Sunday August 3rd, 2014

The exercise:

Write about: the rental.

Went to the beach this morning with my sister and brother-in-law, which involved a lot of Max having fun and a little bit of eating lunch near the end. When we got home he crashed hard for a three hour nap, which was pretty great as it gave his parents a chance to rest and his aunt and uncle time to go visit some wineries.

This evening we took everyone to another beach for a BBQ dinner for more fun and food. My sister and brother-in-law are heading back to Calgary tomorrow morning, so I'm planning to get up early to make sure they don't leave without some fresh fruit in their (rental) car.

Mine:

"I can't believe you rented us a cottage for the whole long weekend! Can we really afford this?"

"Well..."

"No, I'm sorry - I shouldn't have said that. This is too amazing, I just want to be grateful!"

"It's okay, really. But I should -"

"Oh, enough of the shoulds already. Let's go upstairs and check out the bedrooms!"

"Um, there's only one bedroom..."

"Hi kids! Isn't this place great?"

"... and we have to share it with my parents."

2 Comments:

Greg said...

That sounds like a plan I use with the dogs on weekends: take them out for a long walk with lots of sniffing to be done and fun to be had, and then let them sleep away the afternoon so I can things done around them. I'm pleased to see it works with toddlers as well! All those beaches! I'm slightly jealous... :)
Heh, and I did like your story, especially the penultimate line!

The rental
It was starting to get dark outside, but the heat was still oppressive, hanging around like an overprotective mother. The crickets had just started their evening chorus and Deborah (never Debbie) was stabbing the buttons on the remote, flicking through the television channels with bad humor. She was 230lbs and the heat made her sweat, which in turn gave her rashes that crawled under the folds of skin and turned into fungal infections. She itched, but she knew better than to scratch.
Leaving the television on a shopping channel where a perky blonde who was thinner than Deborah thought she'd ever been was trying to demonstrate how to use a mandoline with a coconut she heaved herself to her feet. Her ankles hurt, and then her knees joined in, and she ignored them because she had no choice. She started towards the kitchen, though really there was only one room downstairs in her house.
Someone tapped on the frame of the door.
She lumbered over to the kitchen anyway and yelled out, "It's open." Then she bent over the freezer and sorted through the eight or ten boxes of frozen pizza in there.
"Deborah Muntz?" The voice was deep and sounded official. "Do you live here?"
"It's a rental," she said, her voice squeaky because, bent over like this, she couldn't breathe well. She decided on Hawaiian.
"But you're renting it, right?" What a prick, she decided. She'd told him already.
"Yeah, 'cause if you don't pay your rent they come and kick you out." She stood up holding the pizza in one pasty fist, closing the freezer with the other. There was a man stood in the doorway wearing some kind of uniform.
"Only you haven't paid rent for three months, have you?"
Now she turned and looked harder at him, but he was silhouetted there and she couldn't even make out the details of his face, let alone the uniform.
"Well?"
"The rent's been paid." She sounded sulky, but it was true.
"Ayup. But it wasn't you that paid it, was it?"
"You've got the money, so you can't kick me out. I'm entitled!" She didn't sound sure though, so to hide it she ripped the pizza box open and pulled the plastic-wrapped disc out.
"I'm not trying to kick you out," said the man. She tore the plastic from the pizza and dropped it on the counter. "I just want to know where to find your son."

Marc said...

Greg - yeah, run them around until they fall flat on their faces and go right to sleep. It's solid planning!

That is a rather creepy visit to a rather wonderfully described character's home. Bravo!