Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Capturing Fruit Flies, & Wine Glasses for Two

This is Part 6 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 five parts, I wrote this segment of Mindy's story using the word prompts from the Words for Wednesday challenge, being published by River this month on her blog, Drifting Through Life.

When you are ready, here is Part 6 ...


 Capturing Fruit Flies, and Wine Glasses for Two

Mindy had just finished applying the antiseptic to her still-healing thumb, when she heard the doorbell. Assuming it was being rung by the repairman she had called to fix her garbage disposal, her feelings were mixed. Although happy that he was on time because the disposal was already beginning to smell, she was reluctant to see him - especially if he was wearing that hideous tank top again.

Through the glass window insets of the front door, Mindy saw a man she did not recognize, leaning against the column on the front porch. She opened it and said, "May I help you?" 

window, door, stranger, fiction

Suddenly, she realized it was the repairman. But - what a transformation! 

Gone was the backwards ball cap, scruffy beard, pot belly, and ill-fitting clothes. On her porch stood an
attractive man wearing a white short sleeved button-down shirt tucked neatly into jeans that looked new. His face was clean-shaven, and his hair was nicely cut. His tattoos were the only reason she was certain it was the repairman who had repaired her window before. She remembered wondering why anyone so sloppy in their appearance would have such opulent artwork on his arms. Now, somehow, it seemed to suit him.

“Oh - um, sorry,” said Mindy.  “Of course - you're here for the disposal. I didn't recognize you right away... WOW!”

Flustered, Mindy babbled on, trying to quell her discomfort.  “What I mean is, you look different than I remembered. Or - - anyway ...  in case you forgot, I'm Mindy. I know the name of your company, but your name is ...?”

“Ryan. Ryan Jenkins. Nice to meet you again, Mindy.”

Mindy gestured for him to come in. 

“Whoa.” Ryan stopped short, just after stepping in the door.  “Maybe we're even. You didn't recognize me, and I don't recognize this house! Is this really the same place where I fixed the broken window?”

“It is.” Mindy laughed, suddenly feeling at ease with Ryan.  “Looks like we both have made some major lifestyle changes. I stopped being a hoarder, and you started taking care of yourself!” 

Ryan just smiled, unfazed by her statement, and walked toward the kitchen. He looked at the sink, and whistled. 

“You might have underestimated when you said a few bananas ... this really is a mess,” he said. “It's a gamble, but I am pretty sure I can get it all working again. There's a chance though, that the disposal might be damaged beyond repair and we will have to put in a another one.”  I brought a new one with me, just in case.” 

“I was surprised you could be here on such short notice, especially on a Saturday morning,” Mindy said. “All the other repairmen I called were busy.” Mindy blushed, realizing she had just informed Ryan that he was her last choice for the job!

“I made time for this because I know you're a friend of Barb's, and I owe her a favor,” said Ryan. “She has a network of friends who really helped me out this year.”

“Oh, I know what you mean. Barb sort of is my go-to person when I need a referral of any kind! I guess when you still live in the house that had your first sandbox in the backyard, you know just about everybody in a town this size,” Mindy said.

While Ryan worked, Mindy noticed with curiosity that he had set an empty milk jug and a bottle of wine on the counter. What on earth was that for? 

wine, jug

She assumed he brought the wine because he was hoping to kindle something between them. It would take more than that cheap bottle of wine to impress her though!  None-the-less, Mindy decided to wander back to her bedroom to apply some lipstick and fix her hair.

Fifteen minutes later, the garbage disposal purred quietly when turned on, and Ryan had the sink all cleaned out. He picked up the milk jug and asked her for a pair of scissors.  Handing her the bottle of wine, he asked if she would open it.

Mindy complied. Even though it was only 10:00 am, she got out two wine glasses. “So strange,” she thought. “And what is he doing with that jug?”

Ryan had been intent on his task of cutting off the top of the milk jug. He then scooped a little of the banana mush from the disposal out of the garbage and placed it in the bottom of the jug. He inverted the top, and placed it over the bottom part, so the narrow stem was like a funnel in the center. He pulled a coffee filter (?!) from his pocket, dampened it with water from the sink, and then laid it across the opening and made a very tiny slit in it just above the hole.

“There. And, if that doesn't work to trap the fruit flies in this kitchen, maybe the open bottle of cheap wine left out on the counter will attract and drown them all.”  He looked over at Mindy, saw her pouring the wine into the two glasses and began to laugh so hard he couldn't speak.

“Wait -- oh, my.” He caught his breath, trying to regain his composure but just kept laughing. Finally, he was able to express himself. “You thought I brought the bottle of wine for us to drink?! Oh, my! I am sorry. I knew a few days of having bananas in your disposal would attract fruit flies, and I just wanted to help you trap them.” 

Mindy crossed her arms defensively, feeling indignant, embarrassed, and sort of disappointed that he hadn't brought the wine for other reasons. “Right. Of course. Well, thanks for thinking of that. What do I owe you for today?”

Ryan stopped laughing and looked apologetic. “The job took me so little time, and I didn't have to replace any parts. I will bill you, but it will be the minimum amount for a routine service call, as we discussed on the phone.” 

“Mindy, when I met you the first time, I must admit I didn't like you. You were very rude to me, ordering me around. I would never have brought the woman I met that day a bottle of wine for any reason except to trap fruit flies. But, just like your house, you seem different now.” 

Mindy interrupted him fiercely.  “You didn't like ME?! You were so gruff and uncouth. You could have given me a winery, and I wouldn't have been interested in you!

She paused, took a breath, then said, “Why are you so different than you were just eleven months ago, anyway? What happened to change you?”

Ryan picked up the wine glasses, poured them down the drain and rinsed them out. “Trust me,” he said. “You don't really want to drink this.”

“I could ask you the same question Mindy. My answer is a bit of a long story -- and I'd like to hear yours as well. I can see how me bringing a wine bottle here today must have been confusing, and I'd like to make it up to you for laughing. Could I buy you a cup of coffee? I don't have any other appointments until this afternoon. We could walk to the coffee shop I saw just down the street, if you have time?”

“Just let me get jacket,” said Mindy.

The characters and events in this story are totally fictitious. 

Are you wondering how I was able to use the Wednesday words from this week, and get this story written and posted so early today? The answer involves the International Date line!

River (the blogger supplying the words this month) lives in the Southern Hemisphere - so when she publishes her Wednesday post on her blog, it is Tuesday in the USA!

 hideous, antiseptic, feeling, gamble, opulent, sandbox


column, yourself, network, quell, inset, jug

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

Be sure to watch for part 7 of this story, to find out what Ryan tells Mindy about his dramatic transformation.

Have you ever had problems with fruit flies in your kitchen? 

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


  1. Oooh.
    Poor Mindy. How very embarrasing. And yes, I want to know more. And to know Ryan's back story.
    The different directions the prompts take us in are amazing aren't they?

    1. I really do love to see all the different tales spun with the words. It is amazing how different all of our imaginations can be!

  2. I'm intrigued! Can't wait to find out the reason for Ryan's transformation! Lots of good twists in this story!

  3. I have a feeling there are angels in the background here, working to get Ryan and Mindy together.

    (No fruit flies in my kitchen, but a huge infestation of pantry moth in my daughter's kitchen.)

    1. I have never heard of a pantry moth - but pretty sure I don't want any in my pantry!!

  4. Every chapter of this story gets better and better!

  5. I enjoyed that Susan! Well done... and well incorporated W4W (especially sandbox)!

    1. I enjoyed yours as well, Craig (and how cleverly you incorporated "sandbox" in it as well! Glad to have found your blog.

  6. Mindy, take heart girl! I'd have done the very same thing. Those wine glasses would have been lined up just waiting to be filled. So glad he was able to fix your garburator. That was quick. He's a talented guy. Hope the coffee shop visit has a quirky twist or six as well.

    1. Mindy would be happy to have you as a friend, Kelly! Love your advice!

  7. I wonder if Ryan can fix air conditioners? Mine went out last night and we can't seem to find a repairman that can get to it anytime soon! I'm melting!

    1. Oh Rena - that sounds miserable. I hope you find someone soon!


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