Wednesday October 31st, 2012

The exercise:

Write about a place that is: open all night.

Wrote this ahead of time, forgetting that today is Halloween. I suspect this will be the last year I forget this day for a very long time.

But yes, there will be a Halloween themed prompt tomorrow to make up for it. Or, you know, I'm sure you could find a way to work the holiday (for lack of a better word) into today's writing.


With winter closing in business was growing steadily slower. Since there were no ski hills or major indoor attractions to offer, tourists were leaving town on their annual southward migrations.

Isaac, owner of the only 24 hour coffee shop for miles around, was keenly aware of this. His employees working the graveyard shift, desperate to be reincorporated into the day crew, had been reminding him every day for the past week.

Winter hours, they would say, bleary-eyed and tottering side to side, did not need to wait until the season officially began. The first major snowfall was more than good enough.

But Isaac was set in his ways like concrete. In thirty-five years of business he had never changed his shop's hours out of season. To do so now, he argued, would be nothing short of scandalous.

The graveyard crew, eyeing the calender which was taking great pleasure in reminding them that the solstice was still two weeks away, decided to take matters into their own hands.

That night they refused to open the till, instead giving away coffee and pastries to any soul who came near. There weren't many, but they thought their point well made.

Isaac, caring more for his pride than money, was unmoved.

Next they broke the coffee makers, then spent the rest of the night turning away empty-handed those customers who had caught wind of the previous night's antics. Surely, they reckoned, the complaints would sway the old man.

Isaac listened patiently, apologized sincerely for any inconvenience, and offered free coffee for a month. The shop hours remained as they were.

The graveyard workers reconvened, the panic in their eyes enclosed by dark circles. What else could be done? What action would get through to that stubborn fool?

In the end, the answer was painfully obvious. If Isaac wouldn't put an early end to the shop's summer hours, they would have to put an early end to Isaac.

Tuesday October 30th, 2012

The exercise:

Write two haiku about: conversations.

Today I present the haiku I wrote yesterday while I was under the impression that yesterday was today.



His motormouth leaves
me with no hope to escape
this conversation.

*     *     *

Words drift between us,
delivered via secret
butterfly mailmen.

Monday October 29th, 2012

The exercise:

Write about: an evolution.

More cleaning and organizing today. Also spent most of the morning in our local coffee shop with Kat, who enjoyed her hot chocolate very muchly.

Wrote mine while we were there... right after I finished writing two haiku because I was convinced it was Tuesday.


When humans first discovered them, deep in the jungles of Brazil, they garnered little international attention. No use for them was immediately apparent, and on top of that they weren't especially attractive.

The world had long since moved on a year later, at which point the first change in the creatures was documented. Nothing startling, but a few researchers were quietly intrigued by the speed of their adaptation.

Four months after that a second permutation was recorded. Many considered this impossible, insisting that it had simply been missed during initial observations.

The third and fourth mutations which occurred in the following weeks, however, were too dramatic to be brushed aside in the same manner. A tripling in size, the sudden development of perfect night vision.

The creatures had the world's full attention now.

But by then it was too late to stop them.

Sunday October 28th, 2012

The exercise:

Write about: the professional.

Long but productive day. Finished the garlic work in the garden this morning before turning my attention to the car in the afternoon.

Cleaned it out, added coolant and windshield washer fluid, and finally got around to installing the car seat. I am not a big fan of the manual that came with it, but I got it figured out eventually.

We're pretty much set for baby at this point. Feels like the waiting game is really beginning in earnest.

What follows is not what actually happened today. But I have little trouble imagining it.


The hobby mechanic
Is under the hood,
Banging and clanging
And up to no good.

The hood comes crashing down,
His head starts to throb;
His wife sweetly reminds:
"Don't quit your day job."

Saturday October 27th, 2012

The exercise:

Write a four line poem that could (or actually has) double(d) as a mantra.

The last market of the year was cold and wet and not particularly well attended, but that's all okay because it was, in fact, our last market of the year.

I only had to tell myself that about a hundred times this morning.

We're giving our local customers one last chance to order from us this Monday, and I've got a few things left that need doing in the garden. Other than that, this season is over and done with.


I can't feel my fingers,
I think I lost a toe,
But I've got six months
For them to regrow.

Friday October 26th, 2012

The exercise:

Write four lines of prose about: wishes.

Had a lovely birthday day. Made pancakes with Kat for breakfast, did a little market prep work in the afternoon, then went out for a delicious dinner at one of our favorite local restaurants.

And sprinkled throughout all that were some truly wonderful birthday wishes from friends and family. I'm a pretty lucky guy.

Also: Kat gave me the only present I really wanted - I get to keep my birthday all to myself.

Well, not in the whole world, obviously. But within my family.


With a long sucking breath and great, puffy cheeks, the little boy blew out the candles on his birthday cake. All of his friends at the dinner table and the adults gathered around the outskirts of the room waited in varying degrees of silence for him to announce his wish, as he'd promised he'd do while the lighter was still doing its work.

Never one for keeping secrets any longer than a few anxiety-filled minutes was he, something many suspected he learned from his gossip hound of a mother.

Looking around with an unreadable expression the boy solemnly announced, "I wished for Daddy to be run over by a bus and get replaced by Batman."

Thursday October 25th, 2012

The exercise:

Write about: supernova.

We had another midwife appointment in Penticton this morning. At first we had them once a month, then we went down to every two weeks, now we're at every week until the baby comes. The midwives seem to know what they're doing, because this has matched up perfectly with the increasing number of questions we have for them at each visit.

Anyway, the point I was trying to make was that between the appointment, the drive, and various errands, this took up most of our day. Though I did manage to squeeze in a trip to the insurance office to get my driver's license renewed (it's expiring tomorrow).

Tomorrow I turn 34 years young. This will be the age that will always be remembered as the year I became a father.


We could always tell when Mr. Richards was about to go supernova. There was a particular shade of red that would appear at the base of his neck, as though it was rising from beneath his shirt after it had already transformed the colour of the rest of his body.

It would pulsate up toward his cheeks and he would become the twin of the sort of Santa you might find in a small town's Christmas parade. Well, a throbbing, luminescent, gloriously angry Santa.

If we were wise, we'd knock off whatever we'd been doing to tick our teacher off at this point. Explosion averted, the red would drain back into his buttoned shirt and we'd wait a few minutes before starting up again.

But if we were foolish, or simply not paying close enough attention, that dangerous red would reach his eyes. And by that point, it was too late. There was no going back.

Mr. Richards was going to blow up and he was taking all of us with him.

Wednesday October 24th, 2012

The exercise:

Today we write around the theme of: under the sea.

Little Mermaid references not mandatory, but unofficially encouraged.

Lots of running around today. Included in there was a delivery to a customer who owns the local fish shop, which we always appreciate since we usually end up just trading our produce for fish.

If you squint and maybe shake your head around a bit, it's just like we grow fish in our garden.


The captain watched the storm's approach, one hand resting on a suddenly unresponsive ignition. As dark clouds marched toward her and her craft she felt no concern.

Her boat had survived some of the most vile tempests that Mother Nature had ever concocted. Twenty-five years had passed since their last missed day at sea and that was due to her weak-kneed doctor's unwillingness to deliver her daughter offshore.

The captain's daughter was married now, to some lout who didn't even know how to swim. That had been a difficult pill to swallow, but the captain hadn't interfered. Her daughter, unfathomably, was happy. The moment that changed, however...

Wind lashing against the cabin windows brought her back to the present with a small start. The boat began rocking erratically, but the captain remained calm.

The storm would come. The storm would pass. The captain and her boat would carry on, fish filling her holds. A dead motor would be dealt with, one way or another.

No, there was nothing worth getting stressed about, really.

At least, not until the kraken appeared from beneath the waves.

Tuesday October 23rd, 2012

The exercise:

Write two haiku about: instincts.

Woke up to rain that didn't let up until some time this afternoon, so nothing was accomplished in the garden today. Thankfully it was just rain though - we could see snow not too far up the mountain.

Which was more than close enough, thanks very much.


Wash, clean, organize
everything... what's this about
a nesting instinct?

*     *     *

Uncertainty keeps
me frozen; I wish I could
just trust my instincts.

Monday October 22nd, 2012

The exercise:

Our theme for today: letting go.

It felt like January today. Blah.

Managed to get about half of the garlic covered with mulch this morning. Also planted a couple rows of lettuce next to it. We figured it worked so well last year by accident, we might as well try doing it on purpose this year. We'll see how things turn out in the spring.

They're calling for wet snow overnight. Toooo soooooon.


We've been strict for too long,
Doing right for fear of wrong,
Strained smiles in place of wrath...
I've grown weary of this path.

It is time to let go,
To stop fearing I don't know.
So sit back with a grin
And watch the steering wheel spin.

Sunday October 21st, 2012

The exercise:

Write something which takes place at: college.

Did some railing work on the deck this afternoon and made some decent progress. Hopefully we'll be able to get back to it (and better yet, finish it) before winter really settles in here.

Feels a little weird to not have loads of harvesting and organizing work to do tomorrow. It's a good weird though.


Nathan took his seat at the back of Psychology 101 and opened his notebook. It took a few moments of flipping before he encountered a blank page. Nathan always took care to take immaculate notes.

He didn't have to be there. It was an evening class, which meant he could have been at the pub with his friends. They'd be on their third beers by the time the professor strolled into the classroom and probably their second game of pool.

He didn't even need it for his major. Nathan had completed all his required electives the previous year when he barely managed to pass Chemistry and Geography. No, he was there purely out of interest.

Though not in the subject matter, of course. Well, he was a little interested in the issues being discussed each class - but only so that he knew which girls were particularly keen on which topics.

It made chatting them up so much easier.

Saturday October 20th, 2012

The exercise:

Write a four line poem about one of: the seven dwarfs.

Pretty chilly and slow market this morning. Ah well, only one more left to go now.



Why the constant frown?
You might ask yourself.
Perhaps he hates everyone,
Perhaps he just hates himself.

Friday October 19th, 2012

The exercise:

Write four lines of prose about: excess.

Kat's dad and I finally finished the stairs going from the deck to the backyard today. Because, you know, if I'm not going to spend all day preparing for the market I gotta do something to occupy my time.

On Sunday, weather permitting, we're going to get started on the railings. Because, you know, with a baby coming sometime in the next three or four weeks it might be a good idea to make things around here as safe as possible for him.

The truck is full to bursting, ready to go to Penticton in the morning. Here's hoping people want lots of apples tomorrow. And squash.


"Do you think Eric's had too much to drink?"

"Depends... what's he wearing now?"

"Let's see... the waitress' shoes, no pants, a tablecloth he's turned into a cape, shot glass earrings, I don't know whose sunglasses those are... and the bartender's moustache."

"... Yeah, it's probably time to call it a night."

Thursday October 18th, 2012

The exercise:

Tell us about: the machine.

After a morning trip to Penticton for an appointment and other baby stuff, I managed to get the rest of our garlic planted this afternoon. Still have to toss some mulch over them to keep them safe and warm over the winter, but the most tedious aspect of the process is done now.

Tomorrow's preparations for the market will mostly involve organizing things and packing the truck, as I'm pretty sure that all that I'm harvesting are a few leeks.

I like that Fridays at this time of year get progressively easier.


It sits in the corner, unknown and unused. Once it was beloved - very nearly worshiped, if there is any interest in the truth. Those days are lost in the mists of memory now.

Dust coats its surface, transforming its glossy black to an aging grey. Strange to think it had so much life once, such strength and magnetism. It commanded respect and attention. Any and all competition was not merely conquered, but utterly destroyed.

Perhaps it will return to power one day, as unexpectedly as it was once usurped. Doesn't seem very likely, I must admit. But who am I to predict the future? Who can say what tomorrow might bring?

A strange twist of fate, a change in the tastes of a fickle but influential few... that's all it could take. Never say never, as they used to say.

We know better than to say such things now.

Wednesday October 17th, 2012

The exercise:

I'd sort of forgotten about this prompt, which you'd probably realize both by the fact that the last time I used it was last October, and by the fact that was the only time I ever used it.

So, let us make amends. Today we go back to: the last line prompt.

Take the first line of a song, as randomly as you wish, and use it as the last line of your poetry or prose. It's like the Random CD prompt, only backwards. Kinda.

Today I planted much garlic. There is still more to be planted, which will hopefully happen tomorrow.


Sleep Through The Static - Jack Johnson

He relaxed for a moment,
It seemed innocent enough;
The sky was a perfect blue,
The ocean was not rough.

His stealthy eyes betrayed him,
Escorting him to dreams;
There he found serenity,
A heaven - or so it seemed.

A clap of thunder woke him,
Followed by a lightning flash;
He swore it came from nowhere,
But then, trouble travels fast.

Tuesday October 16th, 2012

The exercise:

Write two haiku about: the festival.

Whatever festival you wish, real or imagined. You could even write about this festival (squash):

I have other pictures of our squash as well, but I quite like this one. So that's what you get to see! For now, at least.

We had a big, big storm overnight here, and I woke to discover a yard full of walnuts. This was after Kat's mom came down to collect all the freshly fallen nuts yesterday afternoon.

So I spent most of this afternoon collecting walnuts and hauling them up the hill for Kat's mom to dry and process. After I got the first two buckets up there I noticed our scale was nearby, so out of curiosity I weighed them. Minus the weight of the buckets? 42 pounds.

Most of me was impressed by this. A small, rather vocal and persistent part of me, suggested I could do better.

Next haul? 46 pounds of walnuts.

All totaled, I brought over 100 pounds of nuts up to the house... and there's still more on the ground. I just had other things that needed doing. Also, plenty more have yet to fall. 

The trees, they have been productive this year.


Gather round, children,
the festival is starting!
Bring Dad's wallet too!

*     *     *

The breeze brings music
and sun-warmed laughter. Rejoice!
The harvest is done!

Monday October 15th, 2012

The exercise:

Today we write about: the craft.

It's done, it's over, kaput, no more! For this year at least, the box program has come to a successful conclusion.

We'll still be offering a produce list people can order from for as long as we still have supplies remaining, but the majority of the work is in our rear-view now. Putting together seven boxes every week, while totally worthwhile and excellent business, has taken a lot out of me.

The knowledge that things are finally scaling down brings me great comfort.


He was a crafty little man, was this Victor from the Dark Woods. I never felt as though I could fully relax whenever he was nearby. It's not as though, I should make clear, I expected him to do me harm.

Not physical harm, at least.

Why his presence was permitted amongst us was never properly explained to me, but I had my suspicions. Victor, with his shifty eyes and black humour, was the sort of man one might expect to excel at the sinister arts of blackmail and bribery.

Well, I certainly expected him to. The others did as well, if I were to judge by the way they avoided being alone with him.

Perhaps I was unfair. Perhaps I should have given him more of a chance to disprove my misgivings. Perhaps he would have surprised us all.

But I, I am not the sort of man to take such chances. I did not reach this great grey age by embracing foolishness and opening wide my door to unnecessary risks.

And so, Victor from the Dark Woods had to die.

Sunday October 14th, 2012

The exercise:

Write about: the manual.

Aside from a fair bit of rest, today was spent doing baby preparation work - setting up the co-sleeper we got from one of Kat's friends, putting our first load of donated newborn clothes through the laundry to freshen them up, and figuring out what we still need to get (not much at this point, thankfully).

Tomorrow is our final box program day of the year. It's pretty funny just how much I'm looking forward to that.


"What's going on?"

Patrick had just walked into the room but he could already tell that something was wrong. Chris, his roommate for the past nine months, was slumped on the couch staring at a package that had been placed on the coffee table. It was obvious that he hadn't moved in quite some time.

"I don't know what to do... this just seems impossible."

"Maybe I can help?" Patrick was suddenly very worried about his friend.

"No, I can't see how you could." Chris, normally bursting with life and energy, sounded as though a hole had been punched through his neck and through it all his vitality had leaked out until there was none left.

"Come on, try me." Patrick came over and sat gently next to his roommate. "Between the two of us I'm sure we can figure this out... whatever this is."

"Sure, okay. Why not?" Chris struggled to a more upright position and sighed deeply. "Here's the thing: it says, quite clearly on the box, to read the manual before doing anything else."

"Right." Patrick waited a few moments before he realized no further information was forthcoming. "And?"

"Isn't it obvious?" Chris pointed at the package, disgust contorting his features. "The manual's inside the box. How in the world am I supposed to read it without opening the package first?"

Saturday October 13th, 2012

The exercise:

Write a four line poem about: pressure.

Had a pretty good market this morning, considering we're post-Thanksgiving and it was actually cloudy and sort of rainy as well. Fairly certain that's the first time we've had rain since July's thunderstorm bonanza.

Looking forward to sleeping in a little tomorrow.


The clock is ticking,
A disguised death knell;
If words stay hidden,
They'll send me to hell.

Friday October 12th, 2012

The exercise:

Write four lines of prose about: the travelling companions.

With today's purchase of a car seat, we're one step closer to having a new travelling companion for ourselves. Little by little, things are coming together.

Back to the market tomorrow morning, mostly bringing apples again. After this one there will be only two more left before we close up shop for the season.

Very much looking forward to that at this point.


The road stretched out before us in a straight line until it crumbled beneath the horizon's vast and magnificent weight. But we were undaunted, carrying on with hope holding our hearts in its tender grip and the nobility of our task pinning wings to our souls.

Edna shook her head as she tore another page out of Judith's journal before feeding it to her struggling campfire. If she was searching for further proof that she'd made the right decision to ditch her whack-job of a travelling companion of the previous month, she'd certainly found it.

Thursday October 11th, 2012

The exercise:

Write about: the debate.

I understand there are a series of these going on south of the border nowadays. I'm not watching them though, as I generally find them either boring, infuriating, or both.

All the squash is now safely out of the garden.

Coincidentally, I am now safely out of energy.


Reggie studied his notes in the hours leading up to the debate, refusing to be distracted by the summer afternoon beckoning at his window. No interruptions were allowed, his assistant standing guard at his door made sure of that.

Elsewhere his outfit was being finalized, his shoes polished, and a stylist used unhappy volunteers to practice the haircut he would be providing to his chosen candidate. Excessive noise was officially banned, and any conversations that rose above a whisper were quickly and brutally dealt with by Reggie's regiment of bodyguards.

As the big moment approached Reggie set aside his papers and turned his focus within. He was ready. His opponent didn't stand a chance against the onslaught he was about to unleash. Victory was assured.

The school would have a new student president by the end of second recess.

Wednesday October 10th, 2012

The exercise:

Write about: the cure.

I spent most of the day hauling squash out of the garden. Though we don't have nearly as much as we did last year, we don't have a team of helpers either, so it's still a lot to get through on my own. Hoping to be finished with them by lunch tomorrow.

As part of the festivities, I got to drive the tractor for the first time in at least a year and a half. Took a while to get reacquainted with the controls, but I managed to get the squash back to Kat's parents house without crashing into any trees.

Also: less than one month to go to the due date.


"All right," Harold called out as he shrugged into his winter jacket, "I'm off to see the boys at the Doctor's."

"Have fun and give my best to Rory," his wife replied from the living room, her voice interwoven with the musical notes of her favorite album as they emerged, rather loudly, from their stereo.

Harold descended the front stairs and hung a left, his pace unhurried. Three blocks later he made another left as dark clouds gathered overhead. Snow was just beginning to drift earthward as he pushed through the heavy wooden door of Doctor MacTaggert's.

"Good evening, Harry!"

"Hey Rory," Harold said with a wave in the smiling bartender's direction. "It's good to be back here - I've had one seriously long week."

"Well then it sounds to me," Rory replied as he reached for a bottle of rum, "that you're in need of my secret cure-all."

Tuesday October 9th, 2012

The exercise:

Write two haiku that have something to do with: first aid.

Spent most of the day at the community center taking a first aid course. Mostly to learn about first aid for infants, but also because I hadn't had any training since a few classes in grade 12 P.E. that nobody took very seriously.

Except maybe the instructor.

Don't ask me, it's not like I was paying attention.


Everyone relax,
I'm a trained professional.
Stand - ugh! What IS that?

*     *     *

Briefcase in hand he
heads to work, always ready
to save someone's life.

Monday October 8th, 2012

The exercise:

Write about: the frog(s).

A little frog has taken up residence in our root house. Kat's dad gathered it up and placed it elsewhere yesterday, but it was already back in there this morning.

It's kinda cute, but I'd rather not have it hopping all over our garlic, potatoes, and onions.

Nearly managed to successfully get through our penultimate box program day - unfortunately the holiday mixed a couple people up, one of whom won't be able to come get their box until tomorrow morning.

But, otherwise, it went well. And we put together some pretty nice boxes, considering all the frost we've seen since last Wednesday.


The girls sit by the river, dresses muddied and blonde hair in tangles. They look similar enough to be sisters, but they are not. In fact, an honest assessment of their relationship would conclude that they are not even friends.

Their mothers are childhood friends, and an annual joint vacation forces them together every summer. Since their ages are nearly identical their mothers presumed the girls would bond sooner than later, coming together for adventures and memories reminiscent of the ones they had formed in their own youth.

They continue to believe this, despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary.

On this occasion the girls have been on their own since a picnic lunch concluded in the park at their backs. It is now late afternoon and they will be called to dinner at any moment.

Which means that they have very little time left to locate the frog they have just been fighting over. It had escaped during their argument, somewhere between what they should name it and who would kiss it first.

It was almost as though the prince had decided that neither girl would make a particularly fitting princess.

Sunday October 7th, 2012

The exercise:

Write something that has to do with: comas.

How am I doing right at this moment?

Turkey coma.

Sleep now.



"Hi, Mrs. Decker. It's Julie calling, from the principal's office."

"Oh... yes, how are you doing? Is everything all right?"

"I'm fine, thanks. It's about Bobby. Again."

"What's my son done this time?"

"Well, he was in the middle of his Math class when... well, he just plain old fell into a coma."

"... is that right?"

"I'm afraid so."

"If his teacher is enjoying the peace and quiet, just leave him be. But if Mr. Underwood actually wants him to do something - like take a test, for example - just tell him that if he doesn't wake up he's not getting dessert tonight."

Saturday October 6th, 2012

The exercise:

Write a four line poem about: the line up. Or the 'queue', should you insist on being all British-y.

Well, people certainly wanted their apples today. We arrived with 30 crates (approximately 600 pounds) and only returned with 6. It's a shame about the frost, because we would have done even better with a selection of cherry tomatoes and berries to go with them.

But honestly, there's not much room to complain after a day like that.

Kat's aunt and uncle from Calgary are visiting with her parents this weekend and we went up for dinner this evening (always appreciated on market days). We get to return for turkey dinner tomorrow night, and I am particularly looking forward to the pumpkin pie.


He stood in the line for days,
A stationary snake
Wedged into a roped off maze,
With no hope of escape.

Friday October 5th, 2012

The exercise:

Write four lines of prose about: the basement.

Because I was just digging around ours for winter clothing. The dark times are indeed upon us.

Even with half the garden killed by frost, there was still a lot of harvesting to be done today. Perhaps not in quantity, but certainly in weight. Pumpkins, squash, potatoes... really the only light thing I picked were the leeks.

Hoping for a good market with the Thanksgiving long weekend bringing people into town. We've certainly got enough apples in the back of the truck to feed them all.


When Sally heard the door close behind her as she descended the stairs, she wasn't concerned. She'd forgotten to put the doorstop in place, but it wasn't like the basement door locked automatically or anything.

When she heard Owen, her four-year-old son, stomp through the kitchen on his way to the door she began to worry, as she didn't want him to take a tumble in an attempt to follow her.

But Sally's concern didn't fully blossom into panic until she heard Owen fumble the lock into place.

Thursday October 4th, 2012

The exercise:

Write about: the interior decorator.

Had a productive day around the house, finally getting around to the last of the windows that needed washing, as well as the bathtub and general shower area.

Took a quick visit out to the garden this morning. Only stayed long enough to confirm that the frost hit the pepper and cucumber plants. Probably killed a lot more but I wasn't feeling up to exploring.

We've got another cold night expected. Thankfully the once-again-in-action fireplace is keeping us warm inside.


"I've done it, darling!" Barry called out as he came through the front door of his home. "I've found us an interior decorator!"

"Oh, that's wonderful news honey!" Virginia, his wife of more years than either of them cared to think about, replied as she came to greet him. "Who is she?"

"Well first off, she is a he." Barry deposited his jacket on the coat rack and turned to give his wife a disapproving look. "I don't know why you insist on being so sexist."

"Oh! I'm not... it's just... it is a rather... feminine vocation."

"So now you're saying he's gay? You haven't even met the man yet! I mean, honestly dear, this is just shameful. You haven't started in on your wine already, have you?"

"Don't be ridiculous, sweetie - it's not even noon yet." Virginia flashed an insincere smile before attempting to get the conversation back on track. "So, who is he?"

"His name is Charles Peterson - I met him down at the General Store. I think you'll like him, even if he's straighter than Main Street."

"Why does that name ring a bell?" Virginia followed her husband as he ambled into the kitchen and went straight for the refrigerator. "Hold on a second, isn't he that beggar who's always crumpled up in front of the church?"

"Great, now you've got something against the poor too, is that it?"

"No, precious, what I have is something against hiring a blind man to decorate our home!"

Wednesday October 3rd, 2012

The exercise:

Let us give the First Line prompt another go. Start your poetry or prose with: Under the cover of darkness...

So there's a pretty decent chance we'll get our first frost tonight. With that in mind, I went out this afternoon and harvested our remaining onions and shallots, the biggest cucumbers I could find, the best peppers our plants had to offer, and a giant bag of stir-fry greens (for our own use).

I'm hoping our garden will avoid the worst of it and keep on producing, but at least some of the more tender stuff was saved. We'll see what the morning brings.


Under the cover of darkness, they approached on silent feet. Moving as though a single brain operated all of their limbs, the men and women soon had the house surrounded. When they were within twenty feet of the building they eased to a halt without any apparent commands being issued.

And there they waited.

The forest watched them for a while before losing interest. The stars took note of their presence, then conferred amongst themselves at length. Just as they reached an agreement to continue monitoring the situation, an apparently oblivious breeze pushed a thick layer of cloud between the watchers and the watched.

And so the darkness in the woods deepened.

A chill slipped through an open window and ran carelessly through the house. Some of those inside were sensitive enough to feel it and became suspicious, hands moving to weapons. Others, those less attuned to such warnings, continued with their tasks, or their meals, or their sleep.

And so, as one, the men and women in the woods descended upon them.

Tuesday October 2nd, 2012

The exercise:

Write two haiku about: tricks of the trade.

Finally, finally managed to attend a meeting of the Osoyoos Photography Club this evening. I was intimidated at first, as there was a whole lot of experience in that room, but they're a fun and friendly group and I felt welcome and less out of place by the end.

I've had no formal photography training and I think I can learn a lot from them. I'm hoping to, at any rate.

There's been a pretty serious wind blowing most of the day and it's not showing any signs of letting up. It's coming from the north and bringing colder temperatures with it; fingers crossed we won't be waking up to frost quite yet.


The photograph is
nice, but crop it here and it
becomes outstanding.

*     *     *

He writes every
day, forever and always
chasing perfection.

Monday October 1st, 2012

The exercise:

Write about something that: spreads.

Mondays are long days around these parts, but very satisfying once all the harvested produce has gone off to good homes.

Probably going to spend most of tomorrow doing work around the house, and then in the evening I might actually make it out to my first meeting of the Osoyoos Photography Club.

But I've been meaning to do that for almost two years now, so we'll see.


One of our box program customers had been away for the previous three weeks, so they'd had one of their neighbours pick up and make use of their produce during that time.

The neighbours had been pleasantly surprised to learn of our operation, which was another reminder to us that advertising really doesn't work in this town. If people don't hear about something directly from someone they trust, that something doesn't exist.

Anyway, the neighbours seemed to be enjoying the fruits and veggies in their borrowed box and were generally impressed with what we're doing here. Last Monday they even seemed disappointed that our regular customers would be returning this week.

And I thought: this won't do at all.

So we offered to sign them up for the final three weeks (only two left now!) and they took us up on it. They're already talking about doing the whole season next year, as well as telling their other neighbours about it.

Slowly but surely, word is spreading about our little farm.