Friday, October 30, 2015

Halloween Story

Halloween Night  I was jolted awake by shrieking outside my second-floor bedroom window. My heart  pounded wildly as I peered at the alarm clock--3:25. Again there was the unearthly shrieking, sounding like nothing I’d ever heard before. I bounded out of bed and ran to the open window, shivering as I peered into the darkness.

The moonless night was illuminated by only the feeble glow from a streetlight down the block. When my eyes adjusted, I could see a shadowy creature moving by the woods bordering my yard. The hulking figure stopped near a tree twenty feet away. It seemed to be staring up at me with glowing eyes. Terrified, I backed away from the window and moved to the side. I peered cautiously from behind the curtain for movement. The creature was now near a tree where the light was better. I gasped when I saw its size--it looked like a Bigfoot!

OK, this can’t be real. I live on a suburban cul-de-sac near parkland, not the deep forest.  There is no way there would be a Bigfoot outside my window. And yet, there was something huge walking on two
legs through the trees. To my relief it seemed to be leaving.

Oh no! It’s leaving! I suddenly realized I needed to get a picture. I snatched my cellphone from the dresser and dashed back to the window to catch a shot before it was out of sight. I knew the flash might attract its attention but a photo would be priceless.

Back at the window, cellphone in hand, I desperately scanned the treeline for movement. There was total stillness. Still shaking from excitement, I sighed in disappointment.

I gazed out into the trees once more before giving up. Just then, an enormous, hairy hand slammed against the window screen in front of me. I screamed and fell back on the floor. The shrieking beast was standing directly under my window and had destroyed it. All thoughts of getting a photo were now gone as I struggled to my feet and groped for the bedroom door. Running into the hall, I could hear the window crashing as it was ripped from the house. I ran down the stairs, dialing 911.

“There’s something trying to get into my house!” I screamed at the operator. “Hurry, it’s trying to kill me!” The 911 operator kept asking me inane questions as I frantically ran from one window to another to see where it was now.

Suddenly, three black SUVs pulled up in front. Two men-in-black exited from each, two came to the door while the others scattered to the area around the house. “Who are you? Where are the cops?” I asked in confusion.

“We just want to ask you a few questions,” they said as they pushed past me into the house.

I told them what I’d seen but they impatiently brushed off my questions. Moments later, a saucer-shaped airship hovered over my backyard. I heard a burst of noise and activity, then a brilliant light beamed down for a few seconds, winked out and the ship disappeared.  

The men turned on their heels, saying “Well, ma’am, that should take care of it. Sorry for the inconvenience. And, just so you know, none of this ever happened—remember that—none of this ever happened!”  
Standing on my front steps watching as they all sped away, I lamely called, “Who the hell is gonna fix my window?”                                    

(I'm an assistant coordinator of the East St Paul Speculative Fiction Writer’s Group. I wrote this for the Halloween Flash Fiction challenge. I'm also a member of a Women's Writers Group. I have published a family cookbook and now rest on my laurels and only write for fun.)

Thursday, October 8, 2015

A trip to HyVee

Okay, a trip to a grocery store is not usually a big deal--and certainly nothing to blog about. However, I am fond of food stores. Wherever I travel, I make it a point to visit a local grocery store and it's always interesting.

On Saturday, my suburban daughter Brenda called and wanted to go to a movie. Since I was dying to see The Martian, we agreed to meet at a theater midway between our locations. Afterward, she insisted on going over to the newly-opened HyVee store in a nearby suburb. She had been there several days earlier and wanted me to see it.

There was a sit down restaurant inside the door and since we were hungry, we decided to give that a try. She ordered a salad and I ordered a side of garlic mashed potatoes and grilled vegetables. The two sides arrived in french fry cups to my surprise. The potatoes were nothing special but the veggies were so good! There were standing strips of carrots, squash, green pepper, onion, etc grilled with herbs. They were so good that I would go back for just that.
Then we went into the very crowded grocery store which is an experience of its own. All around the outer edges were individual areas for different foods. There was one for everything you could be looking for. I was impressed by the wonderful bakery with artisan breads and baked goodies to die for. There was an old-fashioned meat store that wrapped your purchase in brown paper. There was a cheese shop and an endless array of other areas to browse. I was especially impressed by the large section of British foods (with English candy bars), the natural foods and gluten-free offerings.
It was like a food court in a mall only with more variety and quality. It's a wonderful place to visit but I'm actually glad that there isn't a HyVee near me so I won't be wanting to go there again very soon. I wouldn't be able to control myself!