General

Mike the Honey Guy

For today’s #ThrowbackThursday, the wayback machine takes us to September, 2012. Mike the Honey Guy is a family anecdote told since 2012. The mention of honey is always followed by “Are you the honey guy?”

The Road to Hawaii, or how we sold (almost) everything, quit our jobs and moved to Oahu, as told by one family who is experiencing the journey.

Mike the Honey Guy, and no, it’s not a euphemism.

Mike the Honey Guy

Mike the Honey Guy

This morning, I was flipping through my digital cookbook (www.shopnsave.com, amazing. You can copy and paste recipes from magazine websites, sort by ingredients, create your own categories. I digress). Honey seemed to be an ingredient in most of the recipes I wanted to make. So far, honey has been off our grocery list as $5.00 for a little honey bear bottle seemed a little steep.

The next best thing? Do a Yahoo search for local farmer’s markets. My first stop was a nearby honey farm  site that seemed to suit my needs. It sold honey from mangoes and papayas and bananas and all things tropical. But why, I asked myself, have it shipped to me when everything in Oahu is so close (distance not traffic). I emailed the owner and asked if they sold their wares at any markets, grocery stores, surf shops, etc.

Less than a half hour later, my phone rang (set to Big Ben’s chimes) and Mike, the Honey Guy, was there to answer all my questions and give me the lowdown on the honey industry in Hawaii.  Apparently, it’s controlled by a drug honey cartel, which decides who and who won’t sell at said markets. Mike gave me waaaayy too much information on the benefits of honey and how others mistreat it. For example, leaving it in the hot sun, where it can heat to over 100 degrees, destroys something important and you’ll get instant diabetes. At least, that’s what I thought he said.

We decided to meet in a nearby town at a drug drop store at 6:30. I don’t know, but I think I’ve lost a gigajillion brain cells since moving. It never occurred to me to ask for a description of Mike. He’d be the guy with the drugs honey, right?

Six o’clock rolls around, and Aaron absconds with the car to escort Holli home from work. It’s been raining all day, and the roads are slippery. They slide home at 6:13, and Luke and I hit the road to the drug drop store. Every light is red.  ave I mentioned every single intersection has four lanes of traffic with separate left turn lanes and it takes five minutes for your turn? (I exaggerate) (not by much).

At 6:30 on the dot, we squeal into the drug drop store parking lot. Luke circles around like he’s on a cattle drive while I look for a man selling drugs honey out of the back seat of a seedy looking van. This is starting to sound like a mugging waiting to happen.

No Mike.

Mike the honey guy

No MIke, no honey

We hang around for a couple of minutes then Luke spots a guy sitting at a booth/picnic table (on the sidewalk?) and walks up to him.

“Are you the drug honey man?”

“Yes.”

“Are you Mike?  Do you have drugs honey?”

“No, that’s not me.  I’m a contract worker.”

“So you don’t have drugs honey?”

“No.”

Meanwhile, it’s still raining, and I’m trying to call Mike from the number I thought I’d programmed into my phone. No such number exists. I’m sure we’re going to be mugged, or Mike has some secret reverse phone number technology and is robbing our apartment while we’re getting drenched.

Finally, I figure out that I’d transposed two digits. I read off the correct number and Luke calls him.

“Mike, hey, we’re at the drug drop store, and we’re waiting for you. Oh? Yeah. Okay. No, why don’t you call us when it’s convenient.?No, I don’t think we can swing by your house (it was pitch black by now) Yeah, sorry to hear about your dad. We’ll do this later.”

Me: “What?”

“His dad died.”

WTF? HIS.DAD.DIED. What kind of flim-flam joint is he running? I guess, when your dad dies, taking care of business tends to jump to the bottom of the priority list. It happens.

We went home in the rain. Without drugs honey. I have a feeling I’ll have to change my phone number and email address. Mike will stalk me until I buy his drugs honey. I’ll be obligated to him for life for my drugs honey supply.

Sorry for your loss, Mike.I bet your dad was a hell of a beekeeper.

Cheryl Sterling currently resides in Waikele (the more upscale neighborhood of the official city of Waihapu even though she isn’t).  You can find her books on Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

9-21-12 a.m. Update!  Mrs. Mike is delivering drugs honey to my doorstep today. I’m taking the knives out of the drawer.

9-21-12 p.m. Mrs. Mike is not coming. I fear for her life. She’s probably being held captive by the drug time honey lord.  Pray for her.

Cheryl Sterling currently resides in Waikele (the better neighborhood of the official city of Waihapu).  You can find her books on Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

2018 #ThrowbackThursday update:

Mike and/or Mrs. Mike never made it with out honey delivery. One has to wonder.

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Old is Gold

2018 A-to-Z Challenge Theme Reveal

It’s time for the 2018 A-to-Z Challenge Theme Reveal.

But first, what is the A-to-Z Challenge? It’s a one month blogging challenge that takes place in April. Twenty-six blogs on twenty-six days. Twenty-six letters of the alphabet, one post beginning with each letter. One central theme. Any category.

(Post every day except Sundays. Except if the 1st is a Sunday, then write on Sunday, April 1st. No Fooling!)

Sign up here.

Last year was my first year, though the challenge has been around since 2010. I stumbled upon it by accident and signed onto a group (the wonderful blogchatter group). I wrote twenty-six blogs on writing and marketing tips, which I later consolidated and published as an ebook available here.

Writing tools, 26 ways to improve your writing. 2018 A-to-Z Challenge Theme Reveal

Writing Tools: 26 Ways on How to Improve Your Writing

This year, I debated on whether to enter. I couldn’t imagine writing another twenty-six tips. Do you know how hard it is to find a writing tip for J? (I cheated and used, Journey, The Hero’s)

Then a case of insomnia revealed my theme.

2018 A-to-Z Challenge Theme Reveal

Let me explain, and we’ll get to the theme in a minute (after these commercial messages).

When I can’t fall asleep, I head for the couch. One night the lights from the microwave, stove and cable box seemed to burn brighter than normal, and I started playing the writer’s game of “What If?” What if they weren’t lights but cameras? And someone watched my every move? What if I had a character who thought that and no one believed him? What if I could put a Twilight Zone twist on the end?

Playing a little further, what if the character lived in a retirement community where reality clashes with the unexplained? I live in a retirement community and I’ve witnessed a bunch of strange things. What if I wrote about what I know?

Thus, twenty-six stories were born set in the fictional village of Twilight, Arizona. The blurb for the series is:

Twilight, Arizona, on the road between Phoenix and Las Vegas, where reality clashes with the unexplained.

Almost each one contains a grain of a story that has happened to me or I’ve witnessed. All of the endings are not what you’d expect.

I’m excited about presenting the cast of wacky, elderly characters to you (some show up in more than one story). If you’re looking for a cross between Lake Woebegone Days, The Golden Girls, and The Twilight Zone, I’ll see you in this space on Sunday, April 1, 2018.

Old is Gold

Old is Gold

Old is Gold

Blessings,

Cheryl

p.s. Please share using the social media icons on the left.

If you’d like to sign up for my monthly newsletter, please sign up below and get a FREE ebook short story (this offer will change soon, so get it while you can)

Also, if you’ve stuck around to the bottom of this blog, take advantage of a special 99¢ offering of Snow White and the Eighth Dwarf as it celebrates its one year publishing anniversary.

Available for 99¢ until March 25, 2018 on Amazon, ibooks, Kobo and other distributors.

Snow White and the Eighth Dwarf, an adult fairy tale romance. 2018 A-to-Z Challenge Theme Reveal

Snow White and the Eighth Dwarf

 

 

 

 

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Produce. Mango jam.

It’s Saturday, which means it’s usually time for cool links, but I’m foregoing them to show you what I’ve been doing this week (hint: not so much writing). It has to do with making mango jam and other good stuff.

Mango jam and other good stuff

I’m inserting myself into today’s post because I made this mango jam, bread and butter pickles and bell pepper relish:

Mango jam

Bread & butter pickles Mango jam Bell pepper relish

Looks delish, right?

I live in Arizona (don’t hate me because the temperature is in the 70’s. Let’s talk this summer when it’s in the 110’s), so fresh produce is a year-round thing here. From October-May, we are able to buy 60 lbs of otherwise rejected product for $10 through a program called P.O.W.W.O.W. (Produce on wheels without waste) Here’s a picture of what I picked up in February:

Produce. Mango jam.

 

The produce is available every Saturday, but I only go once a month because there’s only two of us to eat it, and it takes an enormous amount of time to take care of it. I mean, look at all those tomatoes! Holy Henry!

This past weekend, I brought home:

10 zucchini

2 acorn squash

10 ears of corn

2 lbs of spinach (that’s a lot of spinach)

17 regular tomatoes

8 mangoes

8-10 cucumbers

12 bell peppers

Needless to say, I spent Saturday looking for recipes then made veggie soup, skillet lasagna, spinach-mushroom quiche, and a mushroom/zucchini/artichoke torte.

Sunday, I made two more quiches, zucchini brownies (I’ll never make brownies without zucchini again. So moist), bread and butter pickles, mango jelly, bell pepper relish, and eight veggie empanadas.

Monday, I tackled the corn and used half of it in a casserole. I had also bought some chicken, so that went into four crockpot freezer bags, and I cut up ten green peppers and froze them in bags.

While I had the oven going, I baked an eggplant that I later turned into baba ganoush. I just finished it up this morning as a snack. So good.

Tuesday, I made more chocolate zucchini brownies (Oh, didn’t I mention the first batch was chocolate?) and naan bread for the baba ganoush. I had a second eggplant I sliced and baked into chips.

Wednesday, I cooked and froze the rest of the corn. It was a light day.

The freezer half of my refrigerator is packed to the gills, but don’t worry, I have a new upright coming on Monday. I don’t think I could cram one more thing inside.

The refrigerator half still holds a quarter bag of spinach, two squash, six bell peppers (I think they’re breeding), and two cucumbers.

We’re going to eat like kings!

Blessings,

Cheryl

 

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