About a bubble…

BubbleWalking home from the local purveyor of alcoholic delicacies yesterday, I met a bubble. I stepped aside to let it pass and the ping-pong ball sized orb nodded courteously. Entranced, I watched it dance around a pear tree heavy with white blossoms as if paying homage to its creator, before continuing on its way up East 11th Avenue. Smitten, obviously, I chased the little translucent thing up the hill only to stop and gasp as it drew dangerously close to the branches of a flowering cherry tree. Certain a collision was about to take place, I turned away. I couldn’t stand the thought of it bursting. I wanted to remember it floating onwards forever! After a half-second or so, I looked back and searched the sky. It was gone. Downcast, I closed my eyes, and there it was, perfect and whole in my mind’s eye, sailing along on the breeze.

With my somewhat remarkable albeit random encounter over, I made my way back down the hill becoming increasingly giddy with each step I took. What a sight I had seen! It was a gift, to be sure, but who had bestowed it on me? There were no children blowing into soapy wands nearby, so I stood still and listened for the sounds of laughter and awe that are required when making bubbles. I heard nothing.

I will never know the origins of that iridescent globe. It doesn’t matter, either, because it’s not important to know where it came from. It’s only important to know that I saw it and let my spirit soar with it for a brief but magical moment. In these strange and unpredictable times, crossing paths with anything so exquisitely fragile, so innocent and pure, is nothing short of divine. And, rare experiences can transform us.

I am thankful for that bubble, and for the opportunity it gave me to be present as child and adult at the same time. It was rather wondrous, if slightly surreal. The child wanted to catch that bubble, hold it tight. The adult knew, all to well, that catching it meant its destruction.

Legend has it that bubbles are souls. Of course, they are not. They are produced when soap catches a breath of air. However, in olden times, when women washed clothing out of doors, I bet the air around them shimmered. And perhaps, when a sphere ventured far afield, a passer-by, catching sight of it, might happily imagine it the soul of a loved one travelling to Heaven. Such a comforting thought.

My wish today is that we allow life to flow without our interference. We destroy a great many things that way. Desperate to hold on to that joyful feeling felt when we first set eyes on something spectacular, we reach out for it, gather it to us, even cage it. But that reaction is the child within us, not the adult. The adult knows those feelings cannot be duplicated; that they are fleeting. The adult knows those feelings can only be recalled, not by holding on, but by letting go.

Until tomorrow…

12 thoughts on “About a bubble…

  1. I love it when I am part of a magical moment, such as you’ve described. I also loved your evocation of when women used to wash clothes outside. I’m sure it was just drudgery to them, but someone looking on may have only have only seen the shimmering and iridescence. How different being ‘in’ something, and looking at it from the outside can be, eh?

    Liked by 1 person

      1. The difference now, is that we probably know when we’re wearing rose tinted glasses, and enjoy the experience regardless. Whereas we didn’t know once, and got crushed when they came off – lol! Yes, all well here in Aotearoa – at least in my nook, anyway. However, apart from insane queues at McDonald’s and other junk food outlets when we reduced to level 3 on Tuesday, the country as a whole seems to be moving in the right direction as far as Covid-19 goes. Let’s hope that the the numb-nuts, who can’t string two intelligent thoughts together, don’t ruin it now.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Frances Sullivan

        Haha. Yeah, everybody’s become highly skilled in biology, virology, epidemiology and every medical procedure that addresses illness. If it weren’t actually harmful in some cases, it would be hilarious. And it’s also wonderful how many would know exactly what to do if they were running the show. LOL Anywho, I’m busy working on keeping a decent balance between my adult self and my child so don’t have the desire to get in the middle of stuff I’ve no knowledge of. I’m happy to trust (for the most part) and because I have a roof and food and access to sunshine etc. things are good. As for the eejits, well, there will always be plenty of them to go around. I just have to make sure I don’t give them too much, if any, of my attention. Challenging at times, but worth the effort. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      3. It is definitely challenging not giving the eejits too much attention, but, as you say, worth the effort. At this point in my life, I’m more interested in what is of value to me (which can still mean fighting for a cause, though) than wasting too much time and breath on eejits.

        I like how you speak of a balance between adult and child, because in many ways I’m in that place, too. I feel as though I’ve said good-bye to all those middle years of angst and struggle, and have attained an almost child-like feeling of freedom again, coupled with the gains acquired as an adult. I’m really liking this third era I’m in, irregardless of the not-quite-so-likeable things it also brings with it.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Frances Sullivan

        Right on. I’m reminded of the expression that tells us to ‘pick your battles and that’s still a work in progress for me but I’m getting wiser and more apt at dropping what doesn’t feel good, that’s for sure.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. VIRGINIA POLOWICK

    I’M SMILING…THINKING OF ALL THOSE BUBBLES MY GRANDCHILDREN AND I CHASED A FEW MONTHS AGO….IN NEW ZEALAND…BEAUTIFULLY WRITTEN…THANKS FOR BRINGING FORTH THOSE MEMORIES! HUGS AND BLESSINGS V

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Frances Sullivan

      Oh, I’m so happy you were able to travel to a ‘happy place’ because of my little story. And thanks so much for reading/getting in touch. I take it you’re home now – must miss them all terribly! Hugs and blessings to you, Virginia. x

      Like

    1. Frances Sullivan

      Our imaginations can indeed rescue, or at the very least, give us momentary reprieve from horror. My life is good. I am safe and sound but was grateful for a moments reminder, I suppose. By the way, your book arrived just now! I’m overjoyed!!

      Like

    1. Frances Sullivan

      Ah, sweet of you to say, James (or do you prefer Jim?). I’ve a follow-up that is quite lovely, too. Within a metre of the spot where I saw the bubble, someone used camellia flowers to make a large heart on the sidewalk. I saw it out walking the next day and its still there! Such a happy memory. Hope you’re keeping well with all the craziness. 🙂

      Like

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