Home | Letter From The Other Side

November 03, 2013

So, You Wish To Write A Book?

"Writing the book is the easiest part. Doing the proof reading and editing is pure torture,'' says Liz Thompson.

Continue reading "So, You Wish To Write A Book?" »

October 03, 2013

The Three D’s Club

Cynthia (ace columnist Liz Thompson) was longing to be invited into the Three Ds Club - until she found out what the Ds were.

Continue reading "The Three D’s Club" »

September 12, 2013

‘I’m The King Of The Castle!’

"I have often wondered what goes through the mind of the person attempting his first time paraglide just after he has uttered the fateful words, ‘I might have a try at paragliding while I’m here','' writes Liz Thompson.

Continue reading " ‘I’m The King Of The Castle!’" »

September 04, 2013

It’s A Fine Line

...‘Do you know what happened to me yesterday when I went to visit Don at the nursing home?’...

Cynthia (Liz Thompson) tells a tale that is both comical and disturbing.

Continue reading "It’s A Fine Line" »

August 27, 2013

Move Over Mr Hitchcock

Cynthia (Liz Thomson) sends an account of an unforgettable weekend to her friend on the other side of the State.

Continue reading "Move Over Mr Hitchcock" »

Move Over Mr Hitchcock

Cynthia (Liz Thomson) sends an account of an unforgettable weekend to her friend on the other side of the State.

Continue reading "Move Over Mr Hitchcock" »

July 10, 2013

Media Therapy

...the fellow must have been the woman’s ‘sugar Daddy’ because he looks decades older than she does and ready to drop off his twig. Despite this, the happy, jolly couple who are running about on a sunny beach like a couple of sex starved rabbits are telling you how wonderful their lives have been since they sold up their home and moved into a retirement village and you should do it too...

Liz Thompson finds nothing on daytime TV which brings reasons to be cheerful.

Continue reading "Media Therapy" »

June 27, 2013

What Are We Doing To Ourselves?

"We seem to be developing two opposing currents of thinking, one emanating from the people and another from multinationals and politicians,'' writes Liz Thompson, disappointed and despairing that inferior food from around the world is now being imported into verdant Australia.

Continue reading "What Are We Doing To Ourselves?" »

What Are We Doing To Ourselves?

"We seem to be developing two opposing currents of thinking, one emanating from the people and another from multinationals and politicians,'' writes Liz Thompson, disappointed and despairing that inferior food from around the world is now being imported into verdant Australia.

Continue reading "What Are We Doing To Ourselves?" »

June 24, 2013

Tightrope Walking And Other Gymnastic Feats In Life

...Who is it really in charge of this home? The children or the parents? Are modern parents nervous of stamping their authority in the house in case they will upset the children or some unseen authority?...

Cynthia (Liz Thompson) has serious thoughts about present-day family life.

Continue reading "Tightrope Walking And Other Gymnastic Feats In Life" »

June 06, 2013

The Necessary Bane Of Our Lives

"It was when I decided to put my purchases through the self serve check-out at the supermarket that I had the first inkling my day was not going to be hours of smooth flowing pleasure,'' writes Liz Thompson.

Continue reading "The Necessary Bane Of Our Lives" »

April 18, 2013

Old Ticker

Cynthia (Liz Thompson) thinks it is high time she told us about a very special character who lives to tell the time.

Continue reading "Old Ticker" »

March 28, 2013

Walkies

...For me, a walk should be something pleasurable, a good exercise to help lower the blood pressure, sooth the mind and remind us the world is not always the dreadful place the news broadcasts would have us believe...

Liz Thompson (Cynthia) brings a deliciously readavke account of walking with Walter, her jet black cocker spaniel.

Continue reading "Walkies" »

February 21, 2013

A Horrible Summer

...A month after it began, the fire in the mountains near us is still burning. Professional as well as hundreds of our volunteer firemen are still working long hours on their trucks or on foot in rugged terrain while water-bombing helicopters drone back and forth all day...

Cynthis (Liz Thompson) sends a letter to her friend following a horrible summer.

Continue reading "A Horrible Summer" »

August 04, 2012

‘Not by the hair on my chinny-chin-chin.’

...Our neighbour who lives across the road left for Melbourne for a much needed holiday. We were happy to agree to care for her girls. Four lovely Isa Brown hens...

But then a hungry fox put in an appearance, as Cynthia (Liz Thompson) reveals in thos letter to her friend on the other side of the state.

Continue reading "‘Not by the hair on my chinny-chin-chin.’" »

June 21, 2012

Tunnell Vision

"I knew when we married all those decades ago that I was marrying a man of high intelligence. I wasn’t quite prepared for some of the small eccentricities that sometimes accompany such intellect,'' writes Cynthia (Liz Thompson), musing in this letter to her friend Del on the tunnell vision displayed by men.

Continue reading "Tunnell Vision" »

June 07, 2012

The Memories Linger On

...Don’t bring those peacock feathers in here, they bring bad luck; don’t put those shoes on the bed, or the table. Turn your money over to-night, it’s a full moon. There is a ring around the moon; we’ll have rain in a couple of days...

In this letter to her friend Del on the other side of the State Cynthia (Liz Thompson) writes with great affection about her Aunt Alice.

Continue reading "The Memories Linger On" »

April 17, 2012

A Caring Town

"‘James, James, Morrison, Morrison Weatherby George Dupree
Took great care of his mother, although he was only three……

……..and goes on to the 4th verse

‘You must never go down to the end of town, without consulting me.’

Those words of A.A Milne were engraved forever on my mind when as a child I recited his poems over and over again.

To this day I still enjoy their rhythm and flow and the wonderful memories of my relatively carefree childhood they recall,'' writes Cynthia (Liz Thompson) in this letter to her friend Del.

Continue reading "A Caring Town" »

March 04, 2012

‘Hoy! I’m Down Here.’

"Aren’t doctors an annoyingly pompous group sometimes?'' writes Cynthia (Liz Thompson) to her friend Del.

Continue reading "‘Hoy! I’m Down Here.’" »

February 09, 2012

One Doesn't Go To Hospital For A Rest

...As I held the kettle of boiling water my hand began to shake and I was aware of a most peculiar sensation. I tried to speak to Teddy but the only noises I could emit sounded rather like baby gurgles....

Despite being rushed to hospital with a suspected stroke, Cynthia (Liz Thompson) retained all her unique good humour when it came to writing this letter to her friend Cynthia.

Read, enjoy...and be inspired by Liz's humour and determination!

Continue reading "One Doesn't Go To Hospital For A Rest" »

July 21, 2011

It Pays To Read The Instructions

"Why do so many of us feel it is unnecessary to read instructions and assume they are written for everyone else but never for us?'' asks Cynthia (Liz Thompson) in the letter to her friend Del on the other side of the State.


Continue reading "It Pays To Read The Instructions" »

July 07, 2011

The Joy Of Books

"Then there is another shop I like to go where the owner appears to have just stepped out of the teacher’s staff room of St Trinians School. She really knows her books and her stock and I would never dare to contradict her opinion in case I was made to write out ‘I must not be rude to my elders’ a thousand times. She always has a few of my favourite authors so I steel myself for each visit and make sure my shoes are polished and my skirts are straight,'' writes Cynthia (Liz Thompson), a lover of books and bookshops, in this letter to her friend Del on the other side of the state.

Continue reading "The Joy Of Books" »

June 24, 2011

Volcanic Ash

I called. ‘Teddy what is that?’

‘What?’ He sauntered across to the window.

Like a flash he was out into the -3 degree morning. Next moment he was rushing across the white frost encrusted grass wearing only a pair of work boots and the habitual light cotton short legged pyjamas he wears all year. In one hand he held a spade, in the other he had the bucket used for the dog’s water. Soon he was digging into the leaves behind our shed and pouring water into a hole.

Cynthia (Liz Thompson) reflects on a week which has been dominated by ash.

Continue reading "Volcanic Ash" »

June 16, 2011

The Burke And Wills Mob

...Teddy was already pretty well equipped for hiking but because the weather can turn from warm to wintry blizzard very quickly up in the ranges he needed some new wet weather pants. He shopped for these on his own and arrived home without having tried them on for size. When he did, the pants came up to just under his armpits. He looked like the bottom half of that old cartoon character the kids watched many years ago…Yogi Bear...

Cynthia (Liz Thompson), in her latest letter to her friend Del on the other side of the state, tells of a happy hiking mob.

Continue reading "The Burke And Wills Mob" »

May 12, 2011

Mates

...Eventually the subject turned to the activities of a small spider about the size of a twenty cent piece which was making its way up one of the veranda posts and bets were laid and estimates made about the length of time it would take the spider to reach the top of the post...

Two chairs on a verandah...two mates sitting on 'em...a scattering of empty home-brew bottles...and the conversation is guaranteed to amuse, as Cynthia (Liz Thompson) confirms in this letter to a friend Del on the other side of the State.



Continue reading "Mates" »

May 05, 2011

Friendly Worms

...Most good cooks have a recipe from great-grandmother’s cookbook for plum pudding or Christmas cake; likewise all keen gardeners have THE special recipe of great-grandfather’s compost making...

In a deliciously long letter to her friend Del on the other side of the State Cynthia (Liz Thompson) tells of dogs, Gang-gang parrots and friendly worms.

Continue reading "Friendly Worms" »

March 31, 2011

Watering The Flowers

Liz Thompson tells a gentle tale which confirms that without friends the world would be a wilderness.

Continue reading "Watering The Flowers" »

March 10, 2011

The Ugly Duckling

...Someone in the crowd noticed the ugly duckling sitting at the waters edge and soon the word passed around and a few dozen pairs of eyes watched with interest, bemusement and uncontrolled mirth as Teddy sat in the fragile structure and using a branch lying in the water pushed out...

Cynthia (Liz Thompson) e-mails her friend Del on the other side of the state to tell what happened when husband Teddy took to the water for the first time in his home-built canoe.

Continue reading "The Ugly Duckling" »

March 03, 2011

Mr Rottweiler

...Not far away from us lives a gentleman I have always privately called Mr Rottweiler. He is a short, stocky gentleman with a square face, square glasses with thick lenses and a large overbite to his square jaw...

In this letter to her friend Del on the other side of the state Cynthia (Liz Thompson) reveals that she may have chosen exactly the right name for the neighbour.

Continue reading "Mr Rottweiler" »

February 17, 2011

Best Conversed With Upwind

...The wildlife is all around us and certainly not trained to think it should stay well away from tourists. So when a brown snake about a metre and half long sidled past as they strolled along a bush track, they refused to venture out again unless they were shielded in a vehicle. The snake Helen assures me was going about its business entirely oblivious to the panicking couple. It had probably already enjoyed a meal and was simply trying find a warm spot in which it could take its afternoon nap...

Helen found a way of getting her own back on her super-critical guests from a foreign city, as Cynthia (Liz Thompson) reveals in a deliciosly funny letter to her friend Del.

Continue reading "Best Conversed With Upwind" »

February 02, 2011

Floods, Then A Cyclone

...It’s a harsh land we live in and to add salt into the wounds, those rotten Poms took the ashes from us! There’s no justice at times is there?...

Cynthia (Liz Thompson) writes to her friend about the terrible floods and cyclone Yasi which have devastated parts of Australia.


Continue reading "Floods, Then A Cyclone" »

December 25, 2010

The Year Christmas Was Late

A happy Christmas to all Open Writing readers and contributors.

And here's a special story for today by our regular columnist Liz Thompson.

Continue reading "The Year Christmas Was Late" »

December 09, 2010

Writing Has Some Peculiar Outcomeas

It is possible to become an unexpected expense for your friends when you are a writer, says Cynthia (Liz Thompson) in another must-read letter to her friend Del.

To read more of Cynthia's letters please click on http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

And do visit Liz's blog spot
http://elizabeththompsonmywrite.blogspot.com/

Continue reading "Writing Has Some Peculiar Outcomeas" »

November 03, 2010

An Innuit Canoe

...I have, up until a few days ago been referring to it as the Titanic, but now the ribs etc are being fixed in place and the shape is showing up I think it would be more suitable if I purchased him a fur hat, put some cow horns on it and allow him to invade England...

Cynthia (Liz Thompson) writes to inform her friend Del of a canoe-building enterprise, speculating that it is going to lead to a drenching.

To read more of Liz's wonderfully entertaining letters do please visit http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

And also visit Liz's blog spot
http://elizabeththompsonmywrite.blogspot.com/

Continue reading "An Innuit Canoe" »

October 27, 2010

What The World Needs Now Is Love, Sweet Love

...To me it is something that would have been accepted as normal years ago because we did trust one another more and people did respect other people’s belongings and property more...

Cynthia (Liz Thompson), in a letter to her friend Del, tells of something she saw in the new supermarket which says a lot about the small town in which she now lives.

Continue reading "What The World Needs Now Is Love, Sweet Love" »

October 13, 2010

A Kind Deed

...He left our car and knelt down on the asphalt to look under the car that the echidna was hiding beneath. He could see it nestled hard up again the driver’s side wheel. Not having anything of much use to put it in or grab it with he tried to use a shopping bag but the little thing held onto the rough surface with a surprisingly strong grip...

Del (Liz Thompson) tells how her husband got himself into an hilariously embarrassing situtation.

To read more of Liz's gloriously entertaining columns please click on http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

Continue reading "A Kind Deed" »

October 06, 2010

A Tongue Like A Cattle Prod

...How was he to know that tiny body of hers holds a steely backbone and a tongue like a cattle prod?

Aunt Alice was seventy when she married him and so far they have been married almost twenty five years which makes both their marriages longer than many...

Those unforgetaqble characters Aunt Alice and Uncle Rodger make a return vist in the latest letter by Cynthia (Liz Thompson) to her friend Del.

To read more of Liz's wonderfully warm and funny letters please click on http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

And do visit Liz's blog spot
http://elizabeththompsonmywrite.blogspot.com/

Continue reading "A Tongue Like A Cattle Prod" »

September 22, 2010

Two Blots On A Soaked Landscape

...Before I could think of a reply he turned to his two Kelpie dogs which were standing on a pile of hay bales in the tray of the ‘Ute’. ‘Shut up you noisy blighters.’ The dogs obliged and sat down, panting with glee, their long pink tongues flapping about as they awaited his next command.

‘I’ll pull you out when we get back. Hop in, I just have to go and unload this lot in the cow paddock.’

We obeyed and hopped in the front seat of the ‘Ute’, not really designed for three reasonably large people. It was very snug as garlic from Teddy, blood and bone or some sort of high powered fertilizer and probably a dollop of cow pat from Mathew’s gum boots filled the warm air of the cabin.

Cynthia ((Liz Thompson) returns to the place she feels most at home.

Continue reading "Two Blots On A Soaked Landscape" »

August 11, 2010

Compulsory Voting

...We all stood about freezing in the wind blowing up from the sea and chatting idly about this and that while shuffling forward slowly. I think we must have looked like a group of morose and slightly depressed children waiting to go into the school doctor for our vaccination jabs.( Now that shows my age. That stopped during the times when free education for the masses was slowly eroded away.)...

Del (Liz Thompson), who is in the throes of moving house, casts an early vote in the Australian Federal election.

To read more of Del's delicious columns please click on http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

And do visit Liz's blog spot
http://elizabeththompsonmywrite.blogspot.com/

Continue reading "Compulsory Voting" »

July 14, 2010

Creative Cooking

...In the dark recesses behind the things we use regularly, I have found all the food purchased during various austerity drives or in case of WW3. Somewhere in my ancestral genes I must still have a need to collect sustanence in case we are forced to live for a long period on a staple diet. There is sago, flour, rice, long life milk, powdered milk, noodles and pasta and tins of this and that which ‘which might come in handy for something’. Who knows what I thought they would be handy for at the time...

And now is the time for handiness. Cynthia (Liz Thompson), in this letter to her friend Del, tells of becoming creative with her cookery as the pantry is cleared before moving house.

To read morte of Liz's hugely entertaining letter click on
http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

And do visit her blog spot
http://elizabeththompsonmywrite.blogspot.com/

Continue reading "Creative Cooking" »

July 07, 2010

Bubble Wrapped Husband?

...We are well along with out packing.

I think if Teddy stood still too long contemplating some knotty problem his mind is working on, I would have him wrapped in bubble wrap very quickly....

Cynthia (Liz Thompson) and her husband Teddy are proceeding apace in their preparations to move to a new home.

To read more of Cynthia's delicious letters to her friend Del please click on
http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

And do visit Liz's blog spot
http://elizabeththompsonmywrite.blogspot.com/

Continue reading "Bubble Wrapped Husband?" »

June 23, 2010

They Must Have Died

...Well, our neighbours all saw these men arrive, park in the street and make their way into our house. It was quite a long time before they all returned to their cars and left.

The neighbours after much discussion and analysis of the men’s business at our home, which evidently ranged from writ servers to a crime or murder squad, came to the eventual assumption one of us had died and the funeral directors had paid our home a visit...

Cynthia (Liz Thompson) survives the "last call'' to write another delicious letter to her friend Del who lives on the other side of the State.

Continue reading "They Must Have Died" »

June 16, 2010

Who Fell Off The Twig?

...our neighbours all saw these men arrive, park in the street and make their way into our house. It was quite a long time before they all returned to their cars and left.

The neighbours after much discussion and analysis of the men’s business at our home, which evidently ranged from writ servers to a crime or murder squad, came to the eventual assumption one of us had died and the funeral directors had paid our home a visit...

Cynthia (Liz Thompson) explains all in a letter to her friend Del.

Continue reading "Who Fell Off The Twig?" »

June 09, 2010

Mudgegonga, Barwidgee, Yarrawonga, Yackandandah...

...As we drove around the long slow hill and looked down at the valley where our two favourite towns are settled our hearts leapt at the view of the mountains and the gold, amber and dark plum colours of the autumn foliage amid the greenness of the paddocks. Our minds were made up...

Cynthia (Liz Thompson) and her husband Teddy have decided to live in the hill country which they love - an area where there are towns with unfamiliar names for strangers to pronounce such as Mudgegonga, Barwidgee, Yarrawonga, Yackandandah, Nug Nug and Wangaratta.

Read Cynthia's glowing letter to her friend Del and will soon realise the many good reasons for her sudden life-change.

Continue reading "Mudgegonga, Barwidgee, Yarrawonga, Yackandandah..." »

May 05, 2010

Medical Matters

...I have found no matter what gruesome procedure is being contemplated by doctors, surgeons and the unfortunate patient, somehow humour even of the darkest kind is sure to be found....

Cynthia (Liz Thompson), though in sombre surroundings, serves up another delicious helping of humour to her friend Del.

To enjoy more of Cynthia's entertaining letters to her friend on the other side of the state please click on http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

Continue reading "Medical Matters" »

April 21, 2010

Politicians - Where Do They Come From?

...I don’t know anyone who likes them, would like to become one when they grow up, wants to marry one or cohabit with one or readily admits to being related to one in the presence of anyone over the age of three...

Cynthia (Liz Thompson) thinks that politicians are a seperate species to the rest of us and is wondering where they come from.

To read more of Cynthia's hugely entertaining common-sense letters to her friend Del on the other side of the state please click on http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

And do visit Liz's blog spot
http://elizabeththompsonmywrite.blogspot.com/

Continue reading "Politicians - Where Do They Come From?" »

March 31, 2010

A Good Deal Of Swearing

...We did all the usual packing and preparations one does, drove ourselves and two very excited dogs all the way to Ballarat to find the place not only had a spiral staircase, it possessed less amenities than we have had when camping and the fence purported to be dog proof had a hole big enough to let a small moribund pony through it....

Cynthia (Liz Thompson) is hoping that a planned holiay doesn't mirror previous disasters.

Continue reading "A Good Deal Of Swearing" »

March 24, 2010

The Great Neighbours Lottery

Cynthia (Liz Thompson), on deliciously peak form (or should that be pique) writes to her friend Del on the other side of the State to inform her of the neighbours from Hell.

Continue reading "The Great Neighbours Lottery" »

March 10, 2010

Are You A 'Huggie' Sort Of Person?

...Perhaps the modern Christian churches in the pursuit of trying to make their faith more relevant to younger folk are missing many people looking for reason, meaning, beauty as well as tranquillity for their disturbed and searching spirits.

Today I think is does exist but not in a building full of noise and clamour but outside in the beautiful world of nature...

Cynthia (Liz Thompson) failed to find tranquility when she went searching for it in Anglican churches.

Continue reading "Are You A 'Huggie' Sort Of Person?" »

March 03, 2010

Don't Blame The Baby-Boomers

...Our most sincere apologies to our younger folk and to all the people who follow us, we didn’t set out to get older or really mean to, it just somehow happened as they will find in time when it happens to them....

Cynthia (Liz Thompson) is incensed by a pronouncement that Australians will have to work harder and delay their retirements to help an overburdened economy said to be struggling to afford its ageing baby-boomers.

Continue reading "Don't Blame The Baby-Boomers" »

February 24, 2010

Freshly Crumbed Cutlets

...Some of us take a perverse and rather cruel delight in watching their skin tones change from rare through to underdone and eventually to crisp and burnt.

I have never understood the pleasure people seem to find in lying about on the beach slowly frying themselves and leaving it each day looking like freshly crumbed cutlets, or beef Wellingtons, as the sand sticks in layers all over their bodies...

Cynthia (Liz Thompson) comments on the crass behaviour of certain visitors to Australia in her latest letter to her friend Del on the other side of the state.

Continue reading "Freshly Crumbed Cutlets" »

December 23, 2009

The Twelve Days Of Christmas

Cynthia (Liz Thompson) shares a poem sent to her friend Del which is sure to raise wry smiles in over-stuffed humans all around the world. Liz credits the poem to that much-maligned author Anon E Moose.

Continue reading "The Twelve Days Of Christmas" »

December 16, 2009

Harassed Santa

...One little sweetly faced thing jumped on Santa’s toes in her frustration and when told not to do it again by her embarrassed mother defiantly repeated her act, only I think she jumped even harder the second time.

I would have been happy to empty my unappetising meal over her head if I thought my aim was good enough, but refrained...

Cynthia (Liz Thompson) closely surveys Christmases past and present in her latest letter to her friend Del who lives on the other side of the State.

Continue reading "Harassed Santa" »

December 04, 2009

Who the …. ?

...At one such service he was midway into an efflorescent valediction enfolding in eternal glory the dead man in the coffin beneath the pulpit when he saw the ‘deceased’ seated among the congregation and very much alive. Kimball’s bewildered response was, "If you are still alive, then who the Hell are we burying?"...

Ronnie Bray tells of poeple who were lucky enough to attend heir own funeral.

Continue reading "Who the …. ?" »

December 02, 2009

A Fairy Wren

Some dead birds were not meant to be found in a fridge, as Cynthia (Elizabeth Thompson) reveals in this deliciously funny letter to her friend Del.

To read more of Liz's letters please click on http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

Continue reading "A Fairy Wren" »

November 25, 2009

Moody Printers

...After driving quite a long way to his premises I was thoroughly miffed to find a note on his door saying he was away from the office.

Teddy lugged the printer back to the car and we drove home, re-plugged it all again and wonder of wonders it worked! Evidently when it plays up again it means it is simply feeling neglected and in need of a ride in the car, a little cosseting and a change of scenery. I suppose it is a cheap way to ensure it keeps working...

Has the inimitable Liz Thompson discovered a novel way of keeping our computers happy and contented?

To read more of Liz's hugely enjoyable letters from the other side please click on http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

Continue reading "Moody Printers" »

Moody Printers

...After driving quite a long way to his premises I was thoroughly miffed to find a note on his door saying he was away from the office.

Teddy lugged the printer back to the car and we drove home, re-plugged it all again and wonder of wonders it worked! Evidently when it plays up again it means it is simply feeling neglected and in need of a ride in the car, a little cosseting and a change of scenery. I suppose it is a cheap way to ensure it keeps working...

Has the inimitable Liz Thompson discovered a novel way of keeping our computers happy and contented?

To read more of Liz's hugely enjoyable letters from the other side please click on http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

Continue reading "Moody Printers" »

November 04, 2009

Who Needs A Thunderbox?

...As happens at the Melbourne Cup, the crowd was segregated by the capacity of an individual’s wallet. Probably, since we were in England, blood lines played as much role with the people as they did with the horses in the enclosure.

Either way, we joined the ‘plebs’ around the track...

Elizabeth Thompson's memories of England's famous Derby Day races at Epsom are more focused on thunderboxes than thundering horses.

Liz, writing as Cynthia, is the most entertaining correspondent you are ever likely to encounter. To read more of her letters to her friend Del please click on http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

And do visit Liz's blog
http://elizabeththompsonmywrite.blogspot.com/

Continue reading "Who Needs A Thunderbox?" »

October 28, 2009

The Melbourne Cup

...Outfits with idiotic confections of lace and feathers sit on heads which have been stewed in new expensive marinades of face creams and hair colourings. Lips and facial lines are plumped with Botox or else have been under wrapping for a few weeks following rearrangements by plastic surgeons. This has sometimes caused trouble in households where the children begin to look older than the parents and daughters in their mid thirty’s refuse to be seen with mother’s who appear to be younger friends...

It's springtime in Australoa - which means that it will soon be Melbourne Cup day.

Cynthia (Elizabeth Thompson) sends another delicious letter to her flower-power friend Del on the other side of the estate.

Continue reading "The Melbourne Cup" »

October 21, 2009

Oh No! Definitely Not!

Cynthia (Elizabeth Thompson) concludes her account of a day from Hell when the impossible Uncle Rodger and ant-haunted Aunt Alice were taken to visit relatives in the country.

To read the first part of this story, and more delicious letters from Cynthia to her friend Del, please click on http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

Do visit Liz's blog spot
http://elizabeththompsonmywrite.blogspot.com/

Continue reading "Oh No! Definitely Not!" »

October 14, 2009

Roadhouse Debacle

...Slowly he took his glasses from his pocket, undid the case and put them on. He stood back and peered up at the various menus above him. The queue lengthened by the second as new people arrived from the highway for a fast meal and quick get-away.

With care he laboriously read each board. His confusion increased as he watched others leaving with trays loaded with food....

When Uncle Rodger and Aunt Alice pay their first visit to a roadhouse an hyserically funny drama begins to unfold.

Cynthia (Elizabeth Thompson) writes another deliciously memorable letter to her friend Del on the other side of the state.

For more letters please click on
http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

And do visit Liz's blog spot
http://elizabeththompsonmywrite.blogspot.com/

Continue reading "Roadhouse Debacle" »

September 30, 2009

Smelly Tiberius

...Earlier he had heard her banging about in the kitchen crashing pots and drawers which he knew was a universal sign of the lady of the house being upset. He saw why when he glanced across at uncle Rodger who was cutting up his steak with a steak knife he had brought with him, a sure sign he had expected Rebecca to serve him a steak far too tough for his liking. No wonder she felt insulted and was taking it out on her kitchen fittings. He sighed, what more did this day from hell have in store for them?...

Cynthia (Elizabeth Thompson) continues her tale, begun last week, of the disasterous day when Aunt Alice and Uncle Rodger were taken for an outing in the country.

To read the first part of this very funny story, and other letters by Cynthia to her friend Del, please click on http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

And do visit Liz's blog spot
http://elizabeththompsonmywrite.blogspot.com/

Continue reading "Smelly Tiberius" »

September 23, 2009

Clammy Trousers

...Tony acted quickly, leaning across to pick Monica’s handbag up from the floor near her feet before it got soaked. He opened the driver’s door and stepped out into water which swirled and eddied around just below his knees. “Bloody, hell!” he yelled as water soaked through his shoes and oozed up his legs. His wet and clammy trousers clung to his legs and small insects swimming on the surface of the water crept through the hairs of his legs to safety. He expressed his anguish at the disaster with a scream of oaths which frightened a flock of cockatoos out of a tree and sent them screeching into the grey sky...

Cynthia (Elizabeth Thompson) tells of the disasterous day they took Auntie Alice and Uncle Rodger to visit a cousin and her husband who lived on a cattle farm.

To read more of Cynthia's delicious funny letter to her friend Del who lives on the other side of the State please click on http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

And do visit Liz's blog spot

http://elizabeththompsonmywrite.blogspot.com/

Continue reading "Clammy Trousers" »

September 09, 2009

Spring Into Temper Tantrums

...I always think of spring here in the southern part of the country as being like a very spoilt young woman.

I think she has been praised far too much in songs and verse in the northern hemisphere and arrives down here full of flouncing blossoms and waving bulbs and when she isn’t greeted with the enthusiasm she thinks befits her pretty face turns on a temper tantrum and blows off our roofs, tosses trees across power lines, railway tracks and roads and generally makes an embarrassing exhibition of herself...

Cynthia (Elizabeth Thompson), writing to her friend-for-many-years Del who lives on the other side of the state, advises that spring should not be overly praised and encouraged.

To read more of Elizabeth's gloriously humorous letters please click on
http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

And do visit Liz's blog
http://elizabeththompsonmywrite.blogspot.com/

Continue reading "Spring Into Temper Tantrums" »

September 02, 2009

Exploding Jeans

...One day when Teddy was in town, dressed in his town clothes, and not likely to be back for a while, I took the opportunity to dispense with the offending jeans which had been left in an untidy pile beside our bed and hurriedly stuffed them into the firebox to help cook the dinner I was making...

Then the stove went bang. Then bang again. And again...

Cynthia (Elizabeth Thomson), writing to her friend Del on the other side of the state, tells of exploding jeans.

To read more of Liz's hilarious columns please click on http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

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August 26, 2009

Heavyweight Response To Australia's Test Loss

Cynthia (Elizabeth Thompson) has a unique realiatory response England's victory this week over her beloved Australia in the Test cricket series. The next time English visitors come a-calling she's going to serve them some of her extra-special heavyweight scones.

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August 19, 2009

Cable Stitch Eyebrows

...Another couple about our age sat in front of us. As they sank into their seats I knew we would be safe from moth and silverfish attack all the way to our destination because a distinct aroma of naphthalene hung like a cloud around them.
He possessed the most marvellous face.

I remembered many years ago writers often used the expression of a character ‘knitting his eyebrows together in anger.’ Well this gentleman had eyebrows you could have made a complete cable stitch from....

Cynthia (Elizabeth Thompson) pays close attention with eyes, ears and nose as she travels by train to Melbourne and back.

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August 12, 2009

The Risks Some People Take

...I have purchased the tonic you suggested and although it looks uncannily like the liquid I have seen at the bottom of a manure bucket, I am taking it every morning. I can only imagine however, because I’ve never actually shared the cud with any of our cows, that its flavour is possibly the same...

Cynthia (Elizabeth Thompson), this week in a serious mood, is amazed and saddened by what isolated people will do and pay for when they seek "cures'' for their problems.

Continue reading "The Risks Some People Take" »

August 05, 2009

Padded Pusher-Uppers

Cynthia (Elizabeth Thompson) made a surprising discovery when she wandered into the ladies lingerie department. "It was as if I had walked into Grandma’s wardrobe only now it had a great deal more colour.

"Thirty years ago we metaphorically (most of us anyway) burned our bras. We opted for comfort which I have to admit created rather a lot of bodily sag and expanse, but we were not going to be trussed up like chooks as the generations of women before us had been. It made no sense in our day or in our climate.''

To read more of Liz's chuckle-filled letters to her friend Del please click on http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

Continue reading "Padded Pusher-Uppers" »

July 29, 2009

Uncle Rodger's Snipping Secaturs

...Uncle Rodger spied some late and rather tattered roses still clinging to the shrubs and before we could prevent him, he whipped out his secateurs which must have had secreted in his pocket and cut the few stoic blooms which had survived the recent gales, but now succumbed to his cutters. Carefully he placed them in the basket of his walking frame...

Elizabeth Thompson (Cynthia) tells of the hazards of taking Uncle Rodger and Aunt Alice for a stroll in the local Botanic gardens.

To read more of Liz's deliciously funny columns please click on http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

Continue reading "Uncle Rodger's Snipping Secaturs" »

July 22, 2009

Monsieur Incompetent

...The Eiffel Tower was of course on our list of things to see and we made our way there.

The crush of tourists jostling about in the viewing area didn’t really live up to the Hollywood images I had grown up with, nor did towing two young boys, one in a push chair, another with wide eyes trying to make sense of the world around him. Plus of course, there was the grumpy pre-teen daughter trying to pretend she wasn’t cold in a skimpy dress she shouldn’t have worn, and a husband reciting engineering dimensions. None of it came close to standing there looking out across the city on a clear starry night with Cary Grant...

Elizabeth Thompson, writing as Cynthia, recalls for her friend Del some of the events on a frlaught family holiday in Paris.

To read more of Liz's deliciously funny letters please click on http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

Continue reading "Monsieur Incompetent" »

July 15, 2009

A Trip On The Yvonne Jay

...We had forgotten, if we had ever actually thought of it, the one very important point about the river. It was tidal. We had no idea if the tide was going in or out.

As we gradually began to list to one side we of course knew...

Elizabeth Thompson, writing as Cynthia to her friend Del who works a radio station, recalls the hilarious events which occurred when she and her husband Ted hired a river cruiser.

Continue reading "A Trip On The Yvonne Jay" »

July 08, 2009

The Bed Is Kaput!

...Tomato paste was evident all over the work benches and a fine trail of red which looked like the droppings from a very ill bird trailed across the ceiling and dribbled down the walls. The chef’s apprentice had perhaps shaken an unsealed container vigorously...

Elizabeth Thompson, writing as Cynthia to her friend on the other side of the state, tells of the unecpected problems in cleaning holiday units.

To read more of Liz's laugh-out-loud col;umns please click on http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

Continue reading "The Bed Is Kaput!" »

July 01, 2009

A Week Of Mistakes

...We were driving to meet them for the lunch when I was sure I saw their car stopped at the traffic lights just in front of us.

The car was the correct colour and when I saw their profiles I waved at them and frantically flicked my lights and to be honest, behaved in a manner which certainly lacked the dignity and lady-like demeanour a woman my age is expected to display. I just wanted to let them know we were behind them. Much to Teddy’s irritation, I kept this up until I was at last acknowledged by a wave...

In a week of blunders, poor Cynthia experiences acute embarrassment.

The Cynthia letters written by Elizabeth Thompson, brimful of chuckles, are being broacast by an Australian radio station.

To read more of Liz's words please click on http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

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June 24, 2009

Red And Black Waste

...Eventually I progressed to accompanying the court reporter. My boarding school upbringing and my complete ignorance of the real world, especially the grimmer sides of life, resulted with me sitting open mouthed in amazement as I listened to the salacious details of the private lives of the persons on trial. The chain smoking senior reporter, who felt herself unfortunate to be saddled with this quite useless recruit, kept leaning across and hissing her tobacco laden breath into my ear saying. ‘Shut your mouth you dope’...

A frustrating hunt for a typewriter ribbon reminds Cynthia (Elizabeth Thompson) of her early days as a newspaper reporter.

To read more of Liz's delicious columns, written in the form of letters to her friend Del, please click on http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

Continue reading "Red And Black Waste" »

June 17, 2009

Some Yolk, No Joke

Elizabeth Thompson, writing as Cynthia, offers her doctor some advice, then has an embarrassing accident in the supermarket.

To read more of Liz's deliciously funny letters please click on http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

Continue reading "Some Yolk, No Joke" »

June 10, 2009

Philosophy Bad For The Blood Pressure?

...When our sick gentleman had been removed by the ambulance, I regretfully bid farewell to the teacher telling him I found philosophy to be bad for my blood pressure and would probably join the garden club...

Elizabeth Thompson, writing as Cynthia, sends another letter to her radio-producer-friend Del telling of unphilosophical incidents in the philosophy class.

For more of Liz's exhilirating letters please click on http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

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June 03, 2009

Just A Little Trip

...Uncle Rodger had been working on staining a small decorative wheelbarrow planter and was feeling very pleased with the results. He wanted to show it to Aunty Alice. Because the stain was still wet, he walked across to their unit to ask her to come to the workshop to admire his handiwork. In his hurry he forgot to put his pot of wood stain down and carried it across with him.

Just as he entered the door he tripped, just a little trip...

Not surprisingly, Aunt Alice was not pleased with the splatterted outcome of that little trip.

Elizabeth Thompson, writing as Cynthia, allows us to read another gloriously funny letter to her friend Del who lives on the other side of the state.

To read more of Liz's letters please click on http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

Continue reading "Just A Little Trip" »

May 27, 2009

Ouch! Oh! Bloody Hell!

...Many families in this area, because they have largely intermarried quite a bit over the years, have inherited acute reactions to bee stings. So if a hive swarmed in an inconvenient place, which they have a habit of doing when there are not many large trees around, people would call on Teddy to remove them. Sometimes, the bees choose places like tractor tyre hubs, chimneys, veranda posts and beams, unused barbeques, the tray of a parked utility truck or even the branch of a shrub which is just outside someone’s door...

Teddy and Jim confront a few stinging problems.

Elizabeth Thompson, writing as Cynthia, sends another report on life in rural Australia to her friend Del.

To read more of Elizabeth's hugely entertaining letters please click on http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

Continue reading "Ouch! Oh! Bloody Hell!" »

May 20, 2009

Amorous Frogs

...The nightly chorus of amorous frogs has begun down at the farm dam and the galahs and cockatoos have finally finished gossiping and fighting over who sleeps which side of the nest for the night.

Cynthia and Teddy take a trip to the Mallee country to visit old friends...

And Cynthia (Elizabeth Thompson) sends another bright and breezy letter to her friend Del giving an account of the trip.

Continue reading "Amorous Frogs" »

May 13, 2009

Doing What Most Young Ones Will Do

...the young couple Monica had hired to serve the drinks and finger food had been enjoying quite a lot of them in the kitchen. Her usual caterers had not been available, so she had hired this couple who worked nearby in one of the restaurants. I had noticed earlier the young man was weaving around the various groups with a little less dexterity than he had shown at the beginning of the evening. Now, neither of them was visible and some of the guests were looking about for refills for their glasses....

Elizabeth Thompson, writing as Cynthia, serves up another delicious helping of domestic news to her friend Del, a radio producer working on the other side of the state.

To read more of Cynthia's letters please click on http://www.openwriting.com/archives/letter_from_the_other_side/

Continue reading "Doing What Most Young Ones Will Do" »

May 06, 2009

What! No Roast!

Elizabeth Thompson, writing as Cynthaia, pens another hilariously funny letter to her friend Del.

Don't you dare miss reading about the special meal in the country pub!

And do visit Liz's Web site http://elizabeththompsonmywrite.blogspot.com/

Continue reading "What! No Roast!" »

April 29, 2009

Washed Out Cat Food Tins

Elizabeth Thompson, writing as Cynthia, sends another newsy letter to her friend Del, a female radio producer.

They are catching up with what has happened since the days years ago when they lived on mong beans.

Elizabeth's letters are being broadcast by an Australian radio station.

Do visit her Web log http://elizabeththompsonmywrite.blogspot.com/

Continue reading "Washed Out Cat Food Tins" »

April 22, 2009

Zucchini Pickle

Letters written by Elizabeth Thompson are being broadcast by an Australian radio station. Writing under the name of Cynthia, Liz imagines that she and one of the station's female producers are long-lost friends, catching up with the days when they lived on mong beans, burned incense and dreamed of love and peace while weaving macrame hanging baskets.

Now they are burdened with life's little problems, getting along as best they can.

Open Writing will be bringing you Liz's delicious letters after they have been broadcast in Australia. Here's the first of them.

Do visit Liz's Web log http://elizabeththompsonmywrite.blogspot.com/

Continue reading "Zucchini Pickle" »

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