Back when I lived in Bali I used to write a lot with prompts. Six Sentence Stories was one of them. The person behind Six Sentence Stories is still updating the prompt and anyone can join!

Stop Stalling

Stop trying to turn on the motor, you will drown it.
But we’ve been stalled here for so long we have to do something or we will never get out.
We need to fix the motor’s emotion sensors, it’s too anxious to start up today.
You’re right, it needs a dose of something.
Stop stalling and give it some love.
Open up and revive yourself.

How far can you throw that?

Is that a piece of caper that you just threw at my face?
In how many pieces can you peel a tangerine, and do you have to throw every single bit as far as toddlery possible?
That apple will explode on the sidewalk and float in the pool, how far can you throw it?
Here, throw this rock at the waves to see it splash.
Do NOT throw your dirty underwear at me!
Listen how the wash towel sounds when it hits the water mom, mom, moooom, MOOOOM.

The Asian Standard?

I arrived in Laos with a four month belly and 8 years of household pampering hanging over my head like a rainbow cloud.

Walking into the huge Asian-Miami looking house with tile floors that reached infinity and teak staircases that gave me instant panic attacks about the one and a half year old that would have to brave them; the first thing I noticed was that the windows were not see through clean and that my feet were getting dirty from the dust on the floor.

I emailed the owner to complain and she went on to explain about “Asian Standards” pretty much saying that I was being ridiculous and that none of her children had needed safety gates for the stairs and if I wanted the house to be shiny clean I’d have to do it myself.

Three and a half years have passed since then, the windows in the house in Bali that we have been in living in for 10 months, have only been cleaned once when we moved in, my feet have dark calluses that I can hike barefoot with (I know, I’ve tried) and my bathroom mirrors always have spots.

Have my cleanliness standards changed?

I’m just a little more relaxed about it I guess, just one of the ways that life in Asia changes you.

Licorice and SpiceLicorice and Spice? Discontentment in Six Sweet Sentences

Contentment of sorts, is a jelly bean in a sea of salty Swedish drop, sea salt, sugar and spice, aniseed and chewy licorice in an ocean of savory powder sugar.

I feel content when the day is clear and the winds are loose, cold sun and shiny clouds blowing overhead.

Today I got a box in the mail, later than it should have arrived with the contents exploded in a spicy sticky mess.

Salty sweets gooey from home, melted in a sea of yellow chili, books and dolls stained like an ochre rainbow.

I am not content with the contents of that damn box

I feel content when the night is light and the stars shine in constellations of fiery dreams, not when my sweets arrive in a mush of stale disgust.

Lego Projectile War

“Give me that, give it to me, now, go on, give it to me, NOW!”

The lego construction flew like a projectile against the wall breaking apart in a rainbow of bricks, and then the crying started, “That was your sister´s construction!, why are you being mean?”
“That`s what I do, destroy!”
“Next time throw your own constructions against the wall, not your sister’s, she’s still upset, let’s help her build another one.”
Another projectile lego build against the tiled floor and a scream of excited destruction.
“I swear I’m gonna projectile dump those stupid legos out the window!!!!”

Turn it down!

It’s stifling in here, open the window for the air to get in.
Don’t forget to keep the screen closed for the mosquitoes and the flies.
Pass me the control for the AC the air from outside isn’t cool enough, close the window quickly before the cool air gets out.
Oh shit it’s so cold, what is it on, 18?
Turn it off I’m freezing, wait no, just put the temperature up and the potency on low.
And that is how we spend every night in this tropical Asian heat.

The Puddles on the Way

 Jumping over the holes on the road, he sometimes slips and lands straight in the puddle splashing his stripy pants creating a myriad of brown dots and stains around his legs.
We are late for school but he has no notion of time, or minutes left or minutes gone, I check the phone every 20 seconds, about every two jumps.
His contagious laughter and giggling make me smile while also getting on my nerves, the car is waiting in front of the shop we have to hurry!
On the last jump before the car, his funny feet step right into a deep lake of street mud and his clothes get totally splattered.
I manage to dry his feet with tissues so that he doesn´t get a cold from the AC and its just a mess really.
We get to school just in time and he looks like a walking pollock painting, I look down and my legs looks just like his, street mud art of the best kind.


These Elephants are NOT Pink.

The water was cold and murky like a forgotten cup of chocolate milk, making me uncomfortable and nervous of leeches and unexpected river critters that could bite me or brush against me causing some kind of muddy anxiety attack.

The Mahout was all smiles as he sat on the elephant’s back and handed me a hard bristle brush to get the caked dirt off the thick grey skin next to my pale goose-pimply legs.

I was distracted enough to not notice the sudden jerk of the animal’s head and all of sudden I’m showered in brown water, not just from the river but from the inside of the elephant’s trunk.

I start to really doubt my choice in partaking of this activity, when did I think that having prickly elephant hairs under my thighs and my feet in mysterious water was a good idea?

I stop imagining and laugh maniacally, I’m not really in that river I’m just watching other people suffer / enjoy their elephant bathing session while I sip a cold mojito on a lounge chair.

You will never get me to sit on an elephant, I’ll stick to giving them bananas to grab with their long winding trunks, and try not to step on their poop