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Monday Morning Photo - Finca de la Pansa

Finca de la Pansa B&B, once a farm house where grapes were dried to make the local Moscatel wine. The local farmsteads had this type of traditional frontage with arches so that the grapes - laid out on large cane mats could be dragged under cover quickly if it rained - yet still be out in the air to ´cure.´ See the video of Finca de la Pansa B&B on YouTube. Visit the  Finca de la Pansa website.

Short Story - A Life Changing Day

A little departure from my normal posts but I just saw this short story that I wrote for a competition in my documents file and thought was a waste just sitting there so if you fancy a short story here's my entry for a competition. The rules were not more than 500 words and the theme: May.

I'd love it if you'd leave me a comment or a suggestion for its title. I have written several short stories before, usually hand-written and never quite finished.

A Life Changing Day

It was the sort of bright grey day that caused wrinkle lines. A day that wasn't going to rain but neither was the sun going to peep through that mass of cloud. May felt the beginnings of a headache from squinting so, but was determined to finish the weeding. It was spring her favourite season.

Every day brought about amazing changes. Sticks on shrubs became invisible under fresh young leaves. Seeds became tiny seedlings. Birds twittered away more animatedly than before. Just a bit of sunshine would be lovely she thought. So engrossed was she imagining just how colourful the garden would be in a few weeks time that the quiet footsteps approaching her gate went unheard.

The voice startled her “Excuse me” a young lady said. May turned round so fast she almost lost her balance. “Yes!” She replied a little sharply.
“Er, sorry. I wonder, are you Mrs Charles?” The girl was clasping and unclasping her hands in front of her. “I'm trying to find Mrs May Charles.”

May struggled to get up from her kneeler. Aware she was being watched made it all the more difficult. “I am she.” she replied walking stiffly towards the garden gate. “And who are you?”
A huge smile changed the girl's face from awkward to beautiful. “I'm Toni, Antonia Hill but you won't know me. It's my late grandmother Agnes Brightly who I hope you know. Knew” she corrected herself, the smile slipping sadly away. “ I believe you and she were friends many years ago. Are you my grandmother's friend May?”

“Yes. Your grandmother was my very dear friend. We were young together, always together for many years. Then her parents moved halfway across the country. We were heartbroken, we wrote to each other every week for years. We both got married.... Moved many times, lost touch. Life took over, we never found each other again. I always meant to but didn't really know where to begin.” She sighed. “So long ago. But you found me! How long ago did she leave us?” May smacked her gloves on her hand. “Just listen to me going on! Would you like a cup of tea? Please say yes.

At ease with each other drinking their tea May watched as Toni carefully dunked her biscuit.
“Do you have children?” Toni asked
May looking at her guest and after a pause said “No my dear. I did. Such a long time ago. My husband died very young in an accident... I never remarried.”

“How many children did your grandmother have?”
Toni replied “Just my mum, apparently she couldn't have more... Sad don't you think? I've got two brothers, but being a girl I had to help Mum clear out Grandma's bungalow. I found some photos and papers mentioning you and Mum. I didn't show her” then boldly looking at May “Should I have?”
Sunshine lit the room as May said “I think we should.”

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