99 Word Flash fiction: The Nutty Aunt


Auntie Boodie was different. Both her father and brother (an Australian bush poet) killed themselves. The father shot himself when cornered by the police after he had killed a bank teller and injured another in a failed bank robbery in Cape Town South Africa having abandoned the family in Melbourne. Boodie was as a young lady very involved with the theosophists. That is a tale much too long for here and deserves a post of its own. Is it any wonder then that Auntie Boodie was just a trifle peculiar.

We stood mourning at the graveside.  I wondered if anyone really knew Auntie Boudie. Perhaps the man they talked of in hushed tones. Another Aunt who lived in sin.

At  twelve, Auntie still sent me rag books for Christmas. She knew I existed, unlike the other aunts. Auntie, dressed in  hat and gloves, met us at the door when we visited. She sent us to the park whilst giving the adults a five-minute audience. She had the first colour TV I saw– blue cellophane at the top, green at the bottom. 

“Thanks Auntie for remembering me.”  I dropped my sod.

Some of the above tale is fiction, some memoir. To my mind this is a fictional tale.

In response to Charli’s prompt over at the Carrot Ranch The prompt

February 4, 2015 prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less) write a story that includes a nutty aunt. What makes her nutty? Is it the situation she’s in or a quirky habit? She can be anybody’s aunt. Maybe she’s really somebody’s uncle but wants to be an aunt. Maybe it’s the name of a cowpoke’s horse, a hockey team or a village pub. Follow where the prompt leads.

Respond by February 10, 2015 to be included in the weekly compilation. Rules are here. All writers are welcome!

About Irene Waters 19 Writer Memoirist

I began my working career as a reluctant potato peeler whilst waiting to commence my training as a student nurse. On completion I worked mainly in intensive care/coronary care; finishing my hospital career as clinical nurse educator in intensive care. A life changing period as a resort owner/manager on the island of Tanna in Vanuatu was followed by recovery time as a farmer at Bucca Wauka. Having discovered I was no farmer and vowing never again to own an animal bigger than myself I took on the Barrington General Store. Here we also ran a five star restaurant. Working the shop of a day 7am - 6pm followed by the restaurant until late was surprisingly more stressful than Tanna. On the sale we decided to retire and renovate our house with the help of a builder friend. Now believing we knew everything about building we set to constructing our own house. Just finished a coal mine decided to set up in our backyard. Definitely time to retire we moved to Queensland. I had been writing a manuscript for some time. In the desire to complete this I enrolled in a post grad certificate in creative Industries which I completed 2013. I followed this by doing a Master of Arts by research graduating in 2017. Now I live to write and write to live.
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23 Responses to 99 Word Flash fiction: The Nutty Aunt

  1. bkpyett says:

    Enjoyed this story Joanne, and good to know some of it is true! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Barbara. All the middle paragraph is true. She was a real character. She did the same when my Dad and aunt were kids except they were given sixpence to go and get lost. Of course they then visited her frequently. We were just sent to the park across the road.


  2. bkpyett says:

    Sorry Irene, not Joanne!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. lucciagray says:

    Aunts are indeed fascinating relatives, especially if they’re slightly, or even very, eccentric!
    Thanks for sharing your inspiring flash:) I may give it a go!
    My aunts are/were all pretty ‘normal’, but two books spring to mind with unforgettable aunts: Grahame Greene’s Travels with my Aunt, one of my favourites (although there’s a catch in the title…no spoilers in case anyone wants to read this magnificent book!) and another book I just read by June Kearns, The 20s Girl, The Ghost, and All That Jazz, which is all about a recently deceased aunt who is ever present in this unusual love story. There’s a review on my blog: http://lucciagray.com/2015/01/29/book-review-the-20s-girl-the-ghost-and-all-that-jazz-by-june-kearns/

    Liked by 2 people

  4. TanGental says:

    The best aunts are the ones that conflict with our parents and prove there’s more that one type of adult love your aunt Brodie

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Annecdotist says:

    Oh, Irene, she sounds fab with her colour TV and those rag books when you were almost a teenager. I bet you had fun remembering her and the way she remembered you.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. What a wonderfully wacky aunt. Loved your story and do tell us more about Aunt Boodie. My aunt Mary was addicted to baseball, on the radio. When we visited we had to listen with her!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Even I remember those rag books. I made a couple when grandkids were toddlers. Good story Irene.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I never fail to enjoy these ! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Charli Mills says:

    She’s a beautiful, though odd auntie. I like how your flash examines her strangeness, yet willingness to connect and how you end with remembering her because she committed to remembering you. That’s very touching. The last line is great, too! Can’t wait to learn more about this aunt though I do recall the post about the color tv!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Charli. I will do a post about theosophy and my aunt sometime. The committed to remembering me was fiction but it worked well. Yes I knew I’d written about the TV – I think in one of the bite size memoirs. You have to laugh at how impressed we were. Now not only do we have colour but high definition colour and the ability to have a screen as large as your wall


  10. Oh, I really like this one, Irene. And the photo is spectacular. You keep bringing me back to a post I have half-written about the blurred lines between fiction and memoir/personal essay.


  11. Sherri says:

    Fascinating…must read more about Auntie Broodie, what a life but so sad too. She looks quite ethereal, beautiful in fact, and obviously left quite an impression on you Irene. Loved your flash…


  12. Pingback: Aunts Like Mixed Nuts « Carrot Ranch Communications

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