It’s been a little while since I’ve posted some of my writing, so because a lot of you are off enjoying the holidays and maybe got something crappy for Christmas and want something better (or you got something really good but wished you had something crappy) or you’re bored and are sick of holiday TV, shopping malls and cricket or maybe you received something like an iPad (lucky bastard) and want to check out some reading or maybe you actually have been hanging out waiting for some stories – then this is the bumper post for you.
That’s right – bumper post. Not only do you get another instalment of Code Nine the unpublished crime novel about rookie cop Peter Wallace and the underworld battles between bent cops, outlaw motorcycle gangs, and the mysterious Italians; but you also get another of my short stories – Lost in Suburbia a very true-like story of domestic violence and despair in hot suburbia (you are supposed to feel the sweat in this story); and for a change of pace, one of my picture books written for a three to six year old – I Lost my Pants in the Middle of France (I loved writing this and if one of my gifted nieces reads it you are free to put the story to pictures, like your mother did for one of my other kid’s stories).
So, read on and enjoy.
CHAPTER TEN of the unpublished crime novel Code Nine – in this chapter police meet bikies
LOST IN SUBURBIA a short story about far too many people who are lost in suburbia – She tried to shrink into the couch. She wanted to be one of those things that always got lost under the cushions. But all she could manage was to be one of those things that got lost in suburbia.
Florence – Italy would be nice, but no, we were in Florence Alabama. Why? Why not. Florence is part of a cluster of towns along the Tennessee River in Alabama known as the Quad Cities – Florence, Muscle Shoals, Tuscumbia and Sheffield. The area is known for its music – particularly Muscle Shoals where many of the hits from the 60s were recorded and by people such as Aretha Franklin, Rod Stewart, Eric Clapton, the Allman Brothers and Lynyrd Skynrd have recorded there. Hence, to fit with the theme of our travels (music, BBQ and good times) we decided it would be a nice place to stop between Nashville and Clarksdale. (The other marker on the map is Lynchburg where the Jack Daniels distillery is; we went there after Nashville and en route to Florence).
And yes, happy holidays to all you others. I hope you have all had a great day of eating and being with family and friends. Our day started walking the dogs – weather wasn’t great in Melbourne (in fact it has been sticky hot and pouring rain and golf ball hail stones) so there were no kids out with their new toys but we did pass one house where there were still the remnants of some carrots, oats and drink that Santa and the reindeers couldn’t finish – cute.
And well done to those who were creeping around in the dark last night erecting swings and other such goodies that Santa can never deliver in a flat-pack. Talking about flat-packs my new Lord of the Rings name is Mij Klappar Nalle (only because Mij Hotdog doesn’t count) – see my earlier post if you don’t understand.
The big green egg got a workout with a pork shoulder preceded by prawns and oysters – and let’s not forget the beer and wine. And the trifle and christmas pudding. Christmas is always a great day no matter the weather so I hope you enjoyed your day and all the best to you and your family.
Now, I bet you thought I had finished up with the slow-cooked American BBQ reviews – well, there can never be enough pork stories. I’d heard of an American style BBQ place starting up in Melbourne and one Sunday afternoon we thought we should venture over there rather than joining the queues at the Ikea checkout.
Big Boy BBQ is on one of the many strips along Glenhuntly Road in Caulfield South and the day we arrived it wasn’t busy so parking across the road was easy – but we were there early and there not long after opening. A few groups started to nestle into the booths and there were a few gazing at the take-out getting quite confused with the difference between an Australian hamburger and an Aussie pulled-pork sandwich.
We went for the Carolina pulled-pork sandwich (for Caroline of course) and I went for the half-rack with a side of potato salad and onion strings. And let’s not forget the bottomless cup of soda.
Nashville was a must do this trip and we weren’t disappointed. We were there only a few days but could quite easily have stayed a few more. We never used the car because there was enough by foot but this city deserves another check-in.
On the short drive from Memphis we decided to turn this into a long drive by taking a detour to the Shiloh National Military Park, which was covered in an earlier post. Again, the side-stop was worth it. We enjoyed this part of our trip – even the shuffling from one country station to the next on the radio (although Caroline had reached the stage of switching off Toby Keith).
I have two bitsa dogs – an old black one: Dixie, and a young whipper snapper white one: Dusty. Both I rescued when they were about five months old – Dixie from the RSPCA and Dusty an impulse buy from the Lost Dog’s Home last Christmas. I don’t know their history but I am sure Dusty was raised on a diet of sugar and red cordial.
But Dusty is a loving little dog and enjoys a snuggle in-between chewing up anything that fits in her mouth (although she has kind of grown out of that now – we hope as we have a new couch on order). And she loves the off-leash park but best of all she loves to go for a swim, then a roll in the dirt until she is completely camouflaged. I think she just wants to be like Dixie. See for yourself 😀
We went to Memphis on our first American trip about ten years back but it is worth a revisit. Our first visit was an experience – Graceland was the focus and is a must do; the Greyhound bus we had to catch from New Orleans to Memphis was also an experience but not one that needs to be repeated unless you want to travel with the poor, the backpackers or those just released from prison.
So this time there was no Greyhound bus and there was no Graceland. But there was still plenty on the go and I would still consider Memphis one of those places you should make an effort to visit.
I was going through my early pieces of fiction and came across this script of a short story I had written. I read the short story in public at an open day and then decided to see how it would turn into a short film – and also to see how a story translates differently when on screen.
Any of you experts out there are welcome to comment – and even turn it into a film. (If you aren’t sure of some of the scriptwriting terms: SFX = sound effect; CU = close up; POV = point of view; VO = voice over (I have used it as voice off screen.)