Jan. 11th, 2013 | 06:30 pm
Characters: Main character unnamed, 'shrink', Claire and Lily.
Word count: 960
Just a little background to my story before you start reading: This week there have been horrible fires all over Australia. And you watch stories on the news of young children starting fires for fun, putting lives and people's homes at risk. This is just a little story about one of a long list of consequences for them. And I hope they get understand that their actions affect others.
My head fell back onto the pillow with a thump. My breath came out in shallow wisps that left my lungs with something to be desired. Mostly air. I counted to ten and took deep breaths, because freaking out like this was not going to help the situation. I snuck a peak at the door, wondering how long before Claire came rushing in to demand why I had woken her up from her sleep. Again. I usually screamed during and after the dreams. Or maybe I should call them nightmares. I’m not really sure what to call them to be honest, since I never remember what the dream is about in the morning. Absolutely no recollection. My shrink keeps telling me that it’s normal for PTSD patients. Completely normal. That I’m just another sufferer of a dangerous disorder and am not unique in any way, shape or form. But I listen to him. I even talk to him sometimes. But then I remember. And my mouth just stops working. I know what I was about to say, but my tongue seems incapable of forming the words, the letters that I need to use to speak. He understands. And then he sits there going over his notes. Sometimes I have little panic attacks like the one I’m having now, where I can’t breathe, and he calms me down. Mostly. But the more you repress your memories, the worse they become.
Satisfied that I didn’t wake Claire up, I slowly move off of the bed and walk to the kitchen. It’s dark and of course I stub my toe on something. But I grit my teeth and move on, until I’m bathed by the moonlight shining through the window in the kitchen. A nice spot to go to sleep.
My shrink notices my eyes, and the way I hold myself. I’m not fooling him for a second. He knows I had nightmares, and he knows I didn’t have much success in getting back to sleep. If only the kitchen floor weren’t so damned uncomfortable.
“Would you like to talk about it?”
“Talk about what?” I deflect.
He rolls his eyes at me. I mean seriously, he rolled his eyes at me. That is a completely unprofessional thing for a shrink to be doing.
“I only remember the part before I woke up.”
That seemed to interest him, “I thought you couldn’t remember anything about the dreams afterwards?”
“I don’t. Then this morning I just remembered one thing. And I got a sense of de ja vu, like I’ve been there before. I was walking down a corridor, following the lights in the roof. I get to the door and I touch it. But I have to take my hands away because the door burns me. And then it’s like I’m too scared to go past the door. Then, suddenly, all of the lights go off and the door starts glowing a dark red.”
The shrink looks thoughtful. “You might be starting to remember what happened to you.”
“What does what happened to me have to do with a glowing door?”
“You say that you can’t go into the room in your dream?”
“For some reason the door just freaks me out.”
“Okay. I’ll give you an assignment. If you start to dream again and you come to that corridor, I want you to open the door and go inside. Even if you’re scared. You need to remember that dreams can’t hurt you. Physically anyway.”
Great piece of advice there, Doc. If I wasn’t scared enough already, you give me something with multiple meanings to cheer me up.
It seems like seconds since I closed my eyes, but here I am, in the long corridor. There seems nothing left but the walk following the lights.
This time I don’t touch it. Because then the lights will turn off. This doesn’t seem rational, but my sleeping mind thinks it’s genius. Completely logical. This is the furthest I’ve ever gone. Should I really go any further?
I take a deep breath and turn the doorknob quickly, pushing the door open.
A bright light blinds me and I put my hands over my face to protect them from the light. Except… Except Lily is here. I don’t know how she comes into it but she’s here, and I have to help her.
I walk through the door and see flames. But I don’t feel any heat. And the flames seem to be moving extremely slowly. It’s almost as if I could reach out and touch them and they wouldn’t hurt me. But I keep looking for Lily.
She’s lying on the floor. I call to her but she doesn’t move. Not a muscle. I go over to her and look into her face. Into her sightless eyes. How could we have left her behind? Then the flames get me, they claim Lily and try to take me with her. I hug her in the flames, not letting go.
It’s light outside when I wake up from the dream. Because it is a dream, not a nightmare. It’s something to help my addled brain remember what happened. Because I saw the firestarter in the flames. I can finally tell the police who lit the fires all those months ago, who caused so many people to die. And killed my precious dog, Lily.
My hand unconsciously goes to my face to move a stray hair out of my eyes. Even if I tell them the firestarter’s name, it won’t change anything. Because the scars on my face will never go away. And all of those people won’t come back.
But I guess that’s how justice works. It’s a band-aid. Nothing more, nothing less.
Jun. 14th, 2007 | 04:00 pm
Workers usually must withstand the pressure and strain of working in close quarters, standing for hours at a time, lifting heavy pots and kettles, and working near hot ovens and grills. Job hazards include slips and falls, cuts, and burns.
Maitre d, host/hostess- Takes Reservations, organizes seating, greets customers, seats customers, distributes menus. They sometimes operate the cash register. They occasionally take orders and act as a liaison between the kitchen and dining room.
Manager - A Manager should be able to open and close your restaurant, purchase food and beverage inventory, open the register, track inventory, train and manage the staff, work with suppliers and manage your advertising.
Chef or head cook - This person is responsible for all that goes on in the kitchen. He/she should be responsible for hiring and training other cooks, prep persons and dishwashers. They are responsible for the menu, buying supplies and equipment. At some restaurants the chef is the star attraction.
The kitchen staff may include several chefs and cooks, (sometimes called assistant or apprentice chefs and cooks), a bread and pastry baker, vegetable, fry or a sauce chef. Each chef or cook usually has a special assignment and often a special job title. Executive chefs coordinate the work of the kitchen staff and often direct the preparation of certain foods. They decide the size of servings, plan menus, and buy food supplies.
Kitchen workers weigh and measure ingredients, go after pots and pans, and stir and strain soups and sauces. They also clean, peel, and slice vegetables and fruits and make salads. They may cut and grind meats, poultry, and seafood in preparation for cooking.
Cashier - The Restaurant Cashier is in charge of the register. This would include cash and credit card transactions, tipping out wait staff, and balancing the register at the end of the shift. The cashier may assists the Wait Staff with various tasks. Must be competent with computerized register system and have good cash handling skills. Must have experience in retail sales, and be professional, polite, and reliable
Waiter/waitress - Take customer's orders, serve food and beverages, prepare itemized checks, and sometimes accept payments. Waiters and waitresses may perform additional duties, which may include escorting guests to tables, serving customers seated at counters, setting up and clearing tables, or operating a cash register. They also check the identification of patrons to ensure they meet the minimum age requirement for the purchase of alcohol and tobacco products. Must be professional, polite, and reliable. Must be able to learn and describe food proficiently.
Wait Staff need to be familiar with the menu, how things are prepared, what they taste like, and if special requests are allowed. They need to be informed about specials and special events.
Bus Person - The Bus persons assist the Waiters by monitoring and cleaning tables throughout service. Generally their duties include setting and clearing the table of dishes during the meal. They are often responsible for bringing bread and butter, etc. to the table before the ordered dish arrives. They may also help bring food from the kitchen and serve.
Dishwasher - Keeps the kitchen staff supplied with clean dishes, pots, pans and utensils. The may also have the job of keeping the kitchen clean during a shift, takes out trash, cleans floors, etc.
Bartenders - fill drink orders that waiters and waitresses take from customers. They prepare standard mixed drinks and, occasionally, are asked to mix drinks to suit a customer's taste. Bartenders collect payment, operate the cash register, clean up after customers leave, and often serve food to customers seated at the bar. Bartenders also check identification of customers seated at the bar, to ensure they meet the minimum age requirement for the purchase of alcohol and tobacco products. Bartenders usually are responsible for ordering and maintaining an inventory of liquor, mixes, and other bar supplies.
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Jun. 13th, 2007 | 09:07 pm
Pane: Garlic or Herb Ciabatta Bread 4.90
Bruschetta : Grilled ciabatta bread, Roma tomatoes, basil and extra virgin olive oil 9.90
Warm Kalamata Olives with Provolone Cheese: Cooked in olive oil, chilli and garlic with bread 14.50
Antipasto Misto : Why not start by sharing a tempting array of traditional antipasto delights. Ask your waiter for today’s selection. 25.90
Insalate Ceasar Salad: A salad of baby cos lettuce, anchovies, croutons, shaved Grana Padano and prosciutto. 17.90
Greek Salad (V) : A salad of lettuce, kalamata olives, fetta cheese, cucumber, Spanish onion and vine ripened tomatoes with fresh oregano, lemon and extra virgin olive oil. 17.90
Caprese Salad (V): A salad of fresh Roma tomatoes and Buffalo milk Bocconcini cheese (Italy), fresh basil and drizzled in extra virgin olive oil and freshly cracked pepper. 19.90
Minestrone (V) : Traditional minestrone vegetable soup with pesto oil. 14.90
Gamberi Aglio Olio E Peperoncino: Pan seared King prawns with garlic, chilli and extra virgin olive oil served with rocket and diced tomatoes and cucumber salad. 21.00
Souffle di Gorgonzola (V): A gorgonzola cheese souffle served with a salad of wild rocket, fennel, cucumber and walnuts. 19.50
Ostriche - Fresh Sydney Rock Oysters : Oysters natural 1/2 doz/ 1 doz $18.50/$32.00
Ostriche - Fresh Sydney Rock Oysters : Oysters mornay or kilpatrick 1/2 doz/ 1 doz $19.5/$33.00
Fresh Victorian Mussels: Cooked in white wine, garlic, fresh tomatoes and cracked pepper. 18.90
Calamari: Fresh baby calamari served with garden salad and home made tartare sauce. 18.90
Grilled Scallops : Served in the shell with grilled capsicum and sun dried tomato. 19.90
Baby Octopus Salad: Served on a bed of fresh baby spinach. green olive pate, diced tomatoes and aged balsamic vinegar. 19.90
Fresh Pasta - Fresca
Lasagne: Traditional beef lasagne with fresh tomato, basil and parmesan cheese. 25.00
Salmon Lasagne: Fresh pasta sheets with layers of smoked salmon, mozarella cheese and spinach. 32.00
Tagliatelle Bolognese: with beef ragout and fresh shaved Grano Padano cheese. 25.00
Spaghetti with Lobster : Spaghetti served with sautéed lobster in the shell with garlic, basil, white wine, fresh tomatoes and parsley. 42.00
Linguine Pesto (V): Pasta served with green beans, potatoes, pine nuts, fresh homemade pesto sauce with shaved Grana Padano cheese and diced tomatoes. 26.00
Linguine Marinara: Fresh mussels, clams, calamari, prawns and fish with a tomato, garlic and basil sauce. 32.00
Basil Gnocchi : Served with roast tomato sauce and rocket pesto. 28.00
Prawns Risotto : Vialone Nano rice served with prawns, asparagus, cherry tomatoes and saffron. 32.00
Squid Ink Pappardelle: Served with scallops and mussels in white wine sauce. 32.00
Mushroom Fettucinie (V) : Porcini and mixed mushroom sauce a touch of fresh cream and parsley. 27.00
Pan Seared Barramundi Fillet: with braised kilfar potatoes, kalamata olives, vine ripened cherry tomatoes and fresh thyme. 36.00
Pan Seared Salmon Fillet : Served on a bed of baby corn, snow peas, cherry tomatoes and a burnt butter pernod sauce. 36.00
Lobster Mornay : Fresh half lobster, cooked in a mornay sauce and served on buttered herb gnocchi and a Grano Padano cheese and rocket salad. 65.00
Best Catch of the Day: Served on a bed of warm potatoes and green beans salad and Mediterranean sauce (extra virgin olive oil, eschallots, garlic, mixed herbs and semi dried cherry tomatoes). Menu Price
Seafood Platter for Two: A whole lobster mornay, balmain bugs, oysters, prawns, calamari, fresh tasmanian scallops and octopus, served with cocktail and homemade tartare sauce, herbed potatoes, garden salad and fresh lemon wedges. 149.00
Osso Bucco : Braised veal shanks served on a bed of saffron risotto, braised vegetables and peas. 33.00
Crumbed Veal Cutlet : in fresh breadcrumbs and served with a green leaf salad. 36.00
Rib Eye Steak : Served with pureed potatoes infused with mushroom, beef jus and truffle oil. 38.90
Grain Fed Beef Fillet Jindalee NSW: Rolled in fresh herbs, served with potato puree and beef jus. 36.00
Pan Seared Rack of Lamb Cutlets : with sauteed artichokes, jus and sun dried tomatoes. 36.00
Char Grilled Baby Chicken : Marinated in garlic and rosemary with roast potatoes and baked truss tomatoes. 36.00
Potato: Puree lightly massed with butter, milk and extra virgin olive oil. 8.00
Steamed Green Beans : Tossed in extra virgin olive oil. 8.00
Potato Chips: with aioli dipping sauce. 8.00
Salad of Wild Rocket and Parmesan : with a balsamic vinegar vinaigrette 8.00
Warm Chocolate Pudding: with a soft centre of white chocolate and Grand Marnier liquer, served with vanilla bean gelato. 13.50
Tiramisu : Traditional tiramisu. 13.50
A pyramid of Italian Gelatos: Served with a vanilla bean anglaise and topped with persian pistachio fairy floss. 13.50
Baileys Panna Cotta : Served with wild berries and raspberry coulée. 13.50
Strawberries in a Sweet Balsamic Vinegar Sauce: Served with a scoop of King Island cream. 13.50
A Selection of Premium Italian Cheeses : served with fresh fruit, walnuts and Pane Carasau. Ask your waiter for today’s selection. 19.00
A Tasting Plate for Two : A mouthwatering array of Italian delicacies. Ask your waiter for today’s selection. 24.00
service not included - surcharge $3.50 per person on weekends & 10% on public holidays minimum charge of $15.00 per person
All prices are in Australian Dollars (AUD$) unless otherwise specified.
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May. 28th, 2007 | 06:13 pm
Characters: All unamed.
Rating: M (Not sure about this one)
Word count: 384
She walked down the path with her handbag hanging loosely from her shoulder. Her shoes made noises with every step that she took.
CLICK-CLACK. CLICK-CLACK. CLICK-CLACK.
She looked over her shoulder nervously, getting an eerie feeling that she was being watched. 'Stop it, you're just being paranoid.' She told herself.
She continued down into the alley. It cut ten minutes off her journey home, meaning she'd be home in time to cook dinner for her sister. She pulled a list out of her pocket inspecting it. It was the ingredients to the caserole she planned to make.
She spun around alarmed. Those footsteps had not been hers. The alley behond her was devoid of all life. The only thing in it was a couple of boxes hiding in the corner.
'It's probably just a young couple seeking some privacy.' She told herself firmly, turning around and continuing on her journey. The alley was almost to an end when it happened: Two strong arms grabbed her from behind and tightened.
"Want a bit of fun love?" The man from behind her asked.
She stuggled, but without success.
When he finished with her he just left her. Her clothes were torn and battered, half exposing her. Blood flowed easily from her, torn by the rough treatment. She had wanted to lose her virginity on her wedding night. Not in such a degrading way.
Her eyes wandered to the other end of the alley where two young children ran and giggled. They could not see her in the darkness, nor could she call out. Shock had set in.
The children's mother warily came into the alley, hushing her children and trying to shoo them back to the well-lit streets.
Hidden in the darkness from the children and their mother, she was jealous. The mother had two beautiful children and was too smart to venture too far into the alleyway.
'I wish I had been that smart. I would have liked to have children...' She murmured to herself.
By this time she had lost too much blood; Her body, already in shock, gave in and went limp. Her last sight of the world was the mother leading her children back into safety by picking them up and carrying them there.
CLACK-CLACK went the mother's shoes.
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Mar. 6th, 2007 | 05:21 pm
music: Does TV in the background count?
Characters: Brendan, Jarryd, Unknown Man, Shaun and Andy
Word count: Ummmm...
Note: This was close to 15 minutes but I don't know exactly how long it was... This is my first 15 minute ficlet so if I've done anything wrong just let me know!
Brendan stood in line waiting. This was the first time he had been there and he was extremely nervous. Jarryd had told him he would have fun, as he had done so many times before in the same situation. Brendan doubted it. He was the quiet, nerdy type. He rathered homework and reading to competitions and sports. His father had always tried to get him more interested in them but it had never worked.
"Next!" A loud voice shouted right next to Brendan's ear.
Brendan, knocked out of his musings by a single shout, moved forward to stand in front of the desk.
"And you are?" A bored man sat in front of Brendan. He clicked a pen that had been chewed so many times that you couldn't even see the shape the pen used to be.
"Brendan Leer. Sir." Brendan replied looking around, suddenly worried. He had never wanted to do this and yet he had let his friend bring him here. Could he pull out now?
"Stand over there." The man points and then calls behind Brendan; "Next!"
Brendan moved to where the man had indicated and looked around again. He had only just noticed that all the teenagers there had muscles all over. He couldn't compete against them, they'd bash him into a pulp!
"Brendan Leer?" A voice beckoned from the other side of the room.
Brendan followed the voice and ended up at another table. "That's me."
"Hi! I'm Shaun. I'll be instructing you this evening." Shaun told Brendan confidently. "Sounds so professional ay?"
Brendan didn't know what to think. Was this Shaun as much of a half-wit as he was led into thinking by the abrupt change of tone and manner?
"Don't worry my lad, You'll hav' fun I promise" Shaun assured Brendan. "Now you'll be versing Andy today. Hav' fun!"
And with those words, Brendan was pushed into the ring.