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Life in Retirement: Double bubble-palooza

A recent visit brought back some nostalgia
Sandy Bexon. (File photo)

Well, that was a fun visit! I had caught up with a dear friend for a drink to celebrate her very last day of work after a long and successful career, which was fun enough. But then, when the waitress brought the bill, she also plopped down a handful of Double Bubbles on the table along with it! Oh the glee.


Just like the complete fixation when we were able to get our hands on them as kids, we immediately set about grabbing a little wrapped piece and chattering at the same time about all the memories. I was mentioning all the differences I was noticing as each layer was unwrapped, while she was boasting about how good she was at blowing bubbles – or had been many decades ago at any rate.


I was still commenting that the outer packaging was the same, but critiquing that the cartoon wrapped around the gum inside was very different and even more silly if that’s possible. And then the gum itself, well, it’s no longer presented with a clear ridge down the centre for splitting with the person who contributed the other cent to purchase it at the corner store. It is ridged in a decorative pattern – designed, if you will.


I looked up from my scrutiny to find my friend holding both her palms to the sides of her cheeks, looking pained as she struggled to chew and chew her gum into submission. Her jaw was stiffening, her tongue was working to form a strong base for her first bubble in decades. ‘It’s way tougher,’ she mumbled through the thick mass. ‘This doesn’t feel the same.’


We chewed and chewed, both trying to loosen the gum into the smooth texture that allowed for bubbles. But try as we might, we couldn’t get the thick, grainy glob to give at all. Remember, long ago, the people who were able to blow a bubble inside of another bubble? Of course, they were likely the ones who went on to refine the art of blowing smoke rings through smoke rings. Or when others blew a particularly large bubble and they would clamp the end off with their teeth and take the whole kit and kaboodle out of their mouths and wave it around proudly. Watching it gather dust and hair and then plunk it back into their mouths.


Or the times we had to swallow the wad to hide the evidence when the teacher asked if we were chewing gum. Maybe the chewing and blowing apparatus is a bit rusty, because we both ended up discarding our gum into our respective tissues that are now folded and waiting in our purses for just such a use. No more sticking it under our desk or spitting it in hedges, this time we were sensible. But we did hurry to get ‘er done before the waitress returned and perhaps reprimanded us for something – some habits are harder to break.


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