Thursday, January 29, 2015

Bridge to Nowhere

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Time to Ponder yet again.  You know the drill... I post a prompt that has multiple meanings and we get see what you write! Add you post to the linky and wait for the magic!!

(If you want to send me words that you would like us all to ponder - please feel free to do so!)

Today's word is BRIDGE (you can always grab the prompt early by visiting the Pondering Page

I used to love going for drives just to see the different types of Bridges along the way
Some of my favorites:

So a bridge is a way to get from one side to the other

Then how do you bridge the gap between generations and differences of opinions?

And who came up with the name Bridge for something in your mouth

Or as a card game?

Happy Pondering!

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Sunday Fiction - Chapter 17

Earlier chapters can be located on the Fiction Page

Intent on at least looking semi normal, Bruce began to start the arduous task of getting rid of his beard. Monica had him provided with a pair of scissors, a razor and shaving cream. He began by cutting away at the length of the beard. That ended up being a more difficult project than he had anticipated. The hair of his beard was coarse and all the hairs seemed to be entangled in each other.

He sat down to rest after two hours and began to contemplate his many choices. But then he wondered if he really had any choices. Was he being held captive with these people or was he free to go?

Thinking about that he returned to the mirror to continue his project. He had just gotten the hair short enough to start with the razor when Jack came in.

“Hey Bruce! How are you doing today?”

Bruce put down the razor and turned to Jack and replied, “Gud.”

“Very good,” Jack responded. “You have obviously been practicing.”

Bruce nodded.

“Do you work now, or would you prefer if I came back later?”

“N..,” Bruce tried to say.

“Ok,” Jack said, “let’s go outside today and see if we can have a simple conversation.”

Bruce grabbed the towel that was next to him and wiped his face. He took a quick glance in the mirror. There was a small improvement, but he still wasn’t very happy about the face that stared back at him.

The two men left the room and Jack led the way. Bruce looked around as they walked, but it appeared as if he was in some sort of hospital; although there did not appear to be any other patients or staff. The corridor was long and devoid of windows. There were several doors, all of which were closed. The dull grey shade of paint was neither appealing nor appalling. It just was. At the end of that corridor they turned right into another similar corridor. There were several more turns before Bruce saw sunshine.

Blinking vigorously as he gave his eyes a chance to adjust to the light, Bruce took a deep breath and smelled the ocean. As his eyes adjusted he realized that he appeared to be on another type of island. Bruce turned to Jack and asked, “Wh r e?”

Jack smiled, “I am assuming you just asked me where we are?”

Bruce nodded and smiled.

“We are in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, somewhat in the South east corner.”

Bruce’s eyebrows furled as he tried to ask, “S th s a il d.”

“No this is not really an island; it is a floating laboratory. We do have an engine and can relocate anytime we want. We have been commissioned by the government to catalog and locate all islands in this region. There are literally hundreds of them and only ten percent have been charted.”

Bruce nodded as he scanned his surroundings. There was water everywhere he could see. This vessel did not appear to be near any islands. He turned around and saw there was a helipad, but no helicopter. Bruce had so many questions.

“Why are you here?” he managed to ask, although it was quite a struggle.

“I am here in case we run into any indigenous tribes and I need to translate. I am a linguist.”

“N a speech th p st,” Bruce tried to ask.

“Not really a therapist; however knowing the basics about speech patterns I offered to help you get your speech back.”

“Ow mny pepl,” Bruce managed.

“There are just eight of us, well nine counting you. Monica is the lead for the project. She has a doctorate in oceanography as well as geography. She was given this grant in order to provide a more viable chart of this region. We have a chef, an engineer, two helicopter pilots and two people who do the charting. We started the venture in May and have been given two years to complete it. Finding you was really just a stroke of luck. Unfortunately we found you at night and the pilots really have no idea exactly where the island is. We have the general coordinates; however have not yet been successful in pinpointing the exact location.

“Do you have any recollection at all of where you were when you became stranded?”

Bruce shook his head. Slowly he tried to communicate. “We dri ted for weeks, th storm.”

Jack asked, “You drifted for weeks and then a storm came?”

Bruce nodded vigorously.

“Do you know which direction you drifted in or what the approximate date of the storm was?”

Bruce shook his head.

“Okay, we’ll have to track it another way. You left through the Gulf of Mexico in July of 1992, right?”

Bruce nodded.

“How many days before you lost power?”

“Ten,” Bruce stammered out.

“And you were going around the world, is that correct?”

Bruce nodded.

“Alright so if we chart a course for ten days out of Texas and then plug in current charts and storms in late summer 1992 we should be able to estimate where you were when the storm hit. After that we will need to do some more current analysis. Did the boat sink?”

Bruce shook his head.

“But it has been seven years. I will also have them check for any recovered ships. The oceanographers should be able to figure out something, but it might take several days.”

“Okay,” Bruce said.

“I think that is enough for today,” Jack said. “You are really making good progress. Now I would suggest that when you are alone you think out loud. That way you can practice voice control and sounds.”

Bruce nodded and the two men went back into the door they had exited from and followed the same path back to Bruce’s room.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Box number one, number two or number 3?

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Time to Ponder yet again.  You know the drill... I post a prompt that has multiple meanings and we get see what you write! Add you post to the linky and wait for the magic!!

(If you want to send me words that you would like us all to ponder - please feel free to do so!)

Today's word is BOX (you can always grab the prompt early by visiting the Pondering Page

This is one of those words that has so many varying definitions. Of course a box is a square container, but they come in so many sizes and shapes.
 and then when you throw a ribbon on it it becomes a gift box!

There is also a box on forms that you have to fill in...

There are window boxes which usually hold flowers:

and a window box valance

In addition there is a sport where in you box....
Now why this isn't just called fighting is beyond me!

AND then there is Boxing day?????

What do you think about this word?  Link up and join in the fun!

Happy Pondering

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Sunday fiction - Chapter 16

Earlier chapters can be located on the Fiction Page

The image staring back at him had a long straggly beard and moustache. His face was much thinner than he had ever seen it and the eyes that stared back at him were sunk deeply within their sockets. He blinked several times trying to orient himself to this new image. He ran his fingers through his hair and admittedly knew that his hair as longer, but he had not expected to see exactly how long it was. He ran his fingers across his face and was stunned by the length of the beard and moustache. He had known they were there, he just hadn’t been aware of their immensity.

More than the facial hair, his face had changed dramatically. Although his eyes were sunk there were tanned wrinkles surrounding them. He was definitely looking at the face of an old man, not someone who was just twenty-nine.

Twenty-nine? How could that even be possible? When he left that summer he was to return to a great job in the fall as a twenty-two year old intern. He wondered what they thought when he hadn’t showed up for work. Or for that matter what anyone thought when the family never returned.  Would someone even have noticed? His grandparents surely would have missed them, but there was no other family to mention. His dad had no family and neither he nor Adriana had been involved in serious relationships at the time they left.

He left the bathroom, re-entering the room he had been living in. Then he wondered, how long have I been here? How long ago was I told it was November 11? His mind started racing with questions he could not possible answer.  He sat in the chair, stared out the window and waited for someone to come back in the room to talk to.

It was mid-afternoon when a tall man entered the room carrying a clip board. Clean shaven, dark brown eyes were set firmly into a nicely chiseled face. He had bright white teeth and Bruce found himself staring at the teeth as the man said, “Good afternoon, Nick. My name is Jack and I am your speech therapist.” He held out his hand for Bruce to shake, which he did. “Am I right to understand that you have been living alone for quite a while and although your cognitive skills are intact the words are not coming from your vocal chords.”

“Y,” Bruce replied.

“I see,” Jack said, smiling at him. I have seen this only one other time. It is quite rare for vocal chords to go into atrophy as yours have done. I believe there might have been mitigating circumstances to lead to this. It is not that you have forgotten how to speak; it is that the muscles that control you speech have forgotten how to work. We just need to retrain the muscles.”
“O,” Bruce said, trying to say okay.

“Let’s start with simple exercises using your tongue. Do you think you can make the sound of a snake?”

Bruce put his tongue to the room of his mouth and tried to say, “Sssssssss.” It was successful.

“That’s a great start!” Jack said, “Now I want you to do that as well as this; put your tongue between your teeth and try the ‘th’ sound.”

Bruce did that and he was able to do ‘th th th’.

“Good,” Jack encouraged. “I also want you to do a ‘k’ sound from your throat. Do you think you can do that?”

Bruce nodded and tried, “K k k.”

“Great start, so I want you to do all three of these throughout the day. When I come back tomorrow we can try to formulate words with those sounds.”

Bruce nodded and said, “Th k.”

Jack left the room and Bruce stared out the window and practiced his sounds. He had no idea how long he had been doing that when the green eyed woman entered the room. He raced over to the counter and picked up a piece of paper and wrote, “What’s your name?”

She smiled at him and responded, “Monica. I’m Monica Simms and I run this facility.”

Bruce wrote, “What is this facility?”

“Well, you see, Bruce, this is a research facility where we are trying to map all of the so far unmapped islands throughout the Atlantic Ocean.”

“Atlantic?” Bruce wrote, “We sailed out of the Gulf of Mexico.”

“Yes, Bruce I know that, however through the time you were drifting and then the storm came in you ended up somewhere in the Atlantic Sea on the eastward side of Cuba. Unfortunately the island you ended up on is not mapped and we are not really sure where it is. My pilots found you only by flying over several times and spotting your fire. As you did not light the fire every night it was difficult to find you.”

Bruce became agitated and tried to talk, “So you don’t know where the island is?” but what came out of him was, “S uh d n th i.”

“I’m sorry Bruce; you are going to have to write that down. I don’t understand you.”

He wrote the question and as she read it she replied, “We have a general idea, but the only time we saw you was at night so we have no landmarks to go by. Our initial thoughts in rescuing you were that you would be able to lead us back there, but it does not seem like that is possible.”

He wrote swiftly, “What about my Mom?”

Monica looked at him and gently said, “I don’t know if we can find her.”

Bruce stared and the woman and blinked several times trying to get his thoughts together.

Monica said, “I am truly sorry. We have been back over the general area where we picked you up, but cannot seem to locate that particular island. It was your fire that drew us there and without it, the island seems to have vanished.”

Bruce stared at her and wrote, "Can I please have a razor?"

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Can't see??

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Time to Ponder yet again.  You know the drill... I post a prompt that has multiple meanings and we get see what you write! Add you post to the linky and wait for the magic!!

(If you want to send me words that you would like us all to ponder - please feel free to do so!)

Today's word is BLIND (you can always grab the prompt early by visiting the Pondering Page

This is such a great word! I thought of it when I was choosing window coverings for the brand new house I just bought! The house I am renting has vertical blinds and I really don't like them. I chose 2-1/2" white horizontal blinds and will probably cover some of the windows with printed valances.

I believe the meaning of the word must have something to do with the inability to see. After all a blind person cannot see, when the blinds are closed you cannot see in or out, and of course there is the dreaded blind spot when you are driving where you cannot see the car in your mirror.

How many other uses of the word can you come up with?

Happy Pondering!

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Sunday Fiction - Chapter 15

Earlier chapters can be located on the Fiction Page

He had no idea how long he drifted in and out of sleep; or what was real and what was a dream. When Bruce opened his eyes he found that the sun was shining in through a window covered with horizontal wooden blinds. He could see that there were curtain around the window in a pale blue gingham print that had been tied in the middle. As his eyes scoured the room he saw that the walls were also a soft shade of blue. He went to lift his arm and discovered that it did so easily. Had he just dreamt that he had been chained to a bed?

“Good morning, sleeping beauty,” he heard. Focusing his gaze on the area where he thought the sound had come from her found himself staring right into the greenest eyes he had ever seen. “Do you want to tell me who you are?”

Bruce tried to answer the question, but again all that came out was a squeak. He tried again with the same result and settled  back into the pillow.

“That’s okay,” the green eyes said. “I’m not sure how you got here or how long you were abandoned, but I am figuring it has been a while since you spoke to anyone. It appears as if your vocal chords have atrophied, or lost all their muscle tone, which is why you cannot make any sound. Do you understand what I am saying?”

Bruce vigorously nodded his head up and down.

“Do you think you can write the answers to my questions on this board?” She asked handing him a small white board and a marker.

Again, Bruce nodded vigorously.

“Great!” The green eyes were firmly embedded into a heart shaped face of olive complexion. Her pert little nose sat squarely in the middle of her face and she had two long braids trailing down either side.  Her mouth formed a perfect “o” when she started to speak. Bruce was mesmerized by her lips and watched as she spoke.  “Let’s get started, shall we?”

Bruce nodded and grabbed the pen.

“First, let’s start with who you are. Do you know your name?”

Bruce nodded and wrote, “Bruce Patterson.”

“Ok, that’s a great start. Do you know where you are?”


“Do you know what the date is?”


“Do you know how you got here?”

Bruce stopped writing and just shook his head back and forth.

“Okay, Mr. Patterson, do you know how you happened to be in the middle of nowhere when my men picked you up?”

Bruce picked up the pen again and wrote, “Ship wrecked. My mom and I were the only survivors.”

“Your Mom?”

“Yes! She is still there! We need to go back and get her.”

“Calm down Mr. Patterson!”

“Bruce!” he wrote and continued, “Mr. Patterson is my dad and he is dead.”

“Did you kill him?”

Shaking back and forth vehemently he wrote, “No! He died during the storm.”

“The storm?”

“Yes, the storm that destroyed the boat and took us completely off course. We lost radio contact and both my sister and father died.”

“And when was this?”

“Mid August?”

“Of what year, Mr. Patterson?”


The woman hesitated before she said, “Mr. Patterson, today’s date is November 11, 1999.”

Bruce closed his eyes. Had he really been stranded for seven years? How long had it been since he had seen his mother? His brain felt like it would explode. He picked up the pen and wrote, “NO MORE QUESTIONS!”

The woman left the room and Bruce was again left in a barren room with no one around. He began to think that his life was destined for solitude and there was just no escaping that.  How could he have been on a deserted location for seven years and not realize that all that time had passed? What had happened to his real life while he was gone?

The only thing that Bruce knew most certainly inside himself was that he needed to go back and get his mom. Nicole had been left alone and Bruce felt responsible. No matter what cost or effort was needed, he had to go get her.

People brought food and water in for him and he was allowed to get out of the bed and walk around the room or use the bathroom as necessary, but no one ever said a word to him.  He had no idea what he looked like as there no mirrors anywhere.

One night, when a young male nurse brought him his dinner he wrote on the board, “Can I please get a mirror?”

The man looked at the message and quietly responded, “I will ask.”

Bruce tried to say “Thank you,” but what came out of his mouth was “Th.”

“You’re welcome,” The man responded and swiftly left the room.

The next morning the woman with the green eyes entered the room. “Good morning Bruce. How are you feeling?”

Bruce said, “Good.” But all that came out of his mouth was “G.”

“Very good,” She replied. “I am ordering a vocal therapist to come in a visit with you for four hours every day. Hopefully that way we can get you speaking again soon.”

Bruce reached for the pen and the board and wrote, “Thank you.”

“Now, I understand you asked for a mirror?”

Bruce nodded.

“I will have one brought in for you this afternoon.” And with that she turned around and left the room.

The mirror was brought in and installed in the bathroom while Bruce stared out the window and stared at an open field that was surrounded by riding trails. He had never seen anyone on these trails but assumed he was somewhere in horse country.

Hesitantly he entered the bathroom to view himself. What he saw staring back at him horrified him. He saw an unkempt beard growing on a tragically thin face. His eyes had sunk into his head as he could actually see the bone structure surrounding it. If he had been a child, this face would have spooked him for years!