Wayzgoose #AtoZChallenge

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Wayzgoose – an annual summer party held by a printing house for all its employees.

It was too warm and the cocktails had gone to my head all ready. I dipped my feet into the cool outdoor swimming pool of the hotel and watched everyone else. Everyone from work I knew was here, it was a work do after all! and there were people from other departments I had never seen before.

Everyone from the printing house seemed to be here; the big cheeses, the receptions and the kids who worked in the post room. Everyone was drinking or eating, talking and enjoying themselves.

It was good to be not at work in this four star hotel for a weekend party. It was the annual tradition of the business. A reward for everyone and a celebration of last year’s best selling books and online articles.

I hated it. I loathed shifting through the paper and online submissions. I grimaced at simple spelling mistakes and rolled my eyes at grammar errors. For years, I had read other peoples’ writings whilst mine had slipped away like shells out to sea.

‘So, I heard you’d handed in your notice….’

I looked up at the sound of the voice, frowning and scrunching my face up because the sun was too bright. It was Naz though, no doubt about it.

He sat down next to me and dipped his bare feet into the water. He was wet from a swim and there was a towel around his shoulders.

‘This isn’t a pool party,’ I joked.

Naz laughed and shook his wet dark hair, ‘everyone’s too drunk to care!’

I pressed my lips together and kicked my feet under the water. He was right, everyone no one cared and the drinks were flowing too much. Not even the Christmas party ended up like this.

‘So, is it true? You are leaving me?’ Naz uttered.

‘Yes. How did you find out?’ I asked.

Naz tapped his nose and laughed.

‘I leave at the end of next month.’

‘So you got on that journalism course then?’

‘University at the age of thirty-one here I come!’ I cried and swung my arms up.

A few people glanced at me then got back on with their conversations or nibbles.

‘Go get ’em girl,’ Naz said, ‘fancy a drink to celebrate?’

‘No, I’ve had too much.’

‘Come on!’ Naz half shouted and got up splashing me with pool water.

I watched him go over to the bar and a part of me wanted to get up and go, make Naz come back with two drinks and discovery himself alone. I couldn’t though, we had known each other too long.

He came back soon enough with tall glasses and something pink and fizz inside. I sipped it through a paper straw and found it fruity and sweet. We didn’t talk for a few minutes, just sat and watched a group of men try and push each other in the pool. Someone give at last and splashed in, followed by another man he had snatched the arm of as he fell.

Laughter and shouting rose up as people swamped the pool. The men got up and everyone distributed lured by the music coming from the marque on the lawn.

‘Party’s kicking off now,’ Naz pointed out.

I rubbed my head, feeling the growth of a headache. I should get something to eat and then maybe slip off back to my room. I wasn’t in the mood for dancing, having my bum and boobs grabbed at. Also, I didn’t want to end up in someone else’s bed tonight like a lot of these people would do.

I turned to Naz and saw him waving at someone, ‘Cherry in accounting, Let’s go say hi.’

‘You go. I’ll see you at the buffet table,’ I replied.

Naz nodded and hurried off.

I got my wrinkled feet out of the pool, back into my red flat shoes that matched my red cocktail dress and went to get something to eat.

There wasn’t a queue though there was enough people getting food to bump elbows with. Most people had gone off dancing. I got a paper plate and selected a few things, not really fussy over the trays of food.

I found a table outside and ate slowly, enjoying the setting sun and the lights coming on in the gardens. Noise echoed around me, the booming of the disco music, the shouting of the people. A woman was screaming somewhere- I guessed in delight as she was chased by a suitor? Or maybe a murderer? I didn’t care.

I finished eating and went back to the buffet table. I gathered some sandwiches, fruit, mini blueberry muffins and a few other things to eat in my room. Then acting like I was looking for somewhere to eat or perhaps the friends I had left a few minutes ago, I sneaked back inside the hotel.

It was a long way to my room and I was grateful not to meet anyone. Either the whole hotel had been booked for the company or the other guests were sticking in their bedrooms. I took the elevator and walked along the corridors until I made to my door.

Once in, I put the food on the desk next to the gathering of bottled water and fizzy drinks I had brought with me. A few packets of sweets and chocolates were there too. That had been my plan for night; far from the party and by myself.

I sat on the bed and turned the TV on. I nibbled on a sandwich and sipped some water.

What a way to spend my last work’s summer party.

(Inspired by; http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com)

Get Away #FFftPP

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The Spanish accommodation didn’t look like the photos on the internet but Mel and Alex weren’t bothered. Their apartment was clean, cool and cosy just what they wanted to return to after a day of exploring.

The stone building was old but built to last with flowers and trailing plants everywhere. There was a nice cold swimming pool at the side and a lawn for kids to play on, though thankfully there didn’t seem to be many children here this week. Most would be going back to school now.

Mel and Alex had just wanted to get away for a week and this holiday hadn’t been planned at all. That’s why they weren’t fussy about things, they were just happy to be relaxing and far from busy city life.

Taking deep breaths of warm, flower fragrant air, Mel stood in the doorway feeling so happy. Alex came behind her, all ready for a morning by the pool side. They kissed, pressed their foreheads together and smiled.

‘I’m glad we decided to do this, husband,’ Mel spoke.

‘Me too, wife,’ Alex replied, ‘let’s go swimming.’

Hand in hand, they walked to the pool and swim in the cool shimmering water.

 

(Inspired by; https://flashfictionforthepracticalpractitioner.wordpress.com/2019/08/28/flash-fiction-for-the-purposeful-practitioner-week-39/ with thanks).

Dear Diary

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Dear diary,

Summer is here but the weather doesn’t feel like it! It’s rainy and windy, with dark clouds and a sense of autumn more then anything.

I wanted to go for walk but have decided against. It’s a cup of tea and a lengthy novel to fill my afternoon out with.

The living room feels cold so I feel chilled which doesn’t help the aches and pains in my body. A bath later will ease things and pass more time till I can go to bed again. Sleeping, once I get there! does help.

I have been doing the exercises the nurse recommended too and spending more time standing up and less sitting which is fine on a good day but not on a bad. Swimming also has helped. In the water, I can forget anything and act like I did in the days before becoming ill. I’m going to do more swimming soon.

Warm, dry weather also helps and I’m hoping summer does settle in soon and I can spend more time feeling well enough to do things.

Till then as always, it’s trying to stay as comfortable as possible and distracting myself with as much as I can.

Swimming #FridayFictioneers

Chris felt cold water underneath his bare feet. He looked down into the rippling water of the swimming pool and took deep breaths.

He tried hard to concentrate on the race but couldn’t block out the noise of the cheering parents and the movements of the other children lining up.

The swimming teacher blew the whistle and all the children jumped in as one.

Chris felt the water swallowing him, he kicked off and parted through waves, bobbing up to breath when needed.

The end of the pool came fast and Chris came to the surface with the roaring of the crowd deafening him.

 

(Inspired by; https://rochellewisoff.com/2019/05/15/17-may-2019/ with thanks).

Swim #FFfTPP

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Butch could swim for hours just like he chased balls, so combined he was in heaven. I enjoyed watching him; his yellow coat flowing across the water, his black eyes and nose pointed towards the ball. When he grabbed the ball, he would turn and come back with no encouragement, knowing his reward would be the ball thrown again.

That was how I would always remember him. Even when the cancer meant he couldn’t walk anymore and everything was a struggle. Saying goodbye to him was the worse day of my life. I didn’t just lose my best friend that morning, I lost myself too.

(Inspired by; https://flashfictionforthepracticalpractitioner.wordpress.com/2018/09/19/flash-fiction-for-the-purposeful-practitioner-2018-week-38/ with thanks).

The Lost Temple

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When he discovered the temple he didn’t know what to think. His mind raced with the usual thoughts; it can’t be, someone already knows about this place, it’s not new. But then as he looked more and more, shinning his torch along the walls, his head cleared of such thoughts and he began to realise what he had uncovered.

He swim deeper, forgetting the weight of the scuba diving equipment and the crushing sea water. He studied the drawings on the wall and his heart leaped. There was no doubt what he had found now. The urge to go on grew and he had to know what was the other side of the temple, but his watch was beeping and he had to leave.

He turned around and swim as fast as he could back to the surface. Breaking through the waves, he searched for the ship and found he had come up way short. He paddled over, the air tank feeling like it was trying to hold him back. Reaching the ship, he waited till he was aboard till he announced his news.

‘It is Atlantis!’ he gasped, ‘we’ve found it!’

Fish

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There was something both calming  and reassuring about watching the fish swimming around their tank. It almost made the visit to the dentist’s easier.

At The Gym

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From the second Matt saw her walking through the door he couldn’t help but stare. Her boobs were huge, like HUGE. He slowly lowered the weights he had in his hands and tried to act normal as she stepped across the gym floor.

He noticed she was wearing loose black jogging pants, which did nothing for legs and bum. Though the light pink vest top she had on was a different story. He could see the large roundness of her belly and the tops of those awesome looking boobs. Her face, which he caught only for a few seconds before she vanished behind the cloth screen, was softly rounded and she had short light brown hair.

Turning back to the weights, Matt tried to get his mind back to his work out. As he bent his knees and prepared to lift, he wondered why he hadn’t seen her here before. He tightened his hands and fingers on the warm metal and raised the weights steadily upwards. Prepares, his mind suggested, she was new? Maybe she’d had a baby or was getting ready to be married.

Lowering the weights, he chased those thoughts away. Snagging his small towel, Matt wiped his face and hands. He grabbed his water and took a few gulps. Closing the safety seal of the bottle, he wandered passed the exercise bikes and around the screen which separated the room. To his left now were a line of blue seat machines used for arm and upper body muscles whilst to his right were the treadmills.

A few people were busy using the machines or running, but Matt couldn’t see her. Frowning, he took another mouthful of water. Maybe she’d gone up to use the women’s only room? He went back to the weights, but came to stop as he saw her mounting one of the exercise bikes. He told himself to move, to not stare, but he got a lump in the throat as he saw her start to peddle.

‘Are you all right?’

The voice brought him back. Nodding to the gym staff man and went towards the bikes. Matt picked one down from her and dumped his things into the cup holders on either side of the screen. He fixed the seat height and got on. Pressing start, he selected some random scenery on the screen and began peddling.

Stealing glances at her, Matt saw she had headphones in and seemed to be bopping along to the music. On her screen, was a similar forest scene to his own. She leant over to hold the top bike handles and he had to stop himself from taking in a deep breath. Her boobs bounced with the rhythm of her peddling. They seemed to swing around, threating to break free of the vest top and whatever bra/s she had on.

Matt shut his eyes and tried to squeeze his legs together on the seat. An image of those bouncing boobs above him flashed into his mind and he had to open his eyes. Desperately, trying not to look, he finished his ten minutes then climbed down from the bike. He grabbed his stuff and walked off.

 

***

Cass clocked him straight away as she walked into the gym. He was a tall, well-muscled man lifting weights in the corner next to the blue mats. Looking around, she saw all the machines she wanted to use were full and she didn’t feel ready to go on the treadmill. Walking through anyway, she looped back around to the bikes. Selecting one, she set it up and got on.

A minute or so later, he joined her. Sneaking a few peeks, Cass started to believe he was watching her. Concentrating on her music helped and she fixed her eyes to the rolling landscape on the screen. However, the feeling of being watched didn’t go away. He wasn’t that bad looking with his short black hair, high forehead, long cheeks and thick lips. He was wearing blue shorts and a loose grey t-shirt which was patched with sweat.

Finishing her ten minutes, Cass looked over at him, perhaps to catch his eye, but he had vanished. Sliding off the bike and picking up her IPod and water, she walked back to the machines and spotted him on a treadmill. Without really meaning too, she selected the waist muscle machine and sat down. Her eyes were almost opposite his bum.

She thought about moving, but then decided not to be silly. She did twenty reps then moved onto the chest machine. Pushing her large boobs against the thick pad in front of her, she tried not to let the grunt escape her mouth. She clutched the bars and began moving her arms up and down. Twenty reps went by in her head and a slight muscle burning sensation tingled along her arms.

Getting up, she went on the treadmill directly behind her, which was one down from him. Being careful to avoid his eyes, which she was becoming painfully aware of, she started up the treadmill. Setting to a fast walk, she looked out of the window and to the swimming pool. A class was just finishing up in there. She tried to make out the clock on the wall across the pool, but she couldn’t see the lines that made up the numbers.

Ten minutes later, she got off the treadmill and looked over. He had vanished again. Sighing, she gathered her things and left. Cass headed to the dry changing rooms, where she collected her things before going into the wet changing rooms. There she switched into her grey, pink and black swimming costume. Putting her stuff into a locker, she stepped out into the swimming pool.

Getting into the lurk warm water and starting to swim, he was all Cass could think about.  Had he really been watching her all the time? Everyone stared at her, but there had been something about him…She shook her head and spat out some water that had leaked into her mouth. Stretching her fingers out, she touched the cold tiled deep end of the pool. Turning, she tread water then kicked off and swam back again.

She was use to the long looks and stares now. It didn’t bother her and she just got on. Cass moved across slightly to avoid an older woman and she felt the small waves hitting her side. She tried to turn her thoughts away and empty her mind, but still for whatever reason, that man wouldn’t leave her head.

Letting the water wash over her, she wondered if she’d ever see him again.

 

Dear Diary #19

It’s the start of a new month and boy, am I embracing it head on and arms out! Returned to the gym this morning and tackled the running machine again. Still a bit nervous on it, but once I’d got the rhyme and the beat of my music right I went for a full twenty minute fast walk. Felt really pleased with that and unlike last time, I didn’t get myself down about the person a few places over from me who was actually going at a full run.

Swimming afterwards was like Heaven. Though I hope the water is warmer up there! When I got home I actually felt more creative and sat down to try and do some writing before husband and baby appeared. I got maybe five hundred words done and finished off the chapter I was stuck on last night. Small steps!

Breakfast was a mad rush then it was just me and B. She’s starting to get a fat face and I swear she’s still forever hungry. Tomorrow, is weigh in day for the both of us. I tried to find out what she should be at for four months, but of course there’s so many factors to fit in there and the average is just an average.

I’m doing really great sticking to the day schedule though, but I’m not sure how much longer I can go without my mid-morning and afternoon TV. I miss Netflix’s too, though hubby and I did finally finish watching Dexter at the weekend. The escape from technology is so hard. I hinted that we need to become nomads a few days ago because I can’t see it being possible any other way.

Hubby won’t have it though. He muttered something about going camping. But with B in tow would I really want to do that? I’m still having a slight problem exposing her to the outside world. I know that sounds really bad, but I’ve not been out with her on my own still. I keep saying I’ll go to the park or the shops or to a friend’s with her, but always at the back of my head there’s this little voice that sounds off.

What if something happens to her or me? What if she catches something or is bitten by an animal? It’s safer inside.

I know that’s insane. Who doesn’t want to show off their first baby? But still…I hope these thoughts got away soon. I saw this thing in my baby pack about post-traumatic stress and how your mental health can be affected by a birth. Perhaps that’s what is and nothing more. I don’t really want to talk about it though, because what if it’s not and I am actually going crazy? I can’t think about it. But seriously, if it doesn’t go away, I’m going to have to do something.

I don’t want to be a bad or dangerous mum. The other day I kept thinking about that poor woman who jumped off a cliff with her hours old baby. She had lots of issues all her life, the news report had said and they didn’t understand why she’s been able to walk out of hospital alone like that. That’s an extreme really though.

Maybe, what I need to do is speak to hubby. I know he’ll tell me it’ll all be fine, but to be honest that’s all I want to hear and my own body back again! B is now crying, so I’d better go and see to her. Then it’s bedtime. Though it feels like I’ve done nothing all day, I’m so tired.

Dear Diary #18

I wanted today to be a bed day, but of course it being Monday, that wasn’t going to happen. My part-time job sucks. Don’t get me wrong, I love the animals and hearing the old customer stories about their present and past pets. Stacking the shelves and tidying is fine too, but the hours and the money? It needs to change. If I could I’d open my own pet shop, but you know what? There’s no point because the internet is where everything will end up.

Afterwards, I came home for lunch and the news, before heading to the hospital. I swear they run on a different time clock to the rest of us. Finally, I was sat in the right waiting room and camped out for almost two hours before it was my turn. I got weighed and the nurse said I’d put on two stone! I know I thought I’d go up a jean size, but I didn’t think it was that much. Time to get down to the gym and swimming again. Not that I’ve got a problem with that. I love swimming, just once again though having to listen to old people chatting away. I wish I could get a big house with its own pool. Then I could go swimming every day and not have to worry about paying or other people.

Anyway, seeing the doctor didn’t go so well. He upped my pills and gave me some more to take. He was unhappy with my last two lots of blood tests and my update. The joys of living with a long-term-none-curable-health problem. I was glad to get out there! Back in my matchbox car, poor Brum is due for scrapping really, I saw I’d been four hours! How shocking is that? I wondered if I’d really been stuck in some time tunnel and it had been running really slow whilst outside had stayed normal. Whatever the case, I went home and found Mr. Tip waiting for me.

He was meowing over his empty bowls and he was delighted that his crying had brought me home! I feed him, give him some water then collapsed on the sofa. I put a cushion over my face and reflected on the appointment. I might have dozed off had Tip not jumped up and sat on top of the cushion and my face.

I had that left over salad for tea and watched another four or five of The Good Wife. Then mum phoned and asked how it all went. She wasn’t pleased to hear my news and said we’d go to lunch tomorrow to talk about it more. She suggested a bath, so that’s what I went and did. Luckily, I found that bath gift set behind the toilet, where a certain someone –cough ‘Tip’ cough- had knocked it.

The bath did me good and now I’m in bed, eyeing all my new medication and sighing over the fact I’ll never get a boyfriend. Who’d want me so doped up and going round in a never ending circle of high and low? Though I was so tempted to sign up for that speed dating event next month…Everyone has their problems, right? Maybe, it would do me some good and even if I didn’t meet anyone, at least it would be an evening out.