Tuesday, March 22, 2011

...and now for something completely different...

Carry On Tuesday had a really interesting prompt today, which was a quote from the first words of the final paragraph of Dostoevsky's Crime and Punishment.  ("But that is the beginning of a new story.")

To respond, I wrote several silly Clerihews earlier today, but the I decided that 1.) I didn't care for them very much, and 2.) prose would probably work better for this prompt.  Here's my take:

Image courtesy of New Jersey Romantic Getaways

The Winstead

Our summer cottage dated back to the late Victorian era.  It was an elegant, charming Queen Anne with a graceful wrap-around porch in front, and it was also only a block away from the sand and sea, which made us the envy of all our friends.  As soon as Chris and I saw The Winstead, as the cottage was called, we knew we had to have it for the season, even though it cost practically the earth.
Staying there was completely and utterly idyllic, except for one peculiar thing:  The Winstead was haunted.  

I didn’t know anything about the place being haunted at first because our lease agent neglected to mention that rather salient feature (although, as it happened, she was aware of the odd circumstances surrounding the place, as I later discovered.)  In retrospect, it did explain why the house was untenanted and available when it really shouldn’t have been, but shortly after we moved in for the summer, I came face to face with a surprise.

One day I found myself staring at a handsome young man in the tuxedo, a true picture of sartorial elegance.  He politely introduced himself and his situation.

"You're dead?  You're a ghost?" I repeated, incredulous.

"Yes, quite, indeed," he said.  "You see, we were all having a splendid time at Whitney's.  They always gave such marvelous parties, you know.  The best in Spring Lake – and perhaps all of New Jersey, in fact.  It had to have been at least four in the morning.  Tommy was driving and he must have had a bit too much to drink.  I suppose we all did, which was typical of us back then, you see.  In any event, he wrapped our lovely Packard around that damned tree. 

"That was it, I'm afraid.  I've been haunting this place since 1937…but that is the beginning of a new story…”


  1. He has haunted through interesting times!

  2. He sure has. Thanks for stopping by, Janice!

  3. forget the writing .I LOVE the picture!

    No really the writing was good honest!