Wednesday, March 8, 2023

Winter Travel by J. S. Marlo


Wounded Hearts
"Love & Sacrifice #2"
is now available  
click here 



    Last week I flew to Victoria, BC, with my 8-yr-old granddaughter to visit my newest granddaughter, an adorable blue-eyed 5-month-old baby girl. We expected warmer weather than back home in Northern Alberta.  Well, we got snow and cold wind.

    At Butchart Gardens, the poor flowers were trying to peek through the snow. 

    Not surprisingly the winter weather in western Canada wreaked havoc with all our flights. I felt like Eli in my novel The Red Quilt. Here's a short excerpt:

The winter storm battered the welcome sign swinging on two chains in front of an uninviting two-story house.

To Eli Sterling’s dismay, the charming holiday pictures on the Bed and Breakfast website bore little resemblance to reality. For the price he paid, he should have known better than to expect colorful lights running around the roof and windows, or an inflatable Santa with his fleet of reindeer ready to take off in the middle of a snowstorm.

His granddaughter would be disappointed when she woke up from her nap. He had promised her a special Christmas, not yet another heartbreak.

I’m sorry, munchkin. The five-year-old child under his care deserved more than a life filled with drama and broken promises.

Eli shifted his SUV into four-wheel drive and inched into what he hoped was an unplowed driveway, and not a ditch. The snow crunched under the tires, suggesting a layer of ice beneath the fresh powder. Afraid he might get stuck if he forced his way farther ahead, he stopped about twenty feet from the front door of the Bed and Breakfast. He left the engine running, and after jacking up the heat so Ruby wouldn’t freeze in her car seat, he got out to brave the storm.

A gust of wind tested his balance as he trudged through the snow. The bright red, orange, and yellow welcome sign creaked on its black chains. It looked freshly painted, unlike the rest of the house.
Welcome to Lisa’s Bed & Breakfast
Eli would have felt more welcomed if Lisa had shoveled the driveway and the porch.

The sun, which wouldn’t set for another hour, had gone AWOL in the middle of the storm. Though darkness hadn’t claimed the island yet, someone should have turned on the porch light.

Eli had arrived within fifteen minutes of the time agreed upon. Someone should be here to greet him. Besides, it was suppertime. Lights should filter through at least one window.

Unsettled by the lack of apparent life, he rang the doorbell, then after a few seconds, pounded on the front door.

“Hey! Is someone home?” Eli shouted over the wind, hoping his voice carried inside. “It’s Eli Sterling. I have a reservation.”

Seconds turned into minutes. As his fingers grew cold and numb in his gloves, it became obvious no one would answer. He returned to his SUV before he could no longer feel his hands, then after warming them up in front of the vents, he dialed the number on the Bed and Breakfast website.

“The number you are trying to reach is no longer in service.” The mechanical voice that showed no empathy toward him hung up before he could catch his breath.

“No, it can’t be...” Thinking he had misdialed, he tried again.

“Are we there yet, Papili? I’m hungry.”

The nickname that Ruby gave him when she was a toddler echoed in his ears as he listened to the same recording from the same mechanical voice.

Struggling to keep his spirits from plummeting, Eli pasted a smile on his face before looking at her over his right shoulder. “Not yet, munchkin. Papili got lost. Would you like a granola bar?”

Shrill giggles filled the vehicle. “Ask Siri, Papili. She’ll tell you where to go.”

Happy Reading & Stay Safe! J.S.




  1. This winter is baffling everyone. Even in Arizona, the temperatures, the winds, and the road conditions in the mountains are dangerous because of the snow. Thanks for sharing.

  2. It's been a strange winter here, too. Hoping for spring soon

  3. A pair of red-winged blackbirds have graced my birdfeeder - usually a sign of Spring. However, another 13 cm (5 inches) of snow fell last night. In Ontario (and, it seems, around much of the world), Mother nature is laughing and laughing and laughing.


There have been so many comments that require moderation, like a couple of you who do 10 or 12 at a time, that I simply do not have time for all of this so moderation is now turned off and only members of the Blog can post comments.

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.

Popular Posts

Books We Love Insider Blog

Blog Archive