Beyond Wisdom… Friday Fictioneers

Grace was longing for a crystal ball. Desperate for clarity, she’d finally decided to see a psychic, even if it was the Devil’s work.  After all, it had to be better than pouring the last remnants of hope down the pokies, especially now her winning streak was gone.

She handed over her last $50.00 note to Madame Sahara Rose. Fingers crossed.  

“You’re going to fly the trapeze and find romance.”

Grace snatched her money back.  That was enough bullshit to bury her alive.

Instead, she accepted the job on board the Ruby Princess. How could a cruise go wrong?


99 words Photo thanks to J Hardy Carroll.

For the last year, I’ve been researching WWI and especially the bios of individual soldiers in detail. I’m repeatedly struck by the mix of random chance, good and bad luck and also how our own choices influence our fate in both good and bad ways. I’m also interested in how we can often shoot ourselves in both feet and make matters worse, instead of improving our lot. Over the last period of time, I’ve also notice people say: “It is what it is”, as though there was nothing they or anyone or even God or science could do to improve things. Our fate isn’t etched in stone. We can make better or worse choices and unfortunately this character whose life was already down the toilet, ended up on the cruise ship which spread Covid 19 around Australia. Hopefully, this will be her turning point.

This has bee a contribution to Friday Fictioneers hosted by Rochelle Wishoff Fields. Please forgive my clumsy links here. I’ve been forced over to the new block editor and am lost in the undergrowth.

Best wishes,


35 thoughts on “Beyond Wisdom… Friday Fictioneers

  1. Paula Sue Bryant, Writer

    Hahaha. How could a cruise go wrong, indeed! I also liked the narrative voice; well done.

  2. Michael Humphris

    I agree cruising is pretty dangerous stuff these days. But then again what’s not dangerous. Even walking the school corridors now it seems.

  3. Rowena Post author

    I didn’t think of that. Well spotted. My daughter dances and includes acrobatics in her dancing. I’m not the most coordinated myself. The thing that triggered me in this photo, was that it was blurry but clear enough that you can make out the image and was a bit like a dream, a vision. Something intangible.

  4. Rowena Post author

    Covid has definitely redefined dangerous or at least, the potential of dangerous. THat said, many people are quite oblivious and some of those will get away scott free as well. Such strange times.
    I feel for the woman in this story who is ure fiction and yet I know there are countless people just like her and I hope they land back on their feet without being struck by further bad luck and choices.
    I hope you are keeping safe and well.
    Best wishes,

  5. Rowena Post author

    Thank you very much. I haven’t been a cruise person myself, but it’s such a shame something which brough a lot of people so much pleasure has been so badly discredited.

  6. Rowena Post author

    Dora, yes, she’s well down the seriously misguided path, but unfortunately, there are so many people like her.
    You could hope that she’s one of the lucky ones on board the Ruby Princess who didn’t become infected, but looking at her luck so far, I wouldn’t be putting my money on that. Fortunately, there are people and organizations which are skilled at helping people like Grace get back on their feet. Their resources are getting strained atm with the fallout from Covid. We each need to try to do our bit, whatever that might be.
    Best wishes,

  7. siobhan1967

    I can never understand the attraction of a cruise ship, even without a pandemic. Grace should have listened to the psychic perhaps? Nice take on the prompt, well done.

  8. subroto

    Oh dear, she should have stayed on the shore instead. But not in Melbourne. After zero cases in Qld we are having a minor spike again. I really don’t mind the working from home bit.

  9. granonine

    I wasn’t aware of the core of this story–good job on all your research. Most interesting. I’ve always loved history, and often wondered how 2020 is going to be told in the history books 🙂

  10. Rowena Post author

    Me too. One of the things that concerns me from my WWI research, was how they used to think the war would be over by Christmas…Christmas 1914 NOT 1918! Now, our Prime Minister is hoping to have much of Australia opened up again by Christmas. It does concern me. Actually, concern is an under-statement.

  11. Rowena Post author

    Having my husband working from home is working out really well for us and we’re saving money and he’s getting stuff done around the house instead of commuting.
    Hope the spike clears up soon. We’ve had two cases locally…a father and daughter. The daughter is in my daughter’s year at school and even in her maths class. However, fortunately the girl isolated before she became infectious. It looks like that family is being very careful and responsible and it doesn’t look like we’re about to have a big local outbreak. Fingers crossed.

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