FFfAW : A streetcar named desire

This week’s photo prompt is provided by Yinglan. Thank you Yinglan for our photo prompt!


The cafe was crowded, loud with the clatter of plates, the hum of chatter. Piles of coats were heaped on each oil fired radiator, their mist making the air heavy.

Gramma’s wheelchair was turned to the window, her coffee cup balanced on the arm, raisin bun balanced on that.

‘When I was a girl they were pulled by horses. Such a mess on the road. All over your shoes.’

Sandy looked out at the trolley cars, the silvery ribbons of track. ‘Gramma, you’re old, but you’re not that old.’

The old lady stuck out her bristled chin. ‘Plenty you don’t know about me.’

Stubborn old goat. ‘Go on then, Methuselah. Tell me.’

Gramma turned away from the street, puckered face alight. ‘Oh my girl, I got more to tell you about than than horse apples. First, you gotta promise me something.’

‘Promise what?’

‘You won’t tell your mother.’

‘Err, okay.’

Gramma smiled so wide, every one of her opalescent teeth flashed. ‘Now, I opened my first cathouse in the summer of ’08 …’


Written for Priceless Joy’s Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers. Pop along here to read the other tales and to join in.


32 thoughts on “FFfAW : A streetcar named desire

    1. Thank you so much Chris! That comment means a great deal. I do try to adapt my language, but am never entirely sure if I’m successful – to some extent we all write the way we write, don’t we? Thank you

      Liked by 1 person

  1. As always, the description is transporting; I can see and hear the setting perfectly. But it’s the characters that make the story. Stubborn old goat, indeed — I think Sandy’s about to learn exactly how feisty her grandma really was! I don’t know about England, but it took a while here in the US for cars to totally take over from horses, especially with the Depression interrupting so rudely like that. So it’s certainly plausible Grandma rode a horse and buggy.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for the historical note, Joy, that’s really interesting. Yes, I think there was an overlap here too, though the lastest reference to horse drawn trams I can find is from the early 1900s. I do like a feisty grandma – too easy to forget old people were young people once.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Priceless… except I was a bit slow with the punchline; purely by chance, before I came to your post a comment I’d just read under one of my posts had turned my mind to the sort of elderly women who fill their houses with cats.
    I don’t think I’m the only one of your readers who was instantly transported to that noisy, steaming cafe 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for the heads up Mike. Yes, Gramma was quite a gal in her time. Who knows what lies in the pasts of all those apple cheeked old ladies – plenty of scandal I’ll bet!


    1. Ha! Glad to surprise you. I realised a long time ago that no matter how tame and respectable older people seem, they often had a racy past. My own nans taught me that – neither of whom ran a brothel, I must add! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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