Great-Grandma Elské’s Bamboo Cane was inspired by a delightful woman in my weekly Tai Chi class. Elské really did lose the cane and we looked everywhere for it. Florence suggested the gardener might have found it and put it where it was indeed, eventually located.
In the book, Elské’s emotional connection to the cane drives her to find it; and she eventually does.
Elské doesn’t need the cane to assist with walking. She walks perfectly well without mobility aids. After all, she’s been doing Tai Chi for at least thirty years. Same class, same teacher. (He’s good!)
Something that didn’t occur in real life was the arrival of Jennifer and Harriet to collect Elské. Jennifer is actually at work and Harriet at school on any given Wednesday. But I needed them to collect Elské because I wanted to show small children (through Harriet’s eyes) how amazing elderly people can be. Many of our aged loved ones become preoccupied with ill health and the advancing years, and of the loss of loved friends and peers, so we often miss the extraordinary things they are capable of. Sometimes we really have to look for the situations in which the elderly excel.
I hope Great-Grandma Elské’s Bamboo Cane inspires your little people to appreciate the great grandies in their lives.