Thursday, February 5, 2015

Tia Marañón (Carrot Ranch Flash Fiction Challenge)

Cashew nuts (seeds, really) hanging below the apple or marañón.
Sometimes, as this week, the Carrot Ranch Flash Fiction Challenge comes out of the blue, and I need to go hunting inspiration. 

February 4, 2015 prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less) write a story that includes a nutty aunt. What makes her nutty? Is it the situation she’s in or a quirky habit? She can be anybody’s aunt. Maybe she’s really somebody’s uncle but wants to be an aunt. Maybe it’s the name of a cowpoke’s horse, a hockey team or a village pub. Follow where the prompt leads.

So I sat at my computer, with a little dish of mixed nuts for support, and started trolling. Nutty aunts, aunts, nuts... Ooh! Brazil nuts, and perhaps a little reference to Jonathan Pryce. Nope. The crazy woman there was his mum. (I make a note to watch Brazil again, though, brilliant movie!)

And then between the Brazil nut, a Spanish peanut, and a cashew, it dawned on me. I really did have a dotty old lady neighbor for a few years when I was just starting school, and was always intimidated by her constant presence on the porch when I passed. So just a little extra flavor and, voila!

My flash:

Tia Marañón

When I was a kid, this old lady lived next door. She was tiny, wrinkled, and very fragile—and crazy loco! Her name was really Manzana, but we all called her "Tia Marañón", because she was a nutty apple.

When the sun was warm, she would sit all day on the little front porch and eat cashew nuts. If it was cold, she was inside with the balcony window open, tossing peanut shells into the front yard.

When we passed on our way to school, she would throw them, nuts or shells, and try to hit us. Crazy old apple...