Wednesday's Words on a Friday

On Wednesdays, Delores, from Under The Porch Light, has a word challenge meme which she calls “Words for Wednesday”.

She puts up a selection of six words which we then use in a short story, or a poem.

I’m hopeless at poetry so I always do a story.

It’s a fun challenge…why not join in?

This week's words are:

1. intense
2. diversified
3. clunk
4. mundane
5. diligent
6. waiter

OR:  (and)

1. pocket watch
2. fountain pen
3. immerse
4. emulsion
5. practical
6. blinding 

Here is my story:

 Continuing Chapter Nine

After the barbecue, while washing up the dishes, Rosa asked Eileen about her son, Robbie Jnr.
"You said you'd come to Australia for his health, what was wrong?"

"Our Robbie? He was born a little too early dear, and just didn't thrive like we expected him to. The doctor said give him time, he just needed to catch up a bit, but then he got croup and just coughed and coughed. 
Doctor Connors suggested a warmer climate might be beneficial. 
We had a little money put aside, we'd been saving for years before Robbie was born, I didn't have him until I was 30. And now he's thirty himself. It's gone so fast, thirty years..

Anyway, we talked it over and came out here when Robbie was one year old and he improved immediately. We missed Doctor Connors at first, he's been my Doctor since I was a wee lass, but with Robbie doing so much better and growing like a weed, we were glad we came. We sent photos back to Doctor each year at Christmas for a while, then he died when Robbie was six."

"It's a sad beginning, but I'm glad you came to Australia, I wouldn't have met you otherwise," said Rosa. "Where is Robbie Jnr now?"

"He spends a lot of time in Perth, he took over a secondhand book shop when the owner got too old to manage, Robbie has always loved to read. Anyway, he got the shop rearranged, cleared out some clutter, it was such a mess, he sent us photos, but things are looking up for him now. He's diversified, said it was the practical way to go, put a small cafe lounge in the back part of the shop and that's doing so well he needs a waiter now to help out. Someone diligent enough to remember people's coffee orders, not just wander off into the books all the time."

"A cafe lounge? In a bookshop? Isn't that a little unusual?" asked Rosa. 

"Oh no," said Eileen, lots of the  bigger cities have them, Robbie got the idea when he visited the university, his girlfriend works in the cafe there. All the Uni kids take their books and laptops to the cafe and study while they eat, so Robbie thought it might be a good way to get more customers into The Sagacious Scone. Look on the wall over there, above the chair is a photo of the bookshop."

"What a wonderful name for a cafe bookstore!" said Rosa. 

A loud clunk from the yard got their attention and they rushed to the window to see what was going on. 
The boys had finished cleaning up the barbecue and were now kicking around a football which had landed on the trailer still hitched to the jeep. 
Eileeen and Rosa watched for a while, the concentration on the boys faces was quite intense, it was clear they all enjoyed playing.

"Jimmy would love this," Rosa said, "I remember when I met him, he was playing with a group of kids from the village, they had an old soccer ball they'd kick around on the empty lot where a big house used to be. Jimmy always said how he loved having kids around."

With the dishes all put away Eileen set out things for the cups of tea that would be had later in the evening. She brought her knitting bag to the sofa by the fireplace and they sat there to continue chatting while Eileen started another jumper for Robbie. He wore them out so quickly!

"Do you do much knitting?" asked Rosa. "I do love," said Eileen, "Robbie goes through a lot of jumpers, they get snagged on things out in the yard and out in the bush when he's helping Trevor with a group of boys. It's seen as a mundane chore by a lot of younger women these days, but I find it relaxes me after a long day. The fingers know the work so my mind is free for an hour or two."

Chapter Ten

It soon became too dark to see the football, so the boys and Trevor came inside with Robbie and sat around the table munching a fresh batch of scones and drinking many cups of tea. 
Waldo wondered if a scone could be dunked in his tea, like his Granny dunked her biscuits and immersed his scone, then decided it hadn't been a good idea as melted butter formed a film across the tea. He got a fresh cup and slathered his next scone with jam instead. "That looked disgusting," he said, "like that emulsion Granny takes to settle her stomach when her ulcer plays up."

Clouds had been building up again while the footy game was on and a blinding flash of lightning cracked open the sky just outside the window. 
"Crikey!" said Waldo through his mouthful of scone. "Didn't think that storm was coming back, the air out there is too warm."
"Just like that freak storm five years ago," said Travis. "It was warm then too. Nanna's chooks all got washed out of their house, we had to build a new one."

Trevor looked at his old pocket watch, (he had a love of old-fashioned things), then told the boys they should get their sleeping bags from the trailer and set up camp in the shed right now, in case it started raining. While they did that, he borrowed Eileen's fountain pen and made the day's notes in his journal.


  1. I had to look up "chooks"--love your story!!

  2. I enjoyed my trip to another climate and culture, and am curious about what happens next!

  3. There you go again...mentioning scones!!!!! I'm just going to have to make a batch on the weekend to appease my cravings!! :)

    I can munch on them while I eagerly await your next instalment. Have a nice weekend, River.

  4. I am loving this. And the Sagacious Scone is a wonderful name for a cafe. I would love to have a cuppa there.

  5. fishducky; you had to look up chooks? That surprises me, i thought everybody knew chickens were called chooks out here.

    Marty Damon; I'm a little curious myself, we'll have to see where next weeks words take me.

    Lee; There were a lot of scones on the internet last week, I had to make a batch myself. First batch in thirty years, I'm surprised I remembered how. They were yummy.

    Elephant's Child; it took me a while to come up with that name, I even texted my K for suggestions, but she had nothing to offer. I'll join you there for a cuppa and a scone.

  6. Your use of the chosen words is absolutely brilliant and this story is developing so well...almost a book more than short story now.
    I only ever call hens 'chooks', always have and always will. Love the sound of the word if for no other reason.

  7. Mimsie; you're right, it is more than a short story now. Last year in my creative writing class I learned that short stories are usually between 2000 and 5000 words; this one is just over 5000 now. A long way from being a book though. I still need to find some adventure and drama. I like the word chooks too, I sometimes say chickens, but never hens.

  8. ... great next chapter River... Eileen and Rosa are becoming lovely blog friends to me... I'm enjoying your writings so much... xxx
    Hugs ... Barb xxx

  9. Barbara; thank you, I'm glad you're enjoying this.


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