a mish-mash of nothingness or how few before it began going circular mid-stream?
I needed direction - an outline, some logic to coral all the creativeness that was spinning quickly into nowhere. So I moved to the synopsis. Did I mention I loathe the synopsis. Yes, loathe - there is no better word for how I feel about that short little condensed version of a story. But you know, I've learned that if I skip right over my "beginning hebejeebies", a synopsis can be an awesome thing. Okay, maybe not awesome, but along with an outline - a big help.
So I went there, to hebejeebie land with a different page, a new tactic, and looked again at another blank page. Problem was there was still a problem. I had a house and nothing else, not even a character name. Yes, you didn't read wrong - a house can be a character, how much of one in this particular story... well even if I make it a female house, I sense that cannot be construed as either romance or woman's fiction. And that folks, is what I write. So I suspect the house will only be a small supporting role. I'm sure not sure if I'll ever want to write about a house, not as a primary character anyway. That's been done before, mostly in the world of horror - and done well. No this was a story about people, about a woman. A woman - now I'm getting somewhere.
So now I need a name - so off to the baby name section of the internet. Unfortunately, the first one I hit on was something about "The Intelligent Woman's Guide to Naming." No, that wasn't what I typed in, it's what came up and the names - well they were names that were slightly unusual, they weren't who my character is. Not that she isn't unusual but I sense she likes to work with her hands and not strictly her head. Aha - a personality is finally beginning to emerge. I left that site, checked out another - found a name and went back to the blank page. This time success. I began to type - single spaced, just to prove I wasn't yet serious. Serious means using the correct font and double spacing. I considered using a chalkboard print but that might be poking the fates so I stuck to publishing industry standard and voila. One and one-half single spaced pages later I had a story, a character, and a rough-hewn synopsis that would make the writing industry cringe.
I'm pleased with the name of my character. I think it suits her and I sense she might be happy with it. I'd mention it here but with only hours into the whole project everything is subject to change. Onward Christian Soldiers - okay, just onward one little writer sitting on her couch pecking away in the early hours of the morning.
And that's the journey of one story. The beginnings anyway. They're all different.
How do you begin a new project - an organized fashion or from every angle possible?
|The Dead Sea, a tourist and a whole other story!|