Welcome to Florida

This post is written for Friday Fictioneers.

Enjoy your retirement. Those were his thoughts driving to his new “number one rated” over 55 community. After twenty-eight years working in a big city he looked forward to a little peace and comfort.

Turning on the car radio he heard the announcer matter of fact deliver the “breaking news” (wasn’t everything nowadays breaking news?)…”a gunman opened fire on students and staff at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, killing 17 people and injuring 17 others.” Looking up he noticed the highway sign said “Welcome to Florida”.

Another War Lost

This post is written for Friday Fictioneers. The challenge is to write a story using 100 words or less that has a beginning, middle and end using the picture prompt below.

PHOTO PROMPT © Miles Rost

We were in the heart of a long abandoned area of the park. The greenness of the area hid the desperation of the inhabitants below. Come nightfall the squatters would come back from their days journey in hell. Dirty backpacks, trash bags containing refundable containers, broken grocery carts filled with their worldly possessions. The daily migration never ended. Each day a few crazed zombies added to the population. The poorest of the poor lived right here, underneath the walking path. Some people who had lost their self-respect called this place home.

For some this was another war that they had lost.

The Essence of Her

Photo Credit === Danny James

The counter space reflects her busy life even as we emerge from this devastating pandemic. The two purses are used for specific purposes which I have never understood. I cringe when she ask me to bring her purse. I invariably choose the wrong one.


The two medical cards with our medications are placed where emergency personnel can find them. I have asked myself a few times if the paramedics will even take the time to look, much less read, them.


There’s the business card from the landscape company she is trying to reach because there are brown patches in the yard. I hate to tell her that the brown spots were probably the result of her using way too much Roundup. But I stay quiet.


The colorful luggage tags are for our upcoming trip to Alaska. No international travel for us this year. She has purchased two new sets of luggage to go along with the six suitcases in the garage. I only need one.


There is a picture of me with my beret sitting in the airport in Dublin. It’s her favorite photo of me. I don’t argue with her.

Some day I will have to clean off that counter.

It Hurts to Laugh

This post is written for Friday Fictioneers. The challenge is to write a story with a beginning, middle and end in 100 words of less. My story follows the picture prompt below.

I am disturbed at being alone. That wasn’t always the case. Today, as I look upon the devastation before me, I feel like laughing. There’s not much left of this little piece of paradise. The flooding will start in a few hours. A man rarely feels like laughing alone. When people observe you laughing alone they tend to think you are crazy.

There was advanced warning. Hours before I hear, from the TV under the thatched roof of the Tiki bar, the Governor asking us to leave the area and seek shelter.

I laughed at the possibility.

Behind the Red Door

This post is in response to Friday Fictioneers. The challenge is to write a complete story with a beginning, middle and end in 100 words or less using the picture prompt below.

PHOTO PROMPT © Roger Bultot

I met Sara at the last meeting. I liked her sad story. She is homeless and sleeps on the grassy area under the highway overpass. We mumble “thanks for sharing” and let our minds wander back to our own pathetic world.

When my turn comes I rattle on about my recent good fortune. Faces turn as I describe my new digs. Suddenly Sara shouts that she is tired of sleeping on the streets and asks if I need a roommate. I give her my address.

“How can I find you?” she asks.

“Behind the red door. Number 6,” I reply.

Something to Remember

This post is written for Friday Fictioneers. The challenge is to write a short story, 100 words or less, with a beginning, middle and end using the picture prompt provided. My story follows that picture prompt below.

PHOTO PROMPT © Ted Strutz

Living far from her parents was rough enough in normal times. And this definitely was not close to normal. She regretted now, more than ever before, leaving home. Leaving them so depended on others.

He did not even get the opportunity to see his latest grandchild. Even her mother was not able to be at his bedside when he died. Only the nurse. A nurse who nothing about the wonderful person that lay before her suffering his last suffocating painful breaths.

She received the dreaded last night at 3 a.m.

“Send me something to remember him,” she asked the nurse.

California Zephyr

This story is written for Friday Fictioneers. The challenge is to write a complete story with a beginning, middle and end in 100 words or less using the picture prompt below. My story follows the picture prompt.

PHOTO PROMPT © Alicia Jamtaas

His mind wandered in and out of the real world. His twenty eight years working on Amtrak trains occupied his decaying mind at the moment. He had a nightmare that would not go away.

He had to throw a switch.

The switch that would allow his train to enter the siding and allow the Amtrak California Zephyr to pass on the main line on its way to its final destination in Emeryville. He didn’t realize how much the heavy snow would slow him down.

The headline in the San Francisco Examiner read: “Brakeman only survivor in Amtrak train disaster.”