Updated: Jan 11
Despite the start of the second lockdown, Bridgeside Lodge were determined not to cancel their annual fireworks evening. With so little to celebrate these days, the fun, enjoyment, and tradition seemed key in raising the residents and staff' spirits. The Spitz were asked to provide some accompanying music and it was the first time we had been at BSL in the evening. The twinkling lights from the care home windows were reflected in the canal and fireworks could be heard in the distance. We set up the keyboard with a portable light and pianist and singer Arthur Lea came armed with hat and gloves. Staff and residents came out to the garden or stood on the balconies to play with sparklers and listen to the music. Many of them sat to listen to Arthur’s playing, all wrapped up in blankets.
It was heartwarming to hear the care staff whooping and laughing as the fireworks lit the sky. Arthur timed his playing for “in-between the bangs” once the fireworks started. It wasn’t until after the last one went off that we realised we had an audience of over 40 people on the other side of the canal! They waved and clapped at us cheerfully.
To finish off the evening Arthur and I sang a couple of residents' songs. It was the first time I had performed E.J’s song for her, and she sat engaged for its entirety. The evening was a great success. We were all agreed that the sense of escapism was powerful. As we performed in the twilight it didn’t feel like we were in a care home at all, let alone being in a care home during a pandemic.