Life’s a Reflection~

Stunning pictures taken by Cindy Knoke from Olympic National Park.

Of what we see.

What we perceive,

depends on where we look.

Beauty is everywhere,

just waiting to be found,

even on the cloudiest days.

Cheers to you from Olympic National Park~

(Note: We are home at The Holler now. These photos were from our May trip. I wouldn’t want you to think we are never home!)

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Ship your oars

First, an adventurous and amusing story by Tallis Steelyard about the regatta in Avitas. Next, the offer of a book by Jim Webster with more about Avitas. A review by a pleased reader is included.

Tallis Steelyard

ship your oars

There are those who claim, not unreasonably, that usurers and those in their employ are persons sunk deep in perpetual misery. Indeed I confess there are times when I wonder if they are not trapped in a world of piles and perpetual constipation. Yet do not let appearances deceive you. I assure you that on propitious occasions, such as when a client is paying, usurers, lawyers and the rest of their ilk, do indeed know how to celebrate.

Thus at the end of summer, most of the usurers offices close, (if indeed they have reopened) and everybody who is anybody travels to Avitas for the regatta. This ancient event is considered one of the highlights of the season. Originally it appears to have been founded to celebrate the city’s close relationship with the River Dharant. Thus at a profoundly moving ceremony which opens the revels, the Mayor and officers of…

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Getting the bird

First, another amusing tale by Tallis Steelyard of Maljie a Temple Warden at the Shrine of Aea in her Aspect as the Personification of Tempered Enthusiasm and the capture of a preacher bird and cleaning of the Temple roof. Next, the offer of a book by Jim Webster which contains various tales by Tallis Steelyard taking place in Port Naain. A review by a pleased reader is included.

Tallis Steelyard

Getting the bird.jpg

The duties of a temple warden are effectively without limit. The list of jobs that need doing seems to stretch as far as the imagination of an archimandrite can reach. But one of the main duties is ensuring that the building remains clean.
Now obviously this can be easily achieved. A simple task to issue dusters and mops to the mendicants and in an hour or so, everything can be spotless. After all, those who visit the shrine are there to spend time on their knees in their devotions. It’s not as if they come in out of the rain to eat their lunch, leaving crumbs everywhere.

But the wildlife that invests a shrine can be an entirely different problem. Numerous species of small rodent seem to regard clerical vestments as an opportunity to dine with friends; a groaning board spread with goodies to share with all comers. Then there…

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The intricacies of livestock husbandry

First, an amusing adventure of Maljie, a Temple Warden at the Shrine of Aea in her Aspect as the Personification of Tempered Enthusiasm and a pet pig. Next, a book on offer by Jim Webster about the adventures in Port Naain of Tallis Steelyard and some Sedan chair racing. A review by a pleased reader is included.

Tallis Steelyard

The intricacies of livestock husbandry

This is another of those episodes from Maljie’s life that I heard from Laxey, the sub-Hierodeacon. It was just after he returned from his week-long silent retreat. Given that the food had been basically vegetables in one form or another, he was cutting himself thick slices of mott ham with the determined air of a man who had a lot of catching up to do. Indeed he might even have been stocking up ready for the next one.

Still when I think about it, the guilty party behind this story is in point of fact Halwallow Timbartson. This grandly named individual was a mott farmer in a small way just outside the city. He lived in one of those villages which is almost, but not quite, a suburb. At irregular intervals he would arrive at the local inn with a pile of tickets. He would announce ‘buy one and win…

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Good People Doing Good Things — Olawale and Temie

Good people doing good things.

Filosofa's Word

As promised yesterday, here it is, only a day late, this week’s ‘good people’ post!  Thanks so much to those of you who suggested that I should be the ‘good people’ of the week!  You brought a smile, and I so appreciate the encouragement, the vote of confidence.  But, in truth, I don’t see myself as a ‘good people’, especially as compared to the good people I write about who are out there doing things for others, while I sit home in my comfy chair, with a fresh cuppa coffee, and only write.  But again, thanks so much … I love you all!  But now …

I’d like you to meet Dr. Olawale Sulaiman, 49, professor of neurosurgery and spinal surgery at the Ochsner Neuroscience Institute in New Orleans, Louisiana. Sulaiman-1Born and raised on Lagos Island, Lagos, Nigeria, he says of his childhood …

“I am one of 10 children…

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A Thing of Value


Photo Copyright: Ted Strutz

Here we are again and this week we’re gathered around a basket of old photos. We’ve come together to discuss our original stories for the week. This is the Friday Fictioneer’s group. Our hostess for the gathering is the talented and gracious author and artist, Rochelle Wisoff-Fields. The challenge for each of us this week and every week is to write a story with no more than 100 words, not counting the title. It’s supposed to have a beginning, middle, end, and be inspired by the picture prompt for the week. This week’s prompt was provided by Ted Strutz. Thanks, Ted. To read the other stories by group members, just click on the link below, then on the smiling frog. Next, follow the given direction.

11 October 2019

Genre: Memoir

Word Count: 98 Words

A Thing of Value By P.S. Joshi


We had three types of photos when I was growing up.

The oldest were those in a shoebox, my mother’s family photos. Then there were my dad’s photos from his time in the U.S. Navy. Next were the newer pictures of my childhood.

When my dad’s mother died, we got really old photos. These were of grandma’s family with women in mutton leg sleeves, and my dad’s and his brother’s childhoods.

There are now my children’s photos and my daughter’s colossal wedding album. The photographers used her wedding pictures in their ads. It was a Halloween theme.





Still waiting for Republican spine

What happened to Republican’s spines?

On The Fence Voters

Mark Twain once said, “Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear—not absence of fear.” The failure of Congressional Republicans to show the kind of courage America so desperately needs, while the leader of their party runs roughshod over our democracy, is one of the most challenging dilemmas of our time.

So perplexing in fact, that I’ve found myself talking … to myself. That’s right, after nearly four years since Donald Trump entered the political arena, I’ve now become a blithering fool. I was hoping it wouldn’t come to this. But, I guess the subconscious of my soul could only take so much.

I’m about to share some of these conversations—with myself—that occurred over the last couple of days as I walked and jogged with my two four-legged canine buddies in our Great Pacific Northwest backyard. They say admitting to one’s insanity is a significant first step. So, here it…

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The Word Police: Filter Words

Some words that need to go.

Myths of the Mirror

The Word Police are at it again. This time they plan to rap some filter words on the head.

Filter words are generally bad dudes and worth arresting when you catch up to them. They’re guilty of two things:

  • They add lots of unnecessary/empty words to your story and therefore can bog down your pace… a lot.
  • They distance your readers from your characters. The “narrator” tells us that the character is thinking/sensing something (filters the information) instead of just letting us experience the thoughts/sensations directly.

In this 217-word passage, there are 20 filter words.

Greta stood on her front porch. She felt the long-awaited spring call her with a rustling of leaves and patter of hummingbird wings. A smile brightened her face as she watched them battle around the feeder that she’d remembered to fill yesterday.  She supposed she wasn’t the only one enjoying the languid morning. On the…

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The Smiling Chipmunks of Riding Mountain~

Pictures by Cindy Knoke of Riding Mountain National Park in Manitoba.

Cheeky little chippers,

stand their ground when you come close!

Riding Mountain National Park in Manitoba Canada has a ‘Red Chair Program,’ where two red Adirondack chairs are placed at random, often remote locations throughout the park, encouraging you sit for a spell and soak up the scenery.

The park consists of 1,146mi² of mostly remote, scenic forest.

It is filled with pristine lakes,

and endless opportunities to soak up the solitary scenery.

Unfortunately we were a bit too early to see the birch leaves turn.

Cheers to you from Riding Mountain National Park~

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Threats of Civil War and Accusations Of Treason: Trump, His Reichsbishof, and Those Ready to Kill in his Name

A pastor’s view on threats and accusations of the Trump administration.

The Inglorius Padre Steve's World

Friends Of Padre Steve’s World,

Just a couple of thoughts tonight. We celebrated Judy’s Birthday with our friends in Germany and even made a trip over the border to France where we got her birthday cake. But I digress…

Tonight I am very concerned about what President Trump and some of his leading supporters, especially his Reichsbishof , Pastor Robert Jeffress, of First Baptist Church Dallas threatened that if he were impeached that it would bring about a civil war. During his Twitter tirade the President accused the Congressman Adam Schiff, Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee of Treason.

First, the whole concept of Treason when it comes to United States law and the Constitution, which set very tight limitations on what can be charged as treason.

In fact it is spelled out in the Constitution:

“Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying war against them, or…

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