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Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/books/item_id/2214457-Wonderland-Challenge-2020/sort_by/entry_order DESC, entry_creation_time DESC/page/4
Rated: E · Book · Comedy · #2214457
Here I go down a rabbit hole. What will I encounter? What will I write? Viva l'imagination
Challenges await...
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March 4, 2020 at 4:18pm
March 4, 2020 at 4:18pm
My Apologies to the Original 'Jingle Bells'
         Jingle bells, jingle bells, stockings smell, wet feet stink and fume.
         Oh, what fun it is to slide and lose a boot, kaboom!
         Falling through the snow, scrabbling to regain
         footing and composure both before the throb of pain.
         PROMPT: Pick a simple basic song and give it more 'spice'.
March 4, 2020 at 4:11pm
March 4, 2020 at 4:11pm
Dear Duchess, Your Specialness, Bestower of Light, Purveyor of Nothing But the Finest of Festivities, Please I beseech you.I appeal to your curiosity and your sense of adventure. Have you ever experienced the magic of ice beyond a tinkling in your drink? Have you ever considered the beauty of ice? Imagine a shimmering kingdom of ice.
         *ConfettiG* You are hereby invited to attend the Sundridge Snowball *Snow2* *Snow5* Guaranteed to be the premiere glistening gala of this winter season!*Snow1* We are pleased to host this extravaganza in our specially built ice castle *Castle* It features shimmering chandeliers, sparkling sculptures, and polished floors, all carved from ice. Sumptuous furs and roaring fires along with dazzling company will assure your comfort.
         Cold soups: Gazpacho and Iced Cucumber Mint
         Chilled Oysters and Shrimp On Ice
         Salads: Iceberg Lettuce and Nicoise
         DESSERTS!:Iced Cakes, Snowballs (cocoanut delights), Ice Cream Floats, Ice Cream Sundae Bar
         Beverages: A Selection of Ice Wines, Ice Cappucinos, Iced Tea, And Hot Chocolate
         Remember to save the date: January 1st, 2020.*SnowMan**Snow5**ConfettiG*Come dip and glide, slip, slide and swirl to the musical accompaniment of The Northern Lights
         PROMPT: There is a grand event in a fictional land of your choice. Create an invitation worth salivating over.
March 4, 2020 at 3:37pm
March 4, 2020 at 3:37pm
         The Snowflake
         Slowly, softly the snowflake swirls
         'round, a shimmery light.
         Innocent, shy, demure as pearls
         illuminating light.
         How quickly flakes accumulate
         How large drifts grow, begin.
         Inches climb, serve to alienate
         My cold toes from my chin.
         PROMPT: Read How Doth the Little Crocodile. Write a similar poem with the same format using any topic of choice.
March 3, 2020 at 6:55pm
March 3, 2020 at 6:55pm
          Hubby and I had decided to pack up and move again. This time the logistics were different. Sure, everything we owned had been wrapped and carefully bundled into labelled cardboard boxes. We'd learned from past experience that this made the eventual resettlement less of a headache. Finding stuff where it should be beat hunting for it frantically amongst numerous cartons.Like the other relocations, we'd leased a large truck and we'd hauled our possessions into it without help. What we hadn't factored into our efforts were our eighteen-month old daughter, Carrie and our dog, Corey.
         While her parents perspired and strained, Carrie amused herself. I became aware of her choice of entertainment when she approached me dragging an open can of white paint. Of course, she had splashed wet paint all over her clothes and the dog, who was desperately trying to rub it off in the grass. Had I been a wee bit more aware of her unnatural silence, I'd have searched for her and found the telltale footprints tracking out of the garage.
         Our road trip had to be delayed for two quick baths. My husband tackled the de-smearing of Corey while I scrambled to bathe a child in an empty house. As fate permitted, I'd left a sliver of soap and an old ratty towel next to the kitchen sink. I made the most of this fortuitous find, and soon Carrie passed muster. Fresh clothing had been secured in a travel bag, but I'd not foreseen the need for a second jacket. No problem, she wore my sweatshirt with the sleeves rolled up.
         As I buckled my daughter into her car seat, I questioned the decision to change domiciles and home towns. Why were we doing this? It wouldn't be the first time I asked this.
         I drove the family car accompanied by a toddler and the cat, Kitty. My partner piloted the moving truck with Corey riding shotgun. My travelling companions soon voiced their displeasure with their captivity. Wails and screeches emanated from the rear of my sedan. To restore peace and soothe all our frazzled nerves, I pulled onto the shoulder of the highway. I all but tossed Kitty into the front passenger seat. Carrie required some cuddling free of her safety restraints and she insisted upon a bandage for her scratched nose. Just as I rebuckled our baby into her chair, the father pulled up behind us in a cloud of dust and squealing brakes. He'd lost sight of us in his rear view mirror and circled back to find us. Again, I wondered why we were uprooting ourselves.
         A few hours later, we returned to the road after a meal respite. I'd almost begun to believe we were in the clear and we'd reach our destination unscathed. Oh, naïve me!
         Unbelievably, I made another shuddering stop on the side of the road. This time I jumped into Mom-life-saving-mode. My super hearing had heard Carrie choking. Without stopping to think, I opened the back door of the car, unsnapped the harness, yanked my child from her chair, and performed the Heimlich manoeuver. Her wails were music to my ears and they continued unabated until she saw I'd already thrown away the offending Smarties. In a moment of deja vu, hubby screeched to a halt behind us. As we resumed our trek, that question niggled at me. Were we certifiable? Did we really need all this aggravation?
         Without any more incidents, we arrived at our new home, hundreds of miles from our previous abode. The next morning, an October 1st, we awoke to several inches of fresh snow. What had we done? How could it be winter so soon? Where was the shovel?
( 617 words)
PROMPT: Create a blog that deals with a moment(s)you've questioned yourself over any decision.
March 3, 2020 at 2:50pm
March 3, 2020 at 2:50pm
         PROMPT: A caucus race has been suggested where everyone has to run in circles with no clear winner. Create a blog where you are in such a race with 10 other participants. Who are these fine folks? Why put them in this meaningless race?
         Oh, this will be so much fun! I am waving my arms in glee. There's always a sense of urgency to a foot race. I can see the red and yellow banners fluttering in a balmy breeze. The sky is a brilliant blue. The sun blazes in glory. The starting line glistens white. The starter raises his arm in the air and blasts an obnoxious airhorn. And they're off! The contestants are tasked with balancing an egg on a teaspoon as they strive to hurry around the track.
         Contestant #1: The philosopher studies his surroundings and his fellow racers. His mind shudders with questions. Why are we here? Why am I here? Does this day, this track, this race and these people exist? What does this race represent? Is this a classic struggle to belong?
         Contestant #2:The sprinter jumps up and down slapping his arms. He is prepared. His muscles are warm. He grips his spoon with steely determination. As his sports therapist taught him, he envisions the finish line. He hears the cheers. Be one with the egg and the spoon.
         Contestant #3:The mathematician strokes his silver beard and measures the track with his discerning eyes. Complex equations dance in his head. Acceleration equals change in velocity divided by change in time. This calculates the rate of change in velocity over time. The numbers never lie.
         Contestant #4: A six-year old child bounces and twirls at the starting line. As he takes off with his egg trembling on a shiny spoon, he stumbles. After he reties his laces, he breaks into a run. When his egg hits the dirt, he stops to retrieve it, but something intriguing catches his eye. Ants are milling about in the gravel and he feels compelled to rub his feet across their slow path. Then he gazes up at the sun, squinting. Time has stood still.
         Contestant #5:The politician straightens his red tie and runs his fingers through his hair; appearances matter. He makes a point of smiling and nodding at each of his constituents fellow athletes. Although he didn't recall there ever being a referendum or a committee being called, he's certain this race has a purpose. Had he voted for this situation? He made a mental note to have his assistant check into this.
         Contestant #6: The race car driver tugged off his gloves and tested the air. Good, there was a strong tail wind. He could use that when he drafted off the other runners. He planned to stick to the upper portion of the track until he entered the corners. He wouldn't bump anyone unless it became necessary.
          Contestant #7:The safety co-ordinator consulted his clipboard. Who had organized this fiasco? Where were everyone's safety vests and goggles? Were all the shoes non-slip and properly, securely fastened? Was this gravel tested for human usage? Did a team of EMS responders wait nearby? Would water breaks be scheduled?
         Contestant #8: The minister gazed solemnly at the sinners, the unsaved in his midst. With a show of reverence, he opened his well-worn bible to a favourite passage. He intoned a sonorous prayer for the endurance and the success of the competitors. He asked God to bless their legs and if it was his will would he cheer for their victory.
         Contestant #9:The mother of the six-year old sighed and swiped at her eyes. This was one more test of her sanity and her insatiable appetite for stress. Why could she never just say no? Laundry was piling up at home and someone had to pick up the other kids from school. She hollered at her son to get his finger out of his nose. A mother's work was never done.
         Contestant #10:The lone teenager shuffled his feet and checked for messages on his cell phone. He stifled a yawn. He avoided eye contact. He wondered if there'd be food after the race.
         I am the lucky eleventh contestant and I organized this momentous race simply because I could. I wished to witness a diverse crew of runners. Oh who am I kidding? I needed a good laugh!
March 3, 2020 at 11:36am
March 3, 2020 at 11:36am
         PROMPT: Spice up boring history. Pick any historical person and write a funny/ridiculous story about them.
          Napoleon Bonaparte Discovers Basketball
The neighbourhood women stood in a semi-circle, arms crossed, tongues clicking, and heads shaking in unison. Madame Bonaparte had just finished bragging that her son, Napoleon learned a new skill, dribbling. This proved her to be delusional. Her odd little boy who strutted around the streets with his hand tucked into his jacket would now be seen drooling?
          Napoleon neither knew about this or cared. He reclined upon his bed with his brain aswirl with all sorts of plans and plots. He recognized that the boys he deigned to play with needed a leader and he intended to be that leader. Unbidden, his left thumb slipped into his mouth as he rose to his feet. Grunting, he pulled it out and shoved it into the brass buttons of his coat. Grabbing a ball from the floor, Napoleon trotted outside. His troops awaited his inspiration.
         He'd experimented with different sports in his efforts to rally and spark his followers. Wrestling had been a flop. How could he command respect pinned to the ground? Golf had seemed tedious and pointless. Too many balls were lost forever and the sticks became handy weapons. Polo had been promising until he grew to hate the assist up into the saddle and the disinterest of his horse. That beast had a mind of its own. He'd relinquished control and all decorum bouncing along clutching at the pommel.
         Basketball served his purpose. How appropriate that it took place upon a court. Great things happened in a court. Respect and admiration were generated in a court. One would most assuredly be noticed in a court.
         What better way to command attention than to run with a bouncing ball and dodge other wannabes? Bonaparte possessed a genetic advantage. Being vertically-challenged permitted him to elude contact or the reach of taller competitors. In his mind, he owned the superior skill to star at basketball. He saw himself as untouchable.
         As a wee tyrant in the making, Napoleon greatly overlooked his reach. The expectations of his self-grandeur lacked a solid footing in reality. In other words, he fell flat on his face. The first time this happened he'd forgotten to tie his shoe laces. The second mishap found him unable to navigate around the taller boys. He could not see the horizon much less the basket. Some of the more zealous 'ballers' discovered a manoeuver they dubbed checking. Gang like behaviour manifested in guarding. Desperate boys resorted to tripping and shoving. Bonaparte could not tolerate anarchy.
         Napoleon bestowed the title of referee upon his doting mother and he armed her with a whistle. He intended that she prevent any insult or injury to his person.
         In time, Napoleon realized that he was in over his head. His creation had a life of its own. The slam dunk he'd envisioned did not cater to his new and improved glorious version of the future. N.B., with the nickname he'd anointed himself with, was resourceful and tenacious, though. If he could not be a participant, he could be a coach/manager. The ball would still be in his court. With the best of strategies, some day he'd own franchises, and conquer the world one team at a time.
(555 words)
March 2, 2020 at 8:28pm
March 2, 2020 at 8:28pm
         PROMPT: You're a stranger in a foreign land. Try to communicate with locals in an attempt to find your missing pet. Write a short story.
         The moment the cat carrier hit my hotel room bed, a ball of shrieking black and white fur exploded from it. Before I could react, my feline companion hurtled herself out the open window. Fearing the worse, I rushed to the flapping drapery in a panic. Spying the bustling street a mere storey below, I winced a little less. A cat could survive a dive from much higher buildings, right? From this vantage, I did not see my wayward pet. With a sigh, or maybe it came out as a snort, I snatched my room key card and ventured forth onto the unknown streets of Paris.
         I had to force myself to breathe and chant a mantra. I will find my kitty. I will find my kitty. How dare she desert me. Did she not comprehend that this simply was not the required behaviour of a therapy animal? I needed her to soothe me. This escape of hers couldn't possibly help my anxiety. I wanted to curl up in a ball and weep.
          At the front door, I spotted the uniformed doorman. When he nodded at me, I interpreted this as an invitation to approach him for some help. I cleared my throat and froze. Wait a minute, I did not parlez vous the local language. He waited while I struggled. At long last, he broke the impasse with an "allo." Ah, yes, this sounded like a familiar greeting.
         I pantomimed a cat or at least I thought I did. I pointed my nose in the air. I licked my paws, er, my hands with my tongue. I wriggled my invisible tail. I preened the fine whiskers fanning my cheeks. I meowed and purred. I pranced and pounced. I attempted to weave myself around one of his legs; I considered myself desperate at that point.
         Wow, the eyebrows of a French doorman are quite expressive. I saw them rise higher and higher until they all but disappeared into his hat. He managed to extricate himself from my grasp with the slightest of controlled movements. He never blinked or broke eye contact. He pulled at his jacket and pressed out imaginary wrinkles. I swear he straightened his shoulders as he motioned with a white-gloved hand to stop.
         Looking me up and down, this guardian of the gates opened his mouth and asked, "Deed you losez un chat, a cat maybeee?"
         My bobble head could only nod vigorously. It felt wonderful to be understood. Then this man pointed to his hair and mine with a shrug. Oh, what colour fur did my cat possess? Neither of us passed muster. I indicated a scowling boy stomping nearby. He seemed to realize what I meant.
         Just then a clump of bushes shook and a woman screamed. A black and white blur launched itself at her impressive feather hat. Before she'd knocked my cat to the sidewalk, I scooped him up. I mumbled an apology to this near victim and I held my wayward feline up to the doorman.
         We both grinned.
         "Zo, theeese is the kittee, n'est-ce pas?"
         As I returned to the hotel, I lectured SmiLing. I just had to share with her that I'd been worried and unsmiling. Cat and French were not in my repertoire.
(571 words)
March 2, 2020 at 5:24pm
March 2, 2020 at 5:24pm
PROMPT: Write of the saddest moment/event in your life.
         Until May of last year, I would have said that my mother's death ranked as the saddest 'event' of my life. Oh, it created a residual ache, but the sudden death of my father surpassed that pain. My Mom's demise stretched out in an almost two week inexorable trudge. She slipped away piece by piece to the ravages of pneumonia and a staph-aurea infection. We, my sister and I, knew death awaited our mother. We witnessed it creep along for ten days of a daily vigil. It became a matter of when she'd die, not if she'd die. We had time to prepare.
         My father passed away without advance warning and at a geographical distance. I reside in Ontario, Canada and he'd moved to British Columbia, Canada.In May of 2019, he'd reached eighty-one years of age. We kept in touch with letters, cards, e-mails, the occasional phone calls, and visits. The visits were from me because he no longer felt comfortable flying or driving. With the demands of life and the physical disparity of a huge country, I could not partake of a cross-country trek as much as I'd have liked. I mistakenly assumed he had lots of life yet to live.
         I'm grateful that I did manage to fly out to Vancouver Island one final time in October of 2018. My mobility was compromised with two 'sketchy' knees, and I'd been on a waiting list for a total knee replacement. The date for that surgery arrived at the tail end of March 2019, and it kept me from travelling far. My Dad's 81st came and went May 21st. He died May 27th.
         To say I felt gobsmacked would be an understatement. This came out of left field. On the morning of the 27th, his partner phoned to inform me he'd been hospitalized. As I made frantic plans to fly out there, she phoned again to break the news that he'd "slipped away". That was it.
         My crazy father had always joked that he wanted no ceremony when and if he "expired". He wished he could be stretched out upon a platform out in the woods or barring that, set adrift in a flaming pyre like a Viking. Evidently, he'd settled for a quick cremation and absolutely no "fanfare" of any kind.
         The partner refused to entertain my visit. She wished to grieve in private. There would be no funeral or celebration of life. I grieved without those standard comforts. There's something life-affirming about a get-together to share memories with others, but I do know there will be future funerals. It's inevitable.
( 434 words)
March 2, 2020 at 4:25pm
March 2, 2020 at 4:25pm
         PROMPT: Your newest dish has made you much too big. List 10 things you'd be able to do in this state and why you'd do them.
         Yikes! I'm now, and hopefully temporarily, too big. Just a minute, what is 'too big'? I'm bigger than normal, right? I'm thinking I could be Godzilla-big. Yes, that's humongous.
         1. Okay, if I'm gigantic, I'm not intending to leap tall buildings in a single bound. I'm clumsy and bigger feet would most likely compound my affliction. I'd like to decorate the top section of a spectacular Christmas tree like the ones displayed in all their glittery glory in Times Square or Disneyworld. I love the colours of this holiday and all of its family oriented sentiments. Imagine being physically able to reach the peak and place a glowing star or a majestic angel. As an added safety bonus, I would not need to scale a rickety ladder.
         2. I would like to assemble/create a snowman as height enhanced as myself. There is more than enough snow in my yard today for this project. I happen to like snow people and I collect them in sizes that sit on shelving. This could be a symbol of the fun, carefree side of winter. As the Quebeckers say, "Viva le bonhomme!" It could be a tourist draw for my village. Come and take a pic with our giant/generous snowman ambassador. The annual Snowfest would be memorable.
         3. With my increased size, I could avoid stairs of any kind. Oh, the bliss of entering a towering building without first climbing far too many treacherous steps! Stairs and I exist in an uneasy truce. I've learned from mishaps to never trust them.
         4. I could scale mountains and skip the gondola rides. No more white-knuckle swaying and fears of a long drop. No more line ups and interminable waits for me. I could get straight to the hiking and breath-taking scenery.
         5. I believe I'd like the pride and pleasure of something well built, so, I'd help build a spectacular crown jewel of a building. I'd replace the awkward cranes. I'd do all the heavy lifting.
         6. Spring will arrive in the not too distant future and sometimes, this means flooding. I could volunteer as a barrier, a flood wall. I could replace thousands of sand bags.
         7. Think of the fields I could plough or clear for crop planting. With my huge hands and enormous feet, I could overturn soil no problem. I'd be an environmentally friendly option, too.
         8. I'd undertake a cross-country trek without any motorized transport. My big boots would be made for walking, and once again, I wouldn't be leaving a polluting carbon foot print.
         9. I could and would plant trees. With my stature, those trees would be the already mature ones ready to provide a canopy, and not the wee stick saplings. Our planet certainly needs more greenery and oxygen.
         10. I would assist all my neighbours when they adorn their homes with festive Christmas lights. No more dangerous ladder climbs, and no more rescues of those neighbours stranded on their rooves. This would free up time for more socializing, and our neighbourhood would glow with cheeriness.
March 2, 2020 at 2:22pm
March 2, 2020 at 2:22pm
         PROMPT: Create a new dish/meal from your imagination, appealing or not to readers.
         Well, my contribution to the gastronomic world may not be readily adopted, or accepted, or eaten. I present to you, the reader, the pickle peanut butter pizza. Yes, it's potentially a mouthful in more ways than one, so, I could shorten its name to pickle p.b. pizza. I'm envisioning the pickles to be of the dill variety.
         To prepare this delightful concoction, I enlist the all too eager assistance of a four-year old. The washing of hands involves a great deal of liquid soap, not a dollop, not a dribble, but a puddle-sized amount of squishy, bubble-emitting soap. In the process, the kitchen floor is scrubbed to a lovely shine, too. I explain to my assistant that clean-enough-to-eat-off-of does not mean we shall be dining on the floor.
         She wrestles a chair up to the counter and climbs up. Both the wooden chair and the hardwood flooring squeal in protest. With some cajoling and promises that it's only for the time we create, she permits me to swath her in an apron. Of course, the mini sous chef's first reaction is to twirl, but I catch her before she tumbles.
         How could I not have anticipated that a toddler experiences through touch and taste? Everything has to be smushed, squeezed, patted and rubbed. Sampling is part of the adventure. Flour, baking powder, salt and more draw faces of disgust and warnings not to spit. The taste of peanut butter appeals and it is licked off fingers and elbows. Flour and peanut butter are smeared on her cheeks and in her hair. Cooking can be messy.
         Pounding the dough and rolling it out is such fun. It is soft and sticky. It oozes between little fingers. It retains the outline of a handprint.
         Pressing the pizza base into a pan requires two hands. Two hands patting in unison. One hand senses an urgent need to scratch a facial itch and push away stray wisps of hair.
         More peanut butter is taste-tested and tried as a pickle dip. A few shudders shake her slight body, but she grins. Maybe we're on to something here. I ignore her pleas to slice the remaining pickles with cries of, "I do it." She snatches up a fistful of green slices and tosses them onto the pizza. Most of them clump together.
         We both carry the pan to the open oven. As the door closes, the pizza whisperer waves good-bye and takes up her post to wait. Despite the heat, she presses her nose to the glass window and asks over and over, "Is it done? Can it come out now?"( 437 words )

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