Thursday, September 26

Love In An Apple Orchard

Image with thanks to gabriel77 found here
The winter of '83 had been a hard one for Sally and her family. Her beloved grandmother passed away leaving her grandfather alone for the first time in over sixty years. And while with spring came new hope, her grandfather was immune to any sign of new life. When his wife died she took with her a lifetime of love. Leaving only a shell of a man behind.

By the time summer arrived her grandfather had lost what little interest in life he had left. He had no desire to watch another season pass on by without his life long love by his side.

Sally had just finished school and was at a bit of a loose end as to what to do next. Logically she knew that she should find some employment and move out of home, but realistically that was the least thing she wanted to do. As much as she wanted to get on and live her life she wasn't really sure how to play it out. Instead she decided that spending some time with her grandfather at the old apple orchard was a much better option.

To begin with the old man made her feel less than welcome. Sally reminded him too much of his wife when they first met and fell in love. She was exactly the same age now as when he and his wife first met. The similarities between the Sally and her Gran were uncanny. It made the pain of his loss cut even deeper than what it already was.

Of an afternoon Sally would drag her grandfather out for a walk amongst the old trees. The trees that he had loved so dearly for nearly a lifetime. The trees that up until a few months ago he and Gran would walk amongst every day from almost the moment they met. Over the years their love for each other grew stronger just as the branches of the apple trees did.

In the middle of the orchard stood the oldest, tallest tree. It was one of the few left from the original plantation. Over the years some trees had to be replaced as their fruiting quality dropped, but not this one. This apple tree was special and not like the rest.

It's so beautiful at this time of day" Sally pondered out loud, more to herself than her grandfather. He always seemed to get extra quiet when they first sat down.

Yes that is what your Gran always said as well" her Grandfather replied. Sally glanced over at the old man. She noticed the tears quietly rolling down his cheek and instantly felt her own eyes well and begin to burn with the onset of tears. Blinking quickly she looked away. The pain of his loss almost too much for her to bare. As selfish as that seemed. She could only imagine how much his heart had been shattered in the last few months.

Today was day I proposed you know? his shaky voice continued. "I can remember it as if it were only yesterday. Right here under this old tree you know.The old man couldn't go on. His words stuck in his throat as he choked back tears."

Yes Gramps I know" was all Sally could manage.

She had heard the story a thousand times or maybe more over the years. As a little girl it had reminded her of a fairy tale, one where everyone lived happily ever after. There was never any denying the love felt between her grandparents. Blind Freddy could have seen they were a match meant to be. She hoped and prayed that one day she would get to feel a love even half as strong as theirs.

He had organised a picnic with all of her favourite fare. An apple pie he had even gone to the trouble of preparing himself. A crumbly base that he would never live down nor never make again. Not that he would need to once his love had agreed to be by his side.

If only men like grandad still existed Sally thought to herself.

She wouldn't say yes you know, until I took off that silly fake moustache" Gramps continued. His gaze far off into the distance, as if he could see it all before him.

Sally tried to imagine what it would have been like laying there sprawled out on the blanket looking up at the multi coloured leaves as the sun glistened down between them. Gentle rays filtering through the branches and engulfing the pair's love. She envied their ability to just know they were so right for each.

I only had it on because she loved Charlie Chaplin so much" he went on, "She was always going on about how wonderful he was and what it would be like to live with such a man.The old man pausing once more as the words got caught in his throat again.

She was a funny thing your Gran" he started again. "She wouldn't even give me a kiss while I had it on, reckoned it tickled her too much, and that it felt like she was kissing another man

Sally noticed the corners of her grandfather's lips start to curl up and a small smile crept across his face. Even through the pain of his loss the thought of his beloved wife could always bring him comfort in some way. 

That's what true love is Sally found herself thinking.


  1. Sob! Old men, lost, make me so sad. x

  2. I don't know why you haven't set about writing a book - that was beautiful !!!! GOOD LUCK with your submission !
    Have the BEST day !

  3. That's lovely, congratulations. Wishing you luck in the comp! x


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