My brother had our parents’ stuff laid out like a well-organized garage sale with no price tags. Relatives were picking up and putting down my mother’s costume jewelry which was arranged in rows on the basement ping pong table.
I found a locket that had been my great grandmother’s and put it in my pocket, misclassified, I guess, with the jewelry that didn’t matter much. My mother’s tangled nest of wristwatches, including the tiny gold watch with her initials on the back that was her high school graduation present, sat in an old gift box next to my father’s tarnished tie clips and cufflinks, rarely used since he always wore short sleeved dress shirts and clip-on ties. Seeing their things displayed made me feel like I was shopping rather than inheriting.
I left my parents’ house that day with pockets full of watches I would never wear, an old bait…
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