Sunday Photo Fiction – A Show of Appreciation

118-08-august-23rd-2015For nearly 50 years he’d worked at the factory – everyone of Ted’s age went straight from school to the factory. Three wives had come and gone in that time, two divorced, one dead – only the last one did he remember with any particular fondness. Six healthy children had been raised in the same red-brick two up, two down on the Marlow Road – all had left, apart from Mary.

‘A gold watch? A gold fucking watch? Is that all I meant to them?’ he spat.

‘But Dad, it is a very nice watch,’ said Mary.

They’d all liked Ted. For 30 years he was Santa Claus to the children gathered at the Christmas party in the factory canteen. Every summer it was Ted who organised and ran the fete in the sprawling grounds of the chairman’s estate. If there was a living, breathing embodiment of a company man, it was Ted.

‘Sod them, and sod their fucking watch!’

Ted coughed, bent double in his armchair: his scarred lungs had paid a heavy price for his loyalty.

Mary handed her father his pills and a brandy. Neither would really make him feel any better, but at least they’d keep the worst of his pain, and disappointment, at bay.

‘A fucking watch,’ he spluttered, once more, as he threw the glinting retirement gift into the fire.


These words form my entry into this week’s Sunday Photo Fiction challenge.

8 thoughts on “Sunday Photo Fiction – A Show of Appreciation

  1. mandibelle16

    It is sad how little the father was valued by his company. All those years of service and the physical pain and sickness he pays for his time working in the factory. He’s right only a watch… seems that even today we are all replaceable at our jobs so our time spent there means not much to our employers.

  2. Sunday Fiction

    Great story, and I love the attitude of him. You can understand his resentment of just getting a watch from them. Sounds like the factory didn’t help his health much either.

  3. afairymind

    You can tell how hard it is for him to learn that the factory he gave his life and his health to appreciated him so little. A watch is a measly thanks for 50 years of work and devotion. A really great story. 🙂


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