Friday Fictioneers :7th February

Thanks again to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for hosting the Friday Fictioneers challenge.
More details of Froggy and how to participate are here

Our picture for inspiration this week is provided by Ted Strutz.
Every Sunday, they would each bathe and wash their hair, then don the white smocks of Selection.
In silence, they rode the escalator to the Selection hall where they were scrutinised, equally in silence, the only motion a nod of the head or indication with a pointed finger.
For those not selected, they were returned below, having no idea what exactly the selection process was, but content.
For those chosen, ownership papers were duly signed and they were taken to their new homes. Such was the operation in ‘orphanages’ in The New World.

94 words

About pensitivity101

I am a retired number cruncher with a vivid imagination and wacky sense of humour which extends to short stories and poetry. I love to cook and am a bit of a dog whisperer as I get on better with them than people sometimes! In November 2020, we lost our beloved Maggie who adopted us as a 7 week old pup in March 2005. We decided to have a photo put on canvas as we had for her predecessor Barney. We now have three pictures of our fur babies on the wall as we found a snapshot of Kizzy, my GSD when Hubby and I first met so had hers done too. On February 24th 2022 we were blessed to find Maya, a 13 week old GSD pup who has made her own place in our hearts. You can follow our training methods, photos and her growth in my blog posts. From 2014 to 2017 'Home' was a 41 foot narrow boat where we made strong friendships both on and off the water. We were close to nature enjoying swan and duck families for neighbours, and it was a fascinating chapter in our lives. We now reside in a small bungalow on the Lincolnshire coast where we have forged new friendships and interests.
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38 Responses to Friday Fictioneers :7th February

  1. neilmacdon says:

    Orphanages? Or pet shops?

  2. It seems quite like a cult

  3. Not only in the ‘new world’ … I can tell you of some kids who felt very much like that when ‘potential parents’ would come to ‘pick’ children for adoption.

    • When Hubby and I wanted to foster teenagers, we wanted long term with the view to adopt, but our assigned social worker was set on under 5s, short term and for me to give up work, even though I was the major breadwinner.

      • I think it is a complicated reality, that of fostering and adoption. People want to make sure they are making the ‘right match’ but inherent in that is the risk of ‘marketing’ in children and the dashing of hopes and erosion of self in those who are left behind. The realities of adoption are something I am aware of in my work (some of it with internationally adopted children, a good bit of it in the past with fostered children I worked with), and perhaps is reflected in my writing, too (especially in “Outlawed Hope”).

      • It is complicated and these days there is so much red tape and hoops to jump through to be approved as a foster carer, so much can be lost in finding a child a ‘forever’ home. Even though I had done it before with a previous partner, that didn’t count, though we understood that checks had to be made. However, having been married for over 17 years when we applied in a different county, that didn’t count either.

      • Yes, it is sometimes a monster system that ends up defeating the goals it was made to bring. And the victims are the children, and the many deserving families and homes that end up unapproved or pushed out of the system by red tape and unreasonable demands. It is very sad.

  4. Iain Kelly says:

    I wonder who was worse off here – the selected or those left in the orphanage? Chilling, but believable Di.

  5. msjadeli says:

    Chilling direction my country seems to be headed in.

  6. Dear Di

    Sounds Like a very cold and calculating way to find homes for orphans. Well done.



  7. That sent a shiver down my spine.

  8. tedstrutz says:

    Oh dear Lord, I love this! Nice take.
    A friend took this photo and I liked it knowing some good stories would come. You can see her work here…

  9. Thankfully, things were very different from this when I was a foster parent!

  10. pennygadd51 says:

    I read your story several times, thinking about what you were trying to convey, and then third or fourth time through I realised that this was a lot more than a dystopian fantasy. It’s a metaphor, but, even more chilling than that, it reflects the experience of some children in care when it comes to finding fostering and adoption. They go through a process repeatedly without understanding it, and are powerless to influence it. That really is a horror story.

    • Thanks Penny. Initially it was a piece prompted by the photograph, but the more I tweaked it for the word count, the more sinister it became, from adoption to child trafficking and worse.

  11. Dale says:

    Oh, this is disturbing (though written well). It got me to thinking of family friends from way back who adopted a little boy – the process was you picked up the baby and if you wanted to keep him/her you held on; if you didn’t, you put them back. Eric was put back so often when our friends finally did adopt him, they also adopted all the issues that came with being rejected. I always felt he could have ended up in a more caring family who could better understand how to deal with him. He somehow turned out okay. Sorry for the ramble!

  12. James McEwan says:

    I found this sad, and I can only hope the selected ones will be happy in their new homes.

  13. michael1148humphris says:

    A sad vision, children deserve more. Well told

  14. Array says:

    Really well done. Reminds me of “Orphan Train,” one way of dealing with overly full orphanages in the U.S. in the1900’s.

  15. A chilling dystopian-type tale with truths from today. Very well done!

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