Flash Fiction Challenge: Charli Mills Carrot Ranch Literary Community

The last time my eldest daughter left home I wrote a flash fiction piece for Carrot Ranch which I entitled The Riptide Suitcases expressing my emotions at my daughter moving abroad.

The Riptide Suitcases

The riptide hid in two shallow suitcases. Foreign tee-shirts lay crushed against jumpers, jeans pressed unfolded next to sandals and boots. I lifted my daughter’s larger suitcase up; it was heavy but not as heavy as my swirling heart.

No traffic impeded our journey. The ripples began early, too early. We shared coffee but didn’t eat. The departure gate beckoned. The riptide began. It burst out of me. I cried, no I wailed. Guilt crashed against waves of sadness. Sadness wrestled and drowned my heart. Never again will I feel such depths of emotion. My adventurer, daughter had gone.

Here is the link to that piece of emotional flash: https://mjmallon.com/2017/09/18/september-14-flash-fiction-challenge/

That was three years ago. Natasha stayed in South Korea for a year and absolutely loved it. I’m so proud of her for taking that courageous step, to travel to the other side of the world to teach English takes a considerable amount of guts especially when you don’t speak the language and you are so young. She was the youngest EFL teacher in her school, newly graduated from University.

You can see a little about that here: (unlike her mum she never really got into blogging, she only wrote two blog posts! )

https://tashainkorealand.wordpress.com/2017/11/12/this-place-sure-has-soul-my-first-trip-to-seoul-south-korea-part-1/

It’s been such a confidence boost for her. What an experience!

Today, she is travelling again but not so far this time – to Glasgow to study to be a secondary English Teacher. I wish her luck, happiness and success.

I wrote about our trip to Glasgow, ( looking for accommodation,) and a poem here: https://mjmallon.com/2020/03/06/colleens-2020-weekly-tanka-tuesday-poetry-challenge-no-167-poetschoice-haiga/

Why Scotland? Natasha has always loved it. My hubby and I always make Edinburgh our home-from-home, so it’s no wonder that at least one of our children might decide to stay there…

This is my piece of flash:

This Life

Three years ago, we said our goodbyes at the departure gate before that first flight. How I cried. I wept for a day, and the next day I wept without weeping. My darling daughter gone so faraway. She braved how scared she was. Now, she is adventuring again – not so far this time! And yet her friends miss her already. I miss her already. This is life, young adults are always moving, taking those steps to independence. They never leave your thoughts. They’re always a part of you, wherever they are.

Daughters always stay in your heart.

***

It will be my youngest daughter’s turn next – Georgina – and then it truly will be empty nest syndrome! Still, I still have her for now… Yay!

Having spent so much time with both of them during lockdown I know I will find it especially hard.

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Thursday Doors and Emotography Showcase: Glasgow University

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Here’s the info on Thursday Doors via Norm:

Thursday Doors is a weekly feature allowing door lovers to come together to admire and share their favorite door photos from around the world. Feel free to join in on the fun by creating your own Thursday Doors post each week and then sharing it, between Thursday morning and Saturday noon (North American eastern time), by using the blue link-up button below. 

Do pop over to Norm’s blog to join in the fun: Thursday Doors – Norm Frampton

If you share your post on Twitter and Instagram don’t forget to use the #ThursdayDoors.

I’ve been saving a few photos of doors because they’re real special. I discovered them on my recent trip to Glasgow. I went adventuring for the day on my own (my hubby was at The Golf Open with his pal.) I didn’t mind that one bit. It gave me a chance to do exactly what I wanted for a day!  Sounds a bit selfish but sometimes a bit of Me Time is just what we need. I had a lovely old time treating myself to  ice cream in Kelvingrove Park, watching the skate boarders, and lunching in Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum. I had lots of opportunity to go…. wait for it…. door searching! There’s no chance I could have done all this with hubby in tow. He would have been tugging me away, or walking so fast (he has long legs,) that I’d miss out on all these wonderful opportunities.

Doors bring me back to my childhood, and my love for The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe, by C.S. Lewis. This alternative land of Narnia, reached via a wardrobe really did enthrall my young self, and developed my love of fantasy.

I’m sharing the emotion behind these doors for Claudette’s Emotography link up. Her blog can be reached via this link: https://ceeisme.com

The principal idea behind Claudette’s Emotography project is to share an emotion that your photographs evokes. For me, photos of doors in general, and these in particular make me feel free. They celebrate my freedom to do what I want!! To walk through such amazing entrances to explore, to discover new wonderful experiences, perhaps to lead me to places which I’d never have imagined, and to share my deep love of learning. Doors have such potential, they can lead you to so many amazing possibilities. Yes, I just love doors. I’m an addict! There’s no cure.

Without anymore rambling chit chat it’s time for the big reveal…… and these are big doors!

With dark mysterious attitude…

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Pretty stunning, that’s some door. Wouldn’t you love to walk through and explore?

I love photography, whether it’s doors, trees, people, sunsets, or places. It’s always nice to try out new things, and create new images. You may be interested to know that I’ve discovered this app called Prisma. A  tool to jazz up your photography….and share on Instagram etc…. oops another thing to get addicted too! Quick, look away!

In their words:  Be an artist! Turn your photos into awesome artworks:
– Modern art filters!
– Stunning photo effects.

The app is available on i-tunes, and google play.

I used the Transverse line filter to get this look below…

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Here’s another view of a door in the same magnificent building.. taken without any filters. I like the suggestion of light on the right side of the photo, contrasting with the dark. Yes, I have a thing about darkness/light.

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Here’s how it turned out with Prisma…. see how addictive this can be!! I went a bit crazy and used the candy filter to get this colourful effect …  What fun! A door with a sweet touch.

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See what I mean – these doors are so incredible aren’t they? Imagine stepping through these magnificent entrances into a world of learning. I really envy students at Glasgow University! Oh, if only I had a time machine with a cracking door to travel back to my student years….

Still never say never, maybe one day I’ll have enough cash to do an M.A in Creative Writing. Now, that would be something!

Next time I will be sharing some Edinburgh doors…. Being an Edinburgh girl, (I spent my teenage years in Edinburgh,) It’d be remiss of me not to! Edinburgh tends to be a bit posh so expect something pretty classy.

Hope you enjoyed my post for Norm’s Thursday Doors, and Claudette’s Emotography project.

Bye for now. Oh, before I go perhaps you’d like to check out my previous Glasgow photography posts.

Here’s the links in case you’re interested:

Glasgow Inspiring City Award

Glasgow University, Hogwarts and Kelvingrove Park

Here’s me and my imaginary cat signing off for a bit of Me Time.. imaginary cat you say, why? My husband and youngest daughter are allergic –  so no real cats for me.. sigh..

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My fun (totally not serious but nevertheless 90% true,) author bio on Wattpad – Link below.

Marjorie Mallon was born in Lion City: Singapore. She grew up in a mountainous court in Hong Kong. Her crazy parents dragged her  spotty soul away from her exotic childhood and her much loved dog Topsy to the frozen wastelands of Scotland. There she mastered Scottish country dancing, haggis bashing, bagpipe playing and a whole new Och Aye lingo. 
As a teenager she travelled to many far flung destinations to visit her abacus wielding wayfarer dad. On one such occasion a  barracuda swam by. It stopped to view her  bikini clad body, longing to take a big bite. With dogs' fangs replacing barracudas' teeth, she returned to her mother's birthplace: Kuching, Cat City. There, Blackie, a black-hearted dog sniffed her frightened butt, whimpered and ran away! Shortly after this extraordinary event an angry female Orang-Utan chased her unfit ass out of the Malaysian jungle believing that she was a threat to her babies! She still monkeys about, would love to own a cat, or a replacement Topsy but refuses to entertain  murderous dogs, or over-protective monkeys.
It's rumoured that she lives in the Venice of Cambridge, with her six foot hunk of a Rock God husband, and her two enchanted daughters. 
After such an upbringing her author's mind has taken total leave of its senses. When she's not writing, she eats exotic delicacies while belly dancing, or surfs to the far reaches of the moon. To chill out she practises Tai Chi and Yoga on the crest of a wave. If the mood takes her she goes snorkelling with mermaids, or signs up for idyllic holidays with the Chinese Unicorn, whose magnificent voice sings like a thousand wind chimes. 

She is a child of the light and the dark. Her motto is simply this: Do what you love,  stay true to your heart's desires, remain young at heart, and  inspire others to do so, even if it appears that the odds are stacked like black hearted shadows against you...

 

My Links: 

Wattpad

Goodreads

Instagram

Twitter

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Glasgow Inspiring City Award

 

As you’ll know from my previous post Glasgow University, Hogwarts and Kelvingrove Park I’ve recently been to Glasgow with my hubby for a few days away. We stayed near Kelvingrove Park and I was lucky to be able to get a chance to visit The Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum which is ‘located on Argyle Street, in the West End of the city, on the banks of the River Kelvin (opposite the architecturally similar Kelvin Hall, which was built in matching style in the 1920s, after the previous hall had been destroyed by fire). It is adjacent to Kelvingrove Park and is situated near the main campus of the University of Glasgow on Gilmorehill.’ Wikipedia Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum

Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum houses one of Europe’s great art collections. It is amongst the top three free-to-enter visitor attractions in Scotland and one of the most visited museums in the United Kingdom outside of London.’ Glasgow Life Kelvingrove Museum

So I thought I’d share with you some of my photos of my day out.

I walked through the park and came upon this guy on the bridge.

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Then I saw this very fine path leading up to this magnificent looking building.

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And then a little sculpture within the grounds .. The Vital Spark Puffer by George Wyllie

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And this one too..

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And I walked round to the Argyle Street museum entrance too. Here it is standing proudly like a jewel of beauteous splendor on a hill.

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Closer it doesn’t disappoint. Look at this! What an imposing building.

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Inside it is just as magnificent. I arrived in time for the organ recital – do you see that tiny dot of a man in the middle of the photo wearing a white jacket playing the organ?

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Take a look at these white floating heads There’s something quite eerie about them!! …

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And this…

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There are 9,000 pieces on exhibition or thereabouts, don’t expect me to count them all individually – this is what I read somewhere. Judging by what I saw I could well believe this. My advice is don’t be a tight Scotsman! Pop some money in the donate box – this really is an amazing art gallery and museum, and a few pounds wouldn’t go amiss to show your appreciation! At the moment there are three exhibition on too:

Then it’s time for a coffee.

There are two options for cafes. Either you can grab a quick sandwich in the centre hall of the museum gallery, which is fine if you’re in a hurry. But if you’re not, I’d advise you to treat yourself to a drink, cake or lunch in the KG Cafe in the basement.  That’s what I did and I didn’t regret it. Here’s why… beautiful views…

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Glasgow is an inspiring and welcoming city. I’m leaving you with my final photo of these beautiful flowers which adorn various places of interest in the streets of Glasgow.

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Have you visited Glasgow? Do let me know if you have. Perhaps you might want to take a look at this: Newsquest Scotland Inspiring City Awards

Bye for now, stay cool…

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Marje @Kyrosmagica xx

 

 

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Glasgow University, Hogwarts and Kelvingrove Park

 

I’ve been in Glasgow for a few days, with my hubby  – for a short holiday. Like my dad he’s a keen golf fan. We’ve been to the Golf Open at Troon. We had a day there together – practice day  – and the next day I had a day to myself in Glasgow to do whatever I fancied. Not being the type to fuss too much about shopping I decided to have a wander in Kelvingrove Park – which happened to be very close to our hotel, The Lorne Hotel. It was quite a sunny day so I stopped for a treat, my favourite:  a chocolate wafer which is basically a tasty chocolate covered wafer filled with marshmallow sandwiched together with vanilla ice-cream. What a supreme feast!

I sat down in the park and watched these guys – aren’t they fabulous? It warms the heart seeing young people out enjoying themselves having fun. Really exhilarating!

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Isn’t it nice to see such a lively park area? With youngsters doing flips and star turns on their bikes and skate boards.

I also popped over to the Kelvingrove Museum and Art Gallery which is a must if you’re ever in Glasgow. Do not miss the opportunity to visit. I will be doing a photographic feature about this wonderful museum soon…

To round off the day I found a pathway of steps via the park that led to Glasgow University. No wonder people tend to think that this beautiful University resembles Hogwarts, (even though Harry Potter wasn’t filmed there.) The view is certainly magical. Not too far away from the University is Ashton Lane, a hidden alleyway lit with fairy lights which is packed with pubs and cafes, supposedly author J.K. Rowling’s inspiration for Diagon Alley. I happened to have an evening drink and meal there with my hubby and a couple of our friends. We started off our evening at a very quaint bar and restaurant called The Ubiquitous Chip. Only in Scotland can the humble chip be elevated to such a grandiose name!

http://www.ubiquitouschip.co.uk/

ubiquitous
juːˈbɪkwɪtəs/
adjective
  1. present, appearing, or found everywhere.
    “his ubiquitous influence was felt by all the family”
    synonyms: omnipresent, ever-present, present everywhere, everywhere, all-over, all over the place,pervasive, all-pervasive, universal, worldwide, global;

Here are a couple of photos of the Ubiquitous Chip and its wee sister The Wee Pub at The Chip:

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Perhaps when my youngest is University age she might consider going to Glasgow University! What a magical place to study.. I wish I could have studied there.. I did study in Glasgow many years ago now… but I went to the then Polytechnic which is now known as Glasgow Caledonian University……

I felt such a fondness for Glasgow returning for this short holiday all these years later. Student days are truly one of the best moments in our lives. I just wish I could turn back the clock and relive them all over again. If only…

What about you, have you been to Glasgow? Or are perhaps studying at Glasgow University? Is it a magical place to study?

Bye for now,

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Marje @ Kyrosmagica xx

 

My fun (totally not serious but nevertheless 90% true,) author bio on Wattpad – Link below.

Marjorie Mallon was born in Lion City: Singapore. She grew up in a mountainous court in Hong Kong. Her crazy parents dragged her  spotty soul away from her exotic childhood and her much loved dog Topsy to the frozen wastelands of Scotland. There she mastered Scottish country dancing, haggis bashing, bagpipe playing and a whole new Och Aye lingo. 
As a teenager she travelled to many far flung destinations to visit her abacus wielding wayfarer dad. On one such occasion a  barracuda swam by. It stopped to view her  bikini clad body, longing to take a big bite. With dogs' fangs replacing barracudas' teeth, she returned to her mother's birthplace: Kuching, Cat City. There, Blackie, a black-hearted dog sniffed her frightened butt, whimpered and ran away! Shortly after this extraordinary event an angry female Orang-Utan chased her unfit ass out of the Malaysian jungle believing that she was a threat to her babies! She still monkeys about, would love to own a cat, or a replacement Topsy but refuses to entertain  murderous dogs, or over-protective monkeys.
It's rumoured that she lives in the Venice of Cambridge, with her six foot hunk of a Rock God husband, and her two enchanted daughters. 
After such an upbringing her author's mind has taken total leave of its senses. When she's not writing, she eats exotic delicacies while belly dancing, or surfs to the far reaches of the moon. To chill out she practises Tai Chi and Yoga on the crest of a wave. If the mood takes her she goes snorkelling with mermaids, or signs up for idyllic holidays with the Chinese Unicorn, whose magnificent voice sings like a thousand wind chimes. 

She is a child of the light and the dark. Her motto is simply this: Do what you love,  stay true to your heart's desires, remain young at heart, and  inspire others to do so, even if it appears that the odds are stacked like black hearted shadows against you...

 

My Links: 

Goodreads

Instagram

Twitter

Wattpad

Facebook

 

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