The Gold in Rainbow Bubbles – by Sandra James (Adult)
It was the hardest decision she’d ever made, re-locating her father to the retirement village. He never complained, always told her it was fine, but the sadness in his eyes betrayed his words.
The stroke, although he recovered remarkably well, had robbed him of many of his abilities and joys in life. Except for his garden where he still loved to potter about, pulling a few weeds and tending the roses. The yard in his retirement unit was almost barren save for a stunted Birch tree with few leaves.
She visited daily and each day watched as he slipped further into decline. He’ll be in the nursing home soon, she thought. Perhaps she should have left him in the old house, at least he would have been happy with his garden and his memories. She’d lost her mother just one year earlier, now she feared she would lose her father all too soon.
Christmas approached. Decorations, treats and presents had filled the shops for weeks. The retirement village hosted a Christmas party and decorated the community hall with a small tree and some tinsel but it was all rather impersonal. Her father had always loved Christmas; had probably been even more excited than she was as a child, and in later years had revelled in all the fun and games with his grandchildren. What could she do?
She persuaded him to go on an outing with the other residents. A drive in the country and afternoon tea. With her husband, children and a carload of supplies, they descended on the unit in his absence.
He politely thanked the village staff and accepted a little help stepping down from the bus. He slowly walked back to his unit, leaning heavily on his walking stick.
Turning the corner, he gasped at the sight before him. Lights and decorations, cheerful plants in pots. And bubbles. Sparkling rainbow bubbles floating through the air.
He beamed and hugged his daughter close. Then he accepted the proffered bubble pipe from his youngest granddaughter and added his own brightly coloured orbs to the scene.