Tag Archives: whimsy

I Got Nothin’

And I like it! You see, I’m a firm believer that nothing is where something begins. Apologies to Einstein for he disagrees with me and he was considered a preeminent mind. I’m just a middle-aged woman with a middle-aged brain and ageless mind. I’m also an unrepented optimist. I believe we can get something from nothing. Actually, I believe that’s the only place you can get a proper start: when you have a clean slate. Ask an artist what they see when they look at a blank canvas. They see possibilities. If something were already there, they would be restricted or they would have to obliterated. You see they start from nothing and then they create. Isn’t that what we do?

I had the idea for this post a few weeks ago but it was still percolating. And then I saw a friend’s post with exactly the same title and I was crushed. I guess we think alike. But in actual fact only the titles are the same. Dan Antion over at nofacilites.com has a brilliant blog. I get lots of ideas from him. (Shush don’t tell him!) But his post with the same title is significantly different than mine. So, I decided to share.  Here are my musings about nothin’ . . .

When I wake up first thing in the morning my first thought is… Of nothing. It’s nice to have no responsibilities, no pressing needs, no requirements that must be dealt with forth with. If only for a few moments my mind can wander anywhere and everywhere with no restrictions. That’s kind of a nice feeling. But of course, it doesn’t last. I have emails to answer, I have a cup of tea that is calling my name and I have engagements that I have committed to. I have responsibilities. And that’s fine. That is my life. And it is a life that I choose. But for short periods of time, it’s so nice to be surrounded by… Nothin’.

I’m wondering if there is a part of me that is channelling that innocent child in my mother’s womb that floated in an oblivion of nothing. I have no memory. But I wonder if my body does. Do our bodies remember? That is a whole Nother question… for another day.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Books versus Life

I love to read. I love to immerse myself in another world, another reality and experience it. I can live the life penned by another for as long as I am in that world. But I have a life. I have a life outside the pages of a book. I cannot stop my life from moving inexorably forward but I can put a book down and walk away. Can’t do that in real life!

When an author sits down to pen a novel, short story, a poem, they usually have an idea of where they ultimately wish to be. I would say they are in charge. Life is not always like that. We can have a plan, desires, a roadmap for our lives but there are too many variables. We might plan to be a dancer and our education is all towards that end and yet we are unable to dance. So, our path is now changed. We have to change with it. We need to devise a new plan. Is that so wrong? I’ve always found the unknown to be challenging and exciting. Perhaps terrifying is the right word but that also makes it enticing. And we wouldn’t be who we are without challenges. We have grown as a species from babes in the wood to leaders of our universe, sort of.

Our greatest inventions have grown out of a need. We were cold so we learned to harness fire. We were afraid of the dark so we learned to bring light. We like challenges.  We thrive on challenges. Which is a good thing, because there are a whole lotta challenges in our world. Sometimes those encounters can become too much and so we escape into the pages of a book. Or a movie, a video game, etc., etc. etc. The point is, we can take a short break and become someone else. But we cannot stay there. We. Can. Not.  There are books I have read multiple times because I enjoy the world that is created there. I like to visit. And I hope to think that some of the benefits I felt within those pages I am able to carry with me in to my reality. There’s something to think about. Someone else creates and we embody. Hmmmm . . .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Witch’s Brew

Eddy stepped back from the sign that she had just hung up outside the open door and thought about what had brought her to this point.  Edwina Roxanne Dupuis was a woman of exquisite taste.  Even if she was the only one who thought so. She had conjured up the idea of a neighbourhood coffee and tea house almost 3 years ago and it was only now getting its finishing touches.  It seemed appropriate that opening day was actually Halloween.  It was Edwina’s favourite holiday. She also felt that the name Edwina didn’t fit her character on any day so she always went by Eddy.

“Eddy do you want to use orange tablecloths or burnt umber.  And what in heaven’s name is the difference?  They both look the same to me.”

The voice that had just interrupted her reverie belonged to her not so silent partner Joshua.  They had met and become friends while both were attending university.  Years went by while they pursued their individual careers.  Unfortunately, neither was satisfied and when they met up again in a coffee shop, they were each looking for something new.  From that coincidental meeting came the idea for The Witch’s Brew.

“Burnt umber Joshua.  If you can’t see the difference then you are colour blind.”

Joshua stood for a moment looking at the two tablecloths, one in each hand.  His head went back and forth trying to discern a difference.  Instead he just shook his head.  Fortunately, each had a label so he was actually able to tell which was which.

“There is no difference,” he whispered quietly to himself.  They might be partners but she was still the boss.

A little louder he said, “The place looks fabulous!  You’ve done a great job Eddy.”

The woman in question came in to the coffee shop proper and she was smiling. “We did a great job Joshua.  I may have been the driving force but you provided the money and the moral support.  I’ll never forget that.

Joshua smiled.  Maybe she’d start to look at him a little differently.  There was more to him than friendly support and a buck or two.  He had been nursing a crush on Eddy since the day they met more than 10 years ago.  Unfortunately, circumstances did not allow them to explore a relationship.  Maybe now it would.  She just had to see him as more than a business partner.

“I’m curious, why did you choose Halloween as the opening day?”

“It’s my favourite holiday.  It’s nice when people are able to let go of convention, and be something they are not.  Or perhaps it’s when their real characters are allowed to shine.  We have no idea who and what people really are unless they tell us.”

As she spoke Eddy moved behind the coffee bar and started to polish an already gleaming counter.  She didn’t look at Joshua as she talked and he wondered if the words she used were meant for him specifically.

“Okay boss lady, what do we still need to do before tomorrow’s grand opening?  Geez, do I have to wear a costume?”

Eddy stopped fussing and looked at Joshua. “Of course you have to wear a costume!  It’s Halloween! And all that’s left to do is put out some flowers and put on a couple of pots of coffee.”

Joshua looked slightly alarmed. “I can handle the coffee, but a costume?”

“Oh and everything is going to be free tomorrow morning, just up until

12 o’clock.  I can’t think of a better way to get people to come into our shop.  It’ll cost a few dollars but I think it will be worth it in the end when people realize what a great place it is.  Are you okay with that money man?”

“Sure Eddy what ever you want.” He seemed somewhat distracted, “I could go as a pirate. They’re macho.  What are you going as?”

“Well as a witch of course.” Eddy’s laughter brightened the room immensely. “Don’t worry Joshua I promise not to turn you into a toad, unless of course you use orange tablecloths instead of the burnt umber!”

The two friends shared a good-natured chuckle.  There was only one problem: the two people in the room were not exactly what they appeared to be.  Each one had a secret they were hiding from the other.

*******************

The day was finally over and with a satisfying click the front door was closed and locked.  One individual was already sprawled over a couch, his shoulders sagging with relief.  The other was slowly patrolling the room picking up the odd cup and saucer.

“We did it Joshua.  And I think it was a huge success.  Now I am so tired I could cheerfully sell this place for a dollar.” With that Eddy sat down in the nearest chair, her chin slowly sliding towards her chest.

The figure on the couch stirred for a moment, his hand raised and a very small voice uttered only one word: “Sold!”

After a moment the two laughed quietly.  Several more minutes went by before Eddy forced her head to rise up and survey the newest hip spot on the street.  The Witch’s Brew was a success!

“Wake-up Joshua, there is still a ton of work to do.  We have to tidy this place up and get it ready for tomorrow morning.  And we have got to hire some staff. . . .”  Eddy’s voice continued on.  She was outlining the necessary steps for the successful run of their joint venture.  While she straightened up, she continued to talk.  She assumed that Joshua was listening.  But he was not.

Some movement had caught his eye.  From his comfortable perch on the couch he could just make out a piece of black wool that seemed to be undulating from behind a coffee bag.  He was mesmerized. For the life of him he could not understand why someone would have draped a piece of wool on the shelf.  Maybe he was still sleeping.  But that piece of wool seemed to be beckoning him.

With a quick glance to be sure that Eddy was otherwise occupied, Joshua slowly approached the wayward wool.  He was pretty sure he was over tired and hallucinating which is why he didn’t want to let Eddy know what he was doing.  After only half a dozen steps he could actually reach out towards his vision.  A fraction of an inch away from the piece of wool he stopped, inhaled deeply and thrust his hand forward.

“Ahhhhhhh! Oh my….!!!!  Call 911! It has eyes!” In his hurry to get away from the apparition, Joshua backed into a chair and sat down, hard.  The chair tilted back and he was on the floor with his legs in the air.  His mouth opened and closed repeatedly as he tried to speak.  All that came out was a guttural “Ahhhhhhhhhh!!!!!”

Eddy raced to his side and knelt down, concerned.  Her eyes followed the direction of his finger that was pointing in desperation at the path from which he had just fled. A small black figure raised its head and stared pointedly at the two people in the middle of the floor.  The demon in question then opened its mouth and uttered one syllable “Meow!”

With no regard for her fallen partner’s about to be bruised ego, Eddy burst out laughing hysterically.  She patted Joshua on the shoulder and then move towards the shelf.

“So that’s where you’ve been hiding Sebastian.  I wondered where you’d been.”

The aptly named Sebastian was cleaning his whiskers when he was unceremoniously picked up.  Eddy cuddled the tiny black kitten with the big-name and turned to face poor Joshua.

“Did I forget to tell you that The Witch’s Brew has a mascot?  Sebastian this is Joshua.  Joshua meet Sebastian.”

Joshua could do nothing more than stare at what he thought was a demon.  It is doubtful that the small kitten weighed more than a pound or two.  He was completely black except for those mesmerizing green eyes and a very tiny pink tongue.

Eddy was nuzzling the furball and her voice was muffled.  “I know you love me Joshua, and I love you too but you have to love my cat as well.”

Stunned, Joshua stood up. “I do, you know, love you.  I always have.  I didn’t know you knew.” He approached Eddy and put his arm around her and the small kitten. “Yes, your little demon is lovely and what a wonderful idea for the shop.  I guess every Witch needs her familiar.” The two chuckled, comfortable with themselves and with each other.

“Well, I guess we have a lot of work to do and we had better get at it.” Joshua left the two after a few moments and continued on with tidying the café while Eddy continued to cuddle Sebastian. It was almost as if the two were in deep conversation.

“I think it’s going to work.  But no magic Sebastian, you have to remain a cat.  And I have to make sure he never finds out that I am a real witch.”

 

The end

Mac and Cheese

When I was a child, my favourite meal was macaroni and cheese. It came in an orange box with elbow macaroni and a package of powdered cheese. I would eat that daily given the opportunity. A little ketchup on top, yep, I was good. Jump forward several decades and my tastes have changed somewhat. Mac & Cheese is still one of my favourite meals but I no longer use powdered cheese because I have discovered real cheese!

I remember being told as a youth that I needed to give up my childhood dreams. I needed to accept that life was not all rainbows and unicorns.  I thought that was ridiculous. There are some things that do belong in my past, in my childhood but others are still with me. Like that Mac & Cheese. I use different cheeses and different pasta but the essence is still one of comfort. Since those heady youthful days, I have discovered spices and herbs and sausage. Yes, my Mac & Cheese is significantly different than it was in those long-ago days. But it still represents, me.

I am glad I’m not the same person I was all those years ago but I’m also proud of the fact that I have retained some of that… childhood curiosity? I think that is something we should all try and keep. Life does its damnedest to mould us into appropriate adults. And that is how it should be. But we should never forget who we were and what we stood for. For that way lies madness. And there is enough madness in the world today that we do not need to contribute any more to it. Maybe that is why things are so crazy: people have forgotten what they cherished as children.

We are not born to remain in one state. We are born to grow, to evolve. Most of us do a very good job of it. But some…!  Life is delicious. It is messy and uncomfortable but it is also fulfilling and rewarding. We need to embrace the best parts of it and ameliorate the rest. Just like my Mac & Cheese.

And of course, rainbows still caress the world and unicorns are just a whimsy away.

Animal Crime?

Discriminately speaking,

Said the possum from bed.

There’s a fly on the wall,

And I think that’s he’s dead!

 

How can I sleep,

Surrounded by crime?

Murder and mayhem,

Time after time!

 

There’s much to be done,

To save all our lives!

But first clean the wall,

It’s giving me hives.

 

Doctor, oh Doctor,

Have you got a cure?

Things are not right,

Of this, I am sure.

 

There’s a wolf at my door,

And he wants to get in!

He wants me for dinner!

His cooking’s a sin.

 

Now the rabbits are fine,

Not a hair out of place.

Which makes me suspicious,

I think there’s a case.

 

Fraud and deceit,

They play all the time!

I don’t trust the cuteness,

I think it’s a crime . . .

 

How weary my soul,

With this evil about.

I’ll go back to sleep,

And just cover my snout.

 

 

 

 

Cutlery At Odds

A knife made

A cutting remark to a fork

Who looked up and said

“I have a point,

several in fact.

I think you’re on edge

And not really yourself.

The rumour I hear:

The spoon scooped you again!”

The knife then retracted

And quietly said

“I feel so under used,

The world has gone soft!”

“Time will move on!”

The fork then proclaimed.

“You’re just newly minted.

Too soon you’ll complain

Your edge is abused!”

The drawer softly closed

On the bickering pair

As the glass chuckled and stated:

“Half empty or full

I’ll always be clear!”

Dream Walker

Have you ever awoken from a deep sleep with your lips pulsating as if from a lover’s kiss?  Have you ever been alone in the middle of the night and yet awoken gasping and wet as if from an intimate embrace? Dreams. In the middle of the night our defences are at their weakest.  We cannot protect ourselves from the dreams that enter our minds when we are asleep.  The experts say that we dream constantly, that our minds are solving complex problems that we cannot contend with when conscious. That would explain many dreams but not all of them.  Some people do not remember their dreams. Some awaken feeling as if something wonderful has happened but they have no recollection of what. Others awaken with the dream intact.

Dreams are not reality. Or are they? What if they are manifestations of a different reality?  What if dreams are engineered by a person or persons with more powerful minds than the average dreamer?  What if . . . . .

***************

Jeremy laid his head on the pillow.  He sighed.  It had been an exhausting day and he needed his sleep desperately.  Preferably eight blissfully uninterrupted hours of unconsciousness.  Then he could start this nonsense all over again.  His eyes closed, his body relaxed.

There was a gentle breeze wafting through the glen.  That seemed to keep the temperature comfortable although he couldn’t actually feel it.  He knew it was there by watching the long grasses moving as if to a gentle love ballad. Jeremy didn’t know where he was.  He did know that he was at peace here; the rest of the world was far away and unimportant.  And then he saw her.

A tall slender figure slowly materialized out of the dense forest.  They say that beauty is quantifiable, that there are certain effects that are the difference between beautiful and merely attractive.  They say that our visual understanding is predicated on our past experiences and that our interpretation of what we see is primal.  Jeremy had no words to speak or even to think of as she walked towards him.  His body betrayed him; he leaned forward as if to embrace her and she stopped.  Even the words she spoke touched his heart as if a gentle kiss brushed his lips.  He waited.  His breath came quicker as he watched her.  He wanted her.  He wanted to embrace her.  He wanted to rest his head on her lap like a child and feel safe.  He did feel safe.  He felt as if this is where he was meant to be.

***************

Anna didn’t want to fall asleep, yet she felt the strong pull of her bed.  She had been up too long, working too hard on too many projects. She needed the relief of nothingness, the mindless abandonment of sleep.  She turned out the lights and rolled into a more comfortable position.  Anna sighed.

The elevator doors opened quickly, she darted inside.  She had to be in time, she had to catch him.  With a slight jolt the elevator began it’s decent.  Ninety floors, it would take too long, she had to stop him.  Anna glanced at the floor indicator, it was moving as if in a free fall.  Bullet Elevator.  She remembered.  It was the new Bullet Elevator that moved three times faster than the fastest elevator in use.  She was going to make it.  Before she had finished her next thought, the elevator doors opened on the ground floor and Anna began looking for him, the man she cared for.  She knew he was headed for the parking lot and it was a bit of a walk.  There were two routes he could take: underground via a shopping concourse or outside across a courtyard and a street.  There was a turnstile ahead and a tall, slender woman taking tickets.  Tickets!  Anna didn’t have a ticket.  She looked down at her hand and at the necessary ticket.  The slender woman smiled as she accepted the ticket.  Anna moved quickly, she would catch John and everything would be all right.

***************

Car fumes, she could smell car fumes.  Madelaine tried to turn over.  She was lying on her side and she was painfully aware of the very hard surface beneath her. What the hell was she doing in a parking garage?  That’s where she was, an underground parking garage.  Sue.  She was here with Sue.  They were practicing with the sword.  Why?  Sue had purchased a very old sword of some obscure parentage and she wanted to practice with it.  Her apartment held too many breakables to risk swinging a potentially deadly weapon so the garage it was.  Kidnapped!  She remembered; Sue has been kidnapped!  She had to reach a phone, call the police, but there was still one of the kidnappers in the garage.  A woman, a tall, slender woman and she had a gun.  Madelaine was the target; she had tried to protect Sue and now she was in trouble. She was hiding beneath a car, she was frightened, confused.  There were footsteps coming towards her, they stopped.  Madelaine held her breath.

5:00 am came much too early in the morning to suit Madelaine but it was what her job required.  It hadn’t been a restful night.  She had a nagging head ache behind her eyes and she was exhausted.  Madeline sighed, someone had to be at the office first and she had been nominated. Oh well, it paid the bills.

***************

Do you ever awakened from a dream and wonder about the people you have just met? You swear you have never seen them before and yet they are familiar to you.  Does the same person show up in many of your dreams, sort of a recurring figure and yet you don’t know them, or do you? Is it a tall slender woman with a warm smile or perhaps a solid, stocky man with a glint in his eye?  Maybe both.  What actually happens in our dreams? It is almost like entertainment.  Entertainment for whom?  Is it for our benefit or for someone else’s, someone with the ability to insert themselves into our minds and follow or perhaps control our dreams?  Interesting thought.  Oh, and pleasant dreams.  Maybe I’ll see you there.

 

 

 

I Did Not Say That!

I am convinced that my Dictation Software is actually a 15-year-old pimply boy wearing socks with Flip-flops and sweatpants sitting in his mother’s basement chewing bubble-gum. I know this because some of his auto corrections on my blog are . . .   Shall we say inappropriate. Which of course means I have to share. As an example: this is what happened when I left a comment on a post at nofacilities.com:  You’re a penis Arnel serve yourself. That’s what auto correct said! No joke. This is what I said:  Your peanuts are now serve yourself? Dan had shared a picture of a bag of peanuts on his back deck. He feeds the squirrels, usually.

Now I am not a prude. I didn’t go ballistic at the word penis. It’s a word. But I do find it hilarious how so many of these auto check changes are sexual in nature. Does that not scream teenage boy? Now when it comes to profanity. . . (I worked for the police for 30 years I am not afraid of profanity.   I actually have quite a litany of vulgar verbiage at my disposal.) Spell check has no trouble spelling expletives perfectly. I get cranky and I get annoyed at auto correct. Because basically, it’s not correct! And it infuriates me when I’m taking great care to enunciate correctly and it prints something that isn’t even a bloody word! Sorry, redhead, temper. I can understand changes with the spelling. I may not like it but I understand it. I am Canadian and the spellcheck is American. There are certain words that we do spell differently, for example: humour and humor.  Oh, my word, spellcheck got that one right! I guess that pimply 15-year-old was listening.  Ha ha ha!

Throughout the ages so many have named their devices. The golf club that’s called Big Bertha, men naming their cars after well, something they probably won’t want to explain. I have never really felt the need. But sometimes I want to have somebody to yell at in my frustration and it really is absolutely no fun at all to yell at a device that has no feeling. So, if I have a teenager hiding in his mom’s basement to be annoyed with, I’m good!

 

 

Who’s at the Pub?

 

Our Creator walked into a bar,

He really didn’t have to go far,

With His Ghost at His side,

His Son tried to hide,

Cuz Daddy thinks bourbon’s a star!

 

Our Lord likes a tipple or two,

Anymore just really won’t do.

But the Ghost is a lush,

His songs make me blush,

And Angels think there’s been a coup!

 

I’ll say this for our celestial guest,

He makes us feel we are blessed.

With His heavenly light,

He makes everything right,

And yes, I admit I’m impressed!

 

A lesson is here to be learned:

Respect is something that’s earned.

No matter your stature,

You still bring the rapture,

All you need be is concerned.

 

I will walk down the path I am shown,

And never will I feel alone.

Cuz with God as my guide,

I will always abide,

And reap the best I have sown.

 

 

Trick or Treat

Juan’s hand gently caressed her cheek until his hand cupped her chin.

“I love you my darling Persephone.”

She closed her eyes, her lips pursed in anticipation.

Juan’s mouth hovered over Persephone’s; his breath warm on her cheeks.

“My darling,” he whispered as he placed his full, quivering lips against hers. In that moment the world ceased to exist. Her breath caught in her throat, her arms encircled his neck and she . . . “

“Penny, sorry to disturb you but I have got to have that report on the boss’s desk by noon and I still don’t have your numbers.  Wake up girl friend; you can’t daydream all day, work to do, work to do!”

Penny blinked rapidly.  She couldn’t quite grasp that what she had just experienced was a dream.  The reality was that she was sitting in an office in a cramped cubicle with a four-inch pile of work in front of her that needed to be completed by the end of the day.

“I’ll, I’ll get right at it.  I’m almost finished, I promise.”  She stammered her words as she tried to make sense of things.

Penny Elizabeth Foster was an ordinary woman, in an ordinary job, in an ordinary world.  What was extraordinary was her imagination.  As she went about the rest of her day Penny smiled at a secret memory.  Her Don Juan had taken her in his arms and made mad passionate love to her. The fact that that memory was actually only a dream was immaterial. To Penny her fantasy life was just as vibrant and vital as the real world.

So, the rest of the day Ms. Foster did as was expected of her.  She collated, she typed, she filed.  She filled the endless minutes with minutia and with deadlines.  Eventually the magical hour approached: the end of her day.

“Happy Halloween Penny!  Are you getting dressed up to give out candies tonight?”

“Yes, Eddy and no you can’t come over.  Besides you would scare the neighbourhood children. Say hi to your wife, Eddy.”

The last thing Penny wanted was to get involved with the office romancer. Or at least that’s how he saw himself. She packed up her purse and coat and made her way to her car.  It wasn’t a long drive home but it’s one she enjoyed because she didn’t have to listen to anybody else talk.  She could continue her fantasies as she wished.

“Ladies and gentlemen, we have a special treat today: Ms. Persephone Foster is in the front line up for today’s race.  She is a world-renowned stock car driver. She has won both the Daytona 500 and the Brickyard 400. Her mentor was the legendary Don Juan of car racing.  The let’s sit back and enjoy today’s race.  Gentleman and lady, start your engines!”

“Hey lady, the light’s green, move!”

With a grin Penny realized that she was still sitting at a green light.  She chuckled and continued on her way home.

She had always enjoyed Halloween.  It was a time when every one could indulge in their secret fantasies without being seen to be odd. Yes, there were the ghosts and goblins and the scary monsters but there were also characters from history and whimsical creatures.  That was the part Penny enjoyed most.  Besides who couldn’t resist a child dressed up like a bunny?  Yes, she loved this day in the year.

So, with her usual efficiency Penny set about getting the candy ready to be handed out to the children, or more specifically the ‘trick or treaters’. After all, the indulgence in fantasies or whimsy is not just for the children.

She had spent a great deal of time preparing her own costume.  It wouldn’t do to answer the door in jeans.  No, Penny was going to be prepared in a costume that was appropriate to her frame of mind at just this time. She had always liked the concept of a damsel in distress so she dressed herself in flowing garments reminiscent of Sleeping Beauty. If only her Prince Charming could come by tonight.

“Trick or treat!  Trick-or-treat!”

The first of the ghosts and goblins had made their appearance and Penny was ready.

“Oh, my goodness what very scary ghosts and goblins you are!”

As she handed out the candy to the multitude of children at her door Penny was reminded of her own costumes as a child.  There was the cat with the long tail that kept dragging in puddles, or the space alien with the javex bottle for a helmet that was spray-painted gold. There was even a gypsy one year with all of her mother’s costume jewellery draped around her neck and her arms.  Her mother had become quite adept at making costumes.  It was something new every year.

Each year saw its share of ghosts and goblins, bunnies, squirrels and cats.  It was exciting to see the wonder in the eyes of the children and the quiet fatigue in the eyes of their parents as they shepherded their children from door to door.  But this year everything changed.

No one had rung her doorbell or cried “trick-or-treat” for about twenty minutes so Penny was starting to clean everything up.  Another Halloween was over.  There was something very sad about that.  But then it just meant that one looked forward to next year.

BBBBBRRRRRRRRRRRRRINGGG

“Trick or Treat.”

The doorbell immediately got Penny’s attention but the quiet little voice that was saying ‘trick-or-treat’ was far more compelling.  When she opened the door Penny saw an adorable little brown bunny or more specifically a very small child in an oversized bunny costume.  As she leaned down, she could see incredibly huge pleading eyes that were almost in tears.

“Well, hello little bunny, here is some candy, but are you okay?”

Sniff, “I think I lost my dad. He doesn’t like to be lost in the dark.  Can you help me find him?”

Penny immediately looked up to see if she could find this errant father.  How dare he allow this small child to wander the streets without him!  She was not going to allow this youngster to stay out here alone any longer.

“You come inside little bunny.  My name is Penny what’s yours?”

“Miranda.”

Do you want me to call your mother?

“It’s only my dad and me.” As she spoke Miranda put her tiny little hand in Penny’s.  This small child needed comfort and she was going to take it from whatever adult was handy. Penny was touched.  She knelt down on one knee and embraced her.

“We’ll find your dad don’t you worry.”

Penny was trying to be comforting but inside she was angry.  What could possibly cause a father to lose sight of this precious child! When she found this man, she was going to give him a piece of her mind!  But first Miranda had to be reassured.

Within a few moments Penny was sure that her new charge was okay.  She was sitting at the kitchen table with glass of milk and a cookie.  Penny was preparing to call the police but she was hesitant.  She had heard stories about children going into foster care and essentially disappearing into a system that was not conducive to proper childcare.  So, she hesitated.

As she looked across the room to this lonely child, she felt an overwhelming sense of responsibility.  In this day and age, we are all responsible for our actions and we should never shirk that responsibility.  Sitting across the kitchen table was someone who was asking for her help.  She just could not drop that responsibility on someone else.

Penny was about to take the child out again into the dark.  She would find this man, the father of this child.

BBBBBBBBBBBRRRRRRRRRGGGGGGGGGG

Once again, the door unexpectedly demanded attention.  When it wasn’t immediately opened, insistent knocking followed.  Penny approached the door hesitantly; someone was anxious to get in. A moment ago, she had been anxious to track down an errant father on a dark Halloween night.  But now?  Who knows what Spirits are walking in the dusky light?  Now she was afraid to open the door.  The knocking continued louder, and louder.  They say that on one night of the year ghosts are capable of taking form and interacting with the living. They say that on one night of the year evil lurks within reach of the innocent.

The knocking continued, louder.  A voice was added to the banging; “Miranda, I know you’re in there, Miranda!”

With a relieved sigh Penny realized who was at the door: Miranda’s father.

With no further hesitation she threw open the door and then stopped.  In front of her was the man that she had been dreaming about earlier this day, a man of strength, of character and a father.  Upon hearing her father’s voice Miranda ran to him.

“I’m sorry daddy, I’m sorry I ran away!  I’m sorry, I’m sorry!  But this nice lady took care of me and she doesn’t have a husband.”

For just a moment no one said a word. And then the man spoke,

“I’m terribly sorry for what my daughter has done.  She has caused both of us undo concern.  I would like to make it up to you, my name is Don.”

Penny opened her mouth to respond but found that she was tongue-tied.  In the doorway of her home was the man she had been dreaming about.  She would have to say something witty and intelligent, but for the moment her mind was a blank.

“Oh, geez did I disturb you?  The boss won’t like ya sleeping on the job! Look a bunch of us are going over to the pub after work, it’s been a rough day.  Why don’t you join us?  Nobody hands out candy anymore, the kids all go to each other’s homes for parties; parents are too afraid of serial rapists and poisoned candy. Penny are you okay?  You look like you’ve seen a ghost! If you want to come to the pub, we’re leaving in twenty minutes.

Penny blinked her eyes repeatedly. She was still at her desk; she was still filing and she was still single.  Trick-or-treat?

 

 

 

The end