Category Archives: Fantasy

Make Me A Sandwich

Yummy veggie sandwich

This is the yummy veggie sandwich I used to get at our office building café BC. How I miss it… and my office! I’m one of those odd people who like working in an office every day. And I liked going to school way back when too. 📚

At first, I was gonna riff on the whole “sand witch” thing, but a billion people got there first. I hate when that happens. Which it always does. Instead, I will reminisce about the time that I actually got out of bed to make a guy a sandwich and he complained later that I hadn’t baked him a lasagna. True story for the #paulacanpickem file.

Anyway. The veggie sandwich isn’t my very favorite sandwich; it’s just my favorite that I used to get while working. My favorite is probably a grilled cheese and tomato. I’ve experimented with various breads and different cheeses, and I have to say that I always return to rye bread and American cheese. I also like my grilled cheese very well done, almost burnt, not golden like they serve it in restaurants.

Grilled cheese sandwich

Another favorite sandwich is loxonabagel. Yes, all one word like that. Most of the time, I have this deliciousness open-faced, but it still counts as a sandwich.

Lox and bagel

Please note how it’s perfectly fine and even recommended (by yours truly) to dot the cream cheese with capers, but I’d rather not have onions on my loxonabagel sandwich. And please no tomato! Save that for grilled cheese. Keep your sandwich fixings in their lanes.

Yes, I know there is tomato in this photo. I am just saying. The only way to know your loxonabagel is better sans tomato is to have one with tomato, amirite? 🤣

Moving on. Some people call a hamburger a sandwich… are you one of them?

Cheeseburger CD holder

I think it’s acceptable! The point is to have a thing between two other separate things. I’m defining it that way to eliminate stuff like pie, which is #notasandwich, but to include sandwich cookies, which we will discuss in depth soon. You didn’t think I was going to end this post without talking about cookies, did you? 😱😱😱

Anyway. Here we have a bun (hun), which is two separate bread pieces, and it creates a convenient way to hold the things inside, which we then can nom while continuing to lose at cards, just as the Earl of Sandwich envisioned. Of course, we must not nom on the pictured cheezberder because it is a CD holder and that would be gross.

Five years ago, when we were living like normal humans, relatively speaking, my eldest took me to a wonderful high tea in Northern California. We had the most scrumptious little cucumber sandwiches and other delights and pastries, and of course many pots of lovely tea. 💖

High tea

Before I bring the dessert cart, please allow me to pay tribute to one of the best combos ever invented: the peanut butter and jelly sandwich!

Peanut butter and jelly

My favorite combo is Jif smooth PB with blackberry or strawberry jam (not jelly) on whole wheat. What’s yours?

Okay, onto the sandwich cookie! Oreo has a baZillion flavors out now, some totes ridonkulous, but I must admit that besides the Double Stuf original flavor, I thought the cookie dough was pretty tasty.

Cookie dough Oreos

Up in Northern California (again ~ they have yummo food!), my daughter treated me to this divine hazelnut pastry at an Italian bakery.

Hazelnut sandwich pastry

So so so good!

In my fantasy of living a normal life again, whenever that may happen, if it even ever does… I’ll walk into a restaurant without worrying about the last time everything was soaked in bleach, order a sandwich at the counter without fretting over how close people are standing to me, and calmly eat my lunch in a booth with my mind on my blog or a book or work or family or friends or whatever thing other than the you know what!

~*~

Image credit to Jim Adams.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

TOVID-22

Derek came upstairs to find Miranda watching the news again, despite their resolution.

“I’m sorry,” she said, as he sprawled next to her on the sofa. “I couldn’t sleep.”

He gestured to the American President on the screen. “And you think that will help? What is he babbling on about now?”

“He said he has the states of Kansas, Iowa, Missouri, and Illinois under quarantine and all livestock has been destroyed, even chickens, to be on the safe side. People there are going crazy, not having meat. I can relate.”

Derek shrugged. “Not really fair to the ones who are immune though. They’ll never catch TOVID-22 if they had COVID-19.”

“But he keeps congratulating himself for keeping those numbers low.” Miranda switched to a channel playing Gilligan’s Island reruns. “He doesn’t like people calling it TOVID, by the way. Says there’s no proof it originated in Topeka. Maybe Mexicans brought it in when that wall fell down in the earthquake.”

“You’ve got to quit obsessing over it, darling.” Derek put his arm around her. “I keep telling you we’re perfectly safe here in my ancestral home.”

“But I’m hungry,” Miranda whined. “We need to hunt again soon. How can we know who isn’t infected? I got such a tummy ache during the Black Plague.”

Derek nodded. These pandemics were so inconvenient. “I remember.”

~*~

Written for Fandango’s Flash Fiction Challenge #57.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

PFF41: The Pledge

Friday Flashback

Welcome to Paula’s Friday Flashback! This is a challenge begun by Fandango and it’s fun to see what we posted back when (as well as the comments). The post below is a reblog of a post I made exactly one year ago. So happy this isn’t another review!

The Pledge

Icefire the dragon heard the soft clop of the horseshoes through the snow and knew a knight approached his bridge. His sensitive nose sniffed out that this was a rider from the East, one of the King’s men. Under normal circumstances, Icefire would come out from under the bridge and burn up the knight, which would indeed be a pleasure. But these were extraordinary times.

Last summer, Icefire had met a princess in the forest. Not just any princess, but the fairest maiden ever born. Instead of being afraid of him, the little princess had given him a bouquet of flowers. Icefire had fallen in love! He’d given her his pledge of honor. Anything in the world that she wanted, he would do for her.

She’d asked only one thing: please don’t kill her father’s knights when they crossed the bridge.

Hmph. It certainly went against a dragon’s nature not to set fire to a knight, but Icefire had his bouquet of dried flowers to remind him of his promise.

/end reblog

~*~

Image from Pexels.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Spiders

She sits at a gilt-edged vanity
In a silky red robe, hairbrush
Placed just so, her skin aglow,
But she does not get too close
To the glass. She knows
That faint network of cracks
Spiderwebbing out from the side
Of the otherwise pristine glass.
When she glides downstairs,
She avoids glancing in dark corners
Where harsh harbingers of new
Contretemps lie in wait,
Growing fat on innuendo
And words better left unsaid.
She imagines their nasty little fangs
And obscenely furry legs,
Eager to latch onto tender flesh.
At the breakfast table, she smiles
At her husband and reaches
For a perfectly ripe strawberry
From the cut crystal bowl,
Never sparing a glance
For the tiny brown recluse
That sinks its teeth into her hand.

~*~

A friend in a poetry workshop shared this week’s challenge with me: write a poem containing a dichotomy. “Spiders” was my response.

Image from Pixabay.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

First Date [flash 175]

Spaceship taking people

“What the heck is going on, Bill?” Kathy patted her hair to smooth it back into place after that whoosh up into the air.

Bill grinned and waved his arms around, which seemed abnormally short. “You said you were bored with the same old dates, so I came up with an original concept.”

She had said that in her profile. “Yes, but when you told me to meet you in the field, I assumed we’d have a romantic evening looking at stars, not a tour of a spaceship.”

“It’s too overcast to see stars tonight through this haze,” Bill said. “Besides, this is the latest Teslatta. Aren’t you interested in the amazing details?”

Kathy shrugged. “Only if it has a wine and cheese bar.”

“Well, it does,” Bill said, pushing a button on the console.

“Eww!” Kathy shrieked as giant insects flew out of a crevice.

Bill zapped them up with his 7-foot tongue. “Sorry about that, Kathy,” he said after swallowing. “I need to put a sticker on that button to remind me.”

~*~

Written for Fandango’s Flash Fiction Challenge 55.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Bingo Update 3

Book bingo challenge

Here’s my first Book Bingo post, followed by my next update. Today is my third bingo installment. Exciting, no? 🤣

So far in 2020 I have read 8 books. Here are my two latest reviews. Visit the links in the above paragraph if you’re interested in the previous reviews (they are brief).

Cappuccinos, Cupcakes, and a Corpse. I grabbed this book by Harper Lin only because of the cupcakes. I’m glad the bingo game is pushing me to read outside my usual genres, but if this is a typical cozy? Meh. The writing is lazy, tepid, and full of stereotypes.

*****SPOILER ALERT*****

Skip the italicized part if you plan to read this book!

I liked the budding romance between Francesca and Matty and the possibility that Matt killed his own father. That kept me going actually, that this whole nice guy routine was a total fraud, as it so often is, and the sweet boy Franny knew as a child had turned into a very bad man as they do. But no. After misdirecting us into thinking that an ex-con had done did the deed, Lin just flings a previously unknown character at us as the murderer. Well, poo! That’s no fun. I won’t read any more books by Harper Lin, no matter how much cake they contain.

Okay, you’re safe from the spoiler now! I’m moving on to a book written by an indie author, my friend JR Rasmussen. Unlike me, JR figured out how to focus on a genre and do the branding thing, gather a group of advance readers, and basically go about writing in a wholly professional way. She also has kick-ass covers on her books, not that we should judge by this, but… damn.

With that disclaimer, I also want to say that I wasn’t all that interested in reading her book A Dream Of Fire when it first came out. Dragons… meh. Magic… meh. Like I was happy for my friend and all, but I was sticking with romances. But then I got sucked into the whole Game of Thrones madness and was suddenly whoa dragons? Hell yes I wanna read a book with magical dragons!!! Gimme.

I loved A Dream Of Fire! Here is the 5-star review I just posted:

Thoroughly enjoyed this witty and exciting story! I used to avoid this genre in general, but Game of Thrones got me hooked on dragons and magic in fiction. This was a superbly well written story with great dialogue and interesting characters. Loved the imaginative spells!”

So there you have it. Unfortunately, my loan expired for American Gods and in the meantime I’ve somehow accumulated a pile of other books to read. I’ll be working on those for my next update.

~*~

Image credit to Kriti and Ariel.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

FPQ58: Shattered Illusions

Fandango’s provocative question

Fandango provocatively asks…

What is something you’ve long believed to be true, but you now realize is not true?

This question definitely lives up to its name and has provoked a lot of thinkies. While there have been minor and/or short-lived beliefs I’ve held that life has popped like a room full of party balloons, nothing comes close to my cherished and false belief in love. 💔

Now before people start hollering at me… I am not saying I have ceased to believe that love exists. Don’t be silly. Of course, I know that people find love all the time. Other people. What I mean is that for decades I was absolutely certain with an unwavering faith that love existed for me. A soul mate. All that romance novel crap. But soon I’m going to turn 59 and I have given up. In fact, I can pinpoint exactly when I gave up: Thanksgiving 2016 when I got dumped by someone I really believed was a good guy who wanted to be with me and would follow through on the plans we’d made. 🥀

Some people will say that it’s because I gave up that I can’t find love. There’s some woo theory that you must behave as if love is already in your life and wake up every day with the idea that you will be with your soul mate imminently. So, you’ll be happy and smiling and dressing beautifully, since you would be doing these things if you were meeting your love for brunch… and then by some miracle he will appear at the car wash or something. Idk. It’s not my theory, so don’t expect me to defend it! 🤣

The thing is, how long does a reasonable human behave this way? Six months? Ten years? You wake up happy, smiling, put on a gorgeous glittering gown, sashay off to the car wash… and they go, “Jesus, it’s that crazy lady again waiting for her soul mate! When is she gonna bring a car here?”

So, anyway. Giving up gave me freedom. I quit the dating sites. I deleted Meetups. I even exited Facebook and Instagram. All the social media sites that were supposed to make you feel connected to people (and potential soul mates), but left me feeling more isolated and alone. I began to focus only on work, family, friends, and writing. I quit spending money trying to look “sexy” for some man I hadn’t met and most likely never would. I revitalized my blog, which has always been my favorite form of “social media.” 😻

Now, in a movie or novel, this is exactly when I would meet my soul mate, right? When I’m focused on my own life and doing things that bring me joy, rather than searching outward for happiness. But this is real life not a romcom… so no.

Bitmoji shrug

~*~

Image credits to Fandango and Bitmoji.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

The Jungle

Jungle

Never ending story of The Jungle started by Teresa Grabs….
Sweat dripped from the tip of Matthew’s nose as he paused under a kapok tree, scanning the thick jungle floor for ants. He didn’t want to go through that experience again.
“Come along, Mr. Howard,” the guide called, waving his arms. “Camp is just a few more kilometers.”
Matthew sighed and wiped his face with his sleeve. Go find yourself, they said. Travel the world, they said. You’ll have a great time, they said. He groaned as a howler monkey sounded in the distance setting off a cacophony. Sudden movement by his foot startled him. “What in the devil is that?”
Crawling out from under a large fern, a small creature with long brown and white fur paused and looked up at Matthew.
“Hey, Carlos!” He waited for a response. “Carlos! Guide! Hey!” No response. The jungle that engulfed him had suddenly become very quiet. Nothing stirred except his imagination and growing concern that he was now lost in the rain forest, surely to be eaten by a stray jaguar or wayward tiger. “This isn’t a movie, man.” He chuckled and glanced back toward the ground where the creature was only to gasp when he saw …

Sadje continued
when he saw that it had grown quite a bit in that short time. It was looking inquiringly at him. It’s large anime type eyes giving him the feeling as if it was understanding what was going through Mathew’s mind at that moment. Mathew started to feel as if he was in a dream world. It cannot happen in real life, he thought. This is a jungle, not a Hollywood movie set. Just then the creature started blinking its eyes in a rapid, Morse code-like manner while pointing towards a clearing in the vegetation. “What the hell!” He thought and started following the creature. The guide was nowhere to be seen anyway.
In a while, they reached a circular clearing in the jungle, over-hung with thick rope-like tree vines. The creature gestured with its eyes and limbs for Mathew to climb up the tree, using one of the vines. When he reached the thick branches, he found a platform had been built there and more of the creatures roaming about there.
Tentatively he landed on the platform testing its strength. It felt solid enough to bear his weight. Mathew was not sure that he was in a dream or reality and made another crazy decision.
Using gestures and simple words he asked his new guide what was happening and where he was. To his intense astonishment……..

Melanie’s bit
….astonishment the being spoke in crisp English tones. “You are in a place. A place of sights and sounds…” the being recited the entire opening spiel to “Twilight Zone” (the retro TV version with Rod Serling). Matthew stared and wondered about the efficacy of that sketchy burrito he’d had for lunch. It was all the economy fare airline offered and he had been hungry, but really? What had they laced that thing with? A little LSD? The striped creature’s eyes boggled. It shook its head, a little sadly. He could almost hear it thinking “What a sad thing man is. No trust. No imagination..” Maybe this WAS the ‘Twilight Zone’. Except with humidity. And a lot of lush plant life.
Matthew started for the vine ladder to exit this surreal castle in the sky. The brown and white furry creature with the googly eyes moved swiftly in front of him and the rest of the herd (?) surrounded him in a tightly knit circle. They all shook their heads in a NO! gesture. Synchronized. Matthew almost expected them to leap into an intricate ballet and Esther Williams to appear, water dancing her way …………….
Matthew shook his head vigorously, causing a small ripple of dismay in the creatures and a widening of the tight circle that surrounded him. “Okay then, I’ll stay!” he exclaimed, “But you have to tell me WHAT YOU WANT! Can you take me to your leader at least?!” The beasts/creatures all pointed at the first googly eye that Matthew had encountered. It smiled, which was creepy, given it had a snout instead of a mouth exactly… There was a loud CRASH and all the heads turned (in synchronized motion obviously)…Matthew leapt up and turned around rapidly to see…

This is where Di picked up the story………….
a huge hand snaking into the tree top from above where he and his new companions were situated.
The creatures bolted leaving him alone to face the music. Those searching fingertips were getting dangerously close.
Matthew had no weapons and did the only thing he could think of when the hand closed around him.
He opened his mouth as wide as he could and brought his teeth down hard.
The bellow was like nothing he had ever heard in his life as he was immediately released. He slid awkwardly down the vine to the relative safety of the jungle floor and out of reach, even if it was only likely to be temporary.
He had an audience as he tried to catch his breath and slow his rampant heartbeat. The creatures stood in awe and started to bow at their saviour, chanting something which he hoped was his name in their native language.
Matthew was both embarrassed and pleased at his new status, but knew there was more to this scenario than met the eye. His jaw hurt and he could taste blood, but wasn’t sure if he’d jarred a tooth loose or it was that of the hand he’d bitten. Either way his head started to spin and he felt himself falling.
The creatures gathered around him and before he knew it, he was lifted up on hundreds of shoulders like some kind of Gulliver and carried further into the jungle where…………………

Now it became Jim Adams‘ turn…..
the googly eyed creatures placed Matthew on a fire ant mound and told him that if he could spend the night there that they would follow him forever. Matthew said, “I am not looking for any stinking followers and how the hell did I get talked into visiting the jungle. I feel like John McClane when he went out to the coast to have a good time and he ran into Hans Gruber. I feel like Indiana Jones when he was thrown into that pit with all the snakes and I told Carlos that I hate ants and fire ants are the worst.” Just then Carlos the guide showed up with bug spray and said, “You are a very good sport Mr. Howard, thanks for going along with this and if you have to blame anybody, your brother told me to do this.”
Matthew said, “That dirty rat bastard, I should have known he was pranking me back for what I had done to him in Tahiti last year with those men I paid to dress up like cannibals. I am not done with him yet and revenge is a dish best served cold, so I will get back at him no matter how long it takes and he will regret ever messing with me. Carlos, did you bring any ointment with you for the fire ant bites?” Carlos said, “Yes but while it will help with your itching, it also contains fermions that attract wild monkeys.” Matthew said, “Just give it to me” and then…..

Paula Light continues the story from here.

Matthew was feeling much better the next day after sleeping most of it, ordering room service, and taking three cold showers. He’d applied a double dose of the ointment Carlos had given him, and the bites had almost disappeared. A couple monkeys had howled outside his window off and on, but hotel staff shooed them away. Matthew put on clean clothes and headed down to the bar for a drink.

He was sipping his second green volcano when the band appeared on stage. There were five men dressed in shiny orange suits and all were very tall and very thin. They were wearing masks and playing strange pulsating music. A sexy woman in a purple dress sat down next to him. She smelled of coconut and orchids. “We must leave at once,” she whispered. “It is not safe here.”

Matthew laughed. “Tell my brother that I’m done with his tricks for this vacation. I need to relax for the next couple days.”

“No, you don’t understand.” She put her hand on his bare arm. It was cold as a popsicle. “Those men are not musicians. They are–”

The lights went out and the music stopped. “Get down!” someone screamed.

Matthew reached for the woman’s hand, but instead he found himself grasping a handful of……….

Now let’s see where MsJadeli can take this!

~*~

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Elevator Pitch [fiction 357]

Adorable unicorn

God was inspecting the various heavenly sectors, as he did from time to time, to make sure all was running smoothly, which of course it was. This was heaven, after all, not some mismanaged junkyard. But it was a big place, and his knees were getting tired from schlepping up and down all the stairs. He was older than, well, God. He laughed at his circular logic, ignoring the side eye from a passing angel.

He pushed the button for the elevator. What was taking so long? He’d have to file another complaint. Finally, the car stopped and he got on. But he wasn’t alone.

“Hey, God. How are you?” the youngish male occupant said.

God searched his memory, which took longer than it used to. But there were more things in there, so that was okay! “Zack,” he said. “The inventor who choked to death on a beyond burger. I’m good, and you?”

“Fantastic actually!” Zack beamed. “I’ve come up with a great idea for you.”

Oh no, God thought. Halp! “What?”

“I know you love horses, so I’ve invented a small white one with a golden horn. It’s very pretty and will remind people of your awesomeness.”

God frowned. “Why? I don’t have a horn.”

“Because it’s gold and points to heaven, showing people the way to eternal life if they stay good and stuff.” Zack gestured upward, though they were already up, and the car had stopped.

“And stuff,” God muttered, rolling his eyes.

“Fine. Show me the little horse,” he said as they exited. “But make it quick. I don’t have all day to look at everyone’s cockamamie–”

God came to an abrupt halt and pointed to an adorable creature frolicking on the grass. “Is that him? He’s so cute! Look how his mane sparkles! Oh my me, I love him!”

“Yay,” Zack said. “I’m so happy I’ve pleased you.”

“Give me a hundred and I’ll put them back on Atlantis,” God commanded. “Can you make some in different colors?”

“Sure! I’ll get to work right away.”

God trundled off to inspect billionaires’ row. Haha, just kidding. There are no billionaires in heaven! 😜

~*~

Written for Sadje’s What Do You See?

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

The Magical Garden of Immortality [fiction 587]

Beautiful garden

The diner looked like any other, and Mitch was skeptical he’d come to the right place. He opened the door a crack and peered inside, expecting to see a dimly lit room full of candles and woo, but instead the light was bright and people were drinking their coffees and eating sandwiches.

A gruff voice behind him said, “You going in, buddy, or what?”

Mitch stepped inside. A waitress told him to take any seat, so he found a small booth for two and sat facing the door. A menu stood in a silver holder with a picture of a lush fruit bowl in the South Seas on the cover, and he picked it up. There were the usual salads and burgers, shakes and pies, on offer.

“You ready?” the waitress said, appearing in front of the booth with pencil and pad.

“I, um, heard that this place was a portal,” Mitch said. “But all I see on the menu is lunch.”

She rolled her eyes. “Check the back.”

Mitch turned the menu over. On the back was a list titled “Infinity Realms.” It was a double column and his eyes began to glaze over reading through the small curly font.

“Usually people know the one they want before they get here,” the waitress said. “And they just tell me the code. We’re kinda busy today and portals close at one.”

“Okay okay.” Mitch had made his decision this morning, after months of agonizing, and he wanted it done. “I found it. The code is XB8720A75.”

“A popular one.” She smiled. “Do you want fries with that?”

“No thanks. Just coffee, black.”

She returned in a minute with his coffee. “I’ll let you know when your portal is ready. You can pay now though.”

He handed her a cashier’s check. It was all he had; that was the deal.

As he waited, he imagined his realm. It would be full of natural beauty… leafy trees, a riot of vivid blooming flowers, butterflies and birds, a sparkling waterfall, lovely warm sunshine… a meadow to lie in, woods to wander in… but also people to admire his works, unlike here. They’d read his poetry and appreciate it. Women would respect his intelligence and deep thoughts instead of brushing him off as an oddball. They’d all compete to date him, but he’d only spend his time with the nicest ones who had tender temperaments.

“Okay.” The waitress reappeared. “Go to the men’s room.”

Mitch walked to the back of the diner and opened the door to the men’s restroom.

Swirling colors

It worked!

Mitch was no longer in the diner, but in a gorgeous garden where he’d live forever and be loved and appreciated. He bent down to sniff a fat yellow rose, but was disappointed when he couldn’t pick up a scent.

“Hi honey, welcome home!”

Mitch turned to find a naked redheaded woman slinking toward him. She reminded him of his third grade teacher. “Hi,” he said, embarrassed. “Would you like to hear some of my poetry?”

She wrinkled her nose. “Poetry? Ew. I want to devour you in a wild frenzy of lust! How does that sound for your last moment of consciousness ?”

“Not great.” Mitch backed away. “I don’t want to be devoured. This is the Garden of Immortality, remember?”

“Oh honey!” She laughed. “You must have put in the wrong code. This is the Garden of Immorality, and I’m the chief cannibal. Meet my friends…”

Mitch stared in horror as hungry naked women emerged from the trees.

~*~

Written for MLM’s Magical Garden Prompt.

Written for Teresa’s Immortality Prompt.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.