OLWG #172- Ah, Señora

This week’s prompts are at the bottom. The words below were written for practice. Practice makes perfect. My thanks to the OC Writers guild, this week, from whom I stole the inspiration for this post. My apologies for the delay in getting this post up – Life just got in the way. Thanks for playing along.

Here’s how to play along, if you are unsure.

The Oswin family had been part of this neighbourhood forever. Most of the homes on the east side, and even my bar on Remy Street, had been built by the Oswins.

Cleve had been a contractor who learned the trade from his daddy; who had, in turn learned it from his. Cleve married his high school sweetheart, Karen Adams, when he came back from the war in Europe and six months later Karen gave birth to their first son, Scott. Three other boys followed on the heels of the first one. They were named Paul Oswin, Mike Oswin, and the youngest got saddled with the name Tiger Oswin.

Cleve collapsed on the job with a heart attack. He left Karen a young widow with four sons.

Scott got drafted in ’68 and never came home from Vietnam. His name is chiselled into a granite wall in DC.

Paul got a job at the mill and was crushed in an industrial accident after working there for less than a year.

About halfway through his second year in college, Michael’s car battery died. Mike took a bullet through the head as he was taking the battery out of a truck belonging to the manager of the Linsmore Store in town.

Tiger and his mother were the only ones left.  Tiger crawled into a bottle and spent most of his days warming a stool at the end of Murphy’s bar. He didn’t come into my place very often. I’d been friends with his brothers and worked summers for his dad. The memories must have been too painful. Oh, he’d come in when his money was light. He knew I was good for a couple of drinks on the house.

The real tragedy of this story, though is Karen Oswin. All the death and despair that she had seen weighed heavily on her kind soul. Her health began to suffer. It was a gradual thing and it may have been dementia or it may have been heartbreak, but she began to fancy herself a fine Spanish lady. Most days she wanders aimlessly around the neighbourhood introducing herself to people. She tells them that her name is Doña Isobel Philomena Santiágo Rivera. Occasionally, in the afternoon, she’ll stop into my place for a drink; maybe a snack (she calls them tapas).


“Ah, señora Santiago,” I’ll say, “Buenas tardes.” I’ll pour her a small glass of red wine and set it on a napkin in front of her.

“Buenas tardes, Guillermo.” She replies. Then she sits silently and sips her drink, If she had tapas she’ll take a few small bites, but she never finishes the food. She’ll organize the plate, glass and silverware neatly on the bar top. She folds the napkin crisply in half and takes her leave.

This week’s prompts:

  1. the nose on his face
  2. can’t there be another way?
  3. rocket boys

3 thoughts on “OLWG #172- Ah, Señora

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