Tuesday 15 December 2009

Portrait Of Words # 23

This writing challenge has changed. Originally Jeff (A Word in Edgewise) started up this monthly challenge, derived from a previous challenge from R.E.H.'s "Picture Fiction Challenge", but Jeff has given it up and Dr. John (Dr. John's Fortress) and Thom (Thom's Place 4 Well Whatever) have taken over. The challenge is now every two weeks and you can get all the details here, where you can also pick up the links to read all the entries. Do pop over and read, you won't be disappointed.

The challenge is you are given a number of pictures and must use some/all of the pictures to create a story.

Marjorie and Herbert were gazing out of the window of the plane, watching the sun rise over the sea. They were on their way to Egypt to see their daughter, Cassie, marry Omari, a local man she had met whilst working on an archeological dig. They hadn’t met Omari, they didn’t know anything about him at all, except that Cassie loved him.

Apparently the wedding was being held in the dessert quite close to the dig, Herbert and Marjorie did not know what to expect never having travelled anywhere but Brighton for their holidays. Cassie had instructed them on what they would need to pack for the week they were to spend in Egypt and she had made all the arrangements; flights, hotel etc. All they had to do was get on the plane and she would meet them at the other end. They were excited about the wedding, the trip, seeing where their daughter had been working, but they were apprehensive about meeting Omari as they knew nothing about him.

The flight was pleasant and their experience through customs in Cairo quite painless. Thankfully Cassie and Omari were there to meet them and before they knew it they were checking in to the hotel. Cassie had booked an expensive hotel, telling her mother and father not to worry about the cost as she would sort it out. She suggested they unpacked and had something to eat and she and Omari would come back for them later, when it was cooler, and take them sightseeing. Thankful for the chance to cool down they kissed their daughter and bid her and Omari farewell.

After exploring their room and marveling at the view from the balcony, Marjorie started unpacking the cases whilst Herbert tried the shower in the marble bathroom. They were both very impressed and couldn’t believe the difference between this luxury hotel and the little B&B where they usually stayed in Brighton. When the phone rang and the receptionist told them Cassie was in the foyer waiting for them they were down there before Cassie had time to blink.

Cassie was taking them to the dig first to show them where she had been working for the past two years and explained that Omari would be there, as he was still working. When they arrived they couldn’t believe the conditions Cassie had been working in but were fascinated to be shown some of the artefacts that had been found. Omari couldn’t go with them for the rest of the sightseeing tour but promised he would see them that evening at dinner.

That evening at dinner in the hotel Cassie and Omari explained the arrangements for the wedding. Tomorrow they would be transported to the venue in the desert and would spend the night in a traditional Bedouin tent until the wedding the following day, then after the wedding, because it would be late and it was too far to bring them back to the hotel they would be staying in the tent again with his parents. Herbert and Marjorie weren’t sure they liked the idea of sleeping in a tent but it seemed like they hadn’t got a choice. The journey took three hours and by the time they reached their destination they were too exhausted to even care that they had to sleep on the floor of a tent, or that the place their daughter was to get married was little more than a deserted shack covered by some sort of awning.

Omari’s parents were gracious and explained that the guests were mostly family and most of them lived in the desert. The wedding seemed to go well, though Herbert and Marjorie couldn’t understand a word of what was said, they just hoped it was legal. Everyone was really friendly and most of the people could speak passable English, so there wasn’t a communication problem. The food on the buffet was like nothing they had even read about let alone experienced and the other guests were keen for them to try the local dishes, much to their surprise, Marjorie and Herbert enjoyed the food immensely, considering they were only used to English fare.

Marjorie and Herbert hadn’t really had time to speak to Cassie much and were concerned that she didn’t really know what she had let herself in for. How would she cope living like this, even at home in Brighton she lived in luxury compared to this. Another night in the tent made Herbert determined to speak to Cassie before they left to find out if she really knew what she had done.

The following day they said their goodbyes to Omari’s parents and the other guests and travelled back to Cairo with Cassie and Omari. Omari apologized that he had to go back to work but Cassie told them she could spend some time with them before they had to leave the following day. Marjorie and Herbert were relieved to hear this, as it meant they could speak to Cassie in Omari’s absence.

Once back at the hotel Cassie sat in the parent’s room and asked if they had enjoyed the wedding. Herbert and Marjorie told her they had but were concerned that her decision to marry Omari meant that she would be spending the rest of her life living in a tent in the desert and they were worried about future grandchildren.

Hearing this Cassie collapsed into fits of laughter.

“Mum, Dad, Omari is the first born son of the wealthiest family in Egypt – they own this hotel!

“Why the wedding in the desert and the tent then?” asked Herbert.

“They don’t live like that all the time Dad, they just wanted a traditional wedding.”

“Well that’s a relief” Herbert and Marjorie said in unison.


Linda said...

Akelamalu, you are such a great storyteller! Seriously!

Anonymous said...

WOOT: I'm in the money!!! LOL. I am so glad that Majrie and Herbert got to experience a traditional wedding and that Omari's parents aren't always living the "good life" You have such a way with story telling This was awesome. Thank you so much for playing my dear sweet friend :)

Susan at Stony River said...

LOL If I were Mum and Dad I would so be moving into that hotel!

Daryl said...

You are such a brilliant storyweaver!

Connie T. said...

I was expecting her to ride them to the airport on a camel. Nice story.

Jeff B said...

Oh me to the pool please, and yes, I would like another Pina Colada.

Bill ~ {The Old Fart} said...

Well done, the story moved along so nicely. I didn't see the ending coming,

Dr.John said...

You managed to twist the ending. I loved it.

Fandango said...

We dragons don't even know a rich human and her daughter marries into a rich family. There is no justice.
Great writing as usual.

quilly said...

Tradition is much more important than money! You wove a great story Akelamalu. I hung on every word!

Cloudia said...


Aloha, Dear

Comfort Spiral

Maude Lynn said...

Excellent story!

Flowerpot said...

anohter good one -mwell done Ak!

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Spiky Zora Jones said...

haha. I love how you write. And living in a tent in the desert is so yucky.

But i could go with a fabulous hotel. hehehe.

'Room service, please.'

Now that's my way of roughing it. :)

later sweets. xx

Maria said...

Fantastic. I loved it!

Akelamalu said...

Why thankyou Linda x

My pleasure Thom, I'm happy you enjoyed it m'dear. x

Me too Susan :)

Thankyou very much Daryl, you're very kind. x

I never thought of that Connie!

That would be a dream wouldn't it Jeff?

Ah thanks Bill.

I try Dr. John :)

I don't know any rich humans either Fandango:(

Aw thankyou Quilly, I'm so glad you enjoyed it. :)

Cheers Cloudia x

Thanks Mama Zen :)

Glad you enjoyed it Flowerpot

I'd much prefer the plush hotel to a tent anyday too Spiky!

Why thankyouGaelikaa :)