Like all great stories, the story of the Red Giant Balloon begins with 3 happy-go-lucky guys meeting at their local bar talking about life. These weekly meetings usually revolve around how their bosses were asses or how their girlfriends were pestering them to get engaged.
On this particular night, the conversation revolved around what they have achieved in their lives and how they wanted to do something more fulfilling with their lives. These three guys had full time jobs at respectable companies, living day by day, paychecks to paychecks, with no immediate plans to better their lives. Life was a bore and these circumstances blended together causing them to began discussing on how they wanted to devote their lives to doing something different.
Soon, they began formulating various plans on how to better their lives. Their gaze soon fell upon an open field, where they saw a joyful little girl holding on to a red giant balloon, hopping across the massive greens, without care, without worries. The guys stared at her running across the plains, thinking to themselves how they would change their life if they could be young again.
Suddenly, there was a quick rustle between the leaves and the little girl tripped over an innocent looking pebble, losing her grip on her balloon in the process. The balloon escaped from her tiny hands and it flew towards a nearby tree where it got stuck.
The group of guys immediately ran over to help the little girl and she winced in pain as they helped her to her feet. "My balloon!" She sobbed as tears rolled down her rosy cheeks. One of them began consoling her while the others began their towards the tree, determined to retrieve the balloon for their little lady. Upon closer inspection, they noticed that the balloon was stuck in one of the higher branches and it was impossible to reach for it without climbing the tree. The guys began jumping, hoping to reach for the string tied to the balloon, however they were unsuccessful and after many failed attempts, the 2 men were worn out with abrasions from the falling and their constant attempts to climb the tree.
"It's okay," the girl said. "I'm happy that you guys showed concern for someone who you barely know. Thank you."
With a smile on her face, she assured them that she was fine without the balloon and she looked happier than before and she left, stating that it was getting dark and her mother was expecting her home soon.
The 3 ordinary men looked at each other, feeling helpless and unaccomplished, they decided to give it a final shot before returning to the bar. With their combined effort, they lift a guy to a branch high enough for him to reach the string of the balloon. He began tugging on the balloon, hoping to loosen its grip between the branches. After several tugs, the balloon burst after brushing the jagged edges of the tree bark.
Feeling frustrated, the 3 men left and return to their drinks.
The 3 ordinary men met again a week later at the same bar and had drinks together. They noticed a man having drinks alone at this isolated corner of the bar, looking miserable and lost. "He probably lost his job, or had a bad day at home." "Let him be." The 3 men thought. That man stood up, walked towards the 3 men and sat beside them at the bar top. "One whisky please." he ordered in a sad tone. "Hey dude, is everything okay?" One of the men asked. "She was a gem, a gift to the family." replied the man. The 3 men, looking sorry, asked: "Your daughter?".
The man burst out in tears. "Her last wish was to be able to fly. So we bought her a giant balloon."
The 3 men immediately knew, and are lost for words. The man continued: "She came home that night without the balloon, however she was smiling all day and told us not to worry about it." "Sorry we couldn't get the balloon down for her.." one of the men, feeling guilty and apologized to him. "Kind people helped me and kept me safe. I'm thankful for people like that. That is what Juliet told me before she slept that night, for the last time." the men appeared sober now.
"Thank you, for showing her the side of the world she wants to see, and showed her the world is full of love and hope so she can leave in peace." The 3 men left the bar after a last drink, still feeling sorry for what just happened.
While on their way back, they saw a red balloon tied to a bicycle stand. The size was exactly the same as the balloon Juliet was holding the other day. One of the men then stood forward and said. "The world cannot be sad all the time, we need to do something to cheer up the world." The others agreed;
Therefore, they got together every night and day to think of ideas and spent countless hours doing research. One day, they came out of this idea to produce a card game where many people can gather and have some quality time together as families, friends, classmates or even strangers.
And they called themselves, "The Red Giant Balloon."
"Drop 'the' ." Someone mentioned.
So they are known as "Red Giant Balloon."
Chiang Yi Herng
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