Recovery Week! (aka Pictures of Portugal)

Hello! I got back mid last week and we had a great Portuguese vacation! (The only bad thing about the entire trip was that, on our first day there, we received notification that a good friend was lost in the Chatanika River. If you’re feeling flush for it, or just want to leave a message of sympathy and support for his family, there’s a GoFundMe campaign set up for his wife and two small children. Thanks!)

We’ve only been back in town for a couple days, so I haven’t had a chance to sit down and write anything up and so, in keeping with post-vacation photographic tradition, here are some photos. (But I’ll admit it frankly- with this batch, I didn’t even try to find a writing theme to go with it. *pulls at face* I AM SO TIRED.)

  1. The “new” church at sunset (Pias)
  2. Me and some water (Foz do Arelho)
  3. Me carrying all my earthly possessions within five thousand miles (Lisbon)
  4. A big bright castle (Pena Palace, Sintra)
  5. A somewhat smaller, somewhat less bright castle (The National Palace, also Sintra)
  6. Husband breaking things and getting trapped in a bathroom (vegan restaurant in a tiny town on the way to Lagos)
  7. Dude tried to eat my foot first thing in the morning how rude (Salema)
  8. You aren’t in love until you share your first bowl of snails (Moura)
  9. Ghost cat resting in peace (Pias)
  10. Sunset on the roof (Lisbon)
  11. The graveyard of an abandoned church my relatives were probably buried in but we’re not sure because the tombs all got raided for rumored gold a couple decades ago, aka people are horrible (outside Pias)
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Blogiversary V

dog-cake-happy-birthday-postcard-greeting-card-send-online-2637_57Hey, look! It’s been another year and I still haven’t managed to get thrown off the internet! *flings confetti*

To celebrate, I’ll be posting three times this week (today, Wednesday, and Friday). Since I haven’t put up any new short stories in a long while, I’ll put up a fresh short on each of those days. So don’t forget to check back again Wednesday and Friday! Happy writing!

Story one: This was written with many regrets at the prompting of my husband, although I have to say, he was very confused with the direction I went with his prompt. I’ve never actually smuggled chihuahuas across the US-Canada border, but I once crossed the border with an apple core in my garbage bag that had actual seeds still in it, so I figure that’s close enough. I can handle myself.

But seriously, everything about this story is so stupid, including the title. I’m sorry, internet.

A Very Poor Career Choice

I know, I know. Of all the things to sneak across a border, chihuahuas are not topping anyone’s Most Smuggled list. But where there’s a demand, there’s a market, and where there’s a stiff tariff, there’s a black market.

A smarter guy would have told his friend no. A smarter guy would have found real work, preferably in front of an air conditioner. But I’ve never been known for my smarts.

I’d run the smelly little yappers across the border a few times already, under the watchful guidance of my buddy Steve, who’s been in this sort of business since our sophomore year of college. They’d been perfectly simple jobs. After all, we were skipping the border between Smallville, USA and Tiny Town, Canada. Not exactly tight security. We picked the little guys up mid-nap, crated them, stacked a few duffle bags on top and, voila! Fifty pooches and five thousand dollars later, we were on our way home. No sweat.

So maybe that’s why it came as such a surprise when, on the first run I attempted without Steve, I showed up ready to crate the dogs, only to find them all wide awake, yapping like maniacs to see me.

I glared at them, imaging what a beautiful arc one would make if I punted it across the warehouse. Then I turned my glare back up to the supplier. “Why are they awake?”

He shrugged, not-my-problem just oozing out of his pores. “Ran out of the stuff.”

I was pretty sure it was a lie. I shook my head. “I can’t take fifty noisy little rats across the border like this.”

He shrugged again.

I whipped out my cell phone and dialed Steve. But Steve wouldn’t answer, probably working his way through an entire paycheck at a skeezy bar. And since he still hadn’t told me anything about who he worked for, I was officially out of options.

To read the full story, go here!