Friday, August 24, 2012

#RomanticFridayWriters: Romantic Picnic

Romantic Friday Writers is an ongoing blog hop developed by L'Aussie and Francine Howarth and now managed by Denise, (L'Aussie) and Donna Hole. You don't have to participate to enjoy reading the many excellent stories. However, I do encourage any aspiring writers of any genre to give it a try. The degree of romance is  up to the writer. Transforming your writing skills is always a worthwhile endeavor. If you'd like to read other stories in this week's submission go here.

Carl, his son James and I spent the day hiking along the Grand Canyon in Colorado. No one could ask for more perfect weather, or a better view. How humbled I felt by the majesty.

We stopped for a picnic lunch and had decided not to light a fire. Fire danger in Colorado was extremely high this year. A long drought accompanied by an extremely hot summer made for match box conditions.

I made my famous potato salad, an old family  recipe that brought back pleasant memories every time I labored over it's preparation. Carl whipped together the ham and cheese sandwiches while James waited on our checkered blanket. 

 We ate while James enthralled us with his digital cell phone pictures.

"Now that's a classic," Carl said and popped a ripe strawberry into his mouth. 

In the picture my hair had been tossed in front of my face by the wind at the last moment. "Oh yeah, I've never looked better." 

"I'm telling you Dad, take cooking lessons from her okay?" James said, some of my potato salad dribble on his chin. He wiped it up. 

"Yeah, yeah, I'll send you over to Leslie's house for lessons." Glancing at me Carl finished. "He's got a new girl friend, something easy so he can impress her, okay?" 

"Any time," I said and meant it. I loved both of them, but I'd never told Carl just how much. 

The heat of the day was eased by a hot wind evaporating our perspiration right off our skins. I applied more sun screen while James pulled to his feet and took off toward the ridge and another great photo experience.  

Carl watched his son for a moment and then rummaged through his backpack. I leaned back, gazing toward the blue sky that supported only a few running clouds. Then...

Carl blocked the sun before kneeling down along side of me. Surprised, I sat and crossed my legs. 

"I've never been more certain of anything in my life," Carl said. 

I blinked, not sure what he was talking about. 

"We've known each other for seven years. James was just a kid and me, a struggling, clueless father. You said hello and took it upon yourself to visit so often I relied on you too much. I still don't know why you---" 


He put his hand on my arm. I never realized just how much I've grown to love you. Do you think you could teach us both  to cook at my house?" 

In his hand he held a ring box. What's a girl gonna say?

WC 400 

So, I gave you a clue earlier in the story about what she thinks. If there had been more words I would have answered this. I bet you can guess. Hope you liked it. 

Picture link:


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Bet he scores big points for that proposal location!

sulekkha said...

A girl gotta say YES, great story...

Roland D. Yeomans said...

You all three of them people I wanted to know better and folks I wanted to share happiness for the rest of their lives. Very good! :-)

N. R. Williams said...

I hope so Alex.

Hi S.
I sure would.

Hi Roland
Thanks for the compliment.

And a big thanks to all for stopping by and leaving a comment.

Suzy said...

I love happy endings. Nice story.

N. R. Williams said...

Thanks Suzy

Donna Hole said...

Great location; and the detail with the wind blowing her hair was great. This was so romantic, what a wonderful place to propose. Great that they knew each other so well, but the proposal came as a surprise.

that picture is beautiful too.


N. R. Williams said...

Thanks Donna

Francine Howarth: UK said...

Hi Nancy,

Welcome back, and I hope things are going well your end these days.

Lovely piece and good atmospheric description, a true painting pics in words. I felt the heat, and tasted the potato salad. ;)


Sally said...

I agree, a lovely romantic story and she wasn't expecting the ring. It was so great that he felt he could propose with his son there as well. I loved the story.

Adura Ojo said...

Nancy, you know I admire your writing style. Actually prefer that you gave us a clue earlier as to her answer and I like the way you ended the story. Works well for a short piece. Bravo!

Heather Murphy said...

Ah, I love this! I like how you portrayed the child and how he was integrated in their relationship. Very romantic

Elen Lackner said...

Beautiful story, I like the romanticism and everything you wrote. Kiss Elen

N. R. Williams said...

Hi Francine
It's good to be back though I must confess to a shorter attention span.

Hi Sally
I wanted to show how they were all comfortable with each other.

Hi Adura
Clues are so needed in story telling I think.

Hi Heather
I was inspired by the picture which has three people in it.

Hi Elen
Glad you enjoyed my story.

Thank you all for your generous compliments. They mean a lot to me.

Andy David said...

Dear Nancy,
You sure set the scene right for her to say "yes"! I can tell they will be a beautiful family (smile). You are very talented my dear.

N. R. Williams said...

Thanks Andy, that's so sweet and nice to hear.

Denise Covey said...

Woo hoo Nancy, great one! The second or third ring in the box at the end this week so far! I kept waiting for the smoke and fire coming, but the fire was of a different sort.
I love your use of the senses with the food descriptions, the sights, the tastes etc. Wonderful.
Thanks for your enthusiastic support.

Don't forget to come back to RFW if you'd like to vote for your favourite entry this week. Go with your gut. Really should be someone who kept to the word limit and has a romantic element! Poll will go up Monday AEST.

Thanks for entering! We made our 20 goal!


N. R. Williams said...

Hi Denise
Thanks for your praise. I'll be sure to vote, it's going to be difficult.

Nilanjana Bose said...

I liked the way he includes his son in his proposal, my favourite bit. And also the descriptions - blue sky supporting a few clouds - you made me see the setting so very clearly. Beautiful.

Anonymous said...

Nicely done -- and as others have said, a great location. I still haven't managed to see the Grand Canyon, but I did visit its little sister on Kauai.

Madeleine Maddocks said...

Oh wow a romantic setting indeed!

N. R. Williams said...

Hi Nilanjana
I am so glad that you were able to put yourself into the story.

Hi Milo
I've never been outside the US, so you're one up on me.

Hi Madeleine
In real life, I'm not sure the Grand Canyon is as romantic as it is scary. LOL

Thanks all for coming by and leaving such wonderful comments. It means a lot to me.

J.L. Campbell said...

Now that's a unique way to ask for her hand. Good addition of details so the readers gets a little bit of history about this couple. Nice.

Southpaw said...

Romance is tricky to write.

radwa pony said...

HI Nancy,

sorry for commenting late but was having some problems to get through the mob and had to wait to borrow a lap as mine not here :)

I loved such story,loved that you took care of every small detail that took me to such place,loved the bond between the three of them and loved the tender romantic touch wrapped with the ring,i really enjoyed it :)

N. R. Williams said...

Hi J. L.
We need to keep our stories original if possible I think.

Hi Holly
I find romance easy, I wonder why.

Hi Radwa
You're not so late here in the U.S., it's Sunday. I'm glad you made it and glad you liked it.

Thanks all for your encouraging comments.

Scheherazade said...

Very subtle and well written. Nicely done!

Michael Di Gesu said...

Hi, Nancy,

What a unique twist adding the son. I really enjoyed the banter between father and son. Stunning description of the canyon. I must admit it is magnificent!

Thank you so much for the kind comment about my writing improving. It means a lot because you have known me for a long time and have read many of my excerpts.

I hope you are feeling much better and enjoying your new living space.


N. R. Williams said...

Hi S.
Thanks so much.

Hi Michael
Been a long time indeed.

Thank you both for your kind comments. It means a lot to me.

Anna said...

Dear Nancy,

This romantic picnic story is perfect!

Your writing style with this first person point of view is so relaxed that I wasn't sure when the story began! And it is so good. I like this story so much, with the background, the details about the risk for fire, the potato salad, having the son present when he proposed, and the fact that he chose such a beautiful setting!! How can a girl say no?

I really enjoyed this! It's flawless!

Best wishes & hugs,

For the benefit of other readers:
RFW No.43 - 'Romantic Picnic'

N. R. Williams said...

Hi Anna
You're going to make me blush with such praise, thanks so much, I really appreciate the effort you made coming, reading and leaving a comment.

Crystal said...

I would most definitely say yes!!! This was such a great read N.R! I'm sorry if it took so long getting here!! I got caught up with laundry!! Among other motherly duties.. LOL! I loved the imagery you displayed here.. It was almost like I was there.. and I could see the amazing view!

N. R. Williams said...

Hi Crystal
I'm glad you were able to get here. Our kids really do take a lot of time, even when they are twenty something. I'm thrilled that you enjoyed my story.