It Was Not From This World …

UFORED

Lino Block Print by Elizabeth McLaughlin, Title ‘UFO’

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It Was Not From This World . . .
by Elizabeth McLaughlin
Times were tough, there was even the talk of war, extreme hardships. Weather also became an enemy to the small town of Waverly. Winters became harsh and summer winds whipped up heat that created forest fires across the nation. People were on edge, no employment in sight for millions. It was the era of errors among disputing corrupted politicians. But the people of Waverly grew stronger each day with the community forming
support groups that planned for multiple scenarios of crisis. They wisely managed their precious resources.
Aggie knew how to be prepared, she read everything about how to plan for disasters and became the go to queen on the topic. Neighbors constantly called her seeking advice and a need for even the basics of living. The family pitched in, Sandy, Tom and husband, Phillip. All helped with boxing groceries to be dropped off at the local food bank. That morning, mid March she would never forget the cloud that formed over her beloved town. It was early morning when she clicked on the weather station, Sandy and Tom munched on honey coated coconut granola cereal at the marble kitchen counter with eyes opened wide to the flat television screen. An alert siren screeched broadcasting emergency news, tornado like winds, flooding, snow, and even possible deadly thunderstorms. This combination will be expected in our location within an hour! Aggie picked up her cell phone and dialed for Phillip. His assistant answered her call and explained that due to emergency weather related circumstances that he was in a shut down security meeting at NASA headquarters. “Sandy, Tom get your bug out bags and let’s go, NOW!” she ordered. With no questions asked the two robotically grabbed their gear and headed toward the black SUV. Aggie called for their pit bull-dog Prince and off they went to the town shelter. The sky was swirling a massive deepening stomach churning darkness as she drove, taking side roads instead of the highway into town. “Buckle up tight kids because it is going to be a rough ride, this is no drill” she screamed! Trying to keep her composure, Aggie turned on the radio to be updated about any impending doom. One hand nervously maneuvered the steering wheel while the other grabbed the stick shift, putting it into high gear. Instantly the wind picked up and trees were thrashing back and forth, bending and breaking limbs.

The conditions intensified as towering strong trees began to uproot and parts of a field tractor became missile projectiles that could saw a barn into two. Heavy snow started to fall as if it could be the blizzard of the Century. Lightening pivoted in every imaginable direction accompanied with thunderous booms. Aggie knew that the town shelter would not be possible to reach, and remembered that The McAllister Farm was a mile down a gravel paved drive. There the McAllister family have a decent underground storm shelter that Phillip recently contracted and completed its construction. Wham! A tree collapsed in front of Aggies SUV and the car hit it like a bullet and ricocheted over the farm fence. The SUV miraculously landed on all four ultra high performance tires. But all that could be heard was the howling, thundering wind. Aggie felt a nudging and licking upon her cut up face from Prince. She was able to turn and view that Sandy and Tom were still strapped into their seats. However, both were in shock but fully functional. Prince whimpered and displayed his sprained paw. Thump, thump, thump, the SUV bounced up and down as if it would take flight.

The McAllister family and ranch hands reached the heavy thick steel door leading to the shelter and proceeded to file into a massive elevator to descend into the comforts of their underground residence. The shelter was partially housed inside a concrete silo that
embellished every modern amenity. A fully serviced gourmet kitchen, sauna, steam showers in two full-sized bathrooms, a living room adorned with thick brown leather pull out sofas, equipped with every electronic entertainment gadget, six bedrooms and a mess hall that included living quarters for their staff. Exterior cameras gave them all a complete spectrum of the ranch. A console that came right out of NASA technology was at their fingertips thanks to Phillips engineering skills. Little did they know that their neighbor Aggie was in such danger and heading to the ranch for shelter until Andy McAllister junior
spotted on the surveillance screen their neighbors SUV in the field. “Well I’ll be darned, what the heck”, Andy blurted out as he scratched his head in bewilderment. They all gathered around the screen while Andy zoomed the camera in for a closer view. With the latest technological software, Andy was able to remove layered storm elements and focus on the automobile to see the family trapped. Swoosh, the twenty-foot silo door smoothly rose and a bright yellow snow caravan emerged to make its twenty-minute trek.

Aggie bundled up Sandy and Tom with woolen blankets. Prince nestled in-between the two for added warmth. The front windshield was partially missing and the cold wind was blowing almost uncontrollably inside the vehicle. Then there appeared a yellow hazy dot moving towards them and with a partial sigh of relief Aggie knew that help was on its way. Back at the underground shelter Mrs. McAllister was preparing a hardy beef stew dinner. Everyone was settled in after unpacking, taking showers, chatting about the storm and expressing their dramatic experiences. Aggie had a fresh bandage wrapped around her head and the children appeared to have lost all signs of trauma after playing computer games. Prince was asleep on a pillow. The New York cheese cake, brightly colored cupcakes for desert and frothy mocha drinks ended the night. After-all, it was a life threatening long day. They all decided to call it a good night. Aggie lay in bed under two white down comforters staring up at the luxurious cedar paneled ceiling trying to sleep. For hours she tossed and turned until the bare silence in her bedroom broke. It was a stifling, deafening, sharp metallic rippling sound that echoed throughout the shelter. She jumped up from her comfort zone and ran directly to the living room where everyone met at the console to view the screen display. The storm had stopped and a bright blue sky appeared framed inside a huge funnel of puffy white clouds. Out in the storm laden field over by the black SUV sat a very strange object, and it was not from this world. … (to be continued)

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Dreaming of Spring

mephotowordpressDreaming of Spring but my mind is still picturing Autumn. The weather has been frigid cold but a few days there was just a tease of warmth. I yearn for the vibrant colors, greenery and fragrance of spring flowers. So during this cold spell I painted and even went through the sketch book to turn into canvas creations that will be fun to developing this blog. Winter can be a time used to turn colorful dreams into reality.

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Watercolor Titled ‘Autumn’

 

Left-Over Colors

Leftover Colors
How much fun it is to have left over colors? Allot! It is a treat for a four  legged friend.
Leftover colors keeps Lacey warm during the winter and she enjoys
laceyonesweaterprancing in the yard and on walks boasting her beautiful colors.
I never created a dog sweater before and it was certainly a challenge.
The fitting process reminded me of a fashion television series where
couture artists
went through frenzied fits during the process of designing a garment.
But don’t be afraid to try it out, use those leftover colors!

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Spring in January!

Two days of delightful spring-like weather arrived. I decided to take a bicycle ride to the big box grocery store. Upon my return I ventured off with Lacey dog for a short observation of nature walk by the lake. The temperature reading posted online, 56 degrees, but it most certainly felt like 65 degrees! On the roadside green grass pokes up through the fallen dead leaves, vines still grow and display a luscious rich green. A small abandoned nest nestled in a bush now houses a few forgotten autumn leaves. The birds that occupied it probably took shelter inside hollow tree trunks for the winter.

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A driver of an old rusted noisy pick-up truck pulled his vehicle around towards the shore. Undoubtedly an anxious fisherman wanting to fish. He hurdled large rocks onto the ice to test its thickness and then drove off down the winding road. The ice looks thin to site but his test proved it is very thick. Tomorrow will be the same and it makes sense to head for the wooded trail.

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Winter Charm

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Winter so far is revealing itself as a charm. Sleeping and creeping weather wise. Sunday was warmer than Saturday, overcast and a melancholy type of day. To my surprise grasses and some plants are rejuvenating growth. The birds were out as if it were the beginning of Spring. I was walking Lacey dog around the lake and she was snooping under a lush evergreen bush.  And this is how I discovered a beautiful group of leaves. One looks like it is being chewed on by some type of critter but still reveals to us a story.

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A Warm Winter Day

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It is December 12, 2015, Saturday and the weather is warm. No snow to capture or a need to even wear a jacket! Everyone was out either driving, dog walking, hiking, biking or just walking. I spotted a mature woman walking and she had a large black pack strapped to her back, and sporting luminous reflective wear for traveling on a busy route. She could have been someones mother, sister? We do live in scary times!

dec12-1At a vacant parking lot a group of hunters congregated and I became concerned if they were hunting down neighborhood black bears.  A mechanic is in the holiday spirit and is now displaying an inflated jolly snowman alongside the American flag. At night it glows with bacteria looking creatures running throughout the entire snowman.

Another item popped up on the major road for the “Things I find on the side of the road,” series. It’s a very strange item, unexpected, especially for this time of year! Click here for the story attached to that topic.

I did make it over to the trail and overall the day air became extremely still, overcast, the lake was glassy in appearance. No snow but a video of today’s captures.

So – where is the SNOW?