Silly Saturday – Fifteen Favourite Facebook Fotos

48427958_274665676532639_8613388218697515008_n-e1546905933813.jpg

Sue has checked in to Toytown International Airport.

42464994_2295089690520808_1144213162061463552_o

Chocolate Moose has changed his profile picture.

DSCN5268

Wanda has changed her profile picture.

P1100996

When one door closes another one stays shut.

DSCN0781

We all need libraries – in our own homes…

44026585_2323276961035414_6235347586627141632_o

        Behind every cloud there’s rain.

DSCN0489

Donald Trump buys Stonehenge for new golf course.

11

New Spiderman film, the 27th in the franchise, promises to be the blockbuster movie for 2019.

DSCN0535

The clock is ticking backwards towards Brexit.

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_8320-Edit

Government announces new technology to deal with drones.

2010 08 20_3997

Know what you are getting when you book a cheap holiday flight.

DSCN4211

Hey guys, wish you were here, this is the view from our holiday apartment.

15

Day 53 of our world cruise.

6

Doctors successfully separate conjoined twin rabbits.

9

Please share – our darling fur baby Tiny has gone missing.

Advertisements

Friday Flash Fiction 636 – Fur Babies

‘Pompom’ called a shrill voice.

When did real dogs turn to toys wondered Vince as he trudged through the mud, conspicuous as the only human without a dog. The dogs skittering around two women did not match the environment, what happened to Labradors and Rottweilers? As if in answer, a large muddy dog, originally yellow, bounced playfully out of the bushes only to find itself attacked by a tiny ball of white cotton wool.

‘Pompom, naughty boy, heel.’

The Labrador’s owner laughed, so did Vince until the ball of fluff veered towards him, jumping up growling to snap at his ankle.

‘If he was an American Pit Bull,’ said Vince gruffly ‘you’d be in trouble with the police.’

The owner scooped up Pompom and marched away as if he had incited the attack.

The walking business, to avoid blood pressure tablets and type two diabetes, was proving to be worse than going to the gym. Vince’s life of crime had not involved exercise, he had had other people to do that for him. But he hated hospitals, so he had no alternative but alternative therapy.

He paused to avoid a large puddle and looked up to see a young man pushing a three wheeler cross country pram. Inside it was a miserable looking baby, but slung under the man’s arm was a baby sling with a fluffy white face poking cheerfully out.

‘It’s even muddier further along’ said Vince, imagining with relish the pram getting stuck and baby falling out.

‘I know,’ said the man cheerfully ‘we must be mad. Oh, you haven’t got a dog… this one’s getting on a bit so he can’t walk far.’

That was when Vince had his idea. Fluffy toys didn’t attack Vince the Mincer and get away with it.

 

71.jpg

On the internet that evening he looked up breeds of dogs, it turned out the mini monster cotton wool ball was actually a valuable breed. Vince looked up battery operated toys and ordered some ‘Fur Babies’ – barking, bouncing, battery operated toy dogs that looked remarkably realistic.

His daily two mile walks had a purpose now. Among the many mutant miniature wolves he encountered, Pompom was a regular, his owner had a strict routine, returning to the car park at the same time each day.

At the dog parlour he bought a National Trust green puppy sling.

dscn6661-e1531005150685.jpg

Vince hid in the bushes, hoping no one would think he was a flasher. Did blokes do that any more, he wondered, or was it all on the internet? In five minutes Pompom should pass that way, trying to avoid having the lead attached to his diamond studded collar. For Pompom was a real dog at heart, who preferred puddles and fresh air to the pink Kar with its sticker ‘Precious Pet on board’.

Some ancestral lupine instinct stirred in little Pompom as Vince waved the dripping fresh raw meat. Within seconds he was in the bushes, within seconds he was bound in the puppy sling and Vince was switching on the battery operated Pompom doppelganger.

‘Pompom, here Pompom, Mummy’s got a treat for you.’

Vince remained motionless, one large hand clamped round Pompom’s tiny muzzle. He remained just long enough to see the toy dog trot obediently out of the bushes and the owner bend down to pick up him up. Her scream attracted the attention of other dog walkers and Vince slipped away.

P1060580

At home, Pompom was in an old rabbit cage and Vince was wondering if he should put the dog on EBay or if a ransom demand would yield more money, or perhaps he could do both.

That night he taped a notice on the window of the little coffee kiosk in the car park.

FOUND – ADORABLE WHITE MINIATURE DOG.

IF YOU ARE THE FRANTIC OWNER

PLEASE PHONE THIS NUMBER…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Facebook Friends Forever

The first time I saw Facebook on the computer screen there was a picture of my sister-in-law getting her breast tattooed. My daughter was trying to show me what it was all about, but that was enough to put anyone off.

Christmas 2018 was my ninth anniversary of being on Facebook, I don’t recall agreeing, but one second we were upstairs on the computer, my daughter typing away my personal details, the next second there was a Facebook friend request from daughter-in-law downstairs. Five seconds later there was a friend request from that ghastly child in my daughter’s class; in her class from playgroup onwards through all the long years of school…

‘Why on earth does she want to be my friend?’

‘DON’T accept, she asks to be everybody’s friend as she hasn’t got any real friends.’

Love it, hate it or are you a shadow, watching what others are doing without ever appearing? Authors are exhorted to have a presence on line and a Facebook  Author Page, and it was a good meeting place at the start, joining writers’ forums etc.

https://www.facebook.com/Beachwriter/

Most of us probably use it to see what everyone else in the family is up to and it is amazing to have messenger groups for family and friends and exchange pictures and news across the world in seconds.

DSCN0437

It took me a while to figure out how to post pictures that I had taken with my camera and loaded onto my desk top computer; I was filled with awe seeing people tap mysteriously on their mobile phones and put pictures straight on Facebook. When I finally acquired a smart phone I immediately became addicted to keeping people up to date with scenic views or strange sights.

What are some of the other things we can do on Facebook? Know how late everyone else is staying up or how early your FB friends in Australia get up. You might be discovered by a long lost relative and wish you hadn’t. See lots and lots of pandas and even more cats. Sign many petitions to save the world, see lots of the world and plenty of places you will never see; but in return smugly post pictures of places they will never visit. Join your local community group and start a conversation that could go on for days  ‘I went in that new restaurant and waited an hour for my dinner and the staff were very rude’.27835424_1971591706203943_476442722_oPress LIKE when you see a funny cartoon and lots more funny cartoons will pop up. If they make me LaughOutLoud I share them; there are plenty of people out there who can’t sleep or are stuck at home ill and love something to cheer them up. Cartoonists can say in a few pen strokes more than writers can in a page, so thank you cartoonists.

Time waster? What is the most inane thing you have found yourself glued to? Press LIKE when you see a news item posted by your friend in the USA and a few nights later you may find yourself watching a car chase filmed by a news helicopter. Keep watching, marvelling at the freeways ten lanes wide, keep watching to see if the police will catch up with the driver. Call out to anybody else in the house to come and have a look, but they have already gone to bed. You promise yourself to watch for two more minutes only before you go and clean your teeth, but those freeways and endless bridges are mesmerising and still the police are keeping up but not catching… like Facebook it goes on forever.

 

 

The Game of Life – Two Thousand and Nineteen

Warning: Do you dare to play the game of life? If you don’t want to read about illness and death or you dislike dark humour please avoid this blog, but I hope you will continue to visit my Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday blogs.

45267299_257326128311826_9052458563544285184_n.jpg

Clear the board and start a new round of the Game of Life for a new year. People are either reviewing their lives with enthusiasm or daily life has come to a halt as they are house bound with ‘flu. Ironically we have caught nothing over Christmas and New Year; luckily, as Cyberspouse is supposed to avoid ‘catching anything’ while he’s on chemotherapy. Having a few plants in your house is supposed to contribute to good health; our home is so full of plants people should be flocking here for plant therapy.

DSCN5985

In the news… when we hear of a public figure who has died unexpectedly followed by the words  ‘he was diagnosed 12 weeks ago with cancer of the…’ we think – How did that happen, only 12 weeks?

Death Jokes   Doctor: ‘I’m afraid you have a malignant tumour.

Patient: ‘Thank goodness, I was worried I had cancer.’

                                      Queen Mary copy

                        One branch of the family does ‘firework events’, sometimes to farewell ocean liners at Southampton. One time they were chatting to a regular dock hand who told them ‘the first thing they bring off after docking is the bodies.’ Two couples we know were surprised to meet each other on a cruise. On their return one husband said to me ‘Don’t go on a cruise, two passengers died.’ The wife of the other couple said to me ‘If you’re going to have a heart attack, make sure you’re on an ocean liner, they had a fantastic medical suite, our friend had a heart attack and he was really well looked after.’

12

Cancer Conversations  Just after we got the first ‘news’ I was sitting on the decking of a sea front cafe, when two chaps came and sat at the next table so I was unavoidably eavesdropping. One was visiting and they were catching up, but the news wasn’t good, the visitor had only three months to live –  ‘it had gone to his brain’. He didn’t look ill. Though he knew his wife was trying to do her best, he had been overcome with irrational anger and taken the car he was no longer allowed to drive to his cancer drop in centre. His furious son had to come and pick him up. The medical team told him it was the cancer causing his behaviour.

48427958_274665676532639_8613388218697515008_n.jpg

The Games of Life It is the time of year for enjoying indoor games. A friend brought round some jigsaws, only they were sawjigs. The picture on the box was not the picture of the puzzle, you have to work that out, it could be what the people in the picture can see, or what happens next. A trivial pursuit, but fun, like Trivial Pursuit, a favourite Christmas game. Outdoors the weather has been grey and dreary except for New Year’s Day when blue sky brought everyone out to play; first move in the game of 2019.

Silly Saturday – New Year Unresolutions

By now you have probably broken most of your resolutions, but it’s never too late to repair them. Here is a handy guide to resolutions that you will never keep, to save you making them in the first place and resolutions impossible to break.

Daunting

  1. Finish my Work In Progress before I finish my Christmas chocolates.
  2. Finish reading A Brief History of Time by Stephen Hawking.
  3. Review the above book intelligently on Amazon and Goodreads.
  4. Read every blog by every blogger I follow.
  5. Sell more books.
  6. Think up lots of new meals to cook.
  7. Clear out every drawer in the house and recycle all twentieth century ‘what’s on leaflets’.
  8. Learn how to use ebay and empty all cupboards and the loft.
  9. Spend less time on social media.
  10. Sign every worthwhile petition going on line and write to my MP and all the world leaders about every important issue.
  11. Become the first Indie Author to trek alone to the North Pole and blog every day about my journey.
  12. Visit the dark side of the moon.
  13. Live without plastic.

 Undaunting

  1. Finish my Christmas chocolates before my WIP.
  2. Read Brief Answers to the Big Questions: the final book from Stephen Hawking – The world-famous cosmologist and bestselling author of A Brief History of Time leaves us with his final thoughts on the universe’s biggest questions in this brilliant posthumous work. As it’s posthumous he may have found out the answers by now.
  3. Review the above book briefly on Amazon and Goodreads.
  4. Read and comment on at least one blog a week.
  5. Sell at least one book this year.
  6. Try cooking one new meal.
  7. Tidy up at least one drawer.
  8. Take that bag of stuff to the charity shop.
  9. Improve social media skills.
  10. Share at least one funny cartoon a day on Facebook.
  11. Go for a walk to a new coffee shop every week – blog about the experience.
  12. Visit that new Ikea.
  13. Remember to take my bag for life to the shops.

 

Friday Flash Fiction – Cinderella

 As the great clock struck midnight, Cinderella flew down the sweeping stone steps of the palace; four… five… six. One shoe had slipped off on the top step, now she nearly tumbled down the last few steps; seven… eight… A strong hand reached out to steady her, she looked up at a pair of dark twinkling eyes.

‘Steady Miss, what’s the hurry?’ a deep voice asked. It was the coachman.

‘We must go,’ she cried ‘the coach…’

Eleven…

‘No hurry Miss, what about the Ball?’

TWELVE

Her heart seemed to stop as the chimes stopped, but the coach remained in all its splendour, the four grey horses stood tossing their heads proudly.

‘I don’t understand…’ Cinderella stammered.

‘Look Miss, the prince is waiting for you to have the last dance.’

She hardly dared take her eyes off the coach, but forced herself to look back at the golden light pouring from the great palace doors. There at the top of the steps stood the Handsome Prince, behind him his valet held aloft the beautiful shoe.

‘I shall be waiting here for you’ said the coachman, his rich husky voice sending a tingle down her spine.

P1110728

 

Cinderella tried to walk gracefully back up the steps.

‘Princess, put this dainty shoe upon your pretty foot and let us dance again.’

The Prince twirled her back into the ballroom, but as his slender cool hands clasped her, all she could think of were the warm strong hands of the coachman. Something new had awoken in her and she wondered why she had thought the Prince so handsome earlier in the evening. Close to his perfumed powdered wig, she recalled the dark tousled hair of the other man. Glancing down at the whirling floor, she noticed the Prince’s boots had high heels, yet he stood only an inch taller than her. When she had first danced with him she had been relieved he had not asked her about herself; now she realised that was because he only talked about himself; how big his palace was, how many horses in his stable, how many princesses wanted to marry him. The words drifted over her as she thought of the man she had only spent one minute with. Now the Prince had glided her onto the balcony and she was relieved to glimpse her coach still there with its fine guardian. Cinderella felt something cold on her finger and glanced down to see a huge diamond ring; she realised what the Prince was saying.

‘…it will be a great privilege for you to marry me.’

A cold chill swept through her; hours ago she could only have dreamt of marrying a prince, now she realised she would be as much a prisoner in the palace as she was in the kitchen.

6

Jethro the swineherd patted the strong necks of the beautiful greys; they smelt of new mown hay and leather. How different from the pigs he had to tend every day. As the youngest son, he was never allowed to plough the fields or take Dobbin to market. This morning, as he cleaned out the pig pens, dreaming of meeting a beautiful girl, a blinding light had struck him and his Wizard Godfather had appeared.

‘You will meet a beautiful girl this evening, but you must return her home safely before sunrise.’

In a flash, Jethro found himself dressed in fine livery, seated on a golden coach, holding the reins of four fine horses. He truly had met the girl of his dreams, but she had met a prince. In a few hours the sun would rise and the coach and horses would be gone.

18

On the balcony, Cinderella managed to collect her thoughts.

‘Sire, I am greatly honoured; allow me to slip away and fetch my cape, then we may talk further, under the stars.’

She melted back into the crowded ballroom and soon she was creeping back to her coach.

‘We must leave immediately coachman, I cannot go home.’

Out of the coach window she caught a glimpse of the Prince, waiting on the balcony. Down the dark road the horses galloped on for many miles.

11

Now the horses were tiring and dawn could not be far away. Jethro knew he must stop the coach. He helped the princess down and showed her the twinkling lights of a town in the valley below. Cinderella felt they must have left the kingdom by now.

‘Princess, I have something I must tell you…’

‘Ssh, don’t speak, let us watch the sunrise together.’

Jethro knew his dream would be over in a few moments; he laid his jacket on the grass for her to sit on and moved close. As the first rays peeped over the horizon it happened; within seconds they were both sitting in dirty rags and turned apart in shame. On the grass behind them sat a large pumpkin and they glimpsed a flash of grey fur and long pink tails disappearing into the undergrowth. Nervously they turned back to look at each other properly in the dawn light. Jethro thought she was more beautiful than ever and Cinderella gazed admiringly at his rugged face. Marvelling, they exchanged their strange stories, but Jethro was in despair; how could he keep this girl and look after her?

Seeing his frown she said ‘Do you know anything about selling jewellery?’ and held up the magnificent diamond ring.

He gasped.

‘But first let us have breakfast’ she laughed, unwrapping a large bundle she still held, to reveal the white linen cloth she had whisked from one of the laden tables at the palace. As the new day started, they both knew more adventures lay ahead than they could have dreamed of yesterday morning.

DSCN1347

 

The Ghost of Christmas Presents

‘How was your Christmas?’

As you go back to work, or your classes, clubs and groups resume, that is the question you can’t avoid. Mother Nature is no respecter of Christmas or New Year, nor is Lady Luck. Volcanoes blow up, oceans swell and man made disasters occur, so making a drama of your turkey exploding ( yes that did happen to a friend’s family ) is rather pathetic, but everyone has Christmas and New Year tales to tell.

48396186_1347570032052702_8168762453912453120_n

We had our Christmas early; Christmas is a date where nothing happens in your home unless you make it. Ours was great fun and the participants could disperse for another Christmas and more presents. But out in the further reaches of the family universe another Christmas has gone by with a rift unhealed, though thanks to technology most of the family are always connected…

A year ago our joint present to ourselves was an ipad so we could abandon Skype and do Facetime; everyone else was already ‘on Apple’. I Facetimed with my mother and sister in Australia and the connection kept unconnecting and reconnecting. Considering what a technical marvel it is in the first place it doesn’t take us long to get frustrated when it doesn’t work. We Facetimed Canada and they were upside down and so were we. On Saturday three of us Facetimed Australia and talked to four people and two dogs, picture and sound were perfect.

42464994_2295089690520808_1144213162061463552_o

Presents: Secret Santa for seven adults was a success; it had been decided to use a website that secretly allotted the anonymous givers and receivers. My parcel included a stuff your own teddy, complete with birth certificate and heart – age 8 plus. We make photo books every Christmas for the pre-readers. Three year old’s was ‘Choclate Moose Comes to Stay’, but it was his thirty three year old uncle who was more engrossed in the book. You are never too old for Lego it seems, Lego caters for big boys and girls with Creator Expert and a red double decker bus and camper van were among the creations in progress that appeared on Family Facebook.

49130418_1288887577919112_588939182781497344_n

Traditions: There are many treats to choose from over the season. At our local garden centre you can visit two live reindeer for free; they look a bit bored in their pen, probably missing the rest of the herd grazing on the pastures of Dorset. You can also book in advance and pay a lot to visit Father Christmas’s grotto, passing giant singing penguins on the way.

Baby and three year old went to their local ‘country house’ to visit the magic elf forest. This involved getting on the elf train ( a decorated truck ) and visiting Father Christmas at the top of a tower. They were the last ones to visit him and when they came back down, the elf train had left, they could have been lost in the magic elf forest forever!  But that was not their only meeting with Santa. We were astonished when pictures came through the ether on Christmas Eve afternoon of Real Father Christmas sitting in their living room… An older tradition is the pantomime; the little ones were taken to their town’s lovely old theatre on Boxing Day to see Jack And The Beanstalk, the three year old was mesmerised.

47689412_2100638626623858_4149638904217075712_n

With Christmas being done and dusted in our house I was able to indulge in that Christmas Eve tradition, watching Carols from Kings on television. Even if people don’t go to church themselves they expect the real meaning of Christmas to still be celebrated in wonderful cathedrals with angelic choir boys. Later in the evening we watched a year inside Saint Paul’s Cathedral with lots of quirky adults and dear little choir boys in their boarding school.

45188729_260490784667675_3292565076355055616_n

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b0bwdbq7

Walks: on Christmas morning we went down to the beach, along with many others, but were surprised to see some stripping down for a dip in the sea, they didn’t stay in long, but the solitary surfer in shorts, no wetsuit, stayed in a good while.

DSCN1218.JPG

Yesterday, on New Years Day, the sun at last came out and the beach was as packed as a summer’s day for the final tradition of the festive season – a walk. A brisk walk was difficult on the crowded promenade and there were long queues for the cafes, but that’s all part of the tradition.