Saturday, 31 July 2010

Dreams - My story extract for the Milestone Blogfest - #fridayflash below

Thank you to Donna Hole for hosting this Milestones Blogfest to celebrate reaching 100 followers. You are already well past that so congratulations! 

This is the ending of the story I first shared on the Bickering Blogfest. You can read it here if you want. However, in this story of dreams, the milestone is reached when my hero, Cassie, opens her French – inspired bistro at a little beach village in Sunny Queensland. Lots of sensuous food…and more! Read on…Please indulge me. I just had to include some complete the escapism...

Cassie's by the Sea

I finished my run along the beach, then jogged towards the village. There it was, Cassie’s by the Sea. My heart did a little flip. I wondered how long before I could look at my bistro and not go all ga ga. Maybe never, and that was probably a good thing.

The outdoor eating area was already filling, the cheery blue awnings providing relief from the midday sun. My customers were studying menus, deciding between the fish or the steak. I smiled at them as I passed by, double checking that little pots of roses had been placed on each table. They smiled back and called out:

‘Hey Cassie!’
‘How are you?’
'This is the life!’
‘What a day!’
‘Enjoy your walk?’

I felt their warmth, their regard for me. I couldn’t help basking in the glow. This was my life, my happiness. The only regret I had was that it had taken me so long to realise that not only had Michael never shared my dream, he was not the man of my dreams.

I pushed through the two-way door leading into the kitchen. I slowly inhaled the exquisite aromas. ‘Yum,’ I sighed blissfully, looking around. François was hunched over the range, stirring a creamy béarnaise sauce. His dark black hair was partially hidden under his chef’s hat, but I loved the way stray locks fell over his forehead.

I looked around the gleaming kitchen. His handiwork was everywhere, laid out like offerings—pans of his silky pasta simmering on the stove…crisp cheesy lasagne bubbling away in the oven…little pots of his sauces arranged along the plating section like jewels…his huge casserole of Boeuf Bourguignonne richly stewing in its mushroom and red wine base…his amazing French Onion Soup ready to be plated…the salmon rillettes…the chicken liver pâté…the potato and smoked fish croquettes—all prepared with minute attention to detail.

French food with a lighter touch. I saw the crustless leek and gruyère quiche, the day’s special that always caused a stampede when it was on the menu. François’ ingenuity was legendary; how he had discovered ways to cut the fat and kilojoules without sacrificing taste or texture. It was no wonder the lunch crowd grew in number from day to day. I admired the salads—crisp curls of greens, reds and orange, the hearty Niçoise.

François put the first serve of oven frites in to warm—you can’t have a French bistro without potato chips! Then there were desserts, works of art like you’d find in the patisseries of Paris, but with an emphasis on fruit rather than cream.

I had found treasures in France, but François was no museum piece, he was far more precious. He was the rarest, most amazing find. ‘There is nothing like a dream to create the future’ I whispered to myself.

‘Hello darling.’ I put my arms around his back and hugged him. He turned to me, his face flushed with his culinary efforts, and kissed me lingeringly, his long artistic fingers entwining mine. ‘Ah, chérie,’ he sighed. ‘How’s our bébé?’ He gently placed his hands on my stomach, loving me and the new life I carried. François took a deep breath, inhaling my scent. ‘Oh, chérie, you smell of the beach, so Australian.’

‘Ah, and you smell of the kitchen, so French!’ I giggled.

‘Ah,’ he murmured, content, ‘the best of both worlds!’

Reluctantly I broke our embrace. I donned my cute red, white and black uniform and left the heady aromas of the kitchen behind. I stepped up to the counter, and joined my excellent staff, Max and Tia. My heart was full. One milestone reached and the greatest of all yet to come. I gazed around, watching my bistro fill, anticipation on every face. I wouldn’t change a thing about my life!

I often think about dreams. I’ve learned that when we are dreaming alone it is often only a dream, but when we are dreaming with a special someone, that is reality.

The End

So tell me what you think s'il vour plâit, then off you go to read some other entries here.
©Denise Covey, 2010


Theres just life said...

I really enjoy reading your stories. The description you do is wonderful. I can almost taste the ocean salt on my lips. I am glad I found your blog. I look forward to reading it.

Denise Covey said...

Thank you again Pamela JO. You are good for my ego. Seriously, I'm so glad you enjoy reading my little stories..:)

Francine Howarth said...


Oh, yum yum.

How could you present such tasty morsels at this time of the morning (8a.m.UK). I'm ravenous now!

Great atmosphere as one now expects from your writings and looks forward to the reading of. ;)

dolorah said...

Denise that was fabulous. Wow, you certainly captured the spirit of a Milestone. So romantic, and hearwarming. Cassie's by the Sea; truly sounds like a place I'd like to visit.

Francois is definitely the man she deserved. After reading your bickerfest entry, I had hoped for a happy ending for Cassie.

I am not a traditionally happy ending person myself. I have this mental block against it, I think. This post did everything I had hoped to accomplish in mine, but . .

Beautiful story.

Thank you for participating.


Denise Covey said...

Thanks Donna. Glad you liked it. Must get off and read yours and others' now..:)

stu said...

I like the richness of this writing and the way it manages so much detail without being too obtrusive.

Justin W. Parente said...

Wow this was absolutely the best form of raw, descriptive writing. I'm captured by the line "My heart did a little flip." A flutter, a pit opening in the stomach, butterflies. We've heard those, but that is new for me. The excerpt carries a wonderful, dominating voice that begs to be read. I had difficulty looking away from the piece, even with so many distractions around me in the early morning.

Aubrie said...

I always love your word choices! "gleaming kitchen" "Silky pasta"

Unknown said...

That's a great ending!

Also, I love your food descriptions. *mouth watering*


Thank you for sharing this with us.

ps. you jump tenses right at the beginning...

Dawn Embers said...

That is so cute. While we don't see much "french" food in Wyoming, I even recognized some of the food described. Nice details added to make it realistic. And the end is just aww worthy. Great milestone.

Denise Covey said...

Stu: Thanks. I appreciate your words.

Justin: I'm glad you were drawn in. Thank you.

Aubrie: You can see where my heart is! Thanks.

Tessa: Thanks, esp for pointing out the tense jump. I knew it and fiddled with it but it just wouldn't happen. I will rewrite. Thanks for your comments.

Dawn: Thanks. I'm glad you liked it. I love describing food as you can see.

Roland D. Yeomans said...

The ending is perfect. I really was drawn in. The photos were not needed as your writing is so visual and engaging.

Still, I enjoyed those photos. I pray that you soon find the end of your writing rainbow. Roland

February Grace said...

Ahhhhhhrrrggg I'm so hungry now!!!

It was wonderful, just wonderful. Thank you for posting it!


PS AH! I just remembered- there's leftover Italian food in the fridge! I'm so happy now LOL that post made me so hungry!

Denise Covey said...

Roland: Thank you. Maybe if I do find the end of my writing rainbow I won't post anymore, huh? I'm enjoying finding out what readers like so thanks for the comments. The pics were self indulgent..:)

February Grace: Well if I made you hungry I must be doing something right. Glad you liked it..:)

notesfromnadir said...

This beautiful writing is only enhanced by the pictures.

I was a bit concerned about Francois & his hanging hair -- hope none of it winds up in the food!

Oh, & thanks for making me hungry for lasagne. :)

Denise Covey said...

notesfromnadir: Good one about the hair. It is nicely gelled. Thanks for the comments..:)

The Words Crafter said...

I feel like I came in at the end of the best was completely lovely. I have to agree with February Grace-now I'm hungry!!!

Denise Covey said...

Thanks Words Crafter!

Unknown said...

Exquisite! made me hungry... and made me want to travel and visit Cassies By The Sea!!


Denise Covey said...

Christopher. Yes, you'd love it. It's right on Noosa Beach!