Granny Atkins sat, hidden in the shadows, on the porch of the old house looking at what used to be a busy street in her hometown of Littleton, West Virginia. Drug addiction had killed this town. Littleton wasn’t even a town anymore. It was a death trap. Only a few people her age remained here. The rest had fled or died off. Her generation had worked on the gas wells, but they weren’t pumping much anymore. There was no work.
All that remained were a few families trying to raise some children. They didn’t have any money to move away. The teachers taught drug awareness classes in the only remaining school, but when the heroin came to town, it didn’t matter. The kids used it anyway. They got crazy, burned buildings, and overdosed.
Littleton was a ghost town now. Soon, she would be a ghost too.
Little Dude in Rehab
“So this was what an adventure tour was like,” Michael thought, as he and Sasha disembarked the small vessel onto Pitcairn Island in the South Pacific.
Pitcairn is one of four volcanic island, still under British control. Population 54. They trudged up the path to their new digs, lodging with a local family. Most families were descendents of the mutineers of the past.
Their family spoke some English. The young girl followed him everywhere he went, aggravating Sasha. Pitcairn was not heavily visited and she hadn’t seen many outsiders. He and Sasha had planned to fish as the waters held all kinds of species of fish. The young girl watched.
Michael and Sasha were fishing in shallow water. Their idea was to get a big fish, something the entire family could have for dinner. They snagged a large white fish. The Pitcairn family would have a wonderful dinner tonight..
“Jerry, how much traffic backup is there now? Can you see the statistics?” Rhonda asked..
“You don’t want to know. Hundreds of vehicles. Mostly oil trucks. Some are stuck to the road. The snow is starting to falling.”
Jerry and Rhonda were agents working at the Portal, North Dakota border crossing site. Portal is one of only three 24 hour, seven-day per week border crossings from the U.S. into Canada. It was December. Trade between the U.S. and Canada didn’t wait on the weather.
There was suddenly a break in the action. A big oil rig was stuck in the ice on the road. Some of the workers were trying to help. Jerry jumped up and went to the back room of the checkpoint. Rhonda watched the truck for a moment and then followed him.
Jerry grabbed her and said, “At least it gives me a moment alone with you.”
“Inspector, we know he is on a bicycle because we think we saw him on the village road, ” said the mayor of the Southern Parish of the Yorkshire Dales National Park in England.
“He may be trying to get into one of the deep dales between the Three Peaks.”
“That sounds like a good place to hide,” said the Inspector.
“What is his crime, sir?” asked the mayor.
“Murder, Mr. Mayor. He was in a pub fight with a man who disparaged his wife,” remarked the Inspector. “Since Yorkshire Dales was close, we were able to track him here fairly easily. Even though I’m new on the job, I’ve heard it was a good place to hide.”
“There are many caves in those dales. Lots of places for a murderer to hide,” the major reflected.
The suspect’s wife walked in to assist with the search.
“He won’t hide in those caves,” she said. “He is afraid of the bats!”
Casey was finally able to visit New Zealand when she graduated from college. Her mother was a native New Zealander, but she died when Casey was only seven years old.
There was a tour she wanted to take in Christchurch. The sights she would see were the result of the earthquakes Christchurch had experienced. It was called the graffiti tour. Christchurch graffiti was special. It was beautiful paintings, painted on the backs of buildings, that were the way Christchurch residents dealt with the pain and devastation of the recent earthquakes.
The tour was fascinating. The graffiti artists had poured all the city’s pain into their work. They rounded the corner of the last building on the tour and Casey turned toward it and screamed. It was a painting of a clown. She had been holding her toy clown when she found out her mother had died.
She had always wanted to visit Iceland. As a photographer, she knew that some of the most amazing pictures could be taken there and she made her living selling her photos. She had been in Iceland for several days and had taken incredible pictures. She had a day trip planned to Gullfoss Falls today, an amazing waterfall.
The tour group arrived at The Falls. As they walked toward The Falls, she was mesmerized because you can’t see the edge. It looks like the Hvita River just vanishes into the earth. She just started snapping pictures. All she could think about was that she could sell these pictures in the U.S. She and some other members of the group got closer. They called to her not to get too close. She had to get this last shot. But she slipped and tumbled over the rocks into the canyon.
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