Thursday, February 3, 2011

VALENTINE VACATION - Chapter Two by Lisa Mondello

Amelia could hardly hide her surprise. What was it about losing a partner that made you suddenly feel like you were the only one in the world who was alone. It was one of the reasons she hadn't wanted to come to this Florida paradise, even when her children insisted. Who wanted to be reminded that they were alone, especially at a time of year that was meant to celebrate love?

What started out as an awkward moment suddenly felt freeing and made Amelia a little bolder than she normally would be.

"You lost your wife...girlfriend?"

He nodded, a hint of sadness colored blue eyes so bright they rivaled the sun sparkling off the Gulf's waters. "Wife. It's be about 18 months now."

"Two years for me. I'm sorry for your loss."

He gave her a crooked smile. "Don't you hate the standard sympathy line? I know people mean well. But after a while it makes me feel like damaged goods."

"How so?" she asked, surprised at his response.

"Most people don't know what to say directly after they've given their condolences. The conversation gets awkward and then they head for the door. I end up eating Chinese Food alone, going to the movies alone and not getting asked out to social functions unless someone knows a "nice" girl who recently became single."

"Ah." She'd experienced that exact thing herself and had to laugh. "You're right. People mean well, but they don't understand."

"No, they don't. But you do."

His eyes were warm and invited her to open up to him. "Yes, I do."

The man reached his arm over the railing and the pot filled with bright colored flowers to decorate their balcony. "My name is Colin."

His hand was rough, as if he worked with his hands for a living, and it was much bigger than hers. As he gave it a gentle squeeze, a slight shiver ran through her. It had been a long time since she'd noticed anything about a man other than Andrew.

She pushed her hair out of her eyes with her other hand and said, "I'm Amelia. Nice to meet you."

"Likewise. Say, I've been up and down this beach all by myself and I have to say..."

"It's beautiful?" she finished when he stopped.

"Not nearly as enjoyable as it could be. In fact, it was downright depressing. How about we walk the beach and see if we can carry this conversation further than the standard line?"

Amelia had to admit that while she didn't dread walking the beach alone, the idea of it hadn't held as much appeal as sharing the experience with someone. Maybe this Valentine's vacation wouldn't be so bad after all. "I'd love to, Colin. By the way, I like Chinese food, too."


  1. Nice installment, Lisa. I'm looking forward to what's next!

    Hey! That's my cue. I guess I better get to work. Any suggestions from any of you readers???

  2. Hi Missy:

    They need to find something on the beach that will change their lives forever! Something that can show them in heroic action; something that will tell more about their characters than twenty pages of narrative could ever hope to achieve. Something that will make the reader stand up and cheer and say: Yes, Yes, Yes!

    I think that would be good. : )

    BTW: I think the photograph really helps the story.


  3. Love the idea of finding something on the beach Vince.

  4. What a great idea, Vince. I loved the picture, too. I tried to find one for my post but just couldn't settle on one. Lisa found the perfect scene. Now what will they find on the beach?

  5. Ooohh, my brain cells are clicking!!

  6. Great installment.On the beach,how fascinating.Could find a ring(my daughter lost her wedding/engagements rings on the beach last year),would love for someone to find them.

  7. Ooh, nice idea, April! Thanks!

    You know, my friend lost her wedding band and a long time later found it in a pawn shop near where she thought she lost it! She was beyond thrilled.

  8. Oh wow, that's so cool, Missy. I'm glad she was able to find it. I've heard stories of people losing rings on the beach and having them turn up 25 years later. Seems amazing. I like the finding the ring on the beach idea. I can picture both of them reluctant to pursue love, thinking they're only going to be friends only to end up in love. They're both on vacation. Wouldn't it be great if they found out they lived close to each other? Or maybe they don't and the conflict of knowing they couldn't pursue the relationship past the vacation has them holding back until they realize they're in love. Oh, the possibilities are endless. Can't wait for the next chapter...

  9. I'm enjoying the story. I lost the diamond out of my engagement ring while we were vacationing at the beach, but fortunately, I was in the house at the time. I kept thinking that I could have been on the beach when it happened.

    I once lost a contact lens at a restaurant near the beach. Their parking lot was not paved, so it was basically sand. It was nearly dark, and we used a flashlight that the restaurant loaned us, and I found the contact. I couldn't believe it. I needed that contact because we were on vacation, and I had accidentally left my glasses at home.

    It will be fun to see what their walk on the beach reveals.

  10. I hope my daughter has the same luck.They left the info with the park ranger who said a lady's after seven years was recovered and returned.My daughter's husband brought her a new set for Christmas.Although,not the seem.


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