Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Wednesday exercise: Improvise a story to a photo

The little girl came running out from the bathroom spitting and crying.
“Why do you trick people, granny?” she yelled. I must have looked rather perplexed because I never tried to trick anyone, at least not in my bathroom. The little girl held up to me what was left of one of those colorful shells for bathing oil meant to dissolve in the hot tub. I realized with shame that my granddaughter took the colorful objects for candy and tasted one. After all, one could not expect a five-year-old to realize that a confectionery bowl is not likely found in granny’s bathroom.

I helped her to clear her mouth from the oil and made her a cup of hot chocolate to sooth things out.
“Those are bathing oils, dear” I explained. “You use them in the tub. Different aromas have different colors.”
“Mom says you can’t use the tub any longer. You’re too old.” I nodded solemnly. Her mother was right. I didn’t have the balance and the legs to get into the tub any longer. When I got aid to get cleaned it was no time to use the oils and just relax in the tub until I looked like a raisin. These days my personal hygiene was taken care of quickly and effective without the luxury of sweet smells and foam. On the other hand I looked like a raisin all the time these days.
“I didn’t mean to trick you, dear.”
“Why do you keep them, if you can’t take a bath?”
“They give the room some color.” That was the truth. Part of if anyway. The part I could manage to talk about. How could I explain for a little girl the longings for things that can no longer be, due to old age?
“Could you give me a bath, granny?” I blinked. I looked into the girl’s eyes. Instantly I knew that she understood what I couldn’t bear to explain.
“Sure honey. With all the foam and oil you want.”

Photo by Chiara Scura
Used with permission.