Thursday, February 26, 2015

Lay the brick

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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 Brick (you can always grab the prompt early by visiting the Pondering Page

I have been paying much more attention to yards as I will have to create a brand new at my new home. I will have approximately 12' x 60' worth of area and am determining what I want to do with it.

When I had this opportunity before I built brick planters - old fashioned style with the red bricks layered 3 high. But this time I have been looking at other types of bricks

I really like these: Image result for landscape bricks  I actually always have. With the rounded edges a straight line is not imperative

Then there are these: Image result for landscape bricks  I'm not sure that these are really considered bricks, much more like sculpted rocks.

Now there are other uses of this word, but I really believe that the term brick might just mean something that is shaped - well like a brick!

How about you? Any thoughts today?

Happy Pondering

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Sunday Fiction - Chapter 20

For previous entries please visit the fiction page

With freedom to roam, Bruce started exploring the ‘ship.’ It felt good not to be confined in his room and as he started walking more he realized that he had lost some of the muscle tone he’d garnered on the island. The first day we explored he headed for the fresh air. All the hallways looked exactly the same, so it took several attempts to actually find the correct door. He didn’t mind though as he went from hall to hall with matching d├ęcor and doors.

By the time he found the right door he was sorely disappointed to exit and be barraged with rain. The skies were a deep gray, bordering on black, and the rain fell in big droplets. He raised his head towards the sky and accepted the water, but only for about two minutes.

Although it was raining, it was not cold. That didn’t really phase him until later in the day when he remembered that is was November, or even December by now. When he had been on the island he noticed there was a slight changing of the seasons and in the winter when the rain came down there was a definite chill in the air. Were they not in the same region as the island he’d been stranded on? Had this whole thing been a rouse?

That evening at dinner Bruce asked Stuart if he could check out the maps the next day.  He intimated that he’d always been interested in geography and looking at the way the world was put together was fascinating. Stuart agreed and after dinner showed Bruce where the map room was. They agreed to meet first thing in the morning.

As Steve put out another amazing dinner of beef stew, buttered noodles, fresh corn and strawberry shortcake for dessert, Bruce asked, “Do you ever catch and eat the local fish?”

The room immediately went bone chilling silent. Steve looked straight at Bruce and replied, “There are no edible fish within a thousand miles of here. I would strongly recommend not entering the water as that will be the last thing you do.”

Bruce stared back and just said, “Okay.” But his head was spinning. He had lived off of the fish he’d caught off the island and if what they had told him was true, it was not over one thousand miles away. So that meant either Steve was lying to him, or both Jack and Monica had.

He said his ‘good-nights’ immediately after dinner. After seeing where the map room was located he made his way back to his room. He paced the room and tried to piece together all of the information he had at his disposal. He had lied to Stuart about his love of geography. Truth be told, he couldn’t even tell you where the seven seas were, much less all of the known islands in their vicinity. But, he had never heard of dangerous fish in the Atlantic Ocean other than sharks. Bruce had this sinking feeling in his stomach that this floating island was nowhere near the Atlantic Ocean.

After a restless night of very little sleep, Bruce met Stuart in the map room. Lyle was sitting at a large drafting table with bright lights above it. Stuart explained that his dad was charting the new course for the next month based upon what they had already found. Bruce looked at the paper that was spread out and all he could see were grid lines and blue spots.

“How do you even know what you’re looking at?” Bruce asked.

Stuart smiled and answered, “The grid lines are longitude and latitude, and the dots are either known islands or discovered islands. Although you can’t see it, the dots actually have numbers and there are corresponding charts of those spots. Come on over here and I’ll show you.”

They went over to a smaller table and Stuart pulled out a chart that had an island shape configured. There were notations of water sources, jungles, vegetation and inhabitants.

“You do this for every island out here?”

“Yes, that’s our job,” Stuart said.

“So do you have a map that is somewhere in between the one your dad is working on and the detailed map? You know something that shows the islands in proximity to other islands and large land masses.”

“Sure,” Stuart said, “Let me get one for you.”

As Stuart laid out the map Bruce had requested, it was apparent that they were not in the Atlantic Ocean. He tried to determine the exact location, but when he saw the word ‘Brazil’ on both the left and right, he began to feel woozy. Stuart grabbed him just before he hit the floor.

Bruce opened his eyes and saw a bright light shining. “Ah, good, you’re back amongst the living.”

Steve was leaning over him with a miniature flashlight. “Can you follow my finger with your eyes?”  Bruce did as he was asked. “Good, now can you sit up?” Bruce attempted to sit up.

“What happened?” Bruce asked.

“You passed out,” Steve said. “But none of us can figure out why.”

Bruce’s eyes swept the room and did not see anyone else there besides Steve. “Are you a doctor?”

“Yes sir.”

“But you’re the cook.”

“That’s only because no one else on this contraption can cook worth crap. I got tired of eating barely passable food, so I volunteered. Best decision I’ve made.”

Bruce blinked a few times and then asked, “Steve, where are we?”

“The Amazon river.”

Bruce gasped. “Why would Monica and Jack tell me that we were in the Atlantic Ocean if we aren’t?”

“Can’t answer you on that one,” Steve replied. “But what I can tell you is that you can trust me and that if you need straight answers just ask.”

“Thanks,” Bruce said. “I thought I could trust everyone, but obviously I was wrong.” He stopped and thought before asking the next question. “What are we really doing here?”

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Bail for fun

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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 Bail (you can always grab the prompt early by visiting the Pondering Page

So here is a tidbit from my past that I rarely think about: When I was a little girl our parents (3 bros and I) enrolled us in sailing classes every summer. We would sail sabots (little 8 foot sailboats).  I was quite small and would often capsize. I remember that when I took water into the boat I would be told to bail. So that is my first impression of this word, however now that I've grown a bit older I find that I am constantly having to bail my kids out of financial jams.... (well not so constantly any more - but does it end???)

And then of course there are the Bail Bondsmen all over the place. Never quite understood why posting money was considered bail when I always thought the word was used to empty - or save something.

Around Halloween many mazes are made from a bale of hay.... not sure if I've ever seen that word used in any other meaning...

How about you?  Any ideas on bail?

Happy Pondering!

Thursday, February 12, 2015

To be a brute or not to be

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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 BRUTE (you can always grab the prompt early by visiting the Pondering Page

I think of strength when I think of Brute.
It is like Brute force ---but then I wander (ponder) off to Brutus - that is an old Roman name and I am thinking it too meant strength (now how would you know when a child is born that he is going to be strong?)

And then there is just a brute - that is a mean spirited person - sort of like a bully only stronger!

This is what I found when I looked for images under Brute:

Image result for brute   Image result for brute

Image result for brute
Not really sure what this is!

How about you...what does this word conjure up?

Happy Pondering

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Sunday Fiction - Chapter 19

For previous entries please visit the fiction page

“What if I asked to go home?” Bruce asked Monica. He did not care for her dismissive answer regarding ‘the facts.’

“I would have to tell you that not only do we not have any capacity to get you back to Nebraska, and the best we could do is drop you off in D.C. next time I go to report. But that even if we did get you to D.C. how would you get to Nebraska on your own? Do you have any funds at your disposal?”

Bruce hadn’t thought of that. If he had been gone for seven years he doubted that any of the accounts were still open. But wouldn’t someone have to have him declared legally dead. Was that an automatic thing when there was not activity on accounts? And if in fact he had no money, how was he going to survive?

“I’m not sure,” Bruce answered. “I hadn’t really thought about that.  What are you proposing, if you hadn’t planned on taking me home?”

Monica’s green eyes locked into Bruce’s, searching for some sort of hope and replied, “I was thinking that as long as you accidentally landed in this project that we should make some use of your knowledge.”

“How would you do that?”

“I would like to officially introduce you to the rest of the crew. They only know that we picked someone up in the middle of the night. I was leery of doing any introductions until you were well rested and had your voice back. Now that you do I think it would be great to let them know who you are and what you’ve been through. We have been out here for almost seven months; you have been out here for seven years! Your knowledge is valuable to this project. I would also arrange to have you paid so that when the project is done you would have some funds to get home.”

Bruce thought about that and responded, “Can I think about this for a little while? It is a bit overwhelming to be offered a job right in the middle of finding out that I have been missing for seven years. If I accept that means I would be gone for over nine years by the time I get back.”

“You can certainly think about it,” Monica said, “But I would advise you to weigh your options carefully. If we have any chance of finding the island your mother is still on, you are the only one who would recognize it.”

Bruce grimaced, “I see your point.” He looked around his room, at the blank walls and the singular bed. “I suppose if you put it that way, I don’t really have any other options but to stay and help you.”

Monica smiled.

“Just out of curiosity, how much are paying me for my assistance?”

“There are seventeen months left on our contract and every member receives twenty thousand dollars for every month they stay, as long as they complete the mission. So in your case, assuming you remain until the end, you will receive three hundred forty thousand dollars.”

Bruce gasped. When he had left for the family vacation he had to postpone a job offer for forty thousand dollars a year. Here is was seven years later and he was being offered a vast amount of money. “Monica, when you put it that way; I’m not really sure that I have any other options.”

“I was hoping you would feel that way! Welcome to the team.”’

Bruce joined the rest of the crew that evening for a meal. Jack had come to his room to escort him so that he wouldn’t be alone. Bruce’s emotions were all over the board. He was excited and apprehensive at the same time. It had been a very long time since he had ‘sat’ down for a meal with people.

Entering the room he saw six people sitting around a rectangular shaped table. The dining area had windows and he saw a vast ocean surrounding them.  As soon as approached the table all of the people got up from their seats. Monica was the first to reach him and said, with a huge smile on her face, “Welcome to the team!”

A fair-haired man, who could not have been more than twenty-five introduced himself, “Hi, I’m Matt. We’ve actually met before, but you probably don’t remember. You and I shared one hell of a ride off an island into a helicopter.”

A man, not much older than Matt said, “I’m Joe, and I was the one making sure that helicopter didn’t fall out of the sky!”

A gentleman who appeared to be in his early fifties grasped Bruce’s hand and said, “Son, I am so glad you are joining us. My name is Lyle and I have been charting unchartered land since before you were born.”
“Hi, I’m Stuart,” A small man with wire-rimmed glasses stated.  “I work with my dad to make sure the charts are accurate.”  Bruce looked from Stuart to Lyle and faintly saw a familial resemblance.

A burly man or short stature appeared in front of Bruce. “My name’s Carl and I am the captain of this ship!”

Just then a man entered the room pushing a cart of steaming food. “Howdy! My name’s Steve and if you don’t like the food….too darn bad!”  The whole room broke into laughter.

Steve proceeded to place plates upon the table. A plate of steaming vegetables, a bowl of mashed potatoes, sliced roast beef, a bowl of gravy and horseradish sauces. Bruce’s mouth watered at the sight of so much food. He took a seat at the table. Jack and Steve did the same.  As Bruce was eating he wondered how and why he got to this place, but the absolute deliciousness of the food he was eating overpowered any other thoughts in his mind.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Branching out

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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 BRANCH (you can always grab the prompt early by visiting the Pondering Page

I walked into my branch of the bank and looked at the branches of the plants and trees that surrounded it and I loved this word!

I have this one tree in my backyard (a persimmon tree) that has huge leaves on it, when there are leaves on it; but now it looks lonely with branches and no leaves.... There is something lonely about a tree without leaves, don't you think.

Some branches are thick and some are thin.  check these out:


You know that picture makes me think of reindeer antlers - they look just like branches - so why are they called antlers??? or why aren't tree branches called antlers?

Now that is something to ponder!

Link up and let me know what you think!

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Sunday Fiction - Chapter 18

For previous entries please visit the fiction page

"My name is Bruce Frederick Patterson and I was born on July 14, 1970." He kept repeating that sentence out loud until it was verbal enough to understand. Or so he thought.

Bruce had been left on his own after his field trip to the top deck. It felt like weeks, but he really had no way of determining time other than how many times he had been fed. He knew for a fact that he had at least four dinners between the time he had been in the sun and the time that Jack came back. It could have been more time; he just wasn't really sure.

Jack came in one morning and asked, "So Bruce, how are you doing?

Bruce responded clearly, "I'm doing good Jack, how are you?"

Jack was stunned! "Bruce, you are speaking so clearly now. This is great news!"

Bruce replied, "There's not much else to do in here but talk to myself, and as soon as you suggested talking out loud my voice came back."

Jack smiled, "I wonder why we didn't think of that sooner."

Bruce looked at Jack and asked, "Why have I not seen Monica? And what are her plan for me? Can I go home?"

"I don't know any of those answers Bruce, but I will certainly get a hold of Monica today and see what she has to say."

"Get a hold of?" Bruce asked. "Are you sayin she is not here?"

"I believe she went back to Washington to report on our progress."

"Did she say anything about me?"

"I really don't have any idea," Jack answered. "I am pretty much in the dark when it comes to the actual operation of this thing. My job is to reach out to the indigenous tribes and see if we can communicate."

"Have you found any more inhabited islands since you found me?"

Jack said, "Two that I know of. I have only been introduced to one of those tribes and the staff believes that the second tribe is hostile."

"Have these been close to where I was found?" Bruce asked excitedly.

"Honestly Bruce, I don't know any of those answers. I am not privy to the exact details of where we are or where you were."

Bruce asked, “Do you know when Monica is coming back?”

“I’m not sure.”

Bruce had more questions than answers at his point. At least when he was on the island by himself he had control. He felt like he was a prisoner on this floating exploratory machine and he had no say in his destiny. That was not what he wanted.  He had two goals in mind. First he needed to go back and get his mother and second he needed to get home and find out what was going on. If in fact they had been missing for seven years, what happened to their house and all their belongings? It was not as if there were any relatives that would have noticed they were gone and they were supposed to be gone for a year.  But don’t you think the place they rented the boat from would have filed a claim?  All of these questions lingered in his mind. It only made him want to get back home sooner to answer them.

He kept himself clean shaven, and did exercises everyday in his room to make sure he remained strong. Living on the island had toned him up and he wanted to keep that shape.

Two days after he asked Jack where Monica was she entered his room.

“Hello Bruce, I heard you were asking about me.”

“Yes, I was Monica.” Bruce replied looking into her green eyes. “I wanted to know what the plan was for me. I assume it was not in your original planning to have an outside join in the expedition.”

“Bruce, I don’t really think of you as an outsider.  You actually have more intimate knowledge of these islands than any of the rest of us.”

“That was by accident,” Bruce said.

“Be that as it may,” Monica smiled at him, “It is a fact.”

“So does that mean I am staying on this ‘ship’ until you studies are completed?”

“Honestly Bruce, I’m not sure what we’re going to do with you.”