Saturday, April 23, 2011

Indie Ink Challenge - The Ghost Traveler

Oh. my.

Below is my II Challenge from Wendryn for my virgin voyage into Indie Ink. 

Pick a topic, anything you want to write, but don't use any word with more than two syllables. Minimum length 250 words.

It was not as tough as I thought, which leads me to believe that I am a master of the 5-cent word. And, I can count to 2 fluently.

I have mentioned in the past that I have done a fair bit of air travel. Not jumbo jet, around-the-world type travel that you should be jealous of.

Oh no.

Puddle jumpers, at best. Many times with people who smell. (Why is this? Bathe and deo, people. It's easy.)

Once to meet my love.

Once with an eagle.

And once, on a trip to the tiny, eensy-weensy town of Havre, MT...I flew with an EXPERT.

In what, you ask? The Para...(damn you rules!).. er,.. ghosts.

You heard me. A real-life, no-shit, EXPERT on the, ghosts. It was just he and I, which was one person MORE than I was used to on this flight. I was prepared to travel solo (minus the pilots, duh.), and I was a little dismayed to have to share my plane with this guy:

Hi, I am just a normal guy, flying to
Nowhere, MT..or am I?  And I don't even smell.
He didn't know that on this mini plane, no one cared or noticed  if you sat in your assigned seat, and I was glad he wouldn't sit by me. By this point in my career, i had mastered "travel aloof".  He was also sporting a long toolbag pony which he groomed as he walked by. Fail.

He sat a row behind me and across the aisle (seats were one and one). You heard me. Yes, they make jets that small. Don't judge my almost chartered plane.

This was the usual scene on this flight. Picture Mr. Pony just
behind and to my right.  No, that light ISN'T heaven. 
I was a smashing success at "travel aloof" during the first part of the flight, feigning work. Pony had tried to make comments about the empty flight, but I was too busy having to admit to myself that this wasn't my private jet to do much more than shrug.

He tapped me on the shoulder and asked if I was from Havre. I gave in. I am from a state in the middle, we are no good at aloof for long. And I couldn't have him think I was a square-head local.

We made small talk and I shared the hot spots in Havre (none). I asked why he was visiting. He looked at me and paused. I raised an eyebrow. A secret mission to Havre?? Do tell.

He said, "I am giving a talk about the, ghosts at the college."


"No kidding...?" I replied calmly, acting like I heard this type of thing all of the time. I am very cool and well-traveled. Ghosts. Old hat. Go on.

He went on to tell me that he was hired by the college to give the talk for their Ghostly Studies Class, as well host a ghost hunt tour, as Havre is frankly quite haunted.

Um...ok. They don't even have a decent coffee place, but whatev.

Back story: Tiny Havre has a rich history, hosting a tour called Havre Under the Streets, where the town shops moved for a time after a fire burned all of the local stores down. If you are ever running for the border through this area, check it out. Kinda neat. Haunted? The jury is still out.

The man told me his name was Chris Moon and that he was the owner of Haunted Times, a rag for ghost lovers.

My poker face must have been stellar, because he told me all about his work, tours and a machine he built called Frank's box (which allows people to talk to the dead) for the rest of the flight.

(Does one GATE CHECK that, or is it more of a carry on kind of item?? Dear TSA.... )

Um, ok....

But who wouldn't listen? It isn't like he is sharing his ice fishing vacay. Ghosts, man!

Frank's Box may have been an mailbox in a past life.

Mr Moon (real name, ya think?) had nice manners and asked what I was doing in Havre as well. I glazed over the details, since I had nothing on this guy. He was polite and well spoken. He even looked mostly normal, (nuts right?). It was snowing to beat the band and he looked a little scared to land. I wondered to myself if those who pal around with ghosts are less afraid of death? It seemed rude to ask.

While we taxi'ed in, I powered up the crack and looked up his name.

It was just. too. good. I e-mailed it to Special Agent and told him I was leaving him for my seat mate, here.

Pause for effect..................

I wonder if it hurts to maintain this face? Cause
 it is kinda killing

Super, really. That picture made my poker face explode into delight and Mr. Moon noticed. He commented "good message?" as I scrolled with mirth.

On our way out, Mr. Moon invited me to join the tour....*FREE*. I said I would come by,  and I meant it.

There was no way I wasn't going to see this in action.

Garage band senior photo or head shot, you decide
Get a load of the hair. Pretty.
 I checked into the hotel and shook my head.

No way.

No way, no way, no way. How do I always meet these folks? I smiled to myself. I think it's kind of lucky.

I braved the winter weather (it isn't afraid to snow up to your ass in Northern MT) and when I arrived at the meeting place I learned that the tour had to be cancelled. (I know, anti-climax, right?).

I was actually crushed.

I blame the ghosts.


Kat said...

I love it! Aren't you glad that you didn't maintain your aloofness? Imagine missing that conversation! And those pictures! I must remember this the next time a stranger tries to start a conversation with me :)

Galit Breen said...

Love it lady! The challenge is intriguing- I lvoed when you ahem addressed that throughout!

Debra Ann Elliott said...

Stopping by from Indie. What a great take on your challenge.

wendryn said...

I like it! You did a nice job with this and it made me laugh. :) Good start to the challenge - please come back next week!

supermaren said...

What a cute way of getting around your four-syllable obstacle. Welcome to the challenge!

Danger Boy said...

Wow, I don't think I could do a post like this. I tend to be way too polysyllabic.

Random Girl said...

Loved this story. Makes me wonder what I have missed by being all closed off/important/too busy working to chat/go away on my flights, but only a little. I don't like talking to real life strangers. Great job on your limitation on the challenge, I don't know that I could have done it but you nailed it girl! Nice job!

Dafeenah said...

I am also a walking magnet for weirdness. For some reason people always want to talk to me I have no idea why. I don't know how you stayed under 2 syllables. I don't think I could have. Great job!

Elle said...

OMG!! I love this! Emily and I have been known to go ghost hunting a time or two. We love that kind of stuff! Hence all the spooky talk over at LYLAS. Go back to my older posts starting with Creepy Ball (I think) and I go into my recent Spooky problem with her son William.
On another note, I love that you met the writing challenge at that you actually started to write the first words on your mind so that we knew what you were originally thinking. Nice. : ) Thanks for checking in over at LYLAS regularly. I really appreciate it!! : )

Marian said...

oh just love this! you made me laugh and smile and show your post to my old man (who enjoys the ghost hunters but doesn't know who that guy is). that is really saying something! welcome to the challenge, please stay!

Anonymous said...

That's an awesome voice. Not sure which blog I found your link on, but I'm glad I did. I smiled throughout..:)

Nicki said...

This would be SO freaking hard for me. My blogging is choked with loooooong words. But awesome story, regardless!

The Empress said...

Talk about an interesting flight mate! And thank you for googling him. That photo is classic, although it certainly diminishes any credibility I may have been willing to grant him. Great post!

NerdyRedneck Rob said...

How can you make fun of this hair! It's bea-u-ti-ful! I am in love! I want to marry his hair!

I have not been so in love with a mans hair since John Edwards!

Anonymous said...

This was so clever and fun. I'm really glad you joined the challenge! Welcome!

Karla said...

This was a tough challenge and you turned into a great story. I thoroughly enjoyed this (as I'm sure you did too!). :)

janani said...

This is such a fun story! I am amused that I know exactly what you mean by "travel aloof". I think I need to loosen up a little next time, maybe I'll get a story out of it too.

Great job staying within two syllables! I would have struggled with this. But sometimes simple words get the job done!