The Find



Ella saw the carpet at the car boot sale. It was draped across a chest of draws, there was something about it that drew her in. On inspection it was covered in dust, but it kind of spoke to her.  She could see the rich reds underneath the dust and grime, it spoke of adventures.

A man who had come along to the stall after Ella was also trying to look at the carpet, but she was there first and therefore had first dibs. ‘There is a beautiful carpet over the way too’ he said, pointing off across the boot sale, ‘Why don’t you take a look if you like carpets’.  Well there are no flies on Ella and this was all she needed to give her the push  to make up her mind.  Ella paid £40 for the carpet, as that was the very lowest the trader would accept and left it with him to continue her walk around the boot sale.  It was meant to be she thought to herself, she never had more than a few pounds on her when she visited the boot sale, she came for a walk in the sun and a rummage usually.  Today she just happened to have the money she owed her sister in her purse.

When Ella returned later to collect the carpet, the trader laughed as he told her the other guy was really upset to have missed out on the carpet.  He knew all about it from its markings, he knew it was a good carpet and knew the region it was made, he had been furious to be beaten on this find.  The trader told her he now thought he had been mistaken to let it go so cheaply, Ella laughed and shook his hand as she left with the carpet.  Luckily she had help from her friend carrying it across the boot sale to where the car was parked.  She noticed the guy who had wanted the carpet too, and the scowl on his face as he saw her with her prize.

Laid on the floor in her lounge it was clear it needed a clean but even so she could see it was meant to be.  It fitted perfectly with her decor, it almost appeared that the furniture around it had been placed there afterwards to compliment it.  Ella thought this was a little like her life at the moment with pieces slotting in finally to where they were supposed to.

Later, after much scrubbing and vacuuming Ella looked at her beautiful carpet and sighed. she was really happy she got out of bed to go to the boot sale this morning.  Ella grabbed a cushion, lit a candle and laid out on her new carpet.  As she did she had a funny feeling that she had come home, how strange she thought as she dropped off in exhaustion on the  floor with her hand gently stoking the weave of the rug.

Ella’s dreams were beautiful, she travelled the universe and understood it was meant to be.


Daily Word Prompt – Orderly

Ron was about as orderly as they come, slightly over the top some might say. He put it down to his time in the forces, whatever it was he liked everything to be spick and span.

He surveyed the apartment one more time and smiled, everything was gleaming as it should. He could see his face in the taps and the sink was dry and polished, not a single water mark in sight but he buffed it again all the same.

He was waiting for Miriam to arrive, she hadn’t been to his home before and he wanted to show her how well he looked after himself. He had always been the same, even when his wife was alive he took charge of the housework. That had been their deal, she did the cooking and ironing and he took care of the house. She had been a wonderful cook, she could make something from nothing all right, they didn’t need to splash out on fancy ingredients. Everybody commented on her skill in the kitchen, it had been difficult adjusting after she went. He was getting better as time went on and tonight he would be cooking for Miriam.

Ron thought he would sit Miriam in the leather chair, save the job of puffing the cushions. He would sit opposite and the could enjoy an aperitif before dinner.

He thought about the music he had chosen, he didn’t want to put it on until after the taxi had left the complex, this way just the right track would be playing when she arrived. Ron looked down to the parking lot but no sign of a taxi yet.

It wasn’t long before the door knocked, Ron was confused he hadn’t heard a taxi.  He hurried over to the stereo and pressed play before having one more check of himself in the mirror and opening the door.  Miriam was standing there somewhat windswept with a dripping umbrella in her hand.  ‘I thought I would walk, clear the cobwebs’ she said, giving him a peck on the cheek and walking past him into the apartment.  Miriam still had her umbrella in her hand and it was dripping all over his freshly polished floors.  Ron quickly relieved her of the umbrella and and pointed her towards the leather chair as planned.  ‘What a beautiful apartment’ Miriam said.  ‘If you don’t mind I would rather sit on the couch, it looks so lovely and comfortable with all those cushions to support ones back’.  Ron screamed silently, he hadn’t sat on the sofa in a year, the cushions were heavy and he wasn’t getting any younger. ‘Of course’ Ron obliged, knowing he should have been faster.

Ron prepared drinks and nibbles and brought them over to the sitting area on a tray.  He purposefully left the tray on the glass coffee table, to protect it from ring marks and crumbs.  Miriam, must have missed this as she pushed the tray slightly to put her glass down on the table.  Miriam told Ron she had brought some photos along to show him and popped her bruschetta on the side to dig into her handbag.  Ron watched as the oil and glass met, he missed what she was saying as she handed him the photo.

Miriam said she would like to use the bathroom before dinner and Ron pointed the way, quickly wiping the table with his nicely ironed hanky chief as soon as she was out of eyesight.  Ron listened as the taps in the bathroom ran and thought about the splashes, thought about the fresh clean towels now creased.

Maybe it was too early to consider lady friends he thought, after all his wife had only been gone six years.

Going Home

She walked down the cobbled pathway towards toward her childhood home, she hadn’t been back in years and yet it looked just the same. The shiny cobbles the rain had washed and shined for her arrival, the blossom floating between the cobbles, knocked from the tree in the shower sparked memories of days gone by. A rainbow appeared to arch the ally down the hill to the small house where she had been brought up. Didn’t that signify a pot of gold, she certainly hoped so.

She was looking for herself, she was in search of what was constant inside of her, what was true. She had changed so much since she left the village, travelled the world and met so many people she felt that she had been moulded into something else completely. She wanted to find her essence in all the confusion of life and had felt a pull to return to where it began if she were ever to find the truth.

She wanted to find what was real, not just thought, fear or judgement but real and constant. She knew she had to come back to the village, experience the peace of the place and still her mind. She took a deep breath and slowly let it leave her body as she took a step closer to the house at the end of the lane.

Her therapist had asked her what in her life was constant and she hadn’t been able to answer. She thought it was something about who she really was and might be discovered in returning to where she had come from at the very beginning of her life. The place she had felt safe in, the place in which she had been allowed to be her natural and authentic self.

Now she knew she had to let go of yesterday and the city, let all the thoughts go past. Accept and let them pass, she did’t want to dwell on them, she didn’t want to loose track of why she was here. She looked down at her feet, connecting to the earth and step by step moved closer to home.

The gate still hung from the rickety post, she lifted the latch and pushed it open stepping onto the path. Flowers framed the pathway to the front door, smiling up at her as she passed them, welcoming her home. The door was still green, a slightly deeper shade but green non the less. She put her hand on the brass handle, feeling the warmth of the metal in her palm. She took another deep breath, opened the door and stepped through.

She was in the parlour, it was exactly how she had remembered although she didn’t want to think she wanted to still her mind. The same old comfy chair was in the middle of the room and she stepped towards it and sat, hands open on her lap. Her mind was still and her heart was open as she sat there waiting, watching and listening. She saw herself sitting, she watched as thoughts passed by in trickles, she let them go, detaching herself from anything outside of herself. For the first time in a long time she felt at one with herself, she wasn’t watching herself anymore she was connected to her true self, her essence. She felt love and realised she was love, love was all there was, love was her constant.  She was at one with the watcher inside, the self that accepted without judgment, she was home.

A breeze blew through her hair and she opened her eyes from her meditation and wiped the tears from her cheeks. She uncrossed her legs and stretched up with her arms, it was always good to go home and get away from the city.

Meeting Me

Today I met myself on my way down the hill.  I was retracing my steps and thinking about where I could have gone wrong on the way.  I’m not sure if I was unconsciously trying to find myself or if we just bumped into each other by accident, but it happened as destiny does.

Both rounded the corner at exactly the same time, it was as if the planets were aligned.  I was preoccupied and lost in thought and she was in a hurry to meet him. The moment stretched like an elastic band, pulled and ready to burst.  I saw her touch herself to make sure she was still there. We were both surprised, her more than me I think as surprises lessen as life goes on.

I studied her, the fresh face, the thick, dark curly hair and the air of excitement that she carried. She was in love, it was not long after they had met and she still wore that look of nervous expectation.  I remembered the day well, today the relationship would be sealed.  I looked and remembered how long it had taken her to decide what to wear, I also knew what she had in her overstuffed handbag.  I smiled, I wanted to tell her he wasn’t really worth it, that in the end she would find she didn’t really know him but I couldn’t do that, she would have to find that out herself. She would have ten years of happiness with him anyway, well most of it happy and she would have our beautiful child. I envied her the opportunity to hold our baby once more, the freedom and the life she had in front of her.  She had so many choices to make, so many experiences to grab. I thought back to the day when I had been standing in her shoes and tried to look out of her eyes and find myself, I must have missed this moment last time.  Funny how many things we miss as we rush through life getting to our destination.

A thought jumped into my mind, if she hadn’t seen me when we were here before, what else could change, what if she made different choices. I wanted to know what would happen if she changed the course of events that brought me here now, where would I be if anything changed.  I looked down at myself and prayed I wouldn’t dissolve into nothingness.  I wanted to tell her how to do it right, how to keep me alive, but I knew I couldn’t. I didn’t even remember all of it, life was a whirl back then, full of ups and downs. I wanted to tell her it would be okay, that the tears of her lessons would dry and she would realise that she had her whole life before her.  I wanted her to meet him, he was a big stepping stone to our future, but again I stayed silent.

She looked at me, my thinning hair, dyed to hide to the inevitable grey and extra pounds I carried.  She was such a willow of a girl if only she knew how beautiful she was, if she could only see the light that shone out.  I thought of a number of outfits I could have put on today that might have left a better impression, I didn’t want to scare her.  I imagine she thought I had let myself go and I wanted to tell her how hard it was to remain slim, I wanted to let her know I was only a size 10/12 after all not that much bigger in the scheme of things, just softer in places.  I didn’t utter a word, just stood a little taller and pulled tight on what was left of my stomach muscles. She had a cigarette in her hand and I knew another twenty Marlborough Red in her bag at least, I desperately wanted a drag.  I hadn’t smoked now in years but that moment I was a smoker again.

I thought of what I could tell her, asked myself what lessons she needed, but realised she would probably laugh, after all I was as old as our mum now and when did she ever listen to mum.  I wanted to tell her about all the people that she shouldn’t waste her time on and those that would be with her all the way.  I wanted to tell her how her family were truly her real friends, but she would have to find that out herself. In fact she would have to find it all out herself, as that is what would take her up the hill I had just walked down from. I understood, that it is the challenges that are before her, that will mould her and create the me of today and I couldn’t help her with any of it.

Neither of us had spoken, we just stood transfixed staring at each other in that moment. I smiled gently at her and without a word I walked away. I hoped that my smile conveyed the love I had for her, the love that I had for myself.

I didn’t turn around as I walked back up the hill again, I knew at some stage she would follow me.