‘Angela Merriweather. Welcome to Greenfield Retirement Community.’
‘Reduced caffeine, better for the circulatory system. And no coffee of course.’
‘We’ve never had a problem here. We’re very strict about that sort of thing. But, well you do hear the most terrible stories. Only last month, thirty people died due to uncomposted coffee grounds at Hazelgrove.’
Nancy shakes her head in horror. Greg looks at her appreciatively. Her yellow petals may be browning with age, her seed cases less full, but her kindness and empathy shine through. She is still beautiful to him, after all these years.
The tea arrives as Angela takes them through the different packages on offer. Option 1, for the fully mobile. 2 bedroom bungalows, with private garden for any tenants wishing to draw directly water from the soil. Perfect for semi-retireds like Greg and Nancy. There is easy access to the outside world, but thick walls to keep them safe. ‘There’s so much street violence these days you can’t be too careful,’ says Angela, Greg nods.
Then there’s option 2, the in-between phase. Glass conservatories, with room to lounge in but also soil trenches to plant your feet, a preparation for option 3. Nobody says it, but option 3 is end game. One last year, rooted in the soil, subject to wind, rain and sun. One last, glorious year when they’ll grow as tall as tall can be, and send their seeds scattering in the wind, before...Well. Angela doesn’t need to say anymore, they all know what she means.
‘Lovely don’t you think?’ says Greg as they head out towards the car.
‘Let’s do it,’ she smiles as she climbs in the car.
They put the deposit down first thing in the morning.
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