Wash, Rinse, and Repeat

This is my first attempt at fiction (just plain fiction, not fantasy or science fiction). However, it isn’t just a run-of-the-mill fiction piece either.


…I woke up, and remembered that I was looking forward to tomorrow. Desperately. Sure, today would be fine, but I really wanted to be in tomorrow. I was going to be doing all assortment of things, including going to the pool, the woods, and out to eat, all things I loved. But today, I had to do school. I was old for doing college, but it was distance-learning. Didn’t particularly matter how old I was.

I just had to get through today and all would be fine.

I got out of bed lazily, slid on a bed-robe, and went downstairs. Today would be fine so long as I paced myself, I thought. Then I remembered something that broke even the smallest expectations for today; I had to do a history test. I tripped and almost fell down the stairs to the living room. I caught myself before breaking my nose and continued down, already weary of the day.

Once I got to the kitchen table, I saw a note there from my aunt, who was spending a while (too long) at my house: “Gone shopping today.”

Dang it. I would have to cook for myself. Of course, that meant I could have coffee. I set some brewing before opening the fridge and scanning for something quick. And hopefully edible.

Eggs? Gone.

Bacon? Why is there never any bacon!?

I sighed, closed the fridge door and looked at the pantry.

Cereal? None left.

Bread? Gone.

At least let there be a bar of some sort! I pleaded silently.

A box! A box of bars! I stepped over to it, picked it up off the shelf, and looked inside. Empty.

I swore inwardly and threw the box down. It seemed as though I was always out of food, for some reason.

That meant I would have to go into town to get something to eat. And spend some of my scarce collection of money. My money I was saving for a book. As I was heading to the door, I caught a look at myself in the mirror.

Ugh. Is that me?

The man in the mirror stood almost six feet tall, but didn’t seem that tall. He was thin and slightly bent-over. There were dark circles under his eyes that told of late nights and early mornings. His hair was tousled; and he looked as though he hadn’t shaved in a few days.

After this rather frightening experience of seeing a reflection of myself, I decided to take a shower.

It’s been, what, one…two…three……… Wait. No, it was yesterday. I took a sniff but I smelled as though I hadn’t had a shower in weeks. Body odor was hanging thick as fog around me. To avoid offending anyone in town, I chose to take a “long” shower. Long enough to clean my hair, body, and shave.

Once I got out of the shower and dressed, I felt better. Somewhat better. After seeing that it looked as though it might rain, I draped a cloak over myself and put on some shoes. I headed out and the low barometric pressure weighed down my emotions even further. I walked (as my self-serving aunt had my car) the half-hour it took to get to a small, somewhat grimy restaurant. I stepped inside, and my interior matched my mood. It wasn’t well lit in there, and reeked of cigarette smoke. I choked on it slightly, sat down at the deserted bar, and ordered a small breakfast. Enough to get me on my day, but not so much that it would drain my scanty purse. Nor quite enough that it would fill my stomach. I ate slowly, considering every bite while chewing before eventually swallowing it. I figured in my head that each bite cost me twenty-five cents, and I intended to make them last. I left the money, with a small tip, on the bar, before donning my hat and cloak and leaving the establishment. As I made my way back to my house, I tried remembering everything I had to do today. Just as I was about to walk inside, I remembered I had to go chop some wood for the fire. I didn’t have enough money for typical heating, which didn’t leave me with many options.

And I would have to get started now, as the sky seemed eager to start its downpour of rain, and wet wood would do me no good. I walked into my garage, rummaged around until I found my axe, and headed to into the forest behind my house, carrying the axe in a wheelbarrow. I looked around for a dead tree, as there were many, and that was the wood I currently wanted. I didn’t want to have to bother with drying the wood right now. Fifteen strokes until I felled the tree. I chopped it into manageable chunks and put them in the wheelbarrow. Just then the rain started to pour down. As I made my way back to the house, I stumbled in the mud a few times. I finally got back to my house, but before going in, I chopped some of the wood and brought that with me. I left the rest of the wood in a shed to keep dry. Once I got into the house, I put some of the wood in the fireplace and lit it, as it had gotten rather cold in the house while I was gone. The warmth soothed my temper slightly, and I got out some of my textbooks to study.

But then I got to the history test.

I read through the entire module that the test was about and quizzed myself until I felt ready.

I got on my computer, went to the website, and printed out the test. Then I went to the kitchen table, turned on the light directly above it, and hunkered down to the test. I was almost done when I got a call from my aunt: “You have to come down here now! It’s important!”

“Where are you?” I asked.

“I’m at the Lower Valley Elderly Water Therapy Centre.”

I sighed. “Fine, I’ll be down right away.” My test could wait if my aunt was in trouble.

I forgot that I didn’t have a car. I got on my bike and pedaled the three miles there. When I got inside, I drew several odd looks, as I was breathless, sweaty, and young. I asked the check-in desk where I could find my aunt. She told me that she was in the Recreational Bathing Room, and gave me directions there.

Once I got there, my aunt beckoned me over.

“I dropped my keys in the pool.”

“What! For one, you mean my keys. And why did you call me over for this? Just ask one of the helper people.”

“You can never trust someone with your keys.”

I dove in, wearing my street clothes, swam around until I found the keys, handed them back to her, and stalked out without another word.

Biking back was uncomfortable, as the bike and me were wet now. When I got back to my house, I settled back down to my test, finished it, and faxed it to the school. I looked at the clock and saw that it was quite a bit past lunchtime. I looked on the shelf and saw that there were two cans of soup left. I grabbed one, heated it, and ate a silent lunch. I then settled down to a book and read for a few hours. When my aunt came back with armloads of bags and boxes, it was close to dinnertime. She cooked, we ate, and she made a half-hearted attempt at a apology for calling me out. I forgave her, then went upstairs and took a shower. I was tired from the day, and slept after only reading a few pages of my book. I went to sleep with visions of tomorrow spinning in my head.

I woke up, and remembered that I was looking forward to tomorrow…


You can download it here:



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