Wednesday, July 15, 2015

A Banana Relapse Will Require a Repair

This is Part 5 of my fiction story about Mindy, a compulsive shopper and hoarder of cleaning products.

To catch up with the story so far:
Like the first four parts, I wrote this segment of Mindy's story using the words from the Words for Wednesday challenge, that are being published by River this month on her blog, Drifting Through Life.

When you are ready, here is Part 4 ...

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banana, recipe, fiction, jam


A Banana Relapse Will Require a Repair

Mindy groaned. “Why is it that everything about my life had to be so hard? How was I to know,” she
thought indignantly, “that you shouldn't put bananas down the garbage disposal?” 

Bananas had been drastically reduced in price at the grocery store last week, so she had not been able to resist buying up the entire inventory. Her plan had been to make Banana Jam, and sell it at the Farmer's Market. She made a big batch, but then ran out of jam jars and hadn't cooked up the rest of the bananas. The last twenty pounds of them had begun to spoil. 

Fruit flies had begun to invade Mindy's kitchen. Their little black bodies contrasted sharply with the cherry-red paint of her kitchen walls, as they billowing up like a thick cloud each time she disturbed a banana. Frustrated finally to the breaking point, she had begun stuffing bananas down the disposal to get rid of them.

Mindy poked at the mass of bananas and peels in the disposal with the handle of a wooden spoon and twirled it around. It squelched but nothing budged.  The gears were jammed and no amount of force or pleading was going to fix such a mess. The fruit flies had already found the sticky contents and were hovering over the sink. She was going to have to hire someone to fix it.

Her mind backtracked to eleven months earlier. “No way am I calling that repair guy I used the last time,” she thought. He had been so rude to her. In fact, he had even included the time it had taken him to remove the broken glass and boxes stored in her tub, when he tallied the labor costs of repairing the broken window!

Those boxes! They had certainly cost her some money, made her shed more than a few tears, and set off quite a chain reaction of events. 

Mindy's cheeks burned as she recalled the day Dr. Franklin (Paul) had come for lunch, and so bluntly assessed her need for psychiatric help.  She remembered being in denial, as he kept referring to her hoarding problem. She had insisted she was just a collector and an entrepreneur! At the time, Mindy had been furious at Paul's suggestion that she needed help, and humiliated by her assumption that they were on a blind date. She had been totally blindsided by the intervention her friend had arranged!

It hadn't been until she had rushed to the bathroom to wash her angry tears that she began to consider the truth of his words. Dashing through the hallway, a whole stack of boxes had tumbled down on her, pinning her to the floor. Paul had helped her up, and said kindly, “Let's talk.”

An hour later, Paul had convinced her to seek some help, and set up an appointment for her with a nearby colleague of his.  She had been going to therapy and attending a support group for hoarders three times a week. For the first time in years, most of the horizontal surfaces of her home were uncluttered. Buying the bananas had been a relapse - but otherwise she had limited her shopping to only purchasing items she needed and would actually use. 


Mindy had forgiven Barb for misleading her into thinking that Dr. Franklin was potential dating material! She had found him quite attractive, but she knew now that he was much too professional to have ever thought of her that way. As it was, it had worked out better for her that they had kept things on a professional level.


After calling the listings for every other plumber and handyman (besides the man who had repaired the window) and finding out they were all busy, Mindy wasn't sure what to do. The disposal would really started to stink, if she didn't get it fixed in a day or two! She wondered who else she might be able to call.

It was almost time to meet Barb, as they had planned to go on a short run together. She retied her sneaker, and headed for the door.


The front door was unlocked, and Mindy walked into Barb's home unannounced. After a quick look around she grinned; her own home was now perhaps less cluttered than Barb's!  


Forty minutes later, Mindy was panting and clutching at the stitch in her side. She laughed and said, “Barb, you just seem to know how to make me do things I don't want to do. First therapy ... then running and exercising ... and now I'm going to follow your advice and call that repair guy again.  I guess I can put up with having a rude, boorish man in my house for 30 minutes, if it means I can get rid of the gross banana slime down my drain!”


“Always glad to be of help,” Barb chuckled.  “You don't happen to have a friend who would fix my satellite dish for free, do you?  By the way, you really should try to be nice to the repair guy. I got to know him a bit when he worked on my house, and he actually was going through quite a rough time back then.”



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The characters and events in this story are totally fictitious. Like Mindy though, I am going to try to make some banana jam this week! If it turns out, I will provide the link to the recipe in my List of Fabulous Finds post on Friday. 


satellite, bananas, unannounced, cherry, backtracked, included

and

sneaker, kitchen, force, around, squelched, short

Be sure to stop by River's blog, and see how other people used the words as well ... or better yet, take the challenge and write something using them yourself!

Have you ever put something you shouldn't have in a garbage disposal? 

Do you call it a garbage disposal, a garburator, a disposal, an in-sink-erator, or some other name?

This post may be linked to one of the great link-up parties I follow and list on my blog. Check them out!


19 comments :

  1. Love it.
    Poor Mindy, though it sounds as if her life is finally starting to turn around.
    I have never had a garbage disposal unit. I suspect they were insinkerators here - but that is an uneducated guess.

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    1. I have had a garbage disposal in some of the places I have lived - they can be convenient, but definitely can have issues!

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  2. Hi Susan. I am so enjoying reading your "serial"--can't wait for the next installment!

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    1. I'm glad you are liking it Donna! Thanks for reading and commenting!

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  3. Great chapter, and I love the title! Glad Mindy is starting to get some help.

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    1. This one was hard to title - glad you like what I came up with! Not sure it is very SEO friendly, but probably not too many of my titles are!

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  4. Mindy, Mindy, Mindy. I hope she makes a fortune selling her banana jam and that she has money left over once the repair bill comes in. I'm glad she's getting help on the hoarding front too. Tell her to keep attending the support group meetings. Three times a week is manageable. Looking forward to seeing how she manages with Mr. Fixit. However, I can't help wondering why he's available and the others are not. Hopefully it's because he works for himself and manages his time better than the bigger companies. And for the record? I've never heard of banana jam! Looking forward to your recipe.

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    1. She better sell the jam quickly - the recipe she used is not for canning, and only keeps in the fridge a few weeks! It is really delicious though - so she may find herself with reorders, if some of the jars do sell! ;)

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  5. I am really getting hooked on this series. I know people who are on the verge of being hoarders. Then I know people who are at the other end of the spectrum and their homes look like a realtor "staged" them. I think I fit somewhere in the middle! I have had a garbage disposal for 44 years and only had a little problem once -- I was putting down all the pulp from the juicer and it was just too much! Hmmm -- never heard of banana jam. Interesting. Keep up the great writing.

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    1. Thanks Lynn! Glad you are enjoying the story. My house fits somewhere in-between as well -hopefully closer to the "staged" end of the spectrum than the other! As you know - I've had a bit of an interesting history with a garbage disposal, as well that set off quite a chain of reactions ;-0

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  6. Oh, yeah -- I forgot about the time I wiped my wedding rings off the counter (I was working with some dough) and started up the disposal. It made a terrible racket. Of course, my husband just had to be standing there. I quickly turned it off and reached down saying, "Oh, it's just a flip top"! (which I thought it was), and my husband said, "Talk about money down the drain!)

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  7. No yardsale! Haha such a cute story. Believe it or not my hubby throws a fit if we use the garbage disposal. He thinks it's disgusting. He says it's like going to the bathroom in your sink. He's such a dork, we do it anyway lol!

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    1. I haven't heard that description before Rena! We actually only use ours minimally, as there is some question as to how good the contents really is for our septic system, and we would rather be safe than sorry.

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    2. Oh NO! You mean I have to tell him he's right! I will never hear the end of it haha!

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  8. Great story.....and yay Mindy for tackling that hoarder problem.

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    1. Thanks Delores. A little dose of Mindy seems to be a good thing - I have spent some of this weekend culling our bathroom cupboards of outdated and unwanted pharmaceuticals, cosmetics and toiletries. Writing about hoarding is turning me into a minimalist!

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  9. This totally made my day! So creative, and you have a great voice in your writing. Loved it!

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    1. What a lovely compliment - thank you, Mary. And, thank you for publishing the Banana Jam recipe! It is going to become a breakfast staple in our house!

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Many thanks to everyone who leaves a comment here!