‘Grandpa, why are you sitting out here in the garden? It’s nearly dark and Nana says it’s going to rain.’

He turned his scarred face to me, dark glasses like pools of blackness. ‘Best time o’ day, Robbie; especially this time o’ year – autumn – and especially if it’s going to rain.’

‘Why’s that?’

He took a deep breath. ‘Sniff the air, Robbie. What can you smell?’

‘Flowers?’

‘Not just flowers, dozens of different flowers, pick ‘em up, one at a time. Your Nana planted all those scented plants and shrubs – for my benefit. To think I once wanted a Japanese garden, all stones and sand, before this.’ He tapped his glasses. ‘What about the atmosphere? I know it’s going to rain, but your Nana got that off the weather forecast.’ He smiled his infectious smile. ‘I can smell the earth where Nana weeded earlier. Talking of Nana, she’s just made a pot of tea. Can’t you smell it?’

I laughed. ‘You’re having me on, Grandpa!’

‘Oh, am I? Just wait and see. She’ll be out with tea and biscuits in four and a half minutes. That’s how long she brews the tea. Now, Robbie, what can you hear?’

I cocked my ears. ‘I can hear a jet plane…’

‘No, laddie. Closer than that. In this garden.’

‘Oh yes. It’s a bird, Grandpa.’ I almost clapped my hands.

‘Several birds, Son. I can hear a blue tit, in fact a pair of them; a couple of sparrows and listen! That’s a waxwing! We only get them when autumn is really with us. There must be a load of berries on one of the shrubs already!’

Nana must have had a stopwatch, as she came out right on time. Grandpa laughed out loud.

I’d wanted to ask him this for some time. ‘Grandpa, how come you’re always happy when…’

He tapped his glasses.

‘This, you mean? Seriously, laddie, when that Argentinian missile hit the ship I thought my life was over. Then I discovered the most important three words in the dictionary.’

He slurped a mouthful of tea.

‘Always think positively.’

4.5 2 votes
Post Rating
Comments without a personalized avatar will not be published.
26 Comments
Oldest
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Voice-Team
Voice-Team(@voice-team)
Admin
8 days ago

We thank this Grandpa for sharing his love and appreciation of nature not only with his grandson, but also with the reader. This feast for the senses should be a lesson to all to enjoy one’s senses and, as Grandpa says, “Always think positively.”

Margarida Brei
Margarida Brei(@margarida-brei)
1 month ago

So grandpa was blind but able to rely on his sense of smell to understand his surroundings. Sweet story and not even sad, because the grandpa was so positive.

Comments without a personalized avatar will not be published.
Carrie OLeary
Carrie OLeary(@carrie-oleary)
1 month ago

That is a truly lovely story, Allan. I loved the descriptions of the garden, the smells and sounds. I’m presuming Grandpa had lost his sight, and his other senses had taken over. Your final three words are sound advice. Very nicely done 🙂

Comments without a personalized avatar will not be published.
Sandra James
Sandra James(@sandra-james)
1 month ago

A wonderful story, Allan, showing us rather than telling us that Grandpa was blind and how his other senses compensated. What an excellent role model for his grandson! Well done!

Lotchie Carmelo
Lotchie Carmelo(@lotchie-carmelo)
1 month ago

Wow! Allan. Beautiful story and description. I can see through my imagination the beautiful garden, I can hear those birds, and I can smell the tea. And wait, Grandpa’s positivity is so admirable. I found it a piece of advice. Love it. Very well done, Allan.

Comments without a personalized avatar will not be published.
Lotchie Carmelo
Lotchie Carmelo(@lotchie-carmelo)
Reply to  Allan Neil
1 month ago

You’re most welcome, Allan. Stay safe always.

Thompson Emate
Thompson Emate(@thompson-emate)
1 month ago

Beautiful story, Allan. Enjoyed reading it. Well done.

Comments without a personalized avatar will not be published.
Greene M Wills
Greene M Wills(@greene-m-wills)
1 month ago

Grandpa might not be able to see but his other senses make up for what he is lacking. His sixth sense is his ability to feel and communicate below the radar and see the joy and colours in his soul. Loved it!

Comments without a personalized avatar will not be published.
Linda Rock
Linda Rock(@linda-rock)
1 month ago

Beautifully told, Allan. My youngest daughter is partially sighted and relies very much on other senses which, of course, are heightened as you have illustrated so well in your story. I also caught the link to the Falklands. Another very enjoyable read.

Staci Harrington
Staci Harrington(@staci-harrington)
1 month ago

Fantastic Allan! What a touching story.

Comments without a personalized avatar will not be published.
Bella Minyo
Bella Minyo(@bella-minyo)
1 month ago

I like the moral of your short story, Allan. Positivity is infectious, once you’re in a good mood it just bounces onto others making everyone’s day better. It was very refreshing to see Grandpa stop to listen to the sounds around him and appreciate all of them.

Comments without a personalized avatar will not be published.
Linda Rock
Linda Rock(@linda-rock)
8 days ago

Well done, Allan, on a double whammy! 1st place, public vote and making the final with the judges vote. Really pleased for you! Lancing’s finest!

Marianna Pieterse
Marianna Pieterse(@marianna-pieterse)
7 days ago

Congratulations, Allan! This is a beautiful, inspirational story! I enjoyed reading this.

Comments without a personalized avatar will not be published.
Lotchie Carmelo
Lotchie Carmelo(@lotchie-carmelo)
22 hours ago

Congratulations, Allan. I am happy for you.

Become a PatronHelp support our family-friendly mission

Recent Comments



26
0
Selected Authors may submit comments (5 Credits)x
()
x
Scroll to Top

Sharing a Post

Why do my friends need to SignIn to read the post I shared?

Actually, this is a voting security feature. During public voting, only club members can read posts submitted for that contest. Since anyone reading the story is able to vote (click the Like button), we reserve these capabilities to members who SignIn. Before we implemented this security feature, people were voting multiple times and making the public voting process unfair and out of balance. To fix this, our staff finally decided to allow only members who SignIn to read the stories. Membership is free and easy, and ensures our club is safe, secure, and family-friendly!