Thursday August 3rd, 2017

The exercise:

Write about: the long weekend.

Monday is a holiday here in BC and the tourist hordes started arriving after lunch. Traffic was backed up on Main Street as I drove back into town, I almost got into an accident before my first stop, and I saw at least five more incidents of seriously questionable driver/pedestrian decision making in the following two hours.

So, so glad I'm not working this weekend.


"Bobby, could you come see me at my desk please?"

"Sure, be right there."

"Now, Bobby."

"Coming, coming..."

"Put down the glue and glitter, Bobby. We need to talk."

"Yes, Mr. Jimmy. Coming."

"For the last time, it's Mr. Lee. Jimmy is my first name."

"... okay?"

"Anyway. We need to go over the proposed schedule you submitted for next term."

"Is something wrong with it?"

"Yes, I should think so. Especially your expectations for February."

"More like Fe-boo-ary, right?"

"... yes. In particular, you have apparently planned for a long weekend..."

"That's right!"

"... that lasts twenty seven days."


Greg said...

Your traffic issues sound like Malta on a normal day to me, but then I think I may have mentioned before that Maltese drivers are not up to the standard I expect coming from the UK. I'm starting to think that UK drivers are actually quite responsible, which is not something I thought I'd ever write. That said, this morning my taxi had to break suddenly as a woman here in Kiev decided to U-turn in the middle of the highway with no warning, and then glared at my driver, apparently for daring to be in a car driving along the road. I can only hope she was late for a driving lesson somewhere, as she clearly needs one. Or ten.
Enjoy the long weekend!
Hmm, Bobby seems to be a forward thinker, which I like, and I rather like his prioritisation of tasks as well, though it seems that Mr. Lee is less of a fan. The little details here make all the difference, as usual, and it's quite impressive that you fit them all into the dialogue without needing any exposition. Great work!

Greg said...

Sorry, it's too long for a single post again :(

The long weekend
Slate tiles fell from the roof of the Inn of the Shire and shattered on the stone path outside. A thrake shrieked and lifted into the sky, flapping black, untidy wings with a noise like an orc trying to hide in a thorn-bush, vanishing quickly against the gathering black storm-clouds. The wind picked up and a few cold drops of rain slapped against the walls and through the broken windows. The brimstone smell of burning sulphur was pushed away for a couple of moments, and then returned oppressively.
Samwise fell off his chair outside the Inn, and his grand-nephew Tomfool picked him back up and set him back into position. Across the much-mended table another Hobbit, Blackfoot, sucked on an empty pipe and sighed.
"Isn't it time you buried him?" he said. "He's been dead for six weeks now."
"Easy for you to say," said Tomfool. Tears welled up in the scarred corners of his eyes. "Gan-- He Who Doesn't like having His Name spoken -- says that he can't be buried until after the Long Weekend celebrations."
"We're celebrating the Long Weekend?" Blackfoot twisted his mouth wryly around the stem of the pipe. There had been no celebrations in Hobbiton since Gandalf had returned and taken up residence in the Inn of the Shire. His sensitivity to noise, especially laughter, was marked by his willingness to throw fireballs around.
"Quietly," said Tomfool. "Gan -- Him Indoors -- says that there's to be food, non-alcoholic drink and respectful silences. And we're to set a place for him at the long table."
Blackfoot scratched his feet, which were the source of his name, and thought. "Pipeweed?" he asked.
"Only for Gan -- whatisface."
"When did we become a communist state again?" The question was rhetorical, but surprisingly it got an answer.
"When it turned out that Sauron was the lesser evil." The voice came from thin air, and both the hobbits started to tremble. "Oh grow up," continued the voice, and the air shimmered as a Ring of Power was removed.
"Frodo!" said Blackfoot, while Tomfool avoided screaming by chewing on his own foot. "You came back, Sir! We thought you'd gone to the Western Isles!"
"Bloody elves," said Frodo with feeling. He spat on Tomfool. "Sorry Tom, missed the floor there. I got to the Grey Harbour fine, and then some tall Elf with silver hair and a big nose looked at me and asked if he could have me clean his cabin. Well, I was all expecting Isildur to set him straight, but instead he looks me in the eye and says, 'He's done a pretty poor job so far. I think I might have him whipped.' Well, I wasn't putting up with that, and we had a bit of a barney and... well, long story short but I walked back here and there's a bunch of Elves swimming around in the Brackish Sea. I'm calling it a draw. What's up with Sam, he's a bit quiet?"
"Dead, Sir," said Blackfoot with dignity. "Died of a broken heart."
"Probably for the best," said Frodo after some thought. "I always thought he was a bit... clingy. Well, I could use an ale."
"Don't go in there!" chorused the other hobbits together, but it was too late; Frodo stepped over the threshold of the Inn of the Shire, and like a horny Balrog Gandalf appeared.

Marc said...

Greg - I think drivers are terrible everywhere, honestly. It's just more apparent in some places. People are dumb.

Thanks for the kind words on mine :)

Your opening paragraph is utterly brilliant. Love the descriptions and the way you establish the scene. And what follows is great fun too :D