Atop the High Wire

Weekly Photo Challenge: Atop
Atop

I’ve always had trouble watching artists take daring risks, such as this tightrope walker crossing St. Denis Street during Montreal’s Cirque Festival in 2016. Usually I cover my eyes and ask my husband to tell me when it’s over!

Montreal Cirque Festival 2016

But he was having so much fun that I couldn’t not watch! Even though there was nothing between him and the hard street below.

Montreal Cirque Festival 2016

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Ice Boy Wants Out

ice sculpture in Place Jacques Cartier, Montréal, March 2016

Ice Boy wants out. Enough of living in an ice cube. There has to be more to life than sub-zero temperatures, icicles and snow.

He wants change, something different. Very different.

He wants sun and warmth. He dreams of a desert island – sand, palm trees, a tube of SPF 30 suntan lotion, a straw hat. Soft twangy music. He’d get himself a grass skirt, dance a little. Shades. He definitely wants shades. The mirrored kind that turn from blue to green to magenta and stop other people knowing what you’re thinking. A cocktail of course. He’d have to have a cocktail. A red one in a curvy glass with a yellow umbrella perched on top.

Ice Boy chips and scrapes and wriggles all night. His fingers are raw, his fingernails broken, he’s exhausted. But by morning he’s gone.

*****

This is Blurt#38 in my Year of the Blurt! My new year’s resolution was to write one Blurt – a quick, spontaneous story – each week through 2016. Thanks for visiting.

Ice sculpture ‘cut out’ – Place Jacques Cartier, Old Montreal, March 2014.

Seeing Strange: The Horse With No Eyes

Notre Dame Cathedral, Vieux Port, Montreal

Notre Dame Cathedral, Vieux Port, Montreal

I’m waiting for a friend in Place d’Armes, the plaza in front of the Notre Dame Cathedral in Montreal’s Vieux Port.

A great place to wait! So much to enjoy!

Narrow cobbled streets, the imposing cathedral, the surrounding historic buildings (which include Montreal’s oldest building: Saint Sulpice Seminary dating from 1687), a guitarist and singer performing under a shady tree, tourists…and of course, the calèches – the horse-drawn carriages festooned with flowers or feathers.

calèche opposite Saint Sulpice Seminary, Vieux Port, Montreal

Three young kids break away from their parents as they catch sight of the queue of calèches, shrieking with delight. They run across the plaza towards the horses, eyes shining, arms open.

Halfway across, the smallest, a boy, freezes, a terrified look on his face. Continue reading

Snow Rage: Writing Lesson From A Snowy Sidewalk

I’m clumping along on my ‘grippers’ – grampons attached to boots for icy sidewalks – to the pharmacy. Only a narrow strip of sidewalk has been cleared between the two banks of high snow.

Inevitably I’m going to come face to face with someone heading in the opposite direction. Who will be the one to step aside, into the snow, and wait for the other to pass? Me? Or the other person? Continue reading

When Someone Reads What You’ve Written

well salted Montreal street outside Montreal General HospitalYou’d think that celebrated award-winning children’s author David Elliott couldn’t possibly complain of a shortage of readers. But in a recent post on his website he shares his disappointment with a particular publishing experience.

I was impressed that an author with such a large following would be so honest about a less than stellar publication experience, and was as happy as if I’d written the book myself when I learned that all was not lost… that David had received Continue reading