I have this box the loft of my camp. It is a trunk, really. It is about 7 ½ years old and it has been locked shut for almost that long. No one knows where the key is, and no one knows what is inside.
I have tried not to think about that box for the past 7 years and I must say I have been quite successful. Until a little beautiful blue-eyed boy happened upon it and couldn’t resist the mystery. He was also motivated by the fact that he had a use for this chest and needed the lock opened and the contents removed. He is in a pirate phase and this “treasure chest” fits right into some scheme that he has cooking in his world of make believe.
He has bugged me for more than a week to open it. Today I finally acquiesced.
This trunk belonged to my Poppy, my paternal grandfather. He was quite sick and in a nursing home for the last couple of years of his life. His mental faculties were quite well considering he was confined to a wheelchair and had suffered 9 consecutive strokes. The staff in the nursing home would take a liking to his belongings and often they would turn up missing. He requested a locking storage unit and I bought him this trunk on his last Christmas. That is probably how I ended up with it again, but I simply don’t remember.
My husband and my son just took the trunk to a neighbor’s house since he had the tools to cut that lock. In the woods up here at camp, I heard the snap of the lock echo against the trees. That was all it took for the tears to start.
I just realized as I was typing this that I realized that today marks the 7th anniversary of his death. The universe works in strange ways.
Here I sit, waiting with dread to sift through the contents of that chest.
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