Category Archives: Fun

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.

The Hidden Away [flash 275]

Spies

Rory and Sue snuck surreptitiously into the upstairs study while Rose slept on the sofa downstairs.

“Do you know where it is?” Sue whispered.

“No,” Rory said, taking out his pistol. “But this is our last chance. We must find that soy turtle soup recipe. It has the secret code hidden in it.”

Sue looked confused. “You mean in a pot of slop? Do I have to slave away over a stove?”

“Never, my pet,” Rory reassured her. “Trust me. The code is buried in the recipe itself!”

“Oh good then.” Sue poked around on the desk. “Rose must be a poet. I see bits of verse but no recipes. I wish we could go out for pie, Rory. I love pie.”

Rory bent over to peer under the desk. “We can later–oof! Did you hear that rip? I tore my trousers. They’re split open.”

Pity,” Sue said. “And those are your new ones. It’s hard to find those stripes you like.”

“This spoils my whole day,” Rory said with a pout. “I don’t even care about the treasure hunt now.”

Sue began to protest. “But we haven’t won any games tonight, honey. We’ll be known as the family losers. I thought we were doing well at this spy challenge.”

“I don’t care.” Rory flung himself in a chair. “These elaborate games are torture. Why can’t Aunt Rose throw normal parties?”

“She’s your aunt.” Sue reminded him. “So, you shouldn’t be asking me.”

There came a horrific shriek from downstairs. “Help!” screamed a man. “Aunt Rose is dead! Someone strangled her with a rope!

Rory and Sue just looked at each other and laughed.

~*~

Written for Rory’s What’s Your Story?

Words made from surreptitiously: is, it, losers, pet, pie, pistol, pity, poet, pot, pout, protest, rip, ripe, Rory, slept, slop, so, soup, soy, split, spoils, spy, stripes, Sue, surreptitiously, to, tore, torture, trousers, trust, turtle.

Image from the Happy Color app.

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

Ten Year Report

Di of Pensitivity101 tagged me for this introspective challenge. I’ll begin with the high points of the past 10 years, followed by the low, and then answer her questions. I’m not going to tag anyone else. 🙂

High Points 2010 – 2020

In 2011, my sweet kitty Gatsby came into my life via the Orange County Animal Shelter. 😻❤️

My daughters both graduated from college (and did extremely well too), one in 2012 and one in 2015.

They also both got married to awesome guys (2017, 2019)! 💖💖

In 2018, a wonderful little granddaughter arrived! 😍✨🤩

I have published many books during these 10 years, and while they may not fly off the shelves, the fact that I have actual finished novels and other books out there gives me a great sense of accomplishment.

Low Points 2010 – 2020

My divorce was final in 2011, and while this was a necessary step, it’s still sad.

The relationship I had through my 2-year divorce process ended badly in 2011.

The entire 5-year dating debacle that followed was a depressing, and at times frightening, mess and continues to have repercussions to this day.

My dad passed in 2013 (my mom in 2008).

My cat Cocoa died in 2010 or 2011… my memory is a bit fuzzy right now. 😢

Di’s Questions

Is there any year in the past decade that stands out as the best?

-This last one (2019) ended up on a positive note because I moved into a new place with a good friend and got away from my old rundown apartment. I also spent quite a bit of time with family and friends and began writing a fun story. 🙂

Has your taste in music changed in the past ten years or do you think music in general has changed?

-I don’t listen to much new music, but in the last several years I’ve found myself liking more country and folk songs. Hard rock is a bit of a bore sometimes lately.

Are you heavier or lighter than you were ten years ago?

-I’m about the same, up maybe 2-3 pounds. But in the middle of these 10 years I was much lighter ~ I got sick from sushi (will never have it again) and could hardly eat for a month. Then a certain relationship stressed me out so much, anxiety kept my appetite away. I was 10 pounds lighter than today and so right now I feel “fat” because I liked the way I looked then. I’m hoping to get back there, but via exercise and good habits. 😇

How many cars have you owned in the past decade?

-Two.

Fun prompt! 🥳

~*~

Image snagged from Rory!

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

PFF31: Cupcakes!

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 below is a reblog of a post I made on January 4, 2013. You’ll have to click through to see the pics. Enjoy!

Sprinkles ATM Cupcake

OK. I finally got to try a Sprinkles ATM cupcake after all this time ~ the ATM is only in select locations, the closest one to me being in Beverly Hills. I ended up there early in the morning on a Sunday, and I won’t regale you with my parking adventures, but trust me, they were epic, as usual.

As you can see, it is pink, and states quite clearly that it is a CUPCAKE ATM, so that you do not confuse it with something else. So far, so good. But things went downhill from there. First, it was early morning, as stated, and the sun was glaring right on the screen making it impossible to read anything at all. I had no idea what I was doing. None. But I could not leave without a cupcake! So I slid my credit card through the thingie and hoped for the best. (Hoped I did not get charged for 500 cupcakes or something.)

Nothing happened. I shaded my eyes every which way and barely made out some squares on the screen. I touched one. Still I had no clue what was going on. Could not see anything because of the glare. But I must have done something because things whirred and clanked and a box appeared ~ my cupcake!

I peeked into the box… bummer. It was a black and white (chocolate cake with white non-buttercream frosting and choccy sprinkles). Oh well.

Finally I could see the main screen a little bit ~ turned out there were only three cupcakes available that day: the B&W, an all-choccy, and a doggie cupcake. Ugh. That’s a terrible selection. I was a little worried about my credit card as I had no idea how much was charged, and there was no receipt, plus also no way to say I was finished with the transaction. But it turned out to be $4, no big deal.

I drove home with my precious. And I was determined to judge fairly, even if I had a little bit of a sad over the choice of cupcake ~ maybe it was a good thing to try a new flavor, right? Right!

The cake was very fresh. Peeps might think it wouldn’t be, coming out of a machine, but it was soft and nummy, and super-chocolatey. Even though choccy cake is not my fave, this cake was tasty plus. The frosting disappointed. I can deal with non-buttercream (I heart Sprinkles strawberry, forex, and it’s NB), but this was just… white. Had a nice texture, but its taste was sugarbland.

So there you go, the ATM cupcake review, done and dusted. I will eventually try Sprinkles ice cream, but not when the weather is so freezing.

My new year got off to a bit of a rocky start with many hours wasted on things that made me feel bad and not good, so I’m going to change that this weekend. It just takes paying attention to what I’m doing and remembering which things I want more of in my life, and which things less of (or eliminated). That sounds easy enough, right?

/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.

The Sprawling Legend [fiction 220]

The tale began in a secluded glade. An angel was said to have fallen from heaven and become tangled in a weeping willow, which turned its branches to gold. Centuries later, an impoverished baron named Dean was awarded the land and gated off the entire forest for hunting, yet that didn’t stop many a curious lad from sneaking in to view the golden tree.

Over tea one afternoon, a distraught young wife thought she heard that praying under the willow would help her conceive, so she snuck onto the estate late one night… and lo… nine months later that gal had a baby. No one seemed to notice the aged baron had a gleam in his eye when he went down to his favorite pub to mooch ale and eat kidney pie.

But word was out, and soon infertile couples from all over the country were flocking to the estate, knocking at the gate, and begging for a date to visit the glade. Baron Dean soon realized he could charge a fee and replenish his gambling losses from this new venture. He happily led the couples to the weeping willow after they paid and even let them stay overnight in a guest room for an exorbitant rate. Many did conceive and thus the Legend of the Golden Tree kept sprawling.

~*~

Written for Rory’s What’s Your Story Then?

Words made from tangled: aged, ale, an, and, angel, date, dean, eat, gal, gate, gated, glade, lad, land, later, led, tale, tangled, tea

Image from Pixabay.

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

Laura’s Music Challenge 38

Happy 2020 Bitmoji

Laura ends the year on a musical note by bringing back her song challenge and asking us to post 5 videos about beginnings, endings and/or looking forward.

Happy New Year! 🥳🥳🥳

~*~

Image from Bitmoji.

©️2019 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

One for the Road! [fiction 261]

Liquor cabinet

“Are you sure this will work?” Bran said to Littlefinger.

The older man nodded. “I saw it in a movie. I think it was one a them Tom Cruise flicks.”

“Oh, he’s great!” Bran said, unlocking the door with the key he’d stolen earlier during his illness ruse.

“Keep your voice down,” Littlefinger warned. “Else we’ll have the guards over here.”

The two convicts snuck into the warden’s private office, where Littlefinger had figured out there was a back door out to the parking lot and freedom. He hadn’t known about the liquor cabinet though. “Let’s have a quick drink, Bran. A cure for what ails us, eh?”

Bran frowned. “But I wasn’t really sick. It was just a trick, remember? Don’t you think we should stick to our plan and escape quick down to the cove?”

“Mmm rice wine!” Littlefinger exclaimed. “Love this stuff. Try it, Bran. It’s midnight and we have lots of time.”

“Okay.” Bran tasted the wine. “It is good. A bit sour though. I’d rather have a slug of whiskey.”

“I can’t stand whiskey without ice,” the other man said. “Look, he has Courvoisier. Our warden sure has fancy tastes. I wonder how much he gets paid?”

“Can we try it?” Bran asked eagerly after he sampled the warden’s apricot brandy. “We might get sore heads though.”

“Just a small sip,” Littlefinger said. “One for the road!”

But one led to another and the warden found them both passed out on the floor of his office when he got to work the next day at 7am.

~*~

Written for Rory’s Word Story

Words used from Courvoisier: cove, cruise, cure, ice, is, our, over, rice, ruse, sore, sour, sure, us, voice

Image from Pexels

©️2019 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

The Little Drummer Boy Challenge [dating story]

Oops, I did it again! 😀 Won the Little Drummer Boy Challenge, that is. It’s this fun game where you try to avoid hearing any version of LDB between 12:01AM Black Friday until midnight December 23. I first found out about it on ye olde book of face, but the host has a blog and a twitter, so I am able to stay connected, yay! I think I’ve been playing for 5 years and have lost once or twice.

I know I lost once for sure because it was at a Barnes & Noble, where I ended up after meeting one of the strangest dating site men. And that’s saying something, trust me. It was 2016, when I was totally broken-hearted and trying to recover, as was my way, by immediately flinging myself into something new. This guy and I hit it off online because he was funny. I like the funny. Funny is good. He was a bit mean though, which I don’t like, but often you have to take the mean with the funny. That’s how it works. I have heard, which I know you will find absurd, that I also am mean. I KNOW RIGHT? 😱

Anyway, this guy, let’s call him Mitty, was a total extrovert online and in text. He even called me in the mornings on the way to work and just jabbered away, all upbeat and flirty. I thought maybe he was gonna be too talkative and pushy for me, IYKWIM (AITYD). But I really wanted to meet him (or anyone above-ground) to get my mind off that other guy, so I proceeded.

We decided to meet at a Bed, Bath & Beyond because Mitty needed new drapes. We had these fun ideas like we’d pretend to be married as soon as we saw each other and try out the beds because ours had “worn out,” etc. I was definitely excited about experiencing his sense of humor in person, though a lil worried I might not be able to keep up. 😬

I needn’t have stressed. In person, Mitty was a mouse. 🐭 He could barely mumble hello. Where was the funny, flirty man on the phone? Idk! He was the same guy as in his photos, but he did not have the same personality… so weird! Maybe he didn’t like me in person, but I had sent accurate pics, so I don’t think that was it. In any case, we spent about 15 minutes looking at drapes, then Mitty said he didn’t like any and was going to try other stores. That’s it. The pre-date was over. Never heard from him again.

But the point of the story is that I had like an extra hour to kill before meeting my friends, since the Mitty meeting was so short, and that’s when I waltzed into B&N, only to get blasted with a version of LDB! Oh noooooooo! Not only had Mitty failed to lift me out of my sea of heartbreak, but now I’d lost the LDBC too. Life was so unfair. 😢

But I haven’t lost since, not even last week when I was at a real live Christmas carol singalong. 🎶 They didn’t do LDB, whew! The funny thing is that I actually love the song and there are so many fantastic versions. On the way home from work today, I heard Josh Groban’s for the first time, and it was so good!

I’ll leave you with Joan Jett’s take on the tune, one of my faves. Have a wonderful night! 🎄🎁❤️

~*~

Image from Bitmoji.

©️2019 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Basically Two Colors [cffc]

My colors are yellow and green! Thanks for a fun prompt, Cee. 🎄😻❤️

Yellow rose Yellow roses Yellow rose and bee

Merry Christmas 🎄 to those who do!

~*~

Images are mine.

©️2019 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

The Furry One! [flash 138]

Splat! Hail hit the covered pot that someone had left by the bus stop. But sure enough in it sat yet another lost kitten that someone had left anonymously for Pat to adopt. The poor little thing hissed and spat, but only due to fear. Pat would take it to the cat hospital and then foster it until a spot in a forever home was found. From past experience, Pat could tell that with love and care, this baby would have a good shot at turning into a healthy, furry beauty. Already its tail was big and fluffy for such a tiny critter. Pat picked up the pot and put it in her Honda Pilot, tucking a towel around the kitten. “We’ll get you in top shape in no time, pal,” Pat said. “You just hang in there.”

~*~

Written for Rory’s Word Story

Words used from hospital: hail, hit, hospital, it, lost, pal, past, pat, pilot, pot, sat, shot, spat, spot, splat, stop, tail, this, to, top

Image from Pexels

©️2019 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.