The Word of the Day prompt today is SHAMBLES
Here’s my response:
O Caveat Emptor!
To the shambles she made her way
to choose their goose for Christmas Day.
The butcher offered “My very best!
This bird will look delicious, dressed.
I’ll set a price you can afford.”
Her shillings in his hand she poured.
At home she learned that goose so plump
had been enhanced with a bicycle pump.
As you can see, parking was tight in front of the Haggleburg General Store two days before Thanksgiving.
The reason for this was obvious to everyone who lived there. On the Monday before the holiday Geordie MacLellan, a poultry farmer west of town, would butcher his young turkeys. This gave local cooks time to choose their birds and get them in the oven for Thursday’s Thanksgiving meal. On Tuesday morning Geordie’s three teenage daughters came to town and set up a table beside the General Store. Here they would sell fresh young turkeys all morning.
Everyone knew Geordie’s birds were attractive, plump speciens with nicely toned flesh and exquisite drumsticks. In the heat they’d toast up to an appealing golden brown. The street by the store would be crowded as young bachelors from the surrounding area came to eye Georgie’s birds and dream of home- cooked feasts.
Of course they planned to do a little visiting with Geordie’s daughters, too, the girls being quite attractive in their own way. Seasoned cooks sorting through the poultry would wink at each other as some young blade let it be known, in forlorn tones, that he had no plans for a Thanksgiving dinner. Everyone knew the girls were allowed to invite guests — but no more than a dozen! — for the day.
The MacLellan girls were reputed to be as good cooks as their mother. And the MacLellan men liked to eat. An invitation to join Geordie’s family for a holiday meal was the ticket to a day in gourmet glory. Young men made sure they got to town very early that day to do their shopping.
So now you know, too, why parking spaces were hard to find on Main Street in Haggleburg on the Tuesday morning before Thanksgiving.
I really went to town with Fandango’s prompt today: PARKING
I read this little anecdote years ago and have retold it in my own words. Thought I’d share it with you today.
A youngster from an inland English city was taken on a day trip to the seashore for the first time. It was an amazing outing; he stared in awe at the vastness of the rolling sea and listened with interest as his father and others around him explained the wonder of oceans and tides.
Then he enjoyed an hour or so of paddling around in the sea and playing on the beach. When it was time to go he wanted to take along some sea water to show his mother. So his dad found him a bottle, which he filled halfway and wrapped in his towel for the ride home.
Later, when he was carrying in his things from the trip, he told his mum all about his wonderful visit to the ocean and showed her the sample he’d brought home.
She thrilled to hear the excitement in his voice and examined the bottle he held up. “That’s great, dear! But why did you only fill the bottle half full?”
“I’ve left room for the tide to come in.”
This clever lad may have gone far in the world of science. 🙂
Speaking of tales of the sea, did you hear about the terrible accident when a red cruise ship collided with a purple cruise ship? All the passengers were marooned.
“In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.
There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe. He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light. That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world.” — John 1:4-9
Wishing every one of you a joyful, love-filled Christmas. My prayer is that you will each feel a special touch from the Lord as we rejoice in His coming.
by Edgar Guest
Vacation time! How glad it seemed
When as a boy I sat and dreamed
Above my school books, of the fun
That I should claim when toil was done;
And, oh, how oft my youthful eye
Went wandering with the patch of sky
That drifted by the window panes
O’er pleasant fields and dusty lanes,
Where I would race and romp and shout
The very moment school was out.
My artful little fingers then
Feigned labor with the ink and pen.
But heart and mind were far away,
Engaged in some glad bit of play.
The last two weeks dragged slowly by;
Time hadn’t then learned how to fly.
It seemed the clock upon the wall
From hour to hour could only crawl,
And when the teacher called my name,
Unto my cheeks the crimson came,
For I could give no answer clear
To questions that I didn’t hear.
“Wool gathering, were you?” oft she said
And smiled to see me blushing red.
Her voice had roused me from a dream
Where I was fishing in a stream,
And, if I now recall it right,
Just at the time I had a bite.
And now my youngsters dream of play
In just the very selfsame way;
And they complain that time is slow
And that the term will never go.
Their little minds with plans are filled
For joyous hours they soon will build,
And it is vain for me to say,
That have grown old and wise and gray.
That time is swift and joy is brief;
They’ll put no faith in such belief.
To youthful hearts that long for play
Time is a laggard on the way.
‘T’was, oh, so slow to me back then
Ere I had learned the ways of men!
It was all Shanz’s idea that we take this scenic trip through the hills and spend a few days at Pineridge Lodge, a great “wilderness adventure” he’d read about. Boating, swimming, fishing, all gear for rent at lowest rates. Sounded like a great plan! And after all, we guys hadn’t taken time for ourselves or gone anywhere special for at least five years. Time we took ourselves off for a relaxing male-bonding holiday.
Shanz sweetened the prospect considerable by showing us an ad in the Turnbull News Herald where the Barnum & Willsby Railroad was offering a bargain rate. “Tuesdays and Thursdays only, special discount fare to Catfish Bay with connections to Pineridge Lodge.” So Shanz, Lester, Nate and I reserved a “Three-day Lodging-plus-Meals package” and we each bought B&W Rail’s bargain ticket, leaving on a Thursday.
For the next few weeks we carried on like little boys headed for a Disneyland holiday. Sad to say, though, Nate had to cancel out on Monday ‘cause his in-laws showed up for a surprise visit. He almost shed tears when he told us about his change of plans.
The rest of us boarded the train this morning expecting to ride all the way to Catfish Bay. But we found out when we got here that there was some fine print we never read. You see, the Lodge is six miles out of town. And the fare, on Tuesdays and Thursdays, doesn’t cover those last six miles.
The agent said we could wait over ‘til tomorrow afternoon, when the local train that does go out to the Lodge hits town. But by the time we got there we’d almost have to turn around and go home again.
So what do you do if you wanna get there today? Hire a taxi for an additional $50? Nope, not us. We got more energy than money.
Too bad Nate couldn’t make it. He’ll be downright grieved missing out on this adventure.