Tag Archives: vacation

The Idyllic Place & The Daily Prompt


Daily Prompt: Always Something There to Remind Me

A song comes on the radio and instantly, you’re transported to a different time and place. Which song(s) bring back memories for you and why? Be sure to mention the song, and describe the memory it evokes.

When the song Penny Lane by The Beatles is played I immediately think about sitting at a kitchen table in an upstairs apartment in Shirley, Massachusetts the winter of 66/67. I sat and listened to that song one morning back then. My wife had just prepared breakfast. We were, in a sense living on Penny Lane – we were living on pennies.

Each line of that song reminds me of different aspects of that small New England town, but most importantly of two married kids struggling with meager and cruel realities and only the hope was that things would somehow improve.

Here is my short story for the day:

  The Idyllic Place

Luke and his family moved in the valley about the same time Ken and his family did. They lived a mile apart. They always said that’s close enough for anybody to live, especially good friends. Ken always said, “Fences don’t make good neighbors; distance does.”

That’s not to say the families didn’t get together now an then, they did and it was always healthy, happy, and good.

Luke and Ken hunted together. It was as much for safety as it was companionship and friendship. The knew how far and how close to get.

It was fall and they sat on a warm rock overlooking one of their favorite hunting grounds. It was a place where elk seemed to graze in the sweet grass and nibble on the wild black berries.

“I’ve been thinking about moving on,” Ken said.

“Ya don’t like it here?” Luke said.

“Monotony,” Ken said.

“What monotony?” Luke said. “Everyday there’s something new. Every few months the seasons change. We got a river to explore and fish. And what is it they say you never cross the same river twice. You never track a deer or elk the same way twice. We ski in the winter, swim in the summer, plant in the spring, harvest and can in the fall. Are you getting soft on us?” Luke gave Ken a friendly nudge.

“I want to go to the open sea,” Ken said. “Sell everything and buy a sailboat. Me and the family just sail from one point to another. Experience…”

“Ken,” Luke said. “I’ve been to sea. It’s the boat and water – all the time. Think about it.”

Ken closed his eyes. A good two minutes passed and he opened them.

“Well,” Luke said. “How did you like it?”

“My family talked me into coming back,” Ken said. “A shark bit my leg off, we got caught in a hurricane, sprung a leak, were adrift in a life raft for two months with nothing to eat.” Ken jumped up immediately.

“What’s wrong!” Luke said.

“We were about to eat our youngest,” Ken said. “I’m going back to the cabin the make sure we didn’t.”

Luke looked at Ken strangely.

“What?” Ken exclaimed. “You want for me to make my trip all idyllic?”



Filed under Daily Prompt, Short Stories

Onondaga, Michigan: The Jittery Goat Travel Log – Places I’ve Been

Onondaga, Michigan

Onondaga, Michigan

While a resident of south/central Michigan the TV station I most watched was WLIX Channel 10, Lansing/Jackson/Onondaga. What! Onondaga, where’s that?

Well, it’s between Lansing and Jackson and the location WLIX’s TV tower. So I suppose to be assured of police protection and to keep high school students from draping toilet paper from the tower, WLIX agreed to name Onondaga as one of its broadcast locations.

What can be said about Onondaga?

Well, it has a really tall TV transmitting tower that seems out of place.

Likely it is one of those places that people go to be alone. I’ve heard more lonely hearts stories emanate from the bar in Onondaga than from any honky-tonk in Nashville. I’m surprised someone hasn’t written a love-lost country song from Onondaga by now.

It’s one of those out of the way places where out of the way people go to be out of the way. It’s where bikers go to be alone

It’s sort of a town that time has forgotten, but bikers will remember.

An Onondaga Conversation

I stopped at the gas station in Onondaga one day. I went inside and got a coffee. A biker pulled up next to my car while I was inside. He was a big guy, tattoos, scars, and beard. He nodded at me in a friendly way.

I thought a little conversation with my coffee would be good.

“Sure are a lot of bikers who pass through here,” I said.

“You got a problem with that?” he said.

“I’m just trying to make conversation,” I said.

“Starting a conversation is saying ‘sure is a nice day,’” he said.

“Okay,” I said. “Sure is a nice day.”

“You got a problem with that?” He said.

So if you ever go to Onondaga, Michigan start your conversation by saying, “I don’t have any problems and I don’t want any, but you guys sure have a nice TV tower just west of town. Is that why so many bikers hang-out here?”

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Filed under Places & Travel

Thompkins, Michigan: The Jittery Goat Travel Log – Places I’ve Been

The Thompkins Cemetery, I wonder how many are buried there as a result of a botched child exchange between divorced couples?

The Thompkins Cemetery, I wonder how many are buried there as a result of a botched child exchange between divorced couples?

Thompkins, Michigan is on M50 northwest of Jackson, Michigan.

It has a grocery with two week old Honey Buns. Stick them in a microwave and you’d think they were fresh from the cooking fat. They have coffee that was fresh once (on second thought, likely never fresh). It is something neither sugar, cream, or whiskey can improve.
If you leave their stale Honey Bun in cup of their coffee overnight it becomes a new life form by morning. It consumes all harmful bacteria, but don’t let it get near the cat or parakeet.
There is also a hardware store in Thompkins. They used to have a sign in the parking lot that read, “No children exchanges.” Apparently divorced parents thought that was a good place to exchange their children.
I asked the clerk at the hardware store why the sign was put up?
“Are you kidding me,” he said. “Every Friday this place was like the shoot-out at the OK Coral. I’d rather this place be a bikers’ hangout.”


Filed under Essays, Places & Travel

Gutman, Ohio; The Jittery Goat Travel Log – Places I’ve Been

Gutman, a hundred years ago, in its heyday.

Gutman, a hundred years ago, in its heyday.

Gutman, Ohio is on Route 65 about 5 1/2 miles north of Jackson Center, Ohio.

I lived near Gutman.

The neat thing about this place is that you don’t have to slow down when you go through it. That makes the average legal speed 55 MPH, perhaps the highest average legal speed limit within an entire population center in the nation.

It’s unclear from where Gutman got its name. I don’t want to know how Gutman got its name, but something must have happened there and it wasn’t good.

Nobody famous came from Gutman. Somebody famous drove through Gutman, but refused to be identified.

At one time a store was there. I needed milk so went in to buy some.

I asked the guy who ran the place where the milk was.

“Dairy, aisle 12,” he said.

I smiled. “There’s only one aisle.”

‘We started with twelve,” he said. “We were expecting bigger things.”

I went to the dairy case. There was only one gallon remaining. I looked at the date. “Hey,” I said. “This expired ten days ago.”

“My, how time flies,” he said. “We’re expecting a delivery tomorrow. We’ll have fresh then.”

“I’ll just come back tomorrow,” I said.

“Before ya go can ya do me a favor,” he said.

“Sure,” I said. “What’s that?”

“Slide that gallon of milk down about two feet in the dairy case,” he said. “That’s the cottage cheese section.”


Filed under Places & Travel

Budapest And Bud Light

Daily Prompt: Come Fly with Me

 Share a story about the furthest you’ve ever traveled from home.

My wife and I still live under the illusion there are places to visit untouched by the commercialism of western culture. New Orléans, Hong Kong, New York, Las Vegas, London, and Paris would be nice to visit and my wife and me would certainly find them enjoyable, but it’s not our cup of tea. We like quiet vacations on the coast of Maine.
We had heard Budapest would be a place for us. It was said to be a bit behind other cities and retained much of its old world charm. The west had not invaded or totally taken over.
We were eager for our visit. We envisioned quiet streets and walks along the Danube River. We could hardly wait to sit and chat at sidewalk cafes as we watched trolleys clickety-click by and boats slowly follow the current of the Danube. We almost heard to stings of a violin being drawn by the bow of a seasoned street musician.
After leaving our plane and walking through a thoroughly modern airport we boarded a bus for the city of Budapest.
As we approached the city we saw a billboard advertising a ZZ Top concert. The bus left us off at a fine hotel overlooking the Danube and the famous Chain Bridge, but on the first floor was a casino. We dined at a small restaurant that served Bud Light.
We arrived a decade or so too late.

Moore Traveling bloggers:

  1. Travels | The Magic Black Book
  2. Daily Prompt: Come Fly with Me | Under the Monkey Tree
  3. The newbie wed – prologue | Beth Byrnes
  4. Flying from Nowhere | Mara Eastern’s Personal Blog
  5. come fly with me | Bizzimummy’s World
  6. Rural Tourism in Russia: Russian Village Street Photography | Bright Moments Catcher
  7. The Lord of the Ring | Geek Ergo Sum
  8. Come Fly With Me…to the Dominican Republic | Maybe Not So Zen…
  9. Let the thoughts flow | Le Drake Noir
  10. My Grand Thailand Adventure! | Open to Experience
  11. The loveliness of Crete… | alienorajt
  12. To the Moon and Back | Delana’s World
  13. My.Vivid.Visions | Daily Prompt: Come Fly with Me – to Mysore
  14. Budapest And Bud Light | The Jittery Goat
  15. Daily Prompt: Come Fly with Me | Anniemation Floe
  16. Come Fly With Me: Traveling from the Bottom to the Top of the World | Charles Ray’s Ramblings
  17. New post Daily Prompt: Come Fly with Me | Welcome to msxhan. The great tricks, tips, infos, poetry and much more.
  18. Back to Starting point | crookedeyebrows
  19. She’s Leaving Home | Javagrrl Cafe
  21. Come Fly with Me – Jumping Pics Around the World | First for Everything
  22. Oh Chanukkah, Oh Chanukkah … in Israel! | Stacy Gittleman’s blog
  23. Daily Prompt: Come Fly with Me | Awl and Scribe
  24. Daily Prompt: Come Fly With Me | Transitions
  25. Enjoying the sunshine in New York’s green promenade is possible; it should be the case in Albania too | Laura’s Little Things
  26. Life Living In Europe | Kansa Muse
  27. Daily Prompt: Come Fly with Me- to the West Coast | Wordz on a Page
  28. Let’s fly away. | smoke&mirrors
  29. Rockin Down That Highway | maunderingsofaninja
  30. Daily Prompt: Travels | veryvanessalynn
  32. Travels [Daily Prompt: Come Fly with Me] | unknowinglee
  33. [DAILY PROMPT] Come Fly with Me. | Fathia’s little cave
  34. Wanderlust | Drops of Magic
  35. Daily Prompt: Come Fly with Me | life n me!
  36. Short Story – ” The Hunters- A Thanksgiving story “ « Dancing with Fireflies
  37. Daily Prompt: Come Fly with Me | Chronicles of an Anglo Swiss
  38. Daily Prompt: Come Fly With Me | Undecided Answer
  39. Home… Where is that? | An Upturned Soul
  40. Come Fly with Me | Going New Places!
  41. “Travels” | Relax
  42. Under the Bridge | Broken Light: A Photography Collective
  43. A Long Time Ago In a Graduate School Far, Far Away
  44. Flying Crab Apples: A Daily Prompt | melanielynngriffin
  45. Come Fly with Me [Daily Prompt/NaBloPoMo]
  46. Daily Prompt: Traveling | Tommia’s Tablet
  47. Travels … on the pier | … Lara Klopp … Variegated Musings …
  48. The Reluctant Tourist | Just Visiting This Planet
  49. Travels … back in time | … Lara Klopp … Variegated Musings …
  50. Travels … curiousity | … Lara Klopp … Variegated Musings …
  51. Journey To The Valley Of Makkah | seifsalamakarem
  52. Photolog of the US | A mom’s blog
  53. China | The Land Slide Photography
  54. Flying First Time | Flowers and Breezes
  55. Time Travel | It’s a wonderful F’N life
  56. Bratwurst and Bitterballen | Fruit Loops & Foie Gras
  57. Come Fly with Me | Real Life Co.
  58. Kirkwood, Missouri | Life is great
  59. I have been 1/8 of the way to the moon – and there are really big spiders there! | The Flavored Word
  60. NaBloPoMo: A Trip to Remember | The Joyful Soul
  61. Once in a Lifetime….(wp daily prompt) | Daily Observations
  62. The impossibility of sleep on an airline. | thoughtsofrkh
  63. Once, we were THIS far away … | Margaret Rose Stringer
  64. Far Far Away | Giving Thought | Giving Sight


Filed under Daily Prompt, Essays, Places & Travel

Geyer, Ohio; The Jittery Goat Travel Log – Places I’ve Been

I contributed one of these to the Geyer, Ohio junk yard. It was a classic.

I contributed one of these to the Geyer, Ohio junk yard. It was a classic.

I once lived a little more than a half mile east of Geyer, Ohio.

There is really no conceivable reason for Geyer to exist. It’s not at an intersection of two highways, there is no river, or port; it just exists, although it does intersect with a railroad and a township road, but that happens all the time.

There is a junk yard there. I contributed a ‘62 Simca and strongly suspect my ‘63 Chevy truck, I sold to a teenage rabble-rouser, ended up there also. That’s the only commerce in town unless somebody is cooking meth.

I talked to an old timer one time. He told me that there used to be more bars than houses in Geyer. He said there were 11 dwellings, six of which were bars. Sounds like my kind of town.

Geyer used to be on my jogging trail. I recall after many a long run passing through the town and thinking ‘man, I could use a cold one.’ There’s something mystical about places like that; they create something in you that only alcohol can appease.

When giving directions I’d always say, “Take Route 65 south till you smell it and head west until you step in it.”


Filed under Places & Travel

Rives Junction, Michigan; The Jittery Goat Travel Log – Places I’ve Been

232323232%257Ffp53386%253Enu%253D3248%253E%253A55%253E435%253EWSNRCG%253D34369768%253C8325nu0mrj_full[1]At the insistence of my friend, who will remain anonymous, but anyway Roger said I should write about Rives Junction, Michigan. I quickly dismissed the suggestion because Rives Junction is too big, but on second thought it is just right.

Right smack-dab in the middle of town is one of the best meat markets I’ve ever gone to. They make a bean soup that is as good as it is simple. They have a variety of outstanding sausages, but lousy coffee and stale Honey Buns.

There appears to be several substantial, yet small manufacturing companies in Rives Junction. I stopped in to one of them and asked, “What do you manufacture?”

The receptionists gave me a three teeth smile, “Stuff.”

There is also a monastery in Rives Junction. After reading the preceding link I still don’t understand why Rives Junction was selected as a location for a monastery.

Out of curiosity I went to the monastery and asked what they did there? A very nice nun said, “We devote our lives to prayer and make stuff.”

“The place down the road makes stuff too,” I said.

“Yeah, but you don’t get any prayers with their stuff,” the nun said.

“What do you pray for?’ I said.

“Good stuff,” the nun said.

I went back to the first place and said to the three teethed lady, “Do you know they make stuff down at the monastery and offer a prayer with it?”

“It’s a marketing gimmick,” she said.


Filed under Places & Travel