To celebrate my Mom-in-law’s 100th birthday, she donated a bench to her village. When she was just a few years younger, she regularly walked a couple of miles uphill from her house into the village to do her shopping. Just before she arrived at the shops, was a wooden bench where she used to stop and rest for a while before doing her errands and returning home, usually carrying a bag of groceries in each hand.
One day she reached her usual rest stop, only to find to her disappointment that the bench had been badly vandalised and was no longer usable. When her centenary came around, it seemed fitting that she should replace the bench with an indestructible one for the use of other senior citizens.
The following year, the family gathered for a sumptuous Christmas lunch at the picturesque country pub just across the road. Grandma was of course the guest of honour and my grandson together with his cousin, sitting on an old bench there, serenaded her with an impromptu ballad all about their amazing great grandma. She’s still going strong and her 106th birthday is coming up in August.
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